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Student Blog: Pittsburgh Playhouse's Dance Nation: Rehearsing the Routine

The cast and crew of the Pittsburgh Playhouse’s production of Dance Nation moved into the theatre, preparing for the final filming of this virtual production.

Student Blog: Pittsburgh Playhouse's Dance Nation: Rehearsing the Routine The cast and crew of the Pittsburgh Playhouse's production of Dance Nation moved into the theatre, preparing for the final filming of this virtual production. With this new space comes excitement, nerves, and change. Yet, this amazing cast and crew is ready for tech!

Dance Nation is performed in one of Point Park's three theatres, the Highmark. A seemingly regular black box theatre, the Highmark has been transformed into the 80s inspired, worn-out Liverpool Dance Works studio, complete with the dance rehearsal space, Dance Teacher Pat's office, and the changing room. The set is a theatrical playground with meticulous details, a colorful paint palette, and several various playing spaces. A few of the set details are; ceiling lights, trophies, previous dance competition photos, a water fountain, two toilets, and yoga balls. The set reflects the COVID-19 era, as cleaning supplies are out along with social distancing caution signs.

Costuming also reflects the pandemic environment, as each cast member wears a neutral, skin-colored mask. Additional masks are utilized, one being a black mask with vampire fangs, reflecting the "vampire robot babies" the script calls for. For the various dance routines, the cast wears your typical pre-teen, glitzy, tiny, dance competition costumes, one being an adorable sailor costume and another being a mature, maroon leo with an ombre skirt. When the characters are at the dance studio, each wear their own unique wardrobe. For example, the character Maev trends an anime inspired, orange rabbit hoodie with her long-sleeve black leotard.

Lighting and sound further support this production. A recurring heartbeat transitions between scenes, while the studio lights of the set gleam a harsh, artificial color into the dance room. Furthermore, a red beam connects the entirety of the set, appearing at key, pivotal scenes of the show where themes of womanhood and success are discussed. Finally, fun, angsty, powerful music concludes the production.

Overall, the Pittsburgh Playhouse's Dance Nation's set, costumes, and lightning have created a wonderful, explorative environment, one that will ultimately be supported and amplified with the released film of the production. Stay tuned for an inside look of the final filming of the show and a review of the finished product!

More information about tickets for the Pittsburgh Playhouse's Dance Nation can be found with this link. For more information about this production's work, check out my dramaturg hub here!


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From This Author Student Blogger: Mary Felix