Pitt Theatre’s 2011-2012 Season To Explore Urban Landscapes

By: Aug. 16, 2011
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Bold collaborations and powerful plays define Pitt Theatre's 2011-2012 season. The exciting new line-up includes a daring new take on the murderously clever Sweeney Todd, an intrepid new docu-drama, The Gammage Project, that exposes the grey areas of Pittsburgh's history, and an excitingly dark and satirical examination of the price of a pound of (someone else's) flesh, Harvest.

The season kicks off in November with a first of its kind, full-scale artistic alliance between the Theatre Arts Department and The University of Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. Lisa Jackson-Schebetta joins forces with musical director Roger Zahab to mount a fresh interpretation of Stephen Sondheim's Sweeney Todd, a project that will showcase the talents of both departments as they bring London to life on stage in the Charity Randall Theatre.

In February, Pitt Rep and Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre co-produce an original docu-drama, The Gammage Project. Inspired by the 1995 murder of Jonny Gammage, cousin of former Pittsburgh Steeler Ray Seals, the production tackles topics of race, class, and the lines dividing our communities. Theatre arts professor Attilio "Buck" Favorini partners with the Pittsburgh Playwrights' Mark Clayton Southers. Together, they investigate the failures of public policy that still trouble the city of Pittsburgh, fifteen years after Gammage's death. This ground-breaking production will be held in the Stephen Foster Memorial in Oakland, and downtown at the Pittsburgh Playwrights' Theatre on Penn, connecting new audiences and communities, and creating new ways of engaging with our city's history.

Finally, visiting artist and scholar Anjalee Deshpande Hutchinson breathes life into Harvest, the Aristotle Onassis International Drama Award-winning play. In near-future Mumbai, a family struggles to survive in a world where the economy has deteriorated beyond repair, and the only way to survive is to sell yourself, piece by piece. Harvest explores the human experience in a world where life can be packaged, bought and sold as long as we never ask ourselves just how much it really costs.

Throughout the year, the University of Pittsburgh Repertory Theatre will also present a variety of innovative student-directed labs, including Funnyhouse of A Negro, Bedtime Stories, WASP, Cleansed, and the English language premier of This Girl Laughs, This Girl Cries, This Girl Does Nothing. These experimental productions range from classic works to contemporary pieces to original plays by up-and-coming authors.

2011-2012 Mainstage Productions

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

By Stephen Sondheim | Directed by Lisa Jackson-Schebetta

Music direction by Roger Zahab

November 3 - 13, 2011
Sondheim's infamous revenge tragedy, produced in collaboration with the Department of Music. Lisa Jackson-Schebetta directs an ensemble cast in a fresh take on this murderously clever classic.

The Gammage Project

By Attilio Favorini and Mark Clayton Southers | Directed by Mark Clayton Southers

February 9 - 19, 2012
Attilio Favorini and Mark Clayton Southers are in the process of co-writing an original docu-drama set in Pittsburgh that will examine the 1995 murder of Johnny Gammage and challenge thoughts on American justice.


By Manjula Padmanabhan | Directed by Anjalee Deshpande Hutchinson

March 29 - April 7, 2012
Pitt Rep closes out its season with visiting artist and scholar Anjalee Deshpande Hutchinson, who directs a diverse cast in Harvest. Set in near future Mumbai, a family struggles to survive in a world where the economy has deteriorated beyond repair, and the only way to survive is to sell yourself, piece by piece

For Tickets: Visit www.play.pitt.edu or call 412-624-PLAY

$25 single tickets, $12 students, $15 senior citizens

$20 Pitt faculty/staff/alumni

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The University of Pittsburgh's Department of Theatre Arts (founded in 1982) offers BA, MA, MFA and PhD degrees in Theatre Arts. All faculty members are active in teaching, research, and artistic projects. The department shares a philosophy of theatre education, the chief feature of which is the firm conviction that theory and practice, academic and creative work, and educational and professional theatre must be integrated for a successful program of theatre education. The University of Pittsburgh Repertory Theatre is the department's flagship theatre company with performance spaces in the landmark Stephen Foster Memorial and the Cathedral of Learning. For more information about the University of Pittsburgh Repertory Theatre, please visit www.play.pitt.edu.


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