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Pittsburgh CLO Announces The Cast of PUMP BOYS & DINETTES

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Pittsburgh CLO is proud to announce casting for the Pittsburgh premiere of PUMP BOYS & DINETTES, January 26 - April 15, 2017 at the CLO Cabaret. A high-octane feast for the ears, this full-blown musical experience features the talented men and women of Grand Ole Opry country - a downhome group who love a slice of homemade pie and great music. Equipped with guitar, piano, bass, cello, ukulele, banjo and more, they're serving up a night of fun in this concert-style show about life's simple pleasures that received rave reviews both on and off Broadway, along with a Tony Award Nomination for Best Musical. Tickets start at $38.75 and are available online at CLOCabaret.com, by calling 412-456-6666 or at the Box Office at Theater Square.

THE CAST

JUSTIN BENDEL (Eddie) began his association with the CLO Cabaret during its inaugural show, Forever Plaid, for which he played 400+ performances. Last year, he returned for the hit comedy First Date. With over sixty musicals to his credit, he is certainly no stranger to musical theater. As a professional bassist, he is active in many genres including various orchestras, jazz groups, singing competitions such as Campus Superstar, and studio work. These vast opportunities have allowed Mr. Bendel to collaborate with the highest-caliber of musicians from around the globe. Career highlights include: Patrizio Buanne tour, Elaine Stritch, Tom Rocco, and legendary Ray Charles.

JON ROHLF (Jackson) was last seen at the CLO Cabaret in Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash. He is a Pittsburgh native and a graduate of Point Park University's Conservatory of Performing Arts as well as California University's Masters of Teaching program. Mr. Rohlf's other credits include Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson (Band Leader) and Huck Finn (Huckleberry Finn). He also devotes much of his time to education and student outreach as a teaching artist and substitute teacher throughout the tri-county area.

JULIA SMOLKA (Understudy) is making her Pittsburgh CLO debut. Ms. Smolka works independently as a musician (singer/songwriter), and she performs at local restaurants, cafés, festivals and weddings. She has worked as a performer for RWS & Associates, an entertainment agency based in New York City. Favorite stage credits include Carrie: The Musical (Split Stage Productions), The Little Mermaid, West Side Story, Phantom of the Opera (Stage Right!), Into the Woods and Children of Eden (Seton Hill). Ms. Smolka is a graduate of Point Park Conservatory where she received a BA in Acting.

Luke Steinhauer (LM) is making his CLO Cabaret debut in Pump Boys & Dinettes. Regional theater credits include: The Muny, Music Theatre Wichita, Theatre Aspen and Pittsburgh CLO. Growing up, Mr. Steinhauer attended the Pittsburgh CLO Academy, was a Mini-Star, and eventually got his Equity card in Singin' in the Rain at Pittsburgh CLO. He is a recent graduate from The University of Michigan.

ERIKA STRASBURG (Prudie Cupp) was last seen at the CLO Cabaret in Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash, and has also played Belle in Pittsburgh CLO's A Musical Christmas Carol for the past 3 years. Other Pittsburgh credits include: Three Days in the Country, Cock (Kinetic Theater), One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (barebones), Pantagleize (Quantum). NYC: St. Joan of the Stockyards (Off-Broadway, Broadway World Performance of the Year) Regional: Gypsy, Pirates of Penzance (Bristol Riverside Theater), Last 5 Years (Island Theater Workshop), The Sound of Music (Millbrook Playhouse), Ellis Island (national tour). Graduate of the Carnegie Mellon School of Drama.

David Toole (Jim) rejoins the CLO Cabaret after appearances in The Toxic Avenger and First Date (Reggie, Gabe, Casey's Father & Stoner Guy). Past credits include Pittsburgh CLO's The Student Prince ; Front Porch Theatrical's The Last 5 Years (Jamie Wellerstein) and Pittsburgh Musical Theater's Tarzan (Tarzan), Jesus Christ Superstar (Judas), RENT (Roger), Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (Joseph), West Side Story (Tony) and High School Musical (Troy Bolton). Outside of theater, Mr. Toole is one of five rotating National Anthem Singers for the Pittsburgh Penguins. He is a private voice instructor based out of the North Hills and is the front man for the Rock/Alternative band "Identity X."

DREW LEIGH WILLIAMS (Rhetta Cupp) is making her CLO Cabaret Debut. Although she's a Pennsylvania native, her theater performance background includes Chicago's Stage 773, Drury Lane Oakbrook, Profiles Theatre, Pride Films & Plays and Fremont St., to name a few. Favorite roles include "Sara Jane Moore" in Assassins, "Cathy" in The Last Five Years, "Lucienne" in A Flea in her Ear, "Dionyza" in Pericles and "Mrs. Walker" in The Who's Tommy. Outside of theater, Ms. Williams is on faculty at Clarion University and Clarion Center for the Arts. MFA in Acting from the Chicago College of Performing Arts.

REED ALLEN WORTH (Understudy) is a Point Park University graduate originally from Lisbon, Ohio. National Tour: Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief (Grover). Others: Beauty and the Beast (Lumiere), Cabaret (Clif), Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson (Andrew Jackson), Oklahoma (Will Parker).

THE CREATIVE TEAM

Benjamin Endsley Klein (Director) was born in Charlotte, NC and graduated from the University of Michigan. Director of Ann on Broadway starring Tony Award-Nominated actress Holland Taylor as Governor Ann Richards. Selected credits as director include First Date at Pittsburgh CLO, Bend in the Road at New York Musical Theatre Festival (included in Huffington Post's "The Best Shows of 2013"), the world premiere musical Hello Out There at The Adirondack Theatre Festival, the East Coast Premiere of Sick by Zayd Dohrn at New Jersey Repertory, Hairspray at Charlottetown Festival (Prince Edward Island, Canada), Notes to MariAnne at the Eugene O'Neill Musical Theatre Conference, and Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas at The Old Globe in San Diego, California.

ISAAC HARLAN (Music Director) is a graduate of Penn State University where he studied classical piano with Steven Smith. For the past six years, he has been living in NYC where he works as a pianist, music director, arranger and orchestrator. Mr. Harlan has played concerts with Norm Lewis, Eden Espinosa, Patina Miller, Renee Goldsberry and Michael McElroy, and has also been fortunate to work with other vocalists such as Leslie Odom Jr., Liz Callaway, Brian Stokes Mitchell and Angela Lansbury. Mr. Harlan also frequently works as an arranger and pianist for the Broadway Inspirational Voices.

Kiesha Lalama (Choreographer) has created more than 50 works for stage, film and television. Ms. Lalama choreographed feature films, The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Sorority Row, the hit television documentary series Broadway or Bust (PBS) and upcoming television series Outsiders (WGN). Theatrical credits include National High School Musical Theatre Awards (Broadway), All Shook Up (North Shore Music Theatre), Jesus Christ Superstar (Kansas City Starlight Theatre), Into the Woods (Arsht Center), Judge Jackie Justice, Ruthless! The Musical and A Grand Night for Singing (Pittsburgh CLO). Concert dance highlights include Shed (DCDC), Catapult (Dance Kaleidoscope), Alegria (Giordano Dance Chicago) and Torque (August Wilson Center Dance Ensemble). She has created two full-length contemporary dance Theater Productions. The Bench received rave reviews and was named by the Pittsburgh Post Gazette's "Best of Dance" Top Ten list in both 2009 and 2010. The Bench is currently under development with Titus Theatrical with a world premiere set for Fall 2017. As an educator, Ms. Lalama serves as an Associate Professor in the Point Park University Dance Department and as the Education Director for Pittsburgh CLO.

TONY FERRIERI (Set Designer) returns to Pittsburgh CLO: The Toxic Avenger, The 39 Steps, First Date. City Theatre: Feeding the Dragon, Hand to God, Sex with Strangers. Pittsburgh Playwrights Theatre: Miss Julie. barebones: One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. Lincoln Park Performing Arts Center: The Phantom of the Opera, The Little Mermaid. Quantum: The Master Builder. Other credits include designs for: Milieu Theatrics NY, Jewish Theatre of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh Opera, Carrnivale, PICT, Emelin, Northlight, Madison Rep, TheatreWorks, 1812 Productions, Playhouse REP & Conservatory, Tuesday Musical Club, Hartwood, Gargaro, Physical Theatre, Spur of the Moment, Chatham, Pitt, International Poetry Forum, Dana Phil Productions, Development Dimensions International, Saltworks and Unseam'd.

Stephanie Shaw (Costume Designer) returns to the CLO Cabaret where she previously designed costumes for The 39 Steps. Ms. Shaw is new to Pittsburgh, moving here from her previous job as Instr. Asst. Professor of Costume Technology for the University of Mississippi, Ole Miss. Some of her costume design credits include: The Spitfire Grill (Ole Miss 2015), World Builders (Contemporary American Theatre Festival 2015), Blood Brothers (Texas Shakespeare Festival 2012), The Taming of the Shrew (TSF 2011), and Hamlet (Reduxion Theatre Company NYC 2006).

Keith A. Truax (Lighting Designer) returns to the CLO Cabaret after The Toxic Avenger, First Date and Altar Boyz. Additional credits include PICT Classic Theatre's Two Tales of Terror, Oliver Twist, Sharon's Grave, How the Other Half Love and Women and Scarecrow, and Sherlock's Last Case and Romance for Kinetic Theatre Ensemble. In NYC: Good Girl Gone Bad and Walken on Sunshine Fringe Festival. Mr. Truax recently graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with an MA in Lighting Design.

Performance Schedule for PUMP BOYS & DINETTES

Wednesdays at 7:30pm
Thursdays at 1:00pm* 7:30pm
Fridays at 7:30pm
Saturdays at 2:00pm & 7:30pm
Sundays at 2:00pm

*March 23 and April 6

TICKETS
Tickets start at $38.75 and are available online at CLOCabaret.com, by calling 412-456-6666 or at the Box Office at Theater Square. Groups of 10 or more can call the Group Sales Hotline at 412-325-1582 to learn more about special discounts, priority seating and corporate discounts.

Pittsburgh CLO graciously acknowledges the generosity of The Charity Randall Foundation for its sponsorship of the 2016-2017 CLO Cabaret Series.Pittsburgh CLO Announces The Cast of PUMP BOYS & DINETTES


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