PICT Classic Theatre has announced its 2018-2019 Season, “Classics in Our Times” which includes three shows, two of which are premiers. The season carries an overarching message of “Care for the child”.
PICT Artistic and Executive Director Alan Stanford commented: “The basic theme of the season is concerned with the effect we have on our children by how we treat them. And this is viewed from three different perspectives in three very different plays. Two of our productions are from the imaginations of a pair of genius storytellers from the 19th Century and the third from the mind of Pittsburgh’s own finest living storyteller.”
The opener for PICT’s 22nd Season is The Old Curiosity Shop, adapted by Stanford from the novel by Charles Dickens. It is the story of a journey made by Little Nell, a fourteen-year-old girl, and her grandfather, the proprietor of the eponymous shop. The play follows them through England as they run from the evil moneylender, Quilp, who seeks the money he lent to the grandfather as an investment. Her grandfather’s addiction to gambling has brought about his ruin. On the journey, they meet with a mixture of kindness and ill fortunes. Along the way, they encounter some of the most memorable characters drawn from the imagination of Charles Dickens.
Stanford: “In The Old Curiosity Shop, we see a young girl, abused in the name of love by an aging grandparent, whose addiction to gambling is justified in his mind by the need to provide for his Grandchild. Through this, she becomes victim to homelessness, poverty and the whims of a predator.”
The Old Curiosity Shop, adapted by Alan Stanford from the novel by Charles Dickens has its preview on Friday, November 23rdat 7: 30 pm and the show opens on Saturday, November 24th with performances through Saturday, December 15.
On January 31st, PICT will premiere Run the Rabbit Path new play by Pittsburgh playwright Ray Werner. Set in the shadow of Pittsburgh’s steel mills, two Irish American brothers and their sister struggle through the trauma of planning their father’s wake, in the kitchen where he died the day before. Their father’s love guides them through the morass of emotions as they stumble onto the mystery of the rabbit path. Werner takes us through this funeral family process with all the wit, tenderness and charm for which his plays have become so loved in Pittsburgh.
Stanford: “In Run the Rabbit Path, we see how simple childhood experiences can alter a person’s life and their perspective on family members. How resentment and secrets can change each of us as we grow to maturity without answers.”
Run the Rabbit Path previews begin Thursday, January 31st through and Friday, February 1st, both at 7:30 pm. The show Opens Saturday, February 2nd and concludes its run February 15th.
The third and final show of the season will be The Heiress, written by Ruth and Augustus. Adapted from the novel Washington Square by Henry James and set in the 1850s of New York City, The Heiress tells the story of a wealthy but insecure young woman, desperate for love, who meets a dashing but penniless bachelor. Despite the influence of her overly controlling father, she dreams and hopes. Is this the prince she hoped would come along or a money-hungry scoundrel taking advantage of an innocent girl? Is she finally blessed by good fortune or terribly naive and falling for the charm of a handsome opportunist? This chess match uncovers true motives, true feelings, and the self-discovery that turns a shy young girl into a woman.
Stanford: “InThe Heiress, from the novel Washington Square by Henry James, we see the suppression of a woman, who. since childhood has been held in little regard by a grieving father. It is his lack of regard for his daughter that drives her to potentially the greatest mistake of her life.”
Previews for The Heiress are Thursday, April 4th, and Friday, April 5thwith performances from Saturday, April 6th to its closing on Saturday, April 27th.
PICT will present this season’s productions at the WQED Fred Rogers Studio in Oakland. Just as PICT gives new voice to the past in its productions of classic theatre, the studio itself provides a lasting connection to the legacy of Fred Rogers, as the site where Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood was taped. During PICT’s debut last season at WQED, audiences enjoyed the comfortable seating, the pleasant acoustics, the social atmosphere of the lobby, the convenient accessibility, and of course, the stories performed upon the stage. The reactions to the new venue have been overwhelmingly positive, and since its first performance in the Fred Rogers Studio, PICT has experienced a steady increase in new patrons.” All performances are at 7:30 pm.
As a prelude to its Season opening, the company will present “Play with PICT” on September 21st, 2018 at The Pittsburgh Glass Center. The event will include gourmet hors-d’oeuvre, fine wines, music, curiosities from past PICT productions, games, pop-up interactions, silent auctions, and wine and beer raffles, benefiting PICT Classic Theatre. PICT also continues its “Buy-A-Seat” campaign, through which patrons can personalize one of the new theatre seats at the WQED Fred Rogers Studio by making a contribution to the company. “Buy-A-Seat” pledges, and tickets for “Play with PICT” are available by calling 412-561-6000, or by visiting www.picttheatre.org.
Subscriptions to PICT Classic Theatre’s 2018-2019 Season are currently available by calling 412-561-6000, or by visiting http://www.picttheatre.org. In addition to the plays themselves, PICT offers several special events coinciding with performance dates that are free to ticket holders, such as opening night celebrations, post-show question and answer sessions, pre-show lectures and interviews, and food truck Fridays. Dates and times can be found at PICT’s website.
George Hoover got his start in theatre in Miami when his family ran the Coconut Grove Playhouse. His career encompasses a variety of work in both the design and technical side of motion pictures, live theatre, and television. George is a three-time Emmy Award winner, member of the Sports Broadcasting Hall of Fame, Broadcasting & Cable Technology Leadership Award winner, Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers Life Fellow, and most importantly a passionate theatre person and generally handy guy.