2023 Momentum Festival Mixes Past and Future

City Theatre’s New Play Fest includes Screening of ‘Feeding the Dragon’ doc; Tami Dixon Revisiting ‘South Side Stories’; Martin Giles’ Solo Show and More

City Theatre’s 2023 Momentum Festival of New Plays will run May 18-21, coinciding with the final week of its season finale, the rolling world premiere of American Fast by Kareem Fahmy.

The festival features public readings of three new plays in progress and a documentary featuring City Theatre’s 2016 production of Feeding the Dragon by Sharon Washington

“The Momentum festival is one of our favorite times of the year at City Theatre. We have the pleasure of inviting you into the exploration of new works in their various stages of development. This year we are excited to introduce the wildly imaginative Inda Craig- Galván to Pittsburgh audiences,” said co-artistic director Monteze Freeland. He added that City would be welcoming back Tami Dixon and Martin Giles as part of the festival, which includes “three staged readings, a community story circle, and for something new: a movie!”


All readings are free and open to the public, but registration is required. Visit CityTheatreCompany.org or call 412-431-CITY (2489).

7 p.m. Thursday, May 18: Bar Joke Tales (Lillie Theatre) – A one-man show written and performed by Martin Giles, directed by Marc Masterson. Having given up his dream of being a standup comedian, a man spins tales based on classic bar jokes and a very unusual bar.

7 p.m. Friday, May 19th: Berth Breach, Breach Birth (Lillie Theatre) – By Inda Craig-Galván, directed by Kyle Haden. Ashanti is a five-month pregnant vet to large animals. When a blow to the head while performing an ultrasound on a pregnant horse causes her to see images of her ancestors, she is forced to face her past to move into the future.

8 p.m. Saturday, May 20: When My Sleeping Dragon Woke (screening, Lillie Theatre) – Directed by Chuck Schultz and co-director Judah-Lev Dickstein; executive producers: Colman Domingo and Raúl Domingo, Edith Productions. Stage and screen actor Sharon Washington – co-writer of the new Broadway musical New York, New York (songs by Lin-Manuel Miranda, John Kander and Fred Ebb) – commits to writing a play about her fairytale childhood living inside a New York public library, but there’s an unforeseen cost – waking the family dragon she thought she’d silenced decades ago. This behind-the-scenes documentary follows Sharon as she brings her original play Feeding the Dragon to life at City Theatre.

Tami Dixon in South Side Stories, circa 2014 (Image: Heather Mull)

Noon, Sunday May 21: South Side Stories Revisited (Lillie Theatre) – One actor. Many Pittsburgh characters. In anticipation of the previously announced 2024 play, Tami Dixon begins revisiting the stories of the original South Side Stories production. The reading will include an excerpt from the 2014 script, as well as an interactive opportunity for audience members to share their own South Side experiences.

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