Originally opened almost 20 years ago, the Greer Cabaret Theater has been completely redesigned.
Pittsburgh CLO‘s Tick Tick…Boom opens at the Greer this Friday night.
By GEORGE HOOVER
If you have been to the Greer in the past, with its bare black-box performance space, cramped Back Stage Bar, so-so food, and less-than-inspiring decor, you should check out the new Studio 54-inspired interior design and the latest stage technology.
Patron flow is a significant element of the new design, improved by rearranging functions and creating a more open feel. The upscale, spacious Kara Family Lobby offers direct access to the Theater Square Garage’s elevators, the Trust’s Box Office, the entrance to Meat and Potatoes, and the Greer Cabaret Lounge and Theater. Visitors can park in the garage and walk directly to their seats in the Greer lounge or Theater without going outside, perfect for a cold winter day in Pittsburgh.
Moss Architects and DLR Group’s design for the new Greer harkens back to an era when the Theater inself was as much a part of the overall experience as the performance. No longer a non-descript space, the new Greer and its lobby and lounge are intimate, inviting, cool-looking, and friendly.
The Theater itself features a fixed proscenium stage. Banquettes have replaced high-top tables on the perimeter. The bar-rail seating at the rear of the audience area is roomier as the is raised seating in the back of the house. Round tables on the audience floor are mostly replaced with semicircular four-tops, eliminating seating at tables with your back to the stage. The former noisy when moved chairs have been replaced with more comfortable and quiet new ones.
Wall treatments convey a modern take on old-school art deco, wrapping up and onto the ceiling. In shades of black, the proscenium has rounded top corners, which is repeated overhead in the house by neon-like color-changing LED lighting, drawing your eye to the stage. The overhead tech almost disappears in the darkness, drawing your attention to the stage as well.
Tuesday’s press tour featured a performance by Ethan Riordan from the upcoming CLO Kara Cabaret’s production of Tick Tick Boom, which showed off the improved acoustics and first-rate quality of the state-of-the-art sound system.
Open to everyone, the Lounge at the Greer Cabaret will upscale bistro fare and craft cocktails. You won’t need to show tickets for drinks or meals at the Cabaret Lounge. Reservations are suggested for dinner or brunch. Bar and table seating is also available on a first-come, first-served basis.
The Pittsburgh Trusts Cabaret series and CLO’s Kara Cabaret call the Greer home.
For Trust Cabaret programming, visit: https://trustarts.org/pct_home/events/series/trust-cabaret-series
For Pittsburgh CLO’s Kara Cabaret programming, visit: https://www.pittsburghclo.org
If you are a fan of the flexibility that a black-box space affords a production, even if it is a bit boring to the eye, perhaps if demand warrants the Trust can create one in an unused Cultural District property in its portfolio for events and productions that need that level of flexibility,
Renovation of The Greer Cabaret Theater and Lounge and the Kara Family Lobby are a project of the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust. The project was made possible by the generous support of the Eden Hall Foundation, whose chairman and president, George C. Greer, has been a long-time Trustee of the Cultural Trust.