Voice of the Arts
Katori Hall's 2010 Olivier Award-winning play, "The Mountaintop," reimagines the final night of Martin Luther King's life in Room 306 of the Lorraine motel in Memphis. Albert Jones plays Dr. King, and Bianca LaVerne Jones plays the sassy (but fictional) hotel maid Camae, who comes to bring him coffee, and stays to guide him through some late-night soul-searching.
Stephen Sondheim's Manhattan musical "Company" is directed by Pittsburgh Public Theater's Ted Pappas through Feb. 23rd. Musical Director F. Wade Russo analyzes the songs and dramatic themes of this centerpiece of Pittsburgh Public Theater's "Masterpiece" season.
Classical music fans could literally be all aTwitterâ„¢ on Jan. 27th, when Ian Hobson conducts and solos with the Carnegie Mellon Chamber Orchestra at a concert with a designated section of "Tweet Seats." Mr. Hobson talks about the program and his ties with CMU's Andres Cardenes.
Jayne Adair, of the Pgh Arts & Lectures series previews the Jan. 27th visit of writer Ayelet Waldman, wife of novelist Michael Chabon, who'll speak about her essay, Bad Mother, and her upcoming novel, Love and Treasure, which re-frames the tragic story of WW2's Hungarian gold train, found abandoned and filled with treasure.
Pittsburgh actor David Crawford gained fame as Dr. Foster in George Romero's horror classic, Dawn of the Dead. Now, he's reanimating Edgar Allan Poe in his one-man show "Poe's Last Night," which presents the writer's demise as "his greatest mystery." Mr. Crawford talks about the development of his play, and about Poe's genius.
Pianist David Allen Wehr continues his Beethoven on the Bluiff Series at Duquesne University with Violin Sonatas Nos. 4 & 5 (the "Spring" sonata) featuring Pittsburgh Symphony Concertmaster Noah Bendix-Balgley, and PSO Principal Cellist Anne Martindale Williams in Beethoven's first two cello sonatas. Mr. Wehr talks about these sonatas' roles in the development of Romantic-era music.
Pianist Rishi Mirchandani, younger brother of 2013 WQED-FM Musical Kid Suvir Mirchandani, has recorded Three Preludes by Carnegie Mellon faculty composer Nancy Galbraith for release on an all-Galbraith CD in mid-2014. Rishi tells Jim Cunningham about his interpretation of the new preludes, his musical training, what it was like to play for Lang Lang, and the process of recording in the studio at CMU.
PBT's accessibility initiatives include live audio description for the visually impaired at one performance of each ballet production. PBT's Alyssa Herzog Melby demonstrates the process of describing The Nutcracker, and talks about PBT's first autism-friendly performance on Dec. 27, 2013.
Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theater presents another Holmes & Watson adventure for the holidays. Co-stars David Whalen (Holmes) and Justin Holcomb (Watson) provide a glimpse into this adaptation that has a beautiful woman, exotic locales, a boat chase in the fog, brief violin playing, and delightful Victorian staging.
University of Pittsburgh's Mark Nordenberg hosts one of the Heinz Chapel Choir's holiday concerts (Dec. 4, live at 7:30 pm on WQED-FM) for the final time as Chancellor. He shares with fellow Thiel College graduate Jim Cunningham his memories of these annual holiday concerts and the many accomplishments of the University through its history and during his tenure as Chancellor.