The Artistic Organizations of Pittsburgh’s Cultural District Proudly Announce
LIGHTS ON! A THREE-DAY CELEBRATION OF PITTSBURGH’S CULTURAL DISTRICT:
The Official Kick-Off to RADical Days 2021 and
with Lead Sponsorship by UPMC and UPMC Health Plan
The August Wilson African American Cultural Center, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, Pittsburgh CLO, Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, Pittsburgh Opera, Pittsburgh Public Theater, and Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra mark the collective reopening of live arts experiences in Pittsburgh’s Cultural District with a weekend of free programs and special partnerships with groups throughout the region
September 9-11, 2021 | Pittsburgh’s Cultural District | CulturalDistrict.org/LightsOn
After many long months, the streets of the Cultural District will once again be bustling, the theaters and galleries will be full, and arts lovers from around the region, state, and country will gather to share their experiences, live and in person. This occasion is too important to the organizations of the Cultural District, who have decided to not let the moment pass by without celebration.
September 9-11, 2021, the August Wilson African American Cultural Center, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, Pittsburgh CLO, Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, Pittsburgh Opera, Pittsburgh Public Theater, and Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra are coming together to light up the District with Lights On! A Three-Day Celebration of Pittsburgh’s Cultural District. The free presentations are all set to take place across three locations: the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership’s Allegheny Overlook Park on Ft. Duquesne Boulevard, the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre’s Mobile Stage at the 8th Street Parking Lot at Penn Avenue, and the Trust Oasis on 7th Street.
This special celebration of the arts in the Cultural District is the official kick-off to RADical Days, an annual thank you to the public with free admission, tours, performances, and family activities offered by the organizations and attractions that are funded by the Allegheny Regional Asset District (RAD). RADical Days runs September 9 – October 10 and the full schedule will be announced in August.
In addition to the presentations of the Cultural District companies, the celebration also features arts groups from throughout the region, Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership events, and the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council’s Restart the Arts truck, which is a part of GPAC’s public service campaign to safely reengage audiences. The truck will visit festivals, community fairs, youth programs, and more throughout the month of September.
The schedule for Lights On! is growing daily, as community partners come on board. In total, 30 different arts organizations are expected to participate, as we celebrate not only the organizations of the Cultural District, but the entire arts ecosystem of our region. The anchor events from the Cultural District organizations are scheduled as follows:
Thursday, September 9
Performances and events from 5 p.m. – 10 p.m.
5 p.m. at the Allegheny Overlook Stage
Opening remarks and performance
Presented by the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership and all Cultural District organizations
6 p.m. at the 8th Street Stage
Excerpts from the full-length ballet Napoli
Three - 4,6,8
Presented by the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre
7 p.m. at the Allegheny Overlook Stage
The Nth Power
Presented by the August Wilson African American Cultural Center
8 p.m. at the 8th Street Stage
Pittsburgh CLO: Love, Laugh, Sing!
Presented by the Pittsburgh CLO
9 p.m. at the Allegheny Overlook Stage
Presented by the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust
Friday, September 10
Performances and events from 2 p.m. – midnight
2 p.m. at the 8th Street Stage
Barefoot in the Park…in the Park
Presented by the Pittsburgh Public Theater
5 p.m. to midnight throughout the Cultural District
Gallery Crawl in the Cultural District and Crawl After Dark
Opening of new exhibitions in SPACE, Wood Street Galleries, 707 Penn Gallery, 820 Liberty Gallery, and 937 Gallery
Presented by the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust
8 p.m. at the 8th Street Stage
Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra: A Season Preview
50th Anniversary of Heinz Hall!
Presented by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra
Saturday, September 11
Performances and events from 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.
11 a.m. at the Allegheny Overlook Stage
Baby Rave – a child-friendly dance and music event with a live DJ, particularly for children ages 0-5 and their families
Presented by the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust Arts Education Department and Supported by PNC Grow Up Great
2 p.m. at the 8th Street Stage
Pittsburgh Opera Resident Artists Concert
Presented by Pittsburgh Opera
Everyone is encouraged to check back at CulturalDistrict.org/LightsOn leading up to the event for updates on other arts organizations that will participate, added partners, and plenty of things to do in celebration of the arts that weekend. The schedule is subject to change, but all time slots within the listed hours are expected to be filled with community arts events.
Details on each Cultural District organization’s specific programs can be found in attached documents, and spokespeople are available upon request to discuss the events of Lights On! A Three-Day Celebration of Pittsburgh’s Cultural District. The safest way to experience these outdoor performing arts events and indoor gallery exhibitions in the Cultural District is to be vaccinated or mask up. You can also learn more about what the organizations in the District are doing to keep you safe at CulturalDistrict.org/LightsOn.
Lights On! is sponsored by UPMC and UPMC Health Plan and is the official kick-off event to RADical Days. Additional support is provided by The Heinz Endowments and Richard King Mellon Foundation.
ABOUT ALLEGHENY REGIONAL ASSET DISTRICT
For more than 25 years, the Allegheny Regional Asset District (RAD) has invested in Allegheny County's quality of life through financial support of public libraries, parks and trails, regional attractions, arts and cultural organizations, sports and civic facilities, public transit, and local municipal services through an additional, countywide one percent sales and use tax. Since its inception, RAD has resulted in over $4 billion invested in the region. Visit radworkshere.org for more information.
RAD Media Contact: Shannon Musgrave, firstname.lastname@example.org
ABOUT AUGUST WILSON AFRICAN AMERICAN CULTURAL CENTER
Named for the Pulitzer-prize winning playwright August Wilson, the August Wilson African American Cultural Center is a multi-purpose venue featuring three art galleries, live performance spaces, meeting areas, and unique educational classrooms for the young and old alike. Designed by renowned architect Allison Williams, the AWAACC is both a visually iconic landmark welcoming visitors to the eastern entrance of the Cultural District and a beacon of cultural excellence for the global arts community.
August Wilson African American Cultural Center Media Contact: Cydney Nunn, cnunn@AACC-AWC.org
ABOUT GREATER PITTSBURGH ARTS COUNCIL
The Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council champions the arts in Southwestern Pennsylvania, providing financial, professional, and political support for the arts and culture sector. Comprised of more than 600 diverse artists and nonprofit organizations, the Arts Council offers valuable research, legal and business consulting, networking and professional development opportunities so that artists, as well as arts leaders and organizations, can grow their skills and advance their practice. The Arts Council provides grants for artists and arts organizations, leads the region's arts advocacy at the local, state, and national level, and models best practices for accessibility and equity in the arts. Learn more at PittsburghArtsCouncil.org.
GPAC Media Contact: Kristen Wishon, email@example.com
ABOUT PITTSBURGH BALLET THEATRE
Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre has been Pittsburgh’s premier professional ballet company since
1969. Today, PBT is a nationally recognized ballet company of 30 professional dancers, a
training institution for over 1,200 students of all ages, and an incubator for education and
accessibility programs in classrooms, libraries and community centers throughout the region.
The company performs a wide-ranging repertoire of classical ballets, contemporary
masterworks and new commissions in more than 50 performances annually at home and on
Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre Media Contact: Denise Mosley, firstname.lastname@example.org
ABOUT PITTSBURGH CLO
Pittsburgh CLO has been a driving force behind the preservation, creation and promotion of live musical theater since 1946. As one of the largest regional musical theater organizations in the country, it is fortunate for the yearly support of nearly 200,000 audience members. In addition to producing fresh new productions of Broadway classics, the not-forprofit’s mission is to develop new works and showcase emerging talent, and has been credited with launching the careers of numerous artists such as Billy Porter, Renée Elise Goldsberry, Rob Marshall, Kathleen Marshall, Rob Ashford, Bernadette Peters and Shirley Jones. The organization’s dedication to musical theater extends beyond its six-show Summer Season at the Benedum Center to year-round programming at the 250-seat Cabaret Theater, which saw the world premieres of Up and Away and Game On in 2018 and The Double-Threat Trio in 2019. Its extensive education
efforts include the Pittsburgh CLO Academy of Musical Theater; a university internship program; New Horizons, and in-school programs Gallery of Heroes and Creative Vision. Other ongoing initiatives include the Construction Center for the Arts, the Richard Rodgers Award, the Gene Kelly Awards for Excellence in High School Musical Theater and SPARK, a festival for new small-cast musicals launched in 2018. The organization also founded the National High School
Musical Theatre Awards/ Jimmy Awards®. To further its mission to grow the art form, Pittsburgh CLO has been involved with 29 Broadway shows (32 Tony Awards®), and in 2014 produced the world premiere of An American in Paris in Paris, then on Broadway, where it won 4 Tony Awards®, and in London, Tokyo, Pittsburgh and throughout the U.S. and Europe. Pittsburgh CLO is the subject of a film starring Jeff Goldblum titled "Pittsburgh."
Pittsburgh CLO Media Contact: Becca Ackner, backner@pittsburghCLO.org
ABOUT PITTSBURGH CULTURAL TRUST
The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust has overseen one of Pittsburgh’s most historic transformations: turning a seedy red-light district into a magnet destination for arts lovers, residents, visitors, and business owners. Founded in 1984, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust is a non-profit arts organization whose mission is the cultural and economic revitalization of a 14-block arts and entertainment/residential neighborhood called the Cultural District. The District is one of the country’s largest land masses “curated” by a single nonprofit arts organization. A major catalytic force in the city, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust is a unique model of how public-private partnerships can reinvent a city with authenticity, innovation and creativity. Using the arts as an economic catalyst, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust has holistically created a world-renowned Cultural District that is revitalizing the city, improving the regional economy and enhancing Pittsburgh’s quality of life. Thanks to the support of foundations, corporations, government agencies and thousands of private citizens, the Trust stands as a national model of urban redevelopment through the arts.
Pittsburgh Cultural Trust Media Contact: Robin Elrod, email@example.com
ABOUT PITTSBURGH OPERA
Pittsburgh Opera celebrates its 83rd season in 2021-22. Established by five intrepid women in 1939, Pittsburgh Opera is viewed as one of the most vibrant opera organizations in the U.S., with a rich artistic tradition, outstanding educational programs, an acclaimed artist training program, and a progressive outlook toward the future. Its green initiative culminated in LEED® Silver certification for its Strip District headquarters, and its capacity as a true community partner has increased significantly under General Director Christopher Hahn’s leadership.
Pittsburgh Opera Media Contact: Christian Cox, firstname.lastname@example.org
ABOUT PITTSBURGH PUBLIC THEATER
The mission of Pittsburgh Public Theater is to provide artistically diverse theatrical experiences of the highest quality. Pittsburgh Public Theater also strives to serve, challenge, stimulate and entertain while operating in a fiscally responsible manner. The Public shares its resources with the community through education and outreach initiatives intended for a wide range of people with the goal of expanding and diversifying the audience while enriching the community.
Pittsburgh Public Theater Media Contact: Aja Jones, ajones@PPT.org
ABOUT PITTSBURGH SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA
Now in its 125th season, the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra is credited with a rich history of engaging the world’s finest conductors and musicians and demonstrates a genuine commitment to the Pittsburgh region and its citizens. Known for its artistic excellence for more than a century, the Pittsburgh Symphony has been led by its worldwide acclaimed Music Director Manfred Honeck since 2008. The two-time 2018 GRAMMY® Award-winning orchestra has a long and illustrious history in the areas of recordings and as early as 1936, the Pittsburgh Symphony has been broadcast on the radio. Lauded as the Pittsburgh region’s international cultural ambassador, the orchestra began regular touring in 1896 has embarked on more than scores of domestic and international tours. In 2019, Music Director Manfred Honeck led the orchestra on an extensive tour of Europe, the 25th in orchestra history. The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra promotes curiosity, skill-building, and knowledge about music through learning programs that address the needs and interests of Pre-K-12 learners, and its community engagement programs community engagement programs leverage the power of live music to support the goals and priorities of neighbors across the region. In the 2021-2022 season, the Pittsburgh Symphony will celebrate the 50th anniversary of Heinz Hall as the home of the orchestra.
Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra Media Contact: Julie Goetz, email@example.com