Kat Grosso as Frank-N-Furter's golden creation Rocky, far right, and cast rehearse a scene from the cult favorite “Rocky Horror Show,” returning to McKeesport Little Theater for one weekend only. (Photo courtesy MLT)
When: Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at 7:30 p.m. Pre-show activities begin at 6:45 p.m.
Tickets: $20 for adults, $12 for students, available by calling the theater at (412) 673-1100 or online.
When patrons of McKeesport Little Theater’s 2022 debut of “Rocky Horror Show” made it clear they’d like to see it become an annual event, director Heather Atkinson took it to heart.
“We got a lot of response last year that people wanted us to do this every year, so we put in for the rights again the day after ‘Rocky Horror’ closed, and found out we were approved again the day before Thanksgiving,” she said.
With show rights acquired and Atkinson on board to return to direct, she said she started thinking about things that would carry over from the 2022 production and others she wanted to change.
The 2023 MLT edition of “Rocky Horror Show” opens today (Oct. 27), and continues for one weekend only on Saturday (Oct. 28) and Sunday (Oct. 29). All shows are at 7:30 p.m., with pre-show activities starting at 6:45 p.m.
When: Sept. 15-17 and Sept. 22-24. Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m.; Sunday matinees at 2 p.m
Admission: $20 for adults, $12 for students. Tickets available through the MLT website or by calling the theater at (412) 673-1100
The show that director Will Dixon calls “the hardest show I’ve ever done” is about a sponge who lives in a pineapple under the sea.
“The SpongeBob Musical” opens Friday at McKeesport Little Theater and runs for two weekends. Rehearsals started in June. Dixon said the musical’s intense choreography, music and dancing makes it an ambitious show for a small community theater.
The beloved children’s cartoon show — which held plenty of humor for parents as well — was adapted to a musical for all ages that opened on Broadway in 2017. That’s when Dixon and a few others who eventually became part of the MLT cast decided to take a road trip and headed to New York City to see it.
“I had not slept for 36 hours,” he said. “Still, I was on the edge of my seat. After that, I knew I wanted to direct it.”
Serra musicians and color guard fine tune the drill during summer evening band camp. (Bonnijean Cooney Adams photo for Tube City Almanac)
If you go...
Serra Catholic Marching Band presents “Wanted”
Tournament of Bands Region 8 Preview of Champions Show
Where: Penn-Trafford High School, 3381 Route 130, Harrison City
When: Saturday, Sept. 9. Gates open at 5 p.m. Serra Catholic performs at 6 p.m., followed by local bands East Allegheny at 7:15 and McKeesport Area at 8:15. Awards begin at 8:50.
Admission: $10 for adults, $5 for students and senior citizens
Serra Catholic High School's band director said fans and audiences can expect a “lighthearted, very upbeat show” when the official competition season kicks off on Saturday, Sept. 9 at Penn-Trafford High School.
Jesse Bush described “Wanted” as a “cowboy-inspired show” with musicians and color guard featured in duets, solos, and even a vocal selection.
Music includes several songs by Randall Standridge, the Eagles, Johnny Cash, and others, Bush said.
Drum major Vincent Brown said he taught himself how to play the harmonica, which is featured at the very beginning of the production. His character is the protagonist cowboy searching for antagonist wanted man Michael Aland.
Students who have performed with Kaitlyn Majewski in high school or at McKeesport Little Theater joined the watch party for the 2023 Jimmy Awards to show their support. (Bonnijean Cooney Adams photo for Tube City Almanac)
An enthusiastic group of friends, family and fellow performers gathered at McKeesport Area High School’s auditorium on Monday night to view a live stream of the 2023 Jimmy Awards.
The collaborative effort between McKeesport Little Theater and McKeesport Area School District enabled those who could not travel to New York City to support 2023 grad Kaitlyn Majewski to cheer her on as she performed as part of the competition that recognizes excellence in high school musical theatre.
Majewski and Elizabeth Forward High School student Tyler Guinto-Brody qualified for the Jimmys after being named best actress and best actor, respectively, during Pittsburgh’s Gene Kelly Awards in May.
Cast of McKeesport Little Theater’s “Gabriel.” (Tabitha Bowman photo courtesy MLT)
If you go...
“Gabriel” by Moira Buffini
Where: McKeesport Little Theater, 1614 Coursin St.
When: 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 2 p.m. Sundays, through May 14
Tickets: $15 for adults, $10 for students, $5 for members. Sold at the door, online at www.mckeesportlittletheater.com, or by calling (412) 673-1100
At the height of the second World War on the Nazi-occupied British island of Guernsey in the English Channel, one family struggles to survive. In a twist of fate, an incoherent young man washes up on the beach. Unable to locate identification, the family names him “Gabriel” and decides to harbor him despite facing possible consequences of the commanding officer of the German forces, Major Von Pfunz.
The McKeesport Little Theater is presenting “Gabriel” by Moira Buffini, beginning this week. The play was first published in 1997 and was described by The New York Times as a “deftly woven plot” that “begins generating suspense early on.” Buffini is an English playwright born in Cheshire, United Kingdom.
Another reviewer wrote that “Buffini, a daring and almost shockingly inventive playwright, derives suspenseful plot turns from these characters thrust into a dangerously close situation.”
The cast of “Little Shop of Horrors,” with Brigid Fuller as Audrey (far left) and TJ Betzner as Seymour Krelborn (far right) rehearse the “Skid Row” number from Serra Catholic's spring musical, which opens Friday. (Tube City Almanac photo by Bonnijean Adams)
If you go...
“Little Shop of Horrors”
Where: Serra Catholic High School gymnasium, 200 Hershey Drive, (412) 751-2020
When: Friday, April 21 at 7 p.m., Saturday, April 22 at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m., and Sunday, April 23 at 2 p.m
Tickets: $10 for adults, $5 for students, available from any cast or crew member, in the main office, at the door, or by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org. Rated PG-13.
Following a string of Disney musicals, Serra Catholic High School’s director and students decided they wanted to do something different this year.
They’ve been hard at work honing skills needed to not only sing and dance their hearts out, but to accommodate an otherworldly, carnivorous plant that is key to the production of “Little Shop of Horrors.” It opens Friday (April 21) at 7 p.m.
“I wanted something completely different,” director Jesse Bush said. “I wanted to step outside our comfort zone and try something new.”
Some of the cast members said they were familiar with the subject matter and music from either watching the movie of the same name or attending Elizabeth Forward’s spring musical last year – while others were not.
The story of a princess with amnesia is about to come to life at East Allegheny.
The high school’s spring musical, “Anastasia,” opens on Thursday (April 13). The story revolves around Anastasia “Anya” Romanov, who is trying to find out about her past, but ends up befriending two con men who have ulterior motives.
Although the show is not a Disney musical, it has all the elements of one — a princess, great song and dance numbers, and (of course) there’s a love story. The show is based on the 1997 animated film of the same name, and a 1956 live-action film.
Musical director Amanda Rosco said this particular musical paired well with the students who came out to audition and their skill sets. The licensing rights to “Anastasia” just became available to schools last musical season, and EA is only the third school in the area — Belle Vernon Area being the closest and most recent — to present it to an audience.
The whole cast dances all out to one of the many musical numbers in “All Shook Up.” (Bonnijean Cooney Adams photo for Tube City Almanac.)
If you go...
“All Shook Up”
Where: McKeesport Area High School, 1960 Eden Park Blvd.
When: Thursday, March 30, Friday, March 31, and Saturday, April 1 at 7 p.m., with an additional Saturday, April 1 matinee at 2 p.m.
Tickets: $10 for adults, $5 for students and senior citizens. Available by emailing email@example.com, or in person at the high school through Friday from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., and Wednesday from 4 to 6 p.m.
While almost all adults have at least heard – and many may have a favorite – Elvis Presley song, that isn’t necessarily true for all teens.
That’s unless those teens are in the cast, crew, or orchestra pit for McKeesport Area High School’s spring musical “All Shook Up,” which opens Thursday (March 30).
Characterized as an “American jukebox musical,” it was written in 2004 and premiered on Broadway the following year. And while “All Shook Up” is inspired by and features the music of Elvis, the storyline is not about Presley. The male lead character is Chad (Collin Klein), who arrives as a stranger on a motorcycle to a conservative town in the Midwest circa 1950s.
While his bike is getting repaired by mechanic Natalie Haller (Kaitlyn Majewski), Chad looks for some excitement, only to learn about the town’s Mamie Eisenhower Decency Act, which prohibits things such as “loud music, public necking, and tight pants.”
Pittsburgh and surrounding neighborhoods continue to be desirable locations to shoot films of all genres and budgets.
The region “has a little bit of everything,” said film producer and writer Mark Cantu. “You can be in a very urban environment one minute and then drive 20 minutes away and be in a very rural farming community.”
Cantu recently completed his upcoming horror-comedy, “Wolf Hollow,” filmed in and around McKeesport and North Versailles Twp.
The movie, which will premiere April 1 at Dormont’s Hollywood Theater, follows a group of filmmakers as they journey to the fictional location of “Wolf Hollow,” searching for an area to shoot a new film only to discover that they are surrounded by a family of werewolves and must fight for their survival.
The cast of McKeesport Little Theater’s production of “Deathtrap,” from left in front, are Amy Melissen as Myra Bruhl and Andrew Lasswell as Sidney Bruhl. In back are Craig Soich as Porter Milgrim, Gavin Calgaro as Clifford Anderson, and Mandy Eckenrode as Helga ten Dorp. (Bonnijean Cooney Adams photo for Tube City Almanac.)
When: Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m.; Sundays at 2 p.m., through March 19.
Tickets: Available through the MLT website, by calling the theater at 412-673-1100, or via onthestage.com.
McKeesport Little Theater’s upcoming production of “Deathtrap” definitely is a show-within-a-show thriller, but has so many twists and turns that even the most astute audience member easily could go see it a second time just to enjoy all the nuances.
There are only five characters in the whole play. As cast, they are Andrew Lasswell as Sidney Bruhl, Amy Melissen as his wife Myra Bruhl, Gavin Calgaro as Sidney’s student, Clifford Anderson, Mandy Eckenrode as psychic Helga ten Dorp, and Craig Soich as Porter Milgrim, Sidney’s friend and attorney.
Here’s a mini-synopsis, but if you plan to attend, don’t go looking up an official full synopsis and spoil the experience.
The entire two-act play is set in the Connecticut home of Sidney, a successful playwright. While he’s not completely down on his luck, he is experiencing a bit of writer’s block, which he is eager to overcome and move on to his next hit following a string of flops.