ATTACKING THE OPERA. Last week Attack Theatre held an open house at its new digs, Pittsburgh Opera, located at Liberty Avenue and 25th St. in the Strip District. Spirits were high and the opera’s debonair general director Christopher Hahn was very much in attendance, offering personalized tours during the two hour event. It just may be a good fit, with Hahn proclaiming that his brand of opera is a break from the past. With Attack founders Michele de la Reza and Peter Kope bringing their own brand of energy to the wide open spaces, cool decor and exposed brick of the former George Westinghouse air brake facility, this just may be a good fit. The triumvirate of directors offered interactive opening remarks, where audience members supplied oddball nouns, adjectives and adverbs — great fun! — thanks to Rebecca Himberger. Check out Attack’s first efforts as a part of the opera’s opening production, “Eugene Onegin” (Benedum Center, Sept. 26 – Nov. 4). Then be sure to hot foot it down to the Strip for “Game Night and the Seven-Minute Dance Series” (Oct. 10). Read more in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
ARTS SPROUTING. Pittsburgh appears to be alive and well at events like the Sprout Fund’s Hothouse 2009, which spread its roots at the expansive unfinished space at Bakery Square. Although it was a huge area to fill and the active areas outside and on the upper floors were separated by the need for elevators, the mostly young crowd still turned out. My hotspots were the silent auction (plenty of young artistic talent up for grabs) and Thommy Conroy’s cloud-like ballroom. When I left, the valet parkers were working up a huge sweat (too few for too many), while the late-night crowd was just getting started.
COME TO THE HOUSE. Dance Alloy will be a part of the 16th annual Friendship House tour on Sunday, Sept. 20. From 1 – 3 p.m., visitors can take in African drummers on the sidewalk outside, then watch Greer Reed-Jones’ rehearsal of Susan Marshall’s “Arms,” slotted for the company’s December concert at the New Hazlett Theater. Upstairs guests will find a class in progress. The word is: join in or just watch from the sidelines. While the Alloy portion is free, the Friendship tour is $15 in advance and runs from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. At the Alloy, patrons can “wander in anytime, ask questions, enjoy goodies, meet the staff and, most importantly, feel free to move and be moved by the music and energy filling every corner of DAT’s building.”
UNDER NEW MANAGEMENT. River City Brass Band tour manager Linda Reznik has gone out on her own and opened River City Artists Management. Although RCBB remains her biggest client along with various offshoots like former conductor Denis Colwell and former RCBB brass-hearted player Lance LaDuke (Lance & The Maestro). I always thought that LaDuke looked like he belonged in the accounting department of a large corporation, which made his humorous outlay all the more funny. Reznik, a dance lover from way back (given former Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre members who went on to Pacific Northwest Ballet — daughter Sara DiMaiao, now raising the two grandchildren, and son-in-law, current principal Stanko Milov), is handling Kun-Yang Lin/Dancers, Verb Ballets, Ballet NY, MillerDANCE and Chicago Tap Theatre. Check out her website at River City Artists Management.