City Theatre Company

October 3 & 4
1 p.m. & 6 p.m.

The next August Wilson or Wendy Wasserstein just might be among this year’s crop of emerging talents taking center stage at City Theatre Company‘s 2015 Young Playwrights Festival.

Running this weekend at City Theatre’s Hamburg Studio, the unique Young Playwrights Festival will feature original, one-act plays written by select middle and high school playwrights hailing from throughout western Pennsylvania. Don’t miss this chance to hear the authentic voices of the region’s—and perhaps the world’s—next generation of playwrights.

For its 16th annual installment, the festival’s lineup includes diverse works and theatrical storytelling—taking audiences from the Roaring Twenties in Manhattan to contemporary everyday life in rural, small town Pennsylvania. Subjects tackled by the young writers range from familial struggles, love and death, to keeping a small restaurant afloat in trying economic times—and even a bank robbery.

Ciara Sing, Michelle Do, Sasha Edwards, Tara Marsh, Kalin Jeffers, Korey Grecek.
Ciara Sing, Michelle Do, Sasha Edwards, Tara Marsh, Kalin Jeffers, Korey Grecek. Photo by Mickey Miller of Human Habits.

Winning scripts—chosen from more than 350 submissions to City Theatre’s Young Playwrights Contest—are evaluated by a literary committee of theatre professionals along with City Theatre’s artistic staff. This year’s showcased plays were penned by students from Lincoln Junior/Senior High School, Keystone Oaks Middle School, Pittsburgh CAPA 6–12, Washington High School and North Hills High School.

In Tara Marsh’s inventive play, The Bus Stop, audiences will be transported to a morning commute that finds two strangers forming a chance connection that leads to love, fate and hope. Set against the backdrop of New York City, Korey Grecek’s Central Park Days tells the moving tale of star-crossed friends Peter and Maggie, while Kalin Jeffers’ Top Hat is centered around the fate of a legendary altruistic bank robber who lands himself in a small town jail—all told through a lively tale shared between a grandfather and grandson.

Sasha Edwards’ Glad You’re Here explores the life of a 19-year old pizza dough stretcher who is juggling intense familial responsibilities with his mother, grandmother and sister, while Michelle Do’s Orchids in Manhattan will take theater-goers to the roaring 1920s in NYC for a rollicking romance involving feminist Jane and journalist Don. Don’t miss Ciara Sing’s The Lord’s Prayer—a heart-warming drama about a neighborhood Jamaican restaurant threatened with foreclosure that explores family, community and perseverance.

Starring in the 2015 Young Playwrights Festival’s ensemble cast features Charles Beikert, Jonathan Berry, Siovhan Christensen, Smith Crowe, Ethan Crystal, Tyler Jetter, Kendra McLaughlin, Moira Quigley, Olivia Vadnais and Malic Williams.

Note to families: the middle school program is appropriate for ages 10 and up, while the high school program is appropriate for ages 13 and older.

Purchase tickets.

Jennifer BaronArts & Entertainment / Jobs Editor

Jennifer has worked at the Mattress Factory, Brooklyn Museum of Art and Dahesh Museum of Art and is co-author of Pittsburgh Signs Project: 250 Signs of Western Pennsylvania. She also is co-coordinator of Handmade Arcade. Musically, she is in a band called The Garment District and is a founding member of Brooklyn's The Ladybug Transistor.