PPT artistic director Ted Pappas stages the Prohibition-era portrait of chorus girls, criminals, cops, bootleggers who populate the Paradise Night Club. Previews began at the O'Reilly Theater Sept. 23. It plays to Oct. 24.
The play is packed with comedy, drama, murder and romance. "This landmark play launched both the gangster movie genre and the gritty backstage melodrama," Pappas said in production notes.
The 1926 play was revived on Broadway in 1987 under the direction of Mr. Abbott himself. The run lasted all of four performances. The move from the Great Lakes Theatre Festival to Broadway was viewed as a more of a salute to the famed director, whose impact on American theatre was profound, than a stab at a long run for the classic. The long-lived Abbott was born in 1887 and died in 1995.
The 16-member Pittsburgh Public cast features John Scherer (By Jeeves), Ruth Gottschall (Off Broadway's recent First Lady Suite), Ted Koch (Broadway's most recent Death of a Salesman), Billy Hartung (Broadway's Side Man and Footloose), Larry John Meyers, Brooks Almy, Joe Warik, Elena Passarello, Holli Hamilton, Daina Michelle Griffith, Kathleen Early, Daniel Krell, John Sierros, Jonathan Hammond, Darren Eliker and Gregory Johnstone.
Designers are James Noone (scenic), David R. Zyla (costume), Dennis Parichy (lighting) and Zach Moore (sound). For tickets and further information, call (412) 316-1600 or visit the Public's box office at the O'Reilly Theater, 621 Penn Avenue, in downtown Pittsburgh or visit www.ppt.org.