Shows & Tickets
HOW I LEARNED WHAT I LEARNED
March 5 - April 5, 2015
co-conceived with and directed by Todd Kreidler
Two years before his death in 2005, August Wilson wrote and performed this one-man play about the power of art and the power of possibility. Recently produced at New York's Signature Theatre and directed by Todd Kreidler, Wilson's friend and protege, How I Learned explores his days as a struggling young writer in Pittsburgh's Hill District and how the neighborhood and its people inspired his amazing cycle of plays about the African-American experience. A must-see theatrical event.
RUN TIME: Approximately 1 hour and 40-minutes with no intermission.
EUGENE LEE (Performer) Mr. Lee's career as an actor goes back as far as a command performance in a University Drama Department production of A Raisin in the Sun for President Lyndon Johnson on his Texas ranch in 1972 and television episodes of "Dallas," "Good Times," "The White Shadow," "The Guiding Light," "The District," "The Women of Brewster Place" with Oprah Winfrey, "The Jackson Five: An American Dream," and features Blacklisted, Coach Carter, and the indie feature, Wolf. On the professional stage he was in the original cast of the Pulitzer Prize-winning, A Soldier's Play. Other Negro Ensemble Company credits include Home, Sons and Fathers of Sons, and Manhattan Made Me. He was Eli on Broadway in Gem of the Ocean, acted in the world premieres of every tongue confess and Guess Who's Coming to Dinner at Arena Stage, and True Colors Theatre Company in Atlanta productions of Fences, How I Learned What I Learned, Ceremonies in Dark Old Men, and Miss Evers' Boys. As a playwright his credits include East Texas Hot LInks, Fear Itself, Somebody Called: A Tale of Two Preachers, Killingsworth, Lyin' Ass, and the musical Twist. Television writing credits include episodes of "Homicide: Life on the Streets," "Walker Texas Ranger," "Michael Hayes," "The Turks," and "The Journey of Allen Strange." Mr. Lee serves as Artist-in-Residence and Artistic Director of the Texas State University Black and Latino Playwright's Conference. Check out his web site: www.eugeneleeonline.com.
AUGUST WILSON (Playwright) was born on April 27, 1945 in Pittsburgh's Hill District and was raised there. From humble beginnings, he went on to become one of the world's most acclaimed playwrights. His visionary work, known as the American Century Cycle, includes 10 plays exploring the African-American experience in each decade of the 20th century. The plays are: Gem of the Ocean, Joe Turner's Come and Gone, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, The Piano Lesson, Seven Guitars, Fences, Two Trains Running, Jitney, King Hedley II, and Radio Golf. Mr. Wilson's last play was the one-man show How I Learned What I Learned. He received numerous awards, including two Pulitzer Prizes (Fences and The Piano Lesson) and a Tony award for Fences. He was also given the only high school diploma issued by the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh. At the time of his death in 2005, he was living in Seattle, Washington. Later that year the Broadway theater located at 245 West 52nd Street was renamed in his honor.
TODD KREIDLER (Director) originally directed/co-conceived How I Learned What I Learned, with August Wilson performing, at Seattle Rep in 2003. Reimagined for an actor to perform, it premiered last season at Off-Broadway's Signature Theatre. Todd wrote the musical Holler If Ya Hear Me, an original story featuring the lyrics of Tupac Shakur that premiered on Broadway last summer. His stage adaptaion of the film Guess Who's Coming to Dinner premiered at True Colors Theatre in Atlanta and was subsequently produced by Arena Stage in Washington, D.C., the Huntington Theatre in Boston, and the Repertory Theatre of St. Louis. He is currently writing several projects including a musical with Nikki Sixx, based on Sixx's memoir and music, The Heroin Diaries, and a one-man show featuring David Foster and his music. Other Broadway credits include Radio Golf and Gem of the Ocean (Dramaturg) and the revival of Fences (Associate Director). Todd co-founded the August Wilson Monologue Competition, a national program aimed at integrating August Wilson's work into high school curriculums. He lives in the Pittsburgh area with wife, Erin Annarella, and son, Evan August.
DAVID GALLO (Scenic and Projection Designer) is an award-winning scenic designer and visual storyteller. His work can be seen daily in more than a dozen cities worldwide. Mr. Gallo has designed more than 30 Broadway plays and musicals and is the recipient of the esteemed Tony Award. David designed the premiere productions of August Wilson's later works including King Hedley II, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, Jitney, Gem of the Ocean, and Radio Golf which garnered him two Tony Award nominations for Best Scenic Design. As creative director for jam band Phish's New Year's Eve epic arena extravaganzas, he provides a complete vision for every aspect of the experience. He was honored with The Tony Award for Best Scenic Design of The Drowsy Chaperone and is also the recipient of the Obie for Sustained Excellence in Set Design, multiple NAACP, Drama Desk, Lucille Lortel, American Theater Wing, Hewes Design, Ovation, and LA Critics Circle awards. David is currently serving as production designer for the television show "Sesame Street" where he has been brought on to re-imagine the neighborhood which has remained largely unchanged for 45 years.
CONSTANZA ROMERO (Costume Designer) Ms. Romero's Costume Design credits include Broadway: The Mountaintop, August Wilson's Fences (associate producer, and Tony nomination), Gem of the Ocean (Tony nomination), Seven Guitars, and The Piano Lesson. Among other regional theaters: Seattle Rep (resident artist), Goodman Theatre, Huntington Theatre Company, Mark Taper Forum (2003 Ovation Award for Best Costume Design, Gem of the Ocean), The Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Crossroads Theatre Company, Intiman Theatre, A Contemporary Theatre, Yale Repertory Theatre, and Milwaukee Rep. Ms. Romero taught costume design at the University of Washington, as well as scenic design at the University of California at Santa Cruz. Additionally, Ms. Romero designed the artwork for both the Broadway productions and publications of Two Trains Running and Seven Guitars. Ms. Romero received an M.F.A. from Yale School of Drama and currently resides in Seattle with Azula Carmen Wilson, her daughter with her late husband August Wilson. She currently serves as the Executor of the Estate of August Wilson, and has ushered many productions of the plays in the American Century Cycle, both nationally and abroad, as well as the New York premiere at Signature Theatre and True Colors productions of How I Learned What I Learned.
THOM WEAVER (Lighting Designer) previously designed How I Learned What I Learned for Signature Theatre in New York City (AUDELCO Award). New York: Teller's Play Dead, The Liquid Plain, King Hedley II (Signature Theatre, AUDELCO Award), Frankestein (37 Arts), Masked (DR2), Lincoln Center Festival, New York Musical Theatre Festival, Lincoln Center Institute, Cherry Lane, York, and the Summer Play Festival among others. Philadelphia: Arden, Philadelphia Theatre Company, Wilma, Walnut, Theatre Exile, 1812, Azuka, New Paradise Laboratories, Headlong, Ego Po, Curtis Opera, and Flashpoint Theatre Company, where he is Artistic Director. Regionally: Pittsburgh Public Theater (Macbeth, Twelfth Night with director Todd Kreidler), Milwaukee Rep, George Street Playhouse, Portland Center Stage, Berkshire Theatre Festival, Roundhouse, City Theatre, Shakespeare Theatre, CenterStage, Cincinnat Playhouse, Folger, Cleveland Playhouse, Syracuse Stage, California Shakespeare Theater, Asolo, Hangar, Children's Theatre Company, Williamstown, Spoleto, and Yale Rep. Additional awards: Three Barrymores (18 nominations), three Helen Hayes nominations. Education: Carnegie Mellon and Yale.
DAN MOSES SCHREIER (Sound Designer) Broadway: The Visit (Chita Rivera), A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, Act One, Sondheim on Sondheim, A Little Night Music, Gypsy (Patti Lupone), Radio Golf, John Doyle's production of Sweeney Todd, A Catered Affair, Gem of the Ocean, Pacific Overtures, Assassins, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Julius Caesar (Denzel Washington), Into the Woods, Topdog/Underdog, Dirty Blonde, The Tempest (Patrick Stewart), Bring in 'da Noise/Funk. Off Broadway: Father Comes Home from the Wars, Passion, Road Show, Floyd Collins, others. Recent scores: King Lear (John Lithgow), The Merchant of Venice (Al Pacino), and Disfarmer at St. Ann's Warehouse. Awards: four Tony nominations, three Drama Desk Awards, OBIE Award for sustained excellence, 2013 Dreyfus Fellow at The MacDowell Colony.
ZACH MOORE (Associate Sound Designer) over the past 17 years his designs at PPT have included the world premieres of L'Hotel, The Chief, Harry's Friendly Service, The Glorious Ones, The Secret Letters of Jackie and Marilyn, and Paper Doll; the American premieres of The Bird Sanctuary and RolePlay (also original music); as well as The Glass Menagerie, Noises Off, Thurgood, 1776, Around the World in 80 Days, Red, Electra, Circle Mirror Transformation (also original music), A Midsummer Night's Dream, Metamorphoses, I Am My Own Wife, Man of La Mancha, and Tea. Other designs include Pop! (City Theatre), Sweeney Todd and Angels in America (University of Pittsburgh Rep), House and Garden (Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theatre), Completely Hollywood (abridged) (Reduced Shakespeare Company), Falsettos (Huntington Theatre), Paper Doll (Long Wharf Theatre), and Fully Committed (PPT, Dallas Theater Center, McCoy/Rigby Productions).
FRED NOEL (Production Stage Manager) marks his 26th season as Production Stage Manager at Pittsburgh Public Theater. He also completed four seasons with the National Theatre of the Deaf, touring throughout the United States and China. Mr. Noel was Stage Manager for the Performing Arts Season at the Model Secondary School for the Deaf in Washington, D.C. and Galludet University's tours of Europe, Argentina, Japan, India, South Africa, Mexico, and Romania. He also serves part-time as Production Manager for D.C. area Quest Productions; he assisted the company in producing Deaf West II, an international deaf arts festival, and several shows as part of the Edinburgh International Festival Fringe. His credits also include the Off-Broadway productions of Women of Manhattan. Mr. Noel is a Pennsylvania native and alumnus of Duquesne University. In Pittsburgh, he has also stage managed for Don Brockett Productions, Pittsburgh CLO, and Carnegie Mellon Showcase of New Plays.
TED PAPPAS (Producing Artistic Director) celebrates his 15th season as Producing Artistic Director of Pittsburgh Public Theater and his 22nd year of close association with the company as a director. He has staged more than 46productions for The Public, including the works of Euripides, Shakespeare, Schiller, Wilde, Gilbert & Sullivan, and Sondheim. Some highlights include Sophocles' Electra, Shakespeare's As You Like It, Kaufman & Ferber's The Royal Family, Peter Shaffer's Amadeus, Mary Zimmerman's Metamorphoses, Kander & Ebb's Cabaret, the American premiere of Alan Ayckbourn's RolePlay, and the world premiere of Rob Zellers and Gene Collier's The Chief. His career began in New York City where he worked at Playwrights Horizons, Joseph Papp's Public Theater, John Houseman's The Acting Company, New York City Opera under the leadership of Beverly Sills, and shows on and off Broadway. His regional credits are numerous and varied and include productions for Williamstown Theatre Festival, Arena Stage in Washington DC, the Kennedy Center, the Canadian Opera Company, Toronto's Royal Alexandra, and Goodspeed Musicals. He staged a hip-hop concert hosted by Harry Belafonte which galvanized the Cannes Film Festival, directed a Las Vegas extravaganza for impresario Steve Wynn, and served as choreographer for NBC's legendary series "Saturday Night Live." He studied Shakespeare with Samuel Schoenbaum and modern drama with Eric Bentley, and holds degrees from Northwestern University and Manhattan's Hunter College. He is a past president of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society, the national labor union.