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September 1, 2005

Theatre season focuses on theme of memory

Theatre-goers can augment their theatrical recollection collection this season as the Pitt Repertory Theatre features plays and a companion multi-disciplinary seminar series centered on the theme of memory.

“Flashbacks, narrators, mime, mystery, amazing revelations and, yes, ‘unforgettable’ characters will enrich your theatrical memory bank for many years to come,” says Attilio “Buck” Favorini, chair of the Department of Theatre Arts, who is writing a book on theatre and memory. “We will explore the exciting enterprise of comparing and contrasting what great playwrights and great thinkers have to say about memory.”

The 2005-06 Rep season will include five plays connected to aspects about memory by playwrights including Shakespeare, Sam Shepard and Harold Pinter.

The Pitt Rep season opens with Harold Pinter’s “Old Times” (Sept. 21-Oct. 9), followed by Shakespeare’s “Pericles” (Oct. 26-Nov. 6) and Sam Shepard’s “A Lie of the Mind” (Nov. 30-Dec. 11).

Constance Congdon’s “Tales of the Lost Formicans” and Brian Friel’s “Dancing at Lughnasa” will be staged next semester. Performances take place in both the Charity Randall Theatre and Henry Heymann Theatre in the Stephen Foster Memorial.

The season will be accompanied by “Memory Speaks!,” a series of public seminars featuring discussions among prominent scientists and humanists. The ideas in the featured plays will be connected to contemporary concepts about memory in such fields as cognitive science, sociology and history.

Merlin W. Donald, a cognitive neuroscientist at Queen’s University in Canada, will kick off the Memory Speaks! series on Sept. 24 at 2 p.m. in the Henry Heymann Theatre. Donald is the author of two books on cognition: “Origins of the Modern Mind: Three Stages in the Evolution of Culture and Cognition” and “A Mind So Rare: The Evolution of Human Consciousness.”

The two-hour program, which will feature additional panelists to be announced, is open to the public at no charge.

Pitt employees who make reservations by Sept. 16 can attend the Sept. 21 opening performance of “Old Times” for free. Faculty and staff, and members of the Pitt Alumni Association, also receive a $2 discount on single tickets throughout the season. Other discounted ticket packages also are available.

For performance schedules and ticket information visit: or call 412/624-7529.

Filed under: Feature,Volume 38 Issue 1

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