PICT season features return of Holmes


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Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theatre has unmasked its 2013 season, featuring the return of David Whalen and Martin Giles as literature's most famous crime-solving duo in the thriller "Sherlock Holmes and the Crucifer of Blood."

Messrs. Whalen and Giles portrayed Holmes and Dr. Watson during the 2012 holiday season in PICT's "Mask of Moriarity," the highest-grossing production in the company's 16-year history. The actors, each a Performer of the Year for the Post-Gazette, are currently onstage as various characters in the company's Chekhov Celebration.

Other events on next year's schedule with a link to the recent past include Oscar Wilde's "Lady Windermere's Fan," in a new production by PICT resident director Alan Stanford, who led the all-male "The Importance of Being Earnest" in 2012. Also, the work of Irish playwright Martin McDonagh ("The Lieutenant of Inishmore") returns to the PICT stage with the graveyard humor of "A Skull in Connemara."

The season will open in April with the Pittsburgh premiere of "Our Class" by Polish playwright Tadeusz Slobodzianek. The play is inspired by the Jan Gross book "Neighbors," which begins in 1925 Poland with Jewish and Catholic school children expressing their hopes for the future. They later face the harsh realities of invading Soviets and Nazis.

Next, Richard McMillan, winner of seven DORA Awards (Canada's Tony), returns to PICT to lead the cast of "The Kreutzer Sonata," Irish playwright Nancy Harris' adaptation of Leo Tolstoy's novella, which was inspired by the music of Beethoven.

PICT also presents the American premiere of "Don Juan Comes Back From the War," Duncan Macmillan's adaptation of the play by German Odon Von Horvath.

The PICT 2013 schedule

April 10-May 4: "Our Class," a new English version by Ryan Craig. The 2010 winner of Poland's top literary prize is presented in association with The Holocaust Center of Pittsburgh. (Henry Heymann Theatre)

May 30-June 22: "The Kreutzer Sonata" takes its title from Beethoven's sonata for piano and violin and features music performed by members of the company. (Henry Heymann Theatre)

July 11-27: "Lady Windermere's Fan": Set in the drawing rooms of high society, Lady Windermere suspects her husband of infidelity and decides to strike back with her own unfaithfulness. Nike Doukas returns to PICT as the disreputable Mrs. Erlynne. (Charity Randall Theatre)

Aug. 8-31: "Don Juan Comes Back From the War": Mr. Whalen portrays the world's greatest lover as a middle-aged veteran torn between the lothario he was, the man he has become and the crumbling world he returns to. (Henry Heymann Theatre)

Sept. 11-28: "A Skull in Connemara": PICT's long association with the works of Mr. McDonagh continues with the last of his Irish-set plays to be performed in Pittsburgh. In the play, we meet Mick Dowd, who each autumn is hired to disinter bones in sections of his local cemetery, to make way for new arrivals. At a time when he must dig up the bones of his late wife, rumors regarding his involvement in her death resurface. (Charity Randall Theatre)

Dec. 4-21: "Sherlock Holmes and the Crucifer of Blood." In Paul Giovanni's take on the Arthur Conan Doyle tales, two murders and a treasure chest filled with jewels lead to a worthy mystery for the team of Holmes and Watson. (Charity Randall Theatre)

Single tickets are $38-$48, with certain youth, student and senior-citzen discounts available. Season subscriptions and more information: 412-561-6000, ext. 207, tickethelp@picttheatre.org or picttheatre.org.

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