The Kelly Strayhorn Theater was the perfect location for Friday's Evening of Arts for Autism, which supports the Arts for Autism Foundation and Pittsburgh's Joey Travolta Film Camp. After enjoying cocktails, nibbling on local treats and bidding on silent auction items, more than 150 patrons enjoyed an impromptu lobby performance from Studio 4, a local a cappella group that later opened the show inside the theater.
"Music expresses how I feel inside," said pianist and performer Dima Harmon. "I feel as though I am more fluent in music than in English." Mr. Harmon performed Alexander Scriabin's Nocturne for the Left Hand Op. 9, which he chose because of a recent surgery on his right hand. He also composed music for the short films created with his peers at the film camp.
"The Joey Travolta Film Camps are two-week camps where kids with autism can write screenplays, get involved, act and produce film. It's a great experience," said Carolyn Hare, president of Arts for Autism Foundation of Pittsburgh. Seen enjoying the performances (including illusionist T.J. Hill and aerialist Kelsey Keller) were Ryan McMullan, Joe Farrell, and Dr. Patrick and Lisa Reilly.