The Downtowner June 20th

Tonight’s the Night: Third Tuesday Happy Hour at Social House 7
Tonight’s the night! Join the PDCDC for our Third Tuesday Happy Hour at Social House 7 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. You can pop in at 123 7th Street and enjoy food, cocktails, music, and dancing. Executive Chef Phillip Milton and Executive Sushi Chef Dan Forster will prepare Japanese, Korean, and Thai plates paired with sushi. A cash bar and free appetizers will be available to PDCDC members, and you can sign up to be a member at the event.
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Third Tuesday Night Happy Hour is a monthly PDCDC initiative where you can sample some of downtown Pittsburgh’s finest restaurants. All are welcome, and you don’t have to be a resident of downtown to attend.
To RSVP, please email or call (412) 235-7263.
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Allegro Dances Their Way to Highmark’s Italian StrEAT Festival
Saturday, July 8th at 5 p.m., Allegro Dance Company will be teaching an Italian dance workshop at Highmark’s Italian StrEAT Festival. Allegro is a professional Italian dance company from Wheeling, WV, and they aim to educate people of all ages on Italian culture by fusing Italian folk dance with other styles such as modern, ballet, and ballroom. Allegro tours the United States and Italy, hosting lectures, performances, and workshops.
The StrEAT festival workshop will be taught by Director and founder of Allegro Dance Company, Anna Harsh. She will be teaching two different types of dance, Circolo Circasso and a tarantella. Circolo Circasso is a mid-19th century social mix dance that consists of simple walking steps with people traveling in and out of the center of a big circle. It has various European influences, but it is popular in northern Italy. The tarantella is a group of vibrant dances from southern Italy that dates back to ancient times with each region having its own variation. Its original purpose was to rid poison from the body after being bitten by a tarantula spider. Today it is used as a celebration dance at Italian weddings and festivals.
“Both dances at the workshop are fun to learn and will be exciting for people of all ages to enjoy and appreciate a little bit of history that comes with it,” said Harsh.
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Harsh created Allegro out of college for her dance thesis project at Slippery Rock University, where she received a BA in dance. She has studied dances from 20 different regions, and her journeys to Italy have allowed her to learn and master these special dances.
“What I find fascinating as a dancer is the variations of body postures, the roles that men and women play in each dance, and the challenging footwork,” said Harsh. “But as an Italian, my favorite thing about Italian dance is the feeling you get when you are dancing with others. The joy of expression and knowing that you are a part of world history, performing steps that your ancestors also enjoyed.”
Harsh’s Italian heritage was her inspiration to create Allegro Dance Company. The name originates from the musical term “Allegro,” which is Italian for “fast tempo.” Each time she performs these dances, she pays homage to her grandparents who immigrated to the US in the early 1920s. As a part of Allegro’s effort to preserve the culture of Italian dance, they created a documentary, La Danza – Bridging time through Dance, that highlights the dances they aim to preserve. It can be found in museums, libraries, and universities across the United States and Italy.
“Today, these folk dances are slowly dying out, especially in the USA since several generations are now gone,” said Harsh. “It’s important to keep teaching and exposing this research to the next generation. Allegro’s mission is to teach the next generation so that it can live on and be celebrated.”
After the StrEAT festival, Allegro is unlocking their 24th season tour this summer with their new show, La Chiave, meaning “the key.” The show will explore northern Italy with a collection of rare and delicate dances. Their next performance is July 22nd and July 23rd in Wheeling, WV at the Upper Ohio Valley Italian festival.
Visit for more tour dates.
You can watch some of their dance highlights here.
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Have Your Voice Be Heard at the BRT Downtown Meeting
Would you like your voice to be heard on transportation in Pittsburgh? Add your input on the next phase of BRT planning. Join the Port Authority on Wednesday, June 28, 2017 from 6:30 – 8:00 pm Trust Arts Education Center, 805-807 Liberty Avenue.
The purpose of this meeting is to:
  • update you on the status of BRT planning
  • answer your questions about the planning process
  • collect your input on station placement and street design
For more information or to learn about other BRT community meetings, please visit the
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Bricolage Production Company Receives First NEA Award as Part of $82 Million for Arts Nationwide
PITTSBURGH, PA (June 14, 2017) – National Endowment for the Arts Chairman Jane Chu has approved more than $82 million to fund local arts projects across the country in the NEA’s second major funding announcement for fiscal year 2017. Included in this announcement is an Art Works award of $10,000 to Bricolage to support a world-premiere immersive theater production created in collaboration with Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh as part of its Carnegie Nexus initiative. The NEA received 1,728 Art Works applications and will make 1,029 grants ranging from $10,000 to $100,000.
“The arts reflect the vision, energy, and talent of America’s artists and arts organizations,” said NEA Chairman Jane Chu. “The National Endowment for the Arts is proud to support organizations such as Bricolage in serving their communities by providing excellent and accessible arts experiences.”
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Bricolage’s new immersive production, set to run from October 13 to November 19, is designed to alter how modern audiences interact with cultural institutions. Heavily sensory-based and intimate, the piece will take place at Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural History. Participants will embark on a personalized experience at the intersections of art and science, exploring public spaces in new ways and navigating behind-the-scenes areas normally off limits to traditional museum visitors.
“We are humbled and incredibly grateful to receive our first NEA grant in support of our adventurous project,” said Bricolage Producing Artistic Director Tami Dixon. “This work aims to deliver an experience that will give unprecedented access to our audience into the deep recesses of the museums and leave them with a profoundly personal connection to both art and human history.”
Jo Ellen Parker, president of Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh, also expressed enthusiasm for the project and the grant award.
“The museums look forward to working with Bricolage to develop an immersive production that has the potential to set a new standard for participative experiences in the theater and museum fields. We believe the project has much to teach us, and, most importantly, great potential benefits for the audiences for who will join us on this journey.”
Creative Team
Jeffrey Carpenter – Director / Co-Creator
Gab Cody – Lead Writer / Co-Creator
Tami Dixon – Director / Co-Creator
Sam Turich – Director / Co-Creator
To join the Twitter conversation about this announcement, please use #NEASpring17. For more information on projects included in the NEA grant announcement, click HERE.
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Wigle Tasting Room Brings Whiskey Back to Pittsburgh
On April 22nd, Wigle Whiskey opened their Tasting Room and Bottle Shop at the Omni William Penn Hotel at 530 William Penn Place. The Tasting Room and Bottle Shop is what they call “Wigle Fancy,” offering flights, house cocktails, and absinthe drips. The atmosphere consists of brightly colored bottles popping against gleaming white walls, with ornate glassware and silver serving platters adding a touch of refinement to their cocktails. The space is “modern-meets-classic,” being a fun, relaxed atmosphere, perfect for unwinding after a long day at the office.
You can visit the Tasting Room and Bottle Shop during their happy hour, Tuesday through Friday from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., which features half-off house and highball cocktails. They also have a build-your-own old fashioned where each guest can choose from a selection of spirits, simple syrups, bitters, and garnish, served deconstructed on a silver platter so guests can be their own bartender.
Some of their best-selling drinks are the Monongahela Straight Rye Whiskey and the Deep Cut Rye, followed closely by their Pennsylvania Bourbon. In September a favorite is the Walkabout, a rye whiskey cut with local apple cider, and in February features the Afterglow Ginger Whiskey, a wheat whiskey steeped with roasted baby ginger, grown at Chatham University’s Eden Hall.
Wigle’s name originated from Philip Wigle, who helped spark the Whiskey Rebellion in Pittsburgh during the 1790s. Now it’s the only whiskey distillery in the region and the first distillery in Pittsburgh since Prohibition. Wigle makes each of its spirits, Whiskeys, Gins, Honey Spirits and Bitters, grain-to-bottle from local, organic ingredients and never purchases from bulk suppliers. They have two other locations, The Distillery Tasting Room in the Strip District and The Barrelhouse & Whiskey Garden at 1055 Spring Garden Ave.
“Wigle is a leader in innovation-all of our handcrafted, organic spirits are inspired by the southwestern Pennsylvania region and Pittsburgh’s unique whiskey history,” said Jessica Pierson-Turner. “Several of our creations are truly one of a kind, like our Brewer’s Series collaborations with local breweries, which result in creative, Pittsburgh-specific whiskeys that also feature designs from local Pittsburgh artists right on the bottle.”
Wigle has won various awards. In 2015 and in 2016, Wigle was the most awarded craft distillery in the US by the American Craft Spirits Association. They’ve won Best in Category Craft Rye Whiskey (2015), Best in Category Wheat Whiskey (2016), and Best in Category Genever (2016) in the same double-blind competition of hundreds of whiskeys from around the country.
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Music City Downtown Weekly Calendar
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Music City Downtown Weekly Calendar 
In an effort to promote all the incredible live music Downtown, we are compiling a list of places where you can catch some tunes in the upcoming week, every week.
Thursday, June 22 – Tania Grubbs from 7:30 – 10:30 p.m.
Friday, June 23 – Trudy Holler from 8:00 p.m. – 12:00 a.m.
Saturday, June 24 – Clare Ascani from 8:00 p.m. – 12:00 a.m.
Tuesday, June 20 – Kenny Blake in Katz Plaza at 5:00 p.m.
Friday, June 23 – Daryl Shawn Acoustic Guitar at 5:00 p.m.
Saturday, June 24 – Jeremy Fisher Jr. Jazz Duo at 5:00 p.m.
Make Music Pittsburgh
Make Music Pittsburgh is a live, free musical celebration on Wednesday, June 21, the longest day of the year, with concerts on streets, sidewalks, and parks across the city. This festival is designed to highlight our local music talent and be an inspiration to play music.  Originally started in France in 1982, Pittsburgh will become one of over 700 cities playing music on June 21, 2017 as part of a global Make Music Day celebration. To learn where to take part in Downtown, visit Make Music Pittsburgh’s website and search the listings
And in the evening, get your dancing shoes on; it’s time for Dancing in the Square! Each Friday evening in June from 5:00 – 7:00 p.m., along with USA Dance Pittsburgh, we welcome performances and free instruction in Ballroom Dancing. This week features performance by Arthur Murray Instructors and instruction by David Geidel and Carlos Lopez teaching Salsa, Ballroom, and Line Dancing.
Live music every Friday and Saturday from 8:00 – 11:00 p.m.
Jessica Lee – June 25 – Jazz Brunch at NOLA
Noon – 2:00 PM
Market Square, Pittsburgh PA
Every Friday and Saturday from 10pm until 1am.
June 23rd – Kelly Carter
June 24th – DJ Sneak
Revel + Roost
Friday, June 23 – Two Tall Twins from 7:00 – 11:00 p.m.
Salsa and Bachata nights at Seviche every Tuesday from 10:00 p.m. – 1:00 a.m. and a live DJ every Friday from 10:00 p.m. – close.
Live jazz every night of the week at various times. Check out Eddie V’s website for a full calendar.
Live music on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays at 8:00 p.m. and Fridays at 6:00 p.m. For more information, visit Howl at the Moon’s website here.
Free, live music every Saturday starting at 7 PM at the Barrelhouse in the Northside! The Mash Bill series runs through September. A food truck will also be on-site at each Mash Bill.
Saturday, June 24, Second Breakfast. Food Truck Feature: Alberta’s Pizza
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Downtown Events this Week:
HiringPittsburgh Career Expo & Operation Hire a Veteran, The Power Center at Duquesne University, 10:00 a.m.
The Reel Story – Free Movie, Carnegie Library Downtown, 12:15 p.m.
Kenny Blake, Agnes Katz Plaza, 5:00 p.m.
Smithfield Critics Book Discussion Group, Carnegie Library Downtown, 12:00 p.m.
Summer Solstice 6.21 Mile, Pittsburgh Winery, 7:00 a.m.
Dancing in the Square, Market Square, 5:00 p.m.