If you have not yet heard of the Pittsburgh International Festival of Firsts, you're in for a treat. The festival is back and bigger than ever this year, featuring 30 companies, including artists from over 20 different countries. More than 500 never-before-seen visual and performing art events will be on display over the course of the eight-week festival right here in Pittsburgh's cultural district.
In a celebration of both local and international artists and performers, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust will host theater, dance, music, and visual art exhibits and performances in a wide array of venues and spaces ranging from traditional to experimental and unexpected. Artists will travel from countries far and wide to be at the festival, including Argentina, Chile, Haiti, Spain, Turkey, Ukraine, South Korea, Thailand, Nigeria, and New Zealand among others. The international scope of the festival strives to shine a light on Pittsburgh as a vibrant cultural hub both locally and internationally.
Driving forces behind this impressive gathering of art and culture include both Scott Shiller, member of the cultural trust since 2016, and Karla Boos, artistic director of Quantum Theatre and this year’s festival guest curator. In a recent release about the festival, Boos states, “Artists all over the world are actively expressing their citizenship in a borderless ‘country’ of the mind and spirit — one that transcends national boundaries and resists xenophobia.” Boos has used this an inspiration in curating the festival’s featured talent.
This extended event will take place from September 21- November 11, and will include everything from theatre, ballet, and visual arts, to music, dance, and even outdoor light shows and circus spectacles. For a full list of events and information about ticketing, be sure to visit the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust’s website here. This is an amazing opportunity to experience global talent right here in our backyard. Choose an event that interests you most, or branch out and attend something new. The festival is also a great opportunity to invite out of town friends to experience what makes our city so unique. We hope to see you there this fall!
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