Hot Ticket: CMU 'Faces of Work' festival; 'Welcome to Night Vale' onstage

| Wednesday, March 19, 2014, 9:00 p.m.


Flamenco performance will open exhibit

Based in State College, artist Micaela Amateau Amato creates paintings and glass sculptures that are melancholic in mood and full of the mournful emotion often associated with flamenco music and dance.

That is why, this weekend, her exhibit “Cante Jondo for Tikkun Olam,” will open at the Jewish Community Center's American Jewish Museum with a special performance by Carolina Loyola-Garcia and the Alba Flamenca ensemble.

Bringing the deep song (cante jondo) and mournful emotion of Amato's artwork to life through flamenco song and dance, the intensity of the Alba Flamenca performance will pair perfectly with the artist's vivid and electrifying take on Sephardic Judaism as it relates to her Spanish heritage.

The opening reception will take place from 7 to 9 p.m. March 22 at the Jewish Community Center in Squirrel Hill, with the flamenco performance from 8:15 to 9 p.m. in the Katz Theater. The reception and performance are free and open to the public.

The exhibition continues through April 25. The museum is at 5738 Forbes Ave., Squirrel Hill. Hours are from 7:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Mondays to Thursdays; 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Fridays; 1 to 7 p.m. Saturdays and 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays. Admission is free.

Details: 412-521-8011 or

— Kurt Shaw


Klezmer festival concert

Setting a table for the poor is part of the old Eastern European traditions which also gave rise to Klezmer music. The Three Rivers Klezmer Festival will offer a concert on March 20 to benefit East End Cooperative Ministries. Admission is free, but donations are encouraged.

The program will include traditional Klezmer music, classical adaptation of it by Joseph Achron, Joel Engel and Alan Bern, as well as contemporary improvisations.

Bern, an important figure in the Klezmer revival, will perform with Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra concertmaster Noah Bendix-Balgley and clarinetist Susanne Ortner-Roberts.

The festival runs through March 29.

The concert starts at 8 p.m. March 20 at Rodef Shalom Congregation, 4905 Fifth Ave., Shadyside.

Details: 412-621-6566 or

— Mark Kanny


America's iconic objects

America's history can be defined in many ways, but one historian sees it through items from Abraham Lincoln's stovepipe hat to Dorothy's ruby-red slippers in “The Wizard of Oz.”

Richard Kurin, the undersecretary for history art and culture at the Smithsonian Institution, will be speaking on those things and others March 22 at the Senator John Heinz History Center in the Strip District. His look at the nation's iconic images is connected to the new, 762-page book, “The Smithsonian's History of America in 101 Objects.”

One of the items selected was the hat Lincoln wore on his fateful visit to the theater in April 1865. A little-known fact about the hat is it had a black band on it because Lincoln was mourning the dead of the Civil War.

Kurin will talk about how he, curators and scholars worked to select the items — and what was left out. A question-and-answer session with Kurin and Andy Masich, the history center's president and CEO, will follow. Kurin also will sign copies of the book, which will be on sale at the museum for $50.

Kurin will speak at 11 a.m. Admission is $20.

Details: 888-718-4235 or

— Bob Karlovits


from podcast to stage

Digital and online new media aren't always easy to explain to those who didn't grow up with them. Podcasting, though, is refreshingly easy. It's radio (more or less) on the Internet, with shows that you can listen to at your convenience.

“Welcome to Night Vale” is a popular podcast that's almost like an old-timey radio serial drama, about the strange goings-on in a small desert town. OK, well, it's a really strange small desert town, full of mystery, dark humor and weirdness, where no conspiracy theory is too outlandish to be plausible.

“Welcome to Night Vale” has been so popular that they've assembled a touring live show, which will be at the Rex Theater on March 26. Tickets are $25 to $30.

Details: 412-681-6811 or

— Michael Machosky


CMU festival: ‘faces of work'

The eighth edition of the Carnegie Mellon International Film Festival, which kicks off March 20, will focus on the “Faces of Work” through 12 independent films with ties to 20 countries.

Highlights of the festival include an opening-night screening of the 2013 biopic “Walesa: Man of Hope,” about former Polish leader Lech Walesa, at 7:15 p.m. at the Regent Square Theater, with an appearance by former Polish first lady Danuta Walesa. “Shipbreakers,” the final film of the late CMU professor Paul Goodman, to whom the festival is dedicated, will make its U.S. premiere at 7:15 p.m. March 21 in McConomy Auditorium.

The festival continues through April 5. Most of the screenings are at McConomy Auditorium on the CMU campus. “The Cleaner,” Peru's 2014 Oscar entry for the best foreign-language film, will be shown at 4 p.m. March 24 at Kresge Theater on the Carlow University campus, and the shortFACES Film Competition entries will be shown at 7:15 p.m. March 28 at Melwood Screening Room in Oakland.

Tickets for the opening movie and reception are $15, $10 for seniors and students. Other films are $8, $5 for seniors and students. A full-access pass is $50, $25 for seniors and students.


— Tribune-Review

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