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Out & About

'Heart of Steel' at Ligonier Theatre

Shirley McMarlin
| Sunday, June 28, 2015, 9:00 p.m.
(from right), Eric Harris, theater manager/executive director, joins Gil Snyder, leader of Gil Snyder's Mystic Knight Blues Band, and lead actors, Levi Minear and Cait Crowley, during the reception following the musical 'Heart of Steel', held at the Ligonier Theatre on Friday evening, June 26, 2015.
Kim Stepinsky | for TRIB TOTAL MEDIA
(from right), Eric Harris, theater manager/executive director, joins Gil Snyder, leader of Gil Snyder's Mystic Knight Blues Band, and lead actors, Levi Minear and Cait Crowley, during the reception following the musical 'Heart of Steel', held at the Ligonier Theatre on Friday evening, June 26, 2015.

“If we open up our hearts of steel, true love will prevail.”

That was the lesson two star-crossed lovers learned in the musical “Heart of Steel,” which played June 26 and 27 in the Ligonier Theatre.

The musical was the brainchild of Debbie Saville of Plum, a Valley Players of Ligonier veteran performer, director and board member who was inspired by the original music of the Mystic Knights, a long-running Pittsburgh blues band.

Saville said she and Knights founder and frontman Gil Snyder worked on the show, built around the group's songs, for three years and premiered the finished product last summer in the Grey Box Theatre in Lawrenceville.

The final number had the opening-night Ligonier crowd dancing in the aisles, before they hit the post-show reception to mingle with cast, crew, creator and everyone else involved in bringing the production to the stage.

Saville directed the cast of J. Levi Minear and Cait Crowley as the lovers, Eric Harris as the narrator and Rosemary Baird as the “Ta-Da Girl.” Jim Mikula served as assistant director and choreographer.

Snyder and bandmates Johnny Roble, Joe Cunningham and Chris Owoc performed the 20-plus numbers live.

Audience members included fellow musicians Tim Lint and Sam Paul, members of the local band The Bricks. Lint gave a thumbs-up, saying the show “had a lot of good songs.”

Seen: Kenny Saville, Bill and Bobbie Saville, Diane Paul, Barry Shirey, Betty Shirey, Connie Stern, Dan and Sharon McCue, Leann Falbo, Pam Curnow, Sherry Critchfield, Jim Torock, Dave Wampole, Caryl Kostic, Gregg Robinsky and DJ Lora Kay of 107.1 WJHB radio, broadcasting live from the theater.

— Shirley McMarlin

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