“American Falls” Premiere Brings Life to Barebones’ New Theater Space
On Thursday, May 14, AMC network contributing writer and Pitt grad Miki Johnson’s first full play will premiere at the Barebones Black Box Theater. Set in a sleepy, desolate Idaho town, “American Falls” hones in on the products of “America’s improbable experiment,” featuring six characters ranging from a beer-drinking ghost in a lawn chair to a Native American shoe salesman. The characters cycle through their daily lives, meeting one another by chance, by fate, by purpose, and by humanity, transitioning from alienation to belonging.
“American Falls” could best be cited as a modern day version of Thornton Wilder’s “Our Town,” as it emulates similar motifs and tones while the characters’ life stories progress. Throughout the play, cast members struggle to answer the inevitably haunting questions we all face throughout our lives: What is it to live? How many mysterious paths must a child take until they reach adulthood? Why do we grow old? What is death?
The Pittsburgh incarnation of the play is directed by Patrick Jordan, artistic director and founder of Barebones Productions, a theatre company whose mission is to facilitate the growth of local artists through production of challenging, entertaining, and thought-provoking plays using minimal production elements for maximum impact. After 12 years of working out of temporary pop-up spaces, Black Box is Barebones first permanent home. Cast members include Cary Anne Spear, Liz Hammond, Leandro Cano, Connor McCanlus, Dave Mansueto, Sarah Silk, Gunnar Bjornson, and John Steffenauer.
The show runs May 14 through May 31, Thursday through Sunday. Performances will begin at 8PM on all days except Sundays (6PM). Additionally, Opening Night and Friday and Saturday tickets include a reception at the Mayor of Braddock’s house with small plates and delicious drinks from Chef Kevin Sousa’s new restaurant, Superior Motors. Black Box shares space with Superior Motors and the Mayor’s residence located at 1211 Braddock Ave. Braddock, Pa.
Tickets are $30 in advance and $35 day-of-show on Thursdays and Sundays. Tickets are $55 in advance on Fridays and Saturdays. Seats are very limited, so make sure to grab your tickets ahead of time to secure your spot.