Press Release: Hope and Gravity

April 10th, 2014 / Posted in Press Releases

For Immediate Release:


A kinetic, new play from the creator of Opus

Directed by Tracy Brigden

May 3–25, 2014

PITTSBURGH, PA (April 10, 2014)—City Theatre closes its 39th season with the world premiere of Hope and Gravity, a new play by Michael Hollinger featuring dynamic, interconnected stories. Directed by Tracy Brigden, Hope and Gravity runs on City Theatre’s Mainstage from May 3–25, 2014, with an Opening Night performance on Friday, May 9 at 8pm.

Lives overlap and elevators stop on random floors as nine characters are compellingly revealed in this nonlinear comedy about fate. From an impromptu house call to an unlikely hotel hookup, chance encounters and rocky relationships unfold through nine stories and one momentous leap of faith.

“In Hope and Gravity, one random event unexpectedly triggers comic and profound consequences in nine intersecting lives,” says Tracy Brigden, City Theatre’s Artistic Director. “In the tradition of films like Magnolia and Love Actually, this jigsaw puzzle of a play fits together, piece by piece, to reveal a complete picture of the thin line that separates dreams from reality and the barely perceptible threads that connect us all.”

Michael Hollinger returns to City Theatre, where his plays Opus and Incorruptible premiered (in co-productions with Arden Theatre Company) and Red Herring was also produced. His other full-lengths include Ghost-Writer, Tooth and Claw, Tiny Island, and An Empty Plate in the Café du Grand Boeuf. Together, these plays have enjoyed numerous productions around the country (including Actors Theatre of Louisville, the Old Globe, Seattle Rep, Northlight, Portland Center Stage, PlayMakers Rep, TheatreWorks, People’s Light, Berkshire Theatre Festival, and many others); in New York City (Primary Stages and Ensemble Studio Theatre); and abroad (London, Paris, Tokyo, Athens, Poland, and Slovenia). Michael’s new translation of Rostand’s Cyrano de Bergerac (co-adapted with Aaron Posner) premiered at the Folger Theatre in Washington, D.C.; a new musical, A Wonderful Noise (co-authored with Vance Lehmkuhl), premiered at Creede Repertory Theatre. He is currently playwright in residence at Arden Theatre Company, which will premiere his next play in 2015. Michael’s awards include a Steinberg New Play Citation from the American Theatre Critics Association, a Los Angeles Drama Critics Circle Award, a Mid-Atlantic Emmy, an Edgerton Foundation New American Plays Award, four Barrymore Awards (including the F. Otto Haas Award for an Emerging Theatre Artist), nominations for Lucille Lortel and John Gassner Awards, and fellowships from the Independence Foundation, Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation, and Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. He is an Associate Professor of Theatre at Villanova University, and a proud alumnus of New Dramatists.

Hope and Gravity features Robin Abramson (Tribes, Maple and Vine, Time Stands Still, Blackbird, Mary’s Wedding, and Outlying Islands at City Theatre), John Feltch (Abigail/1702), Rebecca Harris (Seminar, The 39 Steps, Mother Theresa is Dead, The Missionary Position, Mezzulah 1946, A Picasso, Fiction, and String of Pearls), Daniel Krell (Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Murderers, Tuesdays with Morrie, Gross Indecency, and others), and Federico Rodriguez.

The creative team includes Anne Mundell (Scenic), Robert C.T. Steele (Costume), Andrew David Ostrowski (Lighting), Eric Shimelonis (Original Music), Joe Pino (Sound), and Calleri Casting (Casting).


Hope and Gravity
By Michael Hollinger
Directed by Tracy Brigden

When: May 3–25, 2014

Preview Schedule
Saturday, May 3 at 5:30pm
Sunday, May 4 at 7pm
Tuesday, May 6 at 7pm
Wednesday, May 7 at 7pm
Thursday, May 8 at 8pm

Friday, May 9 at 8pm

Regular Run Schedule
Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 7pm
Thursdays and Fridays at 8pm
Saturdays at 5:30 and 9pm
Sundays at 2pm

Weekday matinees will be performed on Wednesday, May 14 and Wednesday, May 21 at 1pm. There will be no evening performance on Wednesday, May 21.

Where: City Theatre, 1300 Bingham Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15203 (South Side)

Tickets: $35 to $55

Box Office: 412.431.CITY (2489) or

Audiences under 30 may reserve $15 tickets in advance for all performances except Fridays 8pm and Saturdays 5:30pm. On Fridays and Saturdays, rush tickets are available two hours prior to show time and based on availability.

Seniors age 62 and older may purchase $22 rush tickets at the Box Office beginning two hours before show time. Based on availability.

Groups of 10 or more are eligible for discounts. Call Kari Shaffer at 412.431.4400 x286.

City Theatre is now in its 39th season. Located on Pittsburgh’s historic South Side, City Theatre specializes in new plays, commissioning and producing work by playwrights including Daniel Beaty, Jessica Dickey, Christopher Durang, Michael Hollinger, Willy Holtzman, Tarell McCraney, and Theresa Rebeck. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Tracy Brigden, Managing Director Mark R. Power, and a 45-member Board of Directors, City Theatre’s mission is to provide an artistic home for the development and production of contemporary plays of substance and ideas that engage and challenge a diverse audience.