University of Pittsburgh
October 27, 2005

Pitt Repertory Theatre Presents Shakespeare's Pericles

Memory Speaks! seminar to accompany play

Sharon Blake


Cell: 412-277-6926

PITTSBURGH—The University of Pittsburgh Repertory Theatre presents Pericles, Shakespeare's fable of fortune, forgetting, and fantastic voyage through the Mediterranean, directed by Eduard Butenko. Pericles runs through Nov. 6 at the Charity Randall Theatre, located in the Stephen Foster Memorial, Forbes Avenue and Bigelow Boulevard, Oakland. Performances are Tuesdays through Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. For ticket information, call 412-624-7529 or visit

The Shakespearean tale is of one man's fantastic voyage through the Mediterranean and his wondrous romantic adventures along the way. Pericles, Prince of Tyre, risks life, family, and his own integrity in this journey punctuated with unexpected storms and famines as well as some surprising phenomena, including abduction and resurrection. Haunted by the remembrance of his father, the prince spends his time trying to forget the wife and daughter he believes he has lost.

"Pericles is eclectic by genre," says Butenko, "which gives us an opportunity to synthesize in this performance many generic elements of the modern theater." According to Attilio Favorini, professor and chair of Pitt's Department of Theatre Arts, Pericles in many ways is an "answer" to Shakespeare's earlier masterpiece, Hamlet, and ties in with this season's theme of memory.

Butenko, who began his theater career as an actor, has directed more than 60 dramatic performances. Visiting from the Vaktangov Institute and Russian Drama School in Moscow where he lectures, Butenko is teaching Special Topics in Performance at Pitt this fall. His residency is underwritten in part by the University of Pittsburgh Center for Russian and East European Studies.

Pericles, as is the case with each production of Pitt Rep's 2005-06 season, will be accompanied by a free two-hour public seminar designed to connect the season's theme to contemporary ideas about memory found in cognitive science, sociology, and history. Favorini and Suzanne Nalbantian, professor of English and comparative literature at Long Island University, will present a lecture titled "Memory & Narrative," at 2 p.m. Nov. 5 in the Henry Heymann Theatre in the Stephen Foster Memorial. Peter Machamer, Pitt professor of history and philosophy of science, will moderate.