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‘Charlotte’s Web’ coming to Pittsburgh Children’s Theater

December 23, 2011
From staff reports , The Herald-Star

PITTSBURGH - Pittsburgh International Children's Theater, a division of the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, will present the stage adaptation of "Charlotte's Web" at 2 p.m. Jan. 8 and 10:15 a.m. Jan. 9 at the Byham Theater; at 7 p.m. Jan. 13 at Moon Area High School; and 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Jan. 14 at Upper St. Clair High School.

Theatreworks USA's live stage performance of "Charlotte's Web," adapted by Joseph Robinette, has toured across the country since fall 1993 and is based on the Newbery Medal-winning book by E. B. White.

The stage performance follows White's story of a pig named Wilbur, who is saved from the slaughterhouse by a gifted little barn spider named Charlotte. This tale explores bravery, selfless love and the true meaning of friendship.

Article Photos

GETTING READY – Pittsburgh International Children’s Theater will host the stage adaptation of “Charlotte’s Web,” Jan. 8-9 and 13-14. The play stars Robert Chew, Rhett Ranson Pennell, and Donna Michelle. - Contributed

A cast of six actors, directed by Rob Barron, portrays the familiar characters, including Fern, Homer and Templeton the rat, with incidental music by Jeffrey Lunden.

James D. Sandefur is scenic designer, and Anne-Marie Wright is the costume designer.

This 60-minute play is recommended for children ages 5 and up.

Since 1961, Theatreworks USA has entertained more than 68 million people in 49 states and Canada and is America's largest professional, nonprofit theater for young and family audiences. The company tours approximately 16 shows from its repertoire of 110 plays and musicals, performing for about four million people annually. Under the direction of Artistic Director Barbara Pasternack and Managing Director Ken Arthur, Theatreworks USA is the only children's theatre to receive both a Drama Desk and a Lucille Lortel Award.

Joseph Robinette is the author of 51 published plays and musicals, including "The Fabulous Fable Factory," written with composer Thomas Tierney, and "Charlotte's Web," two of the most widely produced children's plays in the United States. He has also dramatized the authorized stage versions of "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe," "The Paper Chase" and "A Rose for Emily." In 2004, he received the American Association for Theatre and Education's best play award for his adaptation of "Sarah, Plain and Tall," and in 2006, he was awarded the Children's Theatre Foundation of America Medallion for his body of dramatic works.

White is known both for his work in children's classics and in modern American essays, largely through his contributions to The New Yorker magazine. White remained a contributing editor for The New Yorker magazine from the year 1927 until his death in 1985, and is still remembered for his long-lasting column, One Man's Meat.

White is also famous for a collection of poetry, "The Fox of Peapack," and his editing of "The Subtreasury of American Humor." In the world of children's literature, White is known for "Charlotte's Web," "Stuart Little" and "Trumpet of the Swan."

Individual tickets are $11 at the door and $9.50 in advance. They can be ordered online at or by calling (412) 456-6666.

Citizens Bank is the season sponsor of Pittsburgh International Children's Theater.

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