For Immediate Release
November 22, 2019

Production of Adding Machine: A Musical canceled
by Pittsburgh Playhouse at Point Park University


PITTSBURGH, PA – The Pittsburgh Playhouse at Point Park University chose Adding Machine: A Musical, for its 2019-20 Conservatory of Performing Arts season because it is a provocative piece that seeks to inspire a wake-up call to its audience.

Adapted a little more than 10 years ago from the 1923 play that demonstrates the loss of humanity and individualism in modern society, Adding Machine holds a mirror to society and shows how easily discrimination and hatred become woven in the fabric of society. As the students in the cast and production crew and the University staff who work in the Playhouse went into rehearsal and production, they found the play increasingly disturbing, and many called for reconsideration of the play’s inclusion in this year’s Conservatory Season.

On Thursday, November 21, Steven Breese, University Artistic Director and Dean of the Conservatory of Performing Arts, convened a town hall at which more than 200 theatre students, faculty and staff discussed their concerns with the play. As a result of that discussion, Dean Breese, on behalf of the University, decided there was no clear path forward and announced the cancellation of the show.

“As a University, we are very proud of our theatre students for their courage to stand up for their beliefs and act according to their values,” Breese said. “The town hall was a step forward.”

The University faculty, staff and students are committed to continuing their dialogue, beginning with a series of town hall events starting the week after Thanksgiving break. In addition, Dean Breese will review selections for future seasons with greater student input, and with the goals of continuing the Conservatory’s tradition of exceptional training and education for our student performing artists, and creating an even more inclusive community at the University.

Single ticket purchasers and subscribers may exchange their Adding Machine: A Musical ticket for a ticket to Winter Dance Concert: Bound in Before running December 6-8 and December 13-15. Refunds may also be requested. Please contact the Playhouse box office at (412) 392-8000.


Lou Corsaro
Point Park University