Three Penny Opera, Acrobat Down, Creta Bourzia, Hovland

Stevenson Theatre, Pittsburgh, PA

20 July 1999

posted: 14 February, 2012 13:35

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i feel like such an amateur historian doing this - documenting a slice of the Pittsburgh independent music scene from 13 years ago - and the one thing that is "complete" about this poster archive would be for the shows at the Stevenson Theatre, a short-lived venue in East Liberty that I had a hand in running. I have every poster from every Stevenson Theatre event that Doug Mousrak and myself organised, which were the majority of the shows there. Besides us, I remember Manny booking Overhang Party and Primordial Undermind there once (which was AMAZING -- a weird Luke-less lineup of Land opened up and Overhang Party were totally amazing; all stayed at my parents' house); I remember Shawn Brackbill organising Texas is the Reason there. And I also saw Ida and solo Warn Defever, when I asked Warn if he would record the Land album. That's about it though, but perhaps I am forgetting some.

The Stevenson Theatre was a pretty large space - I'd say maybe 150m2 - underneath the Artists and Craftsman's Supply shop on the corner. For some reason, the owners of the property - a couple named Ted and Debbie who also owned a yacht club and had no apparent interest in art or music - were super enthusiastic about our proposal to organise independent rock shows that only 25-50 people would come to. I think we paid them $50 to rent the space each night, but only when the shows did well. There was hardly anything in it for them; it seemed like they were genuinely just into it. (And they went above and beyond the call of duty for a band called Lowercase, which I'll explain when I get around to that poster).

I forget exactly how we approached them - a friend worked at the art store above, and everyone knew it was a great and extremely nice space that was mostly unused. Doug and I had this partnership that summer where we organised a lot of things, and we were always in this push/pull frustration with Manny and Millvale Industrial Theatre. (I've since recanted my negative feelings). 

I remember nothing about these bands except the locals. Amusing though that I'm still slapping my phone number on the flyers, and the stuff about the hardware store, which i think referred to Tru-Value Hardware on Forbes Ave in Oakland. An alternate design of this show will follow.

If you have any information to add about this archival item, feel free to get in touch.