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Arts, Sports & Culture

Shakespeare Competition Will Showcase Local Acting Talent

Fans of the Bard will have the opportunity to view and then judge short theater productions this week during "Bard Wars" at the Community College of Allegheny County. The school launches its first Shakespeare Creative Competition Festival June 28 with performances beginning at 8:00 PM each evening through June 30th.

Three local amateur theater companies will each perform 25-minute vignettes of a Shakespeare play of their choice for a panel of judges that will pick a winner with the help of the audience. George Jaber, Chair of Humanities and producer at the South Campus of CCAC, said the winner will receive a pretty special prize.

"Based on the voting tallies, the winning company can produce a full-length Shakespeare play, whether it's the one that their scene is from or something that they've always been wanting to do," Jaber said. That show will run from August 9-18.

Jaber described the experience as a way for people to give back through the power of performing. "The fact remains that each of us has the opportunity to affect people, and that's what I tell my students all the time — that they're extensions of my intentions and if I can teach them to pay it forward, even a little bit, then I've done a good thing, too," Jaber said.

Admission to the event is $5 or five non-perishable food items. The food will go to the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank. Jaber added all monetary proceeds will be donated to the Food Bank as well.

"They were an organization that certainly helps deal with people who are hungry, and you know, satisfying your theater advertisers is one thing, but not having food on your table to feed your children is another," Jaber said.