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Attack Theatre spotlights underutilized buildings at The Dirty Ball

The Attack Theatre is hosting their annual fundraiser performance event The Dirty Ball, Saturday April 12 in South Side’s Jane Street Warehouse — keeping in their tradition of using underutilized buildings for the event.
 
“Attack Theatre has a long history of going into new and interesting spaces,” said Tom Hughes, Attack Theatre marketing and special events associate, about the dance company’s ability to draw inspiration from unlikely places. He noted performances from street corners to theater stages.
                                                                                                                                 
Attack also has a record of hosting The Dirty Ball in vacant or developing spaces and showcasing the location’s potential.
 
The first Dirty Ball in 2006 was held in an underutilized 9th Street spot, the event was also held there in 2007. Today, this building is in use as the Pittsburgh Creative and Performing Arts School. And, this isn’t the only site that has been renovated post- Dirty Ball.
 
In 2008, Attack spotlighted the Pennsylvania Macaroni Warehouse, which has since become the Pitt Ohio Express. Before it was Goodwill of Southwest Pennsylvania, the 2009 Dirty Ball was hosted in the building then known as the 51st Street Business and Tech Center. The recently opened Pittsburgh Public Market — near Attack’s Strip District office — was home to the 2012 Dirty Ball when it was still an underused space.
 
Hughes explained that within a year or two of a Dirty Ball, the site becomes permanently occupied. Making it a rarity for the ball to be held in the same place twice.
 
“Every year it becomes a little more difficult,” Hughes said about the search for an up and coming locale.  “That might be bad for Attack Theatre, but it is good for Pittsburgh.”
 
Hughes joked that this search is a rewarding one and even called it a “game.”
 
“We really show the potential of every space,” Hughes said about efforts to attract attention to a venue.
 
He added that the company also draws inspiration from the changing location, incorporating different architecture into the night’s performances. Last year, he noted that a dancer was able to climb in the South Side’s Mary Street Clock Building — incorporating another level to the performance.
 
This year, Hughes noted they will be utilizing the “big, beautiful” Jane Street Warehouse to create a one-night only nightclub with installations, games, dance performances and music by TITLE TOWN Soul & Funk.
 
“We always say to expect the unexpected,” Hughes said.
 
Tickets to The Dirty Ball can be purchased online at www.attacktheatre.com/tdb14

Writer: Caroline Gerdes
Source: Tom Hughes, Attack Theatre
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