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Professor's Play Selected for Festival

Posted on Monday, October 22, 2007

Dr. Andrew Ade, Westminster College assistant professor of English, is the author of a one-act play selected for presentation at the fifth annual Theatre Festival in Black and White, sponsored by the Pittsburgh Playwrights Theater Company (PPTC).

"A Question of Taste is a political fable about modern Africa," Ade said. "Two African men of different generations and political philosophies meet while both are in police detention. They clash over important issues that motivate their resistance fighting against their national president and, despite the discovery of surprising similarities between them, end their personal encounter in violence.

"I used to live in Africa when volunteering for the Peace Corps in Zaire; part of my play draws from the personal experience I had there. Although I originally had the idea for the play while in graduate school, I have only now been able to write it. The actual composition took about three weeks this past August," he said.

This is Ade's first participation in a Pittsburgh festival. An earlier play was included in a new-works festival while he was in graduate school, and Northwestern presented a musical he co-wrote with Anthony Billera.

The festival will present eight new short plays by playwrights with ties to the Pittsburgh area. They will be presented in alternating evenings of four plays each from Oct. 20 to 28 at the PPTC space in Pittsburgh's Cultural District on Penn Avenue. Reservations may be made by calling (412) 288-0358.

Five of the eight plays will be staged in Westminster's Beeghly Theater for a special performance Saturday, Nov. 3. The Westminster presentation is sponsored by Scrawl, the Office of Diversity Services, and the Inquiry Program. It is free and open to the public.

In addition to Ade's play, the festival and Westminster evening will include Cake Without Frosting by fj Hartland, a 1980 Westminster graduate. John Gresh, former Westminster visiting professor of theatre, will direct Mr. Ding Dong Daddy.

Ade has been with Westminster since 2003. He earned an undergraduate degree from Northwestern University and a master's and Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

Contact Ade at (724) 946-7349 or e-mail for additional information. 

Dr. Andrew Ade