The 63rd annual Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival, a production of the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, brings one of the most diverse lineups of performing and visual arts attractions in its history to a new-look location in the heart of Pittsburgh’s Cultural District. The iconic community celebration welcomes hundreds of artists from throughout the region and around the globe for 10 days of live music, dance, theater, gallery exhibitions, public art, creative activities, and the Artist Market—free and open to everyone.
The Festival’s key attractions are conveniently located within a few blocks of each other this year, bound by Ft. Duquesne Boulevard and Liberty Avenue between 7th Street and 9th Street. The pedestrian-friendly layout brings guests into the Cultural District neighborhood, which includes nearby parking and transportation options as well as a dynamic mix of local businesses and restaurants that will add to the Festival’s atmosphere and benefit from hundreds of thousands of visitors.
This year’s attractions
A major highlight of this year’s festival will be performances by STREB EXTREME ACTION. MacArthur Award-winning choreographer Elizabeth Streb is known for “her loud, unflinching explorations of physics” and has “devised what looks like her own Olympic sport,” according to The New York Times. The company’s performance of Time Machine marks their first appearance in Pittsburgh in more than a decade, as well as the third time that the Trust’s own Pittsburgh Dance Council series has co-presented a spectacle performance at the Festival. Performances are slated for the first weekend: Friday, June 3 at 5 pm, Saturday, June 4 at 2 and 5 pm, and Sunday, June 5 at 5 pm.
STREB EXTREME ACTION is just one of many attractions that can be found in the Backyard at 8th & Penn—a brand-new central hub for this year’s Festival and a new summer-long destination in the Cultural District that embraces artistic exploration, collaboration, and creation. During the Festival, the arts park will host daily music performances on the Backyard Stage and feature a variety of artistic installations including a new mural by artist Naomi Chambers. Guests can expect classic outdoor furniture, new landscaping with EcoGrass, and a food court as a comfortable backdrop for casual gatherings with friends and family. Next month, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust will announce a full schedule of weekly visual, performing, and culinary arts events that will make the Backyard a hot spot for residents and visitors through September.
One block away at the intersection of 9th & Penn, the Dollar Bank Main Stage will host the Festival’s Featured Music Concerts. A full lineup of regional performers is now available at TrustArts.org/TRAF, supporting previously announced headliners: GRAMMY-Award winner Cory Henry; Madeline Edwards of CMT’s “Next Women of Country” fame; multi-year Mandolin Player of the Year, Sierra Hull; the world-renowned Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra; acclaimed vocalist Lizz Wright, wild rock and soul singer Bette Smith; a massive triple-bill featuring The Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Eric Krasno & The Assembly, and The Devon Allman Project; Nick Lowe’s Quality Rock & Roll Revue Starring Los Straitjackets; legendary hip-hop group Goodie Mob featuring Big Gipp, Cee-Lo, Khujo, and T-Mo, which will be followed by an after-party in the Backyard, Late Night with UNION; and Afrobeat powerhouses Femi Kuti & The Positive Force. Additional music performances will take place on the Acoustic Stage in EQT Plaza, including performers from 91.3 WYEP’s Reimagination project.
The annual Juried Visual Art Exhibition moves to SPACE at 812 Liberty Avenue this year, featuring exceptional new art by regional artists. Coordinated by Tereneh Idia, the theme this year is “___alachian [ah-LATCH-en],” and the selected pieces explore the many cultures, communities, identities, and topographies of the Appalachian region. It’s supported by the Bessie F. Anathan Charitable Trust of The Pittsburgh Foundation and Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation. Additional gallery exhibitions include Little Girl Urn by Shori Sims, curated by Tara Fay Coleman at 707 Penn Gallery; Simply Devine: A Retrospective of Danny Devine (1982-2021) at 820 Liberty Gallery; and the recently-opened U.S. Premiere by Cinzia Campolese at Wood Street Galleries.
The Artist Market features 200+ independent artists in an open-air setting, selling handmade fine art and fine craft from 12-8 pm daily. Guests can stroll through booths in five locations: Penn Avenue between 7th and 9th Streets, 9th Street between Penn Ave. and Ft. Duquesne Blvd., the parking lot at 8th Street and Ft. Duquesne Boulevard, the Backyard at 8th Street and Penn Avenue, and the intersection of 7th Street and Penn Avenue (weekends only). Each of this year’s Artist Market locations features two sessions – first half and second half – meaning that you can discover new artists when you visit a second (or third) time.
For kids and families, there’s the Giant Eagle Creativity Zone, located at the Trust Oasis at 131 7th Street. Guests will find hands-on artistic activities curated by some of the region’s most treasured arts and community organizations, 12-6 pm every day.
A place of respite for families with young children, The Anthropology of Motherhood sponsored by AHN doubles as a functional amenity and art installation. Curated by Fran Flaherty, the space provides a semi-private feeding area, diaper changing tables, a play area for siblings, art by local artists and more at the Encore on 7th at 100 7th Street, with an entrance on Fort Duquesne Boulevard.
The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust thanks presenting sponsor Dollar Bank for its stalwart support of the Festival. Additional funding comes from Creativity Zone Presenter Giant Eagle, Allegheny Health Network, the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council, the Bessie F. Anathan Charitable Trust of The Pittsburgh Foundation, The Buhl Foundation, the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation, Colcom Foundation, The Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation, The Fine Foundation, The Grable Foundation, Laurel Foundation, and The Pittsburgh Foundation. Media partner support is provided by 91.3 WYEP, 90.5 WESA, and KDKA-TV. Operational support is provided by Flyspace Productions.
Funded by a growing community of foundations, corporations, and Festival guests, the Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival is for everyone who believes in the arts. It cannot happen without individual support. Gifts made at TrustArts.org/TRAFdonate will help make this year’s Festival possible.