Pittsburgh Cultural Trust to present hybrid 2021 Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival | Arts + Entertainment | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Pittsburgh Cultural Trust to present hybrid 2021 Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival

click to enlarge Opening day of the Three Rivers Arts Festival, Fri., June 7, 2019 - CP PHOTO: JARED MURPHY
CP Photo: Jared Murphy
Opening day of the Three Rivers Arts Festival, Fri., June 7, 2019
One of Pittsburgh's biggest, most anticipated events of the year, the Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival, will return with 10 days of both in-person and online events.

Today, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust announced that TRAF will return from June 4-13 with both online and tentative in-person events, almost a year after the in-person event was canceled and moved to a virtual format in the midst of the pandemic.

“We are thrilled to be bringing back components of in-person gathering to the Festival this year while building upon what we learned about virtual Festival elements in 2020,” says Sarah Aziz, director of the Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival and festival management for the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, in a press release.


Aziz emphasizes that the planning for the in-person events is still “committed first and foremost to the health and safety of our guests, staff, volunteers, and artists,” while also satisfying the “deep desire” to return to the Downtown Cultural District.

The hybrid model for TRAF includes keeping events free while also implementing limited capacity. While the complete TRAF schedule has yet to be announced, guests can expect advanced registration and timed ticketing for many offerings. This would extend to the Artist Market, which will host a smaller group of artists this year, as well as select live music shows, film, and visual art exhibitions, including Transverse: the 2020 Juried Visual Art Exhibition set to take place indoors at a yet undetermined location.

Unlike previous festivals, no events will take place at Point State Park and Gateway Center this year.

Access to in-person events is also subject to change based upon the status of COVID-19 and the “changing guidance” of government and health and safety experts.


Organizers also promise “enhanced virtual presentations” for this year's TRAF, and they are currently accepting proposals for “new collaborative and experimental performance opportunities” and special projects. Local and regional artists, including musicians, dancers, actors, literary, and performance artists are welcome to apply for these opportunities now through Fri., March 12.

Capacity limits, locations, registration processes, and other details will be released closer to the Festival.

While specific programs, presentations, and schedules are not yet available, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust and Dollar Bank emphasize that the 2021 festival will absolutely go on “in the safest and most enjoyable format possible.”

“Dollar Bank is proud to continue its 23-year long partnership with the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust and bring back an iconic event of Pittsburgh’s summer season,” says Jim McQuade, president and CEO of Dollar Bank. “This year, we will be able to safely share the power of art together again and experience the sense of community that the Dollar Bank Three Rivers Arts Festival brings to the city both in person and virtually.”

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