It all began when Dr. A. Lester Pierce met tamburitza musicians Matt L. Gouze, Frank Gouze, and Anthony Antoncic in the early 1930s. His intrigue with the folk instrument sparked an idea that has endured as one of the world’s finest, longest-running live stage shows of its kind. Dr. Pierce negotiated work scholarships for these three young musicians and formed “St. Thomas Tamburitza Trio”. In 1937, headed east with their musical variety show, stopping in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Impressed with the cultural diversity of the city, the group made a permanent home for the ensemble in the form of a work scholarship agreement with Duquesne University. This newly formed group would eventually be known as the “Duquesne University Tamburitzans”, coined by a University reporter during the late 1940s.
The Tamburitzans ensemble expanded its repertoire throughout the past eight decades to include a wide variety of folk dance and music representing international cultures. Eighty-plus years, several international tours, hundreds of performers, and hundreds of thousands of audience members later, the Tamburitzans’ show is an annual tradition for some, and a delightful new surprise for others. Year after year, generation after generation, the Tamburitzans dazzle audiences across the country with elaborate costumes and incredibly versatile musicians, singers, and dances. The talented young performers are full-time students who have chosen to continue the Tamburitzans’ legacy by bringing international cultures to the modern stage.
In 2014, Duquesne University announced that the Tamburitzans would become an independent, nonprofit organization. The Tamburitzans now audition and accept students from other Pittsburgh-based universities, as well as, Duquesne.
Tickets: $16, $18, $22, $26
Ticket sales are final; no refunds or exchanges unless the show is cancelled. In the event of a cancellation or postponement, certain service and historic preservation charges are not refundable.