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Actress excelled in multiple aspects of theater

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Rebecca Hunt, 59, of Pleasant Hills, who was popular in local theater, died Thursday, Nov. 13, 2014.

Of the many roles that Rebecca Hunt played in community theater, her favorite was Bloody Mary, who sang the haunting “Bali Ha’i” from the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical “South Pacific,” her sister said.

“She loved playing that role,” said Terri Hunt. “She had to get into a different character to do that. It was challenging. She had to come up with a different dialect to be able to perform that role.”

Rebecca Hunt of Pleasant Hills, died Thursday, Nov. 13, 2014, in Jefferson Hospital in Jefferson Hills of complications from long-term medical issues. She was 59.

Ms. Hunt was active in local theater for years, thanks to her time as a stage manager and assistant producer at Community College of Allegheny County’s South Campus Theater from the late 1980s to around 2000, where she worked as a reservationist until she was laid off because of budget cuts.

“She was the consummate stage manager,” said George Jaber, CCAC department chair of humanities and theater professor/producer. “She was amazing.” Ms. Hunt also directed several plays there, Jaber said, and handled reservations for the campus theater, doing so without complaint even as she struggled with diabetes.

“I’ve got 13 years of seating charts, highlighted and meticulously kept,” Jaber said. “I know exactly how many people attended and where they sat.”

Ms. Hunt acted, sang or worked at McKeesport’s Little Theater, the Three Rivers Arts Festival and other venues, including the Pittsburgh New Works Festival, which features one-act play performances, her sister and Jaber said.

For years, Ms. Hunt spoke proudly of how she, as a member of the Thomas Jefferson High School jazz band, performed with noted guitarist Joe Negri in the early 1970s, her sister said. She played trombone, classical guitar, piano and other instruments.

“Within our family we always had music around. We were always proud that our parents (John and Alberta Hunt) exposed us to a wide range of music and art so we could appreciate it,” Hunt said.

Ms. Hunt is survived by her father, John Hunt of Pleasant Hills; brothers, Greg Hunt of Durham, N.C., and Randy Hunt of Bellefonte; sister, Terri Hunt of Bethel Park. She was preceded in death by her mother, Alberta Hunt.

Friends will be received from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. Sunday in Jefferson Memorial Funeral Home, 301 Curry Hollow Road, Pleasant Hills. A funeral service will be conducted at 10:30 a.m. Monday in the funeral chapel.

Bill Vidonic is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-380-5621 or [email protected].

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