Friday, July 30, 2010


Bring your chair or blanket, pack a picnic dinner or snacks and gather up the entire family to experience Shakespeare in the Park (no, not Central Park in New York City where you have to line up in the afternoon and then pray that you get a ticket—not to mention the money you spend on tolls and parking)! This park is Pleasant Valley Park on Valley Road in Basking Ridge, where a natural amphitheater provides the appropriate venue to see a play. And Macbeth is one of the Bard's most accessible tragedies—one you probably read in high school (at least your kid did). Besides, it's good and gory and comes complete with a trio of yucky witches (although I've seen them played by some sexy lady types) and a hero who has feet of clay. Too, it's one of Shakespeare's shortest plays and marches inexorably from opening post-battle scene to the bloody finish!

But, you have only 4 chances to see Trilogy Rep's Macbeth: Saturday, July 31, and Thursday, Friday and Saturday, August 5, 6 & 7, at 8 PM. So mark your calendar and travel to the hills of Somerset County NJ (not England or London or even NYC) to brush up your Shakespeare!


featuring Comedian and Emcee, Buddy Flip (from MTV, Comedy Central, HBOs Comedy in the Park, Caroline's, the New York Comedy Club, the Borgata—all over the place!)

WHEN: Thursday, August 5 (Doors open 7:30 PM, Showtime 8 PM)
WHERE: YM-YWHA of North Jersey, 1 Pike Drive, Wayne, NJ
HOW MUCH: $25 pp (advance purchase*), $30 pp (at the door)

Ticket price includes all food and drinks: beer & wine, light appetizers, beverages, coffee & dessert

WHO ELSE: Harriet Halloway, James Royale, Greg Rahner, Joe Fulton, Lisa Haim, Pat Lamb and Andy Hayward

ADULTS ONLY PLEASE (You do not have to be a member of the YM-YWHA of North Jersey to attend this event.)

*Advance tickets may be purchased at 973.595.0100, ext. 237, or contact Arlene Liebman at 973.595.0100, ext. 280 or via e-mail at .

Tables of 10 people may be reserved in advance.

Proceeds from this fundraising event will benefit the classes, programs and workshops at the Parenting Center of the YM-YWHA of North Jersey


For Adults
Splash of Color
Need a splash of color? Brighten your life with native plants and birds. Kathleen Salisbury of the Native Plant Society of New Jersey will discuss how you can attract winged wildlife with native plants on Thursday, August 5, at 7 PM.

The Native Plant Society of NJ is a statewide non-profit organization devoted to teaching about flora native to New Jersey. They offer assistance to NJ gardeners through outreach with lectures, nature walks, garden tours, and gardening and landscaping advice.

Register for this program at You may also stop by or call the Library at 973.736.0198.

For Teens and 'Tweens
Watercolor Workshop
Be inspired by ocean waves! Create your own seascape using a combination of oil pastels and watercolor paint to produce a resistant paining. The Montclair Art Museum shows you how. Teens will draw from their imagination as well as from photographic references and will bring home a finished painting at the end of the workshop. Wednesday, August 4, at 7 PM.

Register for this program at You may also stop by or call the Library at 973.736.0198. Registration required.

For Kids
Make a Splash
Enjoy the unique musical style of Presley and Melody as they lure you in with their interactive music performance. Presley and Melody translate their family experiences and feelings into music. In fact, they often perform with their entire family! With songs like Believe in Yourself, Color of Kindness and Friends, their upbeat performances splash the stage with inspiration. Monday, August 2, at 4:30 PM.

Register for this program at You may also stop by or call the Library at 973.736.0198. Registration required.


Musicals galore fill the schedule of the annual Summer Festival of Shows at the Centenary Young Performers Workshop with a cast of talented young thespians from Morris, Warren, Hunterdon, and Sussex counties. The Centenary YPW has been hailed as “a state treasure” by Peter Filichia of The Star Ledger. (Left: The Rink Rehearsal photo: Tommy Wright (Sparta), Gillian Eichler (Long Valley), Hunter Gross (Blairstown), Kali Wright (Sparta), Daniel Marion (Lafayette), Jenna Black (Hackettstown), Scott Abbondanzo (Califon)

The festival, which will feature the musicals The Rink, A Day In Hollywood, A Night In The Ukraine, and Godspell, as well as Clarence Day’s Life With Father and One Act Plays, will run August 6–15 at the Little Theatre on the campus of Centenary College, Hackettstown, NJ. And because there are so many performance dates and the tickets are so reasonably priced, these productions are a great way to introduce children and teens to the magic of the theater without breaking the bank! And Hackettstown is eminently reachable via Route 80 and is so quaint that you'll be glad you came!

The YPW is led by Broadway, film and television veteran, Michael Blevins, and is the educational arm of the Centenary Stage Company, which includes professional Equity Stage Company productions and a season of professional concert events throughout the year.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010


“The tempo throughout is gleefully brisk, with every detail nailed into place and every laugh arriving right on time.” —The Wall Street Journal

“...a pretty, proper and joyously funny production...” —The New York Times

“ (An) on-the-money production ...” —The Star-Ledger

With only a week of performances left of the critically acclaimed comedy Arms and the Man by George Bernard Shaw, The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey is thrilled to announce the addition of a performance on Sunday, August 1, at 7:30 PM. Excellent seats are available for this added performance!

For details or to purchase tickets, contact the box office at 973.408.5600 or

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


More than 60 artists from northern and central New Jersey will put their work on display Wednesday, July 28, at the Renee Foosaner Art Gallery at Paper Mill Playhouse, 22 Brookside Drive, Millburn.

The juried exhibit, the summer show of the Millburn-Short Hills Arts Center, a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting the development of local artists, will remain on view until August 19. The public is invited to a free meet-the-artists reception from 4–6:30 PM on Friday, July 30.

Though historic records are sketchy, M-SHAC, as the arts group is known, has been exhibiting its members’ work at the Paper Mill for decades, at least since the Foosaner Gallery was established in 1982, when the playhouse reopened after a disastrous fire two years earlier. The gallery was a gift of Samuel J. Foosaner, a nationally known lawyer who practiced in Newark and Millburn, specializing in tax matters. Mr. Foosaner, the author of seven books and hundreds of articles, died in 1988. The gallery is dedicated to his wife, who was an artist.

Paper Mill Playhouse: "Hairspray’s Dance Invention Contest"


To promote the first show of its 2010-2011 season, Hairspray, which opens in September, Paper Mill Playhouse has launched an online video contest entitled Hairspray’s Dance Invention. Contestants are challenged to come up with a new, original dance move to a music track that will be provided by Paper Mill Playhouse on its Web site,

The contest will be conducted via FaceBook. Video submissions will be accepted from July 19–August 20. All contestants must be at least 13 years of age to participate. The videos must use the music track provided by Paper Mill, be no longer than 30 seconds in duration, and provide the contestant’s name, age, city, state and name of his or her dance invention.

To enter visit:

From July 19–August 20, the public can vote for its favorite dance invention, and from the videos with the top number of votes, a team of judges at Paper Mill Playhouse will select eight finalists. The public will then vote again on the remaining eight finalists beginning on September 1, and the overall winner, the contestant with the most votes, will be announced on September 26, 7 PM, at the opening night performance of Hairspray.

Monday, July 26, 2010


The following events fill an exciting week in Essex County communities. Check them out; there's sure to be one or two you and your family would like to attend!

Tuesday, July 27
  • Donovan Newby Reggae Band: part of the Essex County Summer Concert Series in West Side Park, S. 13th Street and 18th Avenue in Newark at 7 PM. FREE.
Wednesday, July 28
  • Searson: part of the Summer Concerts in the Park in Meadowland Park, North Ridgewood Road and Mead Street in South Orange. 7:30–9:30 PM. For information, call 973.378.7754.
  • Family Nights at the Turtle Back Zoo, 560 Northfield Avenue in West Orange. Reduced admission rates, extended zoo hours, musical entertainment and dinner specials every Wednesday during July and August. $5. For more information, contact or call 973.731.5800.
  • Music for the Soul Series/Inside Out: Jazz with Tim Ferguson, bass; Rob Henke, trumpet; and Diane Moser, piano, at the Allwood Community Church, Chelsea and Merrill Roads in Clifton, 8–9:30 PM. $10 donation. Call 973.777.6360 for information.
  • Pushcart Players presents Cuentos Del Arbol (Tree Tales) at Premiere Stages, Kean University, Union, NJ. 11:00 AM . For tickets call: 908.737.SHOW
Thursday, July 29
  • No Name James & Butterball: Funk music in Venner Park on Bloomfield Avenue at State and Liberty Streets, in Bloomfield. 4–7 PM. FREE.
  • Marty DeRose: Essex County's Summer Music Series at Yanticaw Park, Centre Street and Park Drive in Nutley. 7 PM. FREE.
  • Teen Performance Zone: open mike for grades 8–12; poets and writers 2:30–4 PM; singers and musicians 4–5:30 PM at the East Orange Public Library, 21 S. Arlington Avenue, East Orange. Contact or 973.266.5600.
  • Allan Harris: Jazz in the Garden lunchtime series 12:15–1:45 PM at the Newark Museum, Alice Ranson Dreyfuss Memorial Garden, 49 Washington Street in Newark. $3. Contact or call 973.596.6550.
  • Passaic Valley Summer Theater presents the classic American musical, Rodgers & Hammerstein's South Pacific. Performances will be held on July 29–31 at 8:00 PM with a 2 PM performance on Sunday, August 1. All performances will be held at Passaic Valley High School, 100 East Main Street, Little Falls, NJ. Tickets can be purchased online at For more information, please contact Jennifer Shue at 973.890.2500 x2522.
Friday, July 30
  • Fifth Annual Lincoln Park Music Festival: lineup of jazz, Youth Explosion and Gospel in Lincoln Park, Broad Street between Chestnut and Pennington Streets in Newark. Noon–8 PM. FREE.
  • Bobby & the Jets, Big Shot: part of the Essex County Summer Music Concert Series at Brookdale Park, Watchung Avenue in Montclair. 7:30 PM. FREE.
  • New Voices of 2010: Pure Imagination: Summer Musical Theatre Conservatory Concert featuring members of the senior, junior plus and junior companies at the Paper Mill Playhouse, 3 Brookside Drive in Millburn. 3 PM. $22.75–$38.75. For information, contact or 973.376.4343.
Saturday, July 31
  • Fifth Annual Lincoln Park Music Festival: house music in Lincoln Park, Broad Street between Chestnut and Pennington Streets in Newark. Noon–8 PM. FREE.
  • NYU Summer Guitar Festival: Pete McCann Trio, Bruce Arnold Slide Guitar and Dave Schroeder Harmonica Duet with student duos at Whole Foods Market, 702 Bloomfield Avenue in Montclair. 2–5 PM. FREE.
  • Steve Turre: part of the Gramercy Brass Band Camp Spectacular Finale Concert at Caldwell College, Newman Center, 9 Ryerson Avenue in Caldwell at 3 PM. $20. Contact or call 212.229.7606 for more information or reservations.
  • National Dance Day: performances followed by group dance activities for children and adults, games and food at the YWCA of Essex & West Hudson, 395 Main Street in Orange. Call 973.672.9500 for more information. (If you watch So You Think You Can Dance, you will be familiar with this celebration!)
  • Latin American Festival: music, dance and foods from a variety of Latin American countries at Oskar Schindler Performing Arts Center (OSPAC), 4 Boland Drive in West Orange. 6–10 PM. $10. For more information or reservations contact or 973.669.7385.
  • New Voices of 2010: Pure Imagination: Summer Musical Theatre Conservatory Concert featuring members of the senior, junior plus and junior companies at the Paper Mill Playhouse, 3 Brookside Drive in Millburn. 3 PM and 7:30 PM. $22.75–$38.75. For information, contact  or 973.376.4343.
Sunday, August 1
  • Fifth Annual Lincoln Park Music Festival: hip-hop music in Lincoln Park, Broad Street between Chestnut and Pennington Streets in Newark. Noon–8 PM. FREE.
  • Spiritual Drumming: workshop for adults and teens led by Richard Reiter at the First Congregational Church, 40 S. Fullerton Street in Montclair. 3–5 PM. $7. For information or reservations, visit or call 973.744.6560.
  • Arms & The Man at Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey on the campus of Drew University in Madison. Final performance 7:30 PM. Good seats still available. Call 973.408.5600 or visit for tickets.


The two summer exhibitions at the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey in Summit will close September 3, 2010. You won't want to miss these two exciting exhibits:

Material Girls
in the Main Gallery
Margaret Murphy, Curator

The six New Jersey women artists of Material Girls work with materials traditionally used by women, but with a contemporary twist. Women have been associated with domestic or consumer objects such as fabric, lace, clay and paint throughout history. These six artists manipulate and transform traditional domestic materials in very nontraditional ways. Hand-sewn lace, meticulously cut paper paintings and stitched shoes running up the gallery walls all speak to labor and its role in the work of women while offering a glimpse into the artistic process. (The Exquisite Frost by J Carpenter)

Art to Wear
A solo show by Amanda Yoakum in the Mitzi and Warren Eisenberg Gallery

Art to Wear features traditional fashion items used in an innovative way. Ordinary sneakers are transformed by acrylic paint with additions like wire and chopsticks. (Takeout at left)

A graduate of Parsons School of Design with a BFA in fashion design in 2006, Amanda 's background in both fine arts and fashion design pushed her to unite the two to create wearable art. As the owner and designer of YoaKustoms, she works closely with her clients for inspiration to produce her hand-painted custom footwear.  Amanda was the first award winner of the 2009 Clash of the Customizers year-long shoe tournament which exhibits work across the country. Her current work includes a custom project for the popular canvas sneaker brand, VANS.


Single tickets for Two River Theater Company's 2010-2011 season are now on sale, but special discounts apply only through Saturday, July 31.

6 or more tickets and receive 10% Off
10 or more tickets and receive 15% Off
15 or more tickets and receive 20% Off

This offer is only available by calling 732.345.1400 or visiting the box office.
Regular priced tickets can be purchased by calling the box office at 732.345.1400.


Directed by Seret Scott
September 21—October 10, 2010

Pulitzer Prize-winner Lynn Nottage's vivid tale is set among the bustle of New York in the early part of the 20th century. Esther, a talented African-American seamstress, crafts stunning undergarments for women from the brothels to the Upper East Side. Shimmering with vital and memorable characters, this is a powerful and moving tale of romance, independence, acceptance and what lies just under our outer appearances.

Sunday, July 25, 2010


Dear theater lovers,

I just came across a special code that will get you $5 off each ticket (maximum of 6 tickets can be ordered) for Menopause: The Musical, which will be performed at SOPAC (South Orange Performing Arts Center) at 1 SOPAC Way (just off South Orange Avenue) in the village of South Orange from September 17—October 31.

Here's the story: Four women at a lingerie sale with nothing in common but a black-lace bra AND memory loss, hot flashes, night sweats, not enough sex, too much sex and more! This joyful musical parody set to classic tunes from the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s such as Puff, My God I’m Draggin’ and Stayin’ Awake, Stayin’ Awake will have you cheering and dancing in the aisles! It’s definitely not The Silent Passage anymore! Come see what nearly 11 million people worldwide are laughing about!

High art it's not, but it sure is a fun evening to spend with your girlfriends (leave the guys at home)!

But you have to act fast: when you order, mention the code MTMLOVE. Call 973.313.2787 or I don't know when the offer will be withdrawn.

Greater discounts for groups of 10+: call 800.223.7565 or


Week of July 26, 2010

Tuesday, July 27
  • Sing, Sign and Dance: Music with Nina Peterson: family oriented program of songs with sign language–noon 
  • Open Mic featuring local musician Michael Reitman—6:30–8:30 PM in the Main Library Isabel Rose Café
Wednesday, July 28
  • Summer Family Film Festival: Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory—noon
  • Easy Origami: workshop on Japanese art of paper folding into animals and shapes—3 PM
Thursday, July 29
  • Shakespeare Theater of NJ presents As You Like It—7:00 PM at Main Library Auditorium
  • Out of the Vault:16 mm Film Series: A Woman's Vengeance—1:00 PM at Montclair Public Library Auditorium
Montclair Public Library
50 S. Fullerton Avenue

For information, call 973.744.0500 or


Monday July 26 at 7:30 PM
Bloomfield Presbyterian Church on the Green
147 Broad Street
Bloomfield, NJ
Featuring Jeremy Blossey, Alexander Caraballo and John Hammel performing the music of Verdi, Puccini, Gounod, Bizet, Leoncavallo and other popular favorites.

Bring a lawn chair.

For information, call 973.780.4249 or


LENAPE: Tools & Daily Living
through December 31, 2010

Museum visitors to the Museum of Early Trades and Crafts in Madison will learn about the Lenape (le NAH pay), the indigenous Indians who lived on the land now known as New Jersey—how the tribe lived, worked and played before the Europeans arrived. Through various displays of the tools and artifacts, visitors will gain an understanding of what it was like to live in New Jersey as a member of a Lenape tribe.

Objects on display include ceramic vessels; burl bowls and baskets; a dugout canoe; tools used for working with wood, hunting and gardening; historic and contemporary Lenape clothing; and ceremonial objects.

The exhibit explores the things people made to survive, prosper and decorate their days. Lenape: Tools & Daily Living focuses on the earliest people who lived in this area, the native Lenape.

9 Main Street (NJ Route 124 at Green Village Road)
Madison, NJ
It is about 28 miles west of New York and is easily reached from exit 35 of Interstate 287 or exit 7 of New Jersey Route 24

Tuesday–Saturday: 10 AM–4 PM
Sunday: Noon–5 PM
Closed major holidays

The Museum will be closed on Sundays during July and August.



The Princeton Doll & Toy Museum at 8 Somerset Street in Hopewell will exhibit Historical Hallmark Collectible Dolls through October 4, 2010.

Monday–Saturday: 10 AM–5 PM
Adults $5, Children $3

Call 609.333.8600 for more information.


Hair Tactics
Main Galleries
through August 22, 2010

Hair Tactics explores hair as subject matter and medium. Increasingly, artists have begun to use both real and synthetic human hair to create works of art. Some use synthetic hair because it is widely and inexpensively available in urban neighborhoods, others because for its social and political meaning, and still others to explore the human obsession with hair. Texts written in hair, fancy hair motifs used to decorate a love letter, extravagant and multicolored wigs, drawings featuring hair-covered bodies, and ladies with elaborate up-dos are all featured in Hair Tactics. The exhibition includes works in a wide range of media, including painting, sculpture, prints, photographs, video and installation.

Hermanas Iglesias: Hairwork
Atrium Gallery
through August 22, 2010

In conjunction with Hair Tactics and with a nod to Victorian hair jewelry, sisters (hermanas) Janelle and Lisa Iglesias have adorned the Jersey City Museum's upper atrium gallery with the large-scale installation, Hairwork. The Hermanas Iglesias have been using hair since 2005, making wall installations that combine real and synthetic hair and that sometimes also include gold and silver chains and earrings associated with urban styles. The sisters have also worked in various other media, including performance, installation, sculpture, video, painting and drawing.

350 Montgomery Street
Jersey City, NJ

Wednesday & Friday: 11 AM–5 PM
Thursday: noon–11 AM–8 PM
Saturday & Sunday: noon–5 PM


Pictures of Pictures
through October 10, 2010

Pictures of Pictures explores the ingenious way in which artists create one picture within another. Drawn from the Museum's collections, the 50 objects in this exhibition include prints, photographs, collages, paintings, and sculptures, and span centuries, ranging from a seventeenth–century Alsatian still-life of precious objects to a Japanese woodblock print of a merchant and his painted fans.

The exhibition places classics of the genre side-by-side with their inspiration. Pictures of Pictures, with its examination of paintings of paintings, sculptures of sculptures, drawings of drawings, and photographs of photographs, offers an experience that is at once witty and profound.

Presence and Remembrance: The Art of Toshiko Takaezu
through September 11, 2010

Centered upon an image of the Remembrance bell erected on Princeton’s campus in memory of the 13 alumni who tragically lost their lives on September 11, 2001, this exhibition features new gifts from the artist, as well as older favorites from the Museum's and University's collections, highlighting one of the great ceramic artists of the twentieth century. Contemporary artist Toshiko Takaezu is perhaps best known for closing the vessel form to render it useless as a functional object, transforming it into a beautiful sculpture. In this seemingly simple act, Takaezu's pieces gain presence and resonate sound that lingers into memory.


PRESENT TENSE: Arts of Contemporary Africa
Ongoing Exhibit

Featuring works from the museum’s permanent collection of contemporary African art, this new gallery is the first such dedicated exhibition space in the country. The installation focuses on the art of the present day, including works by nine artists with wide-ranging approaches to “art-making” as well as equally varied subject matter and sources of inspiration. Artists include: Olu Amoda, El Anatsui, Owusu Ankomah, Viyé Diba, Samuel Fosso, Senzeni Marasela, Etiyé Dimma Poulsen, Julien Sinzogan and Sue Williamson. Together, they provide a window into the ongoing artistic creativity of this dynamic continent, complementing the adjacent thematic installation of African art while encouraging connections with other examples of contemporary art featured in the museum’s American art, Asian art and Decorative Arts galleries.

49 Washington Street
Newark, NJ

Wednesday–Friday: 10 AM–5 PM
Saturday–Sunday: noon–5 PM


Zula Patrol: Under the Weather

through August 13
Wednesday–Sunday, 1:30 and 2:30 PM
Recommended for children ages 6-9 (30 minutes)

From the far reaches of outer space, the stalwart heroes of the Zula Patrol swing into action when their loyal pet Gorga is tricked by interplanetary villain Dark Truder into stealing the weather from other planets.

Origins of Life
Through August 13
Wednesday–Sunday, 3:30 PM
Recommended for adults and children ages 10 and up (30 minutes)

Origins of Life is an inspirational journey through time and a celebration of life on Earth. Travel from the depths of the oceans to the far reaches of space to explore the Big Bang, the birth of stars, formation of solar systems and the first life on Earth.

49 Washington Street
Newark, NJ


Indigenismo: Ancient Roots in Mexican Art
Exhibit closes Sunday, August 8, 2010

The Newark Museum marks the centennial celebration of the Mexican Revolution (1910-1920) with an exhibition of works from the Bank of America Collection Arts in our Communities Program.

Indigenismo (Indianism) was a cultural movement that arose after the Revolution spawned by artists and writers who studied and used indigenous imagery and concepts to express their social messages to the public, proudly including their ancient Mesoamerican past. Indigenismo was the impetus responsible for many of Mexico’s great works of art—whether painted on walls or printed on paper—and part of a legacy that continues up to the present.

Make Me Something Beautiful: 2010 Jersey Crafts Annual
Exhibit closes Sunday, August 8, 2010

Highlighting the works of New Jersey’s visual artists and craftspeople, Make Me Something Beautiful: 2010 NJ Craft Arts Annual commemorates the Newark Museum’s centennial anniversary. The event, held annually at one of six sponsoring museums, is part of a unique exhibition program.

49 Washington Street
Newark, NJ

Wednesday–Friday: 10 AM–5 PM
Saturday–Sunday: noon–5 PM

Saturday, July 24, 2010


Just a reminder that several notable dramatic productions will close this coming weekend, after their final performances on August 1. The following are not-to-be missed:

  • Arms and the Man at the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey in Madison on the campus of Drew University. Call the box office at 973.408.5200 for tickets or visit online at
  • The Servant of Two Masters at the outdoor Greek Theatre on the campus of the College of St. Elizabeth in Convent Station. A production by the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey. Call the box office at 973.408.5200 for tickets or visit online at
  • Why Torture Is Wrong, and the People Who Love Them at The Theater Project in the Roy Smith Theatre on the campus of Union County College in Cranford. Contact Brown Paper Tickets either online at or by telephone at 800.838.3006. Information is also available at

Thursday, July 22, 2010


Malabika Guha specializes in the whirling, stamping style of dance popular in Northern India, but her Kalamandir Dance Company will perform a contemporary fusion piece that blends elements of classic Indian dance forms this weekend. Her choreographic influences range from ballet to capoeira and flamenco!

Kalamandir Dance Co. presents Earth, based on Rabindranath Tagore's poem Prithibhi ("Accept my homage Earth, as I make my last obeisance of the day..."), narrated by William Metzo, with music by Tarit Bhattacharya & Company, choreography by Malabika Guha and the dancers of Kalamandir Dance Company and directed by Malabika Guha. Dancers: Ariana (Ria) Dasgupta, Jamuna Dasi, Brinda Guha, Donia Salem.

The program begins at 3 PM sharp. Prithibhi, the second program in the lineup, will begin 4:30 PM.
The program includes live music and a play by Epic Actors' Workshop of NJ.

Saturday July 24, 2010
3–7 PM

George St. Playhouse
9 Livingston Avenue
New Brunswick

Call 732.397.3619, or e-mail for tickets!
Tickets are $25 general admission, including an Indian dinner.


On Sunday, July 25, Dance New Jersey hosts Show Up and Dance, featuring a mix of students and professionals performing in a variety of dance styles. Three separate programs will be offered at 2, 4 and 6 PM at the Loree Dance Theatre, Mason Gross School of the Arts, Douglass College campus at Rutgers University in New Brunswick. Admission is $7 at the door; children under 12 are free.

On Monday, July 26, Dance New Jersey holds its annual membership meeting, offering classes and professional development workshops. Choreographer Doug Elkins will teach a class in post-modern hip-hop fusion; Theresa Purcell Cone will discuss teaching dance to students with disabilities. The meeting will take place from 8 AM to 4 PM in the studios at Rutgers' Nicholas Music Center, 85 George Street in New Brunswick.

Admission is free to Dance New Jersey members. Membership $30. For additional information and to register, call Macada Brandl at 973.222.8844.


This summer, The Mason Gross School of the Arts Extension Division and Opera New Jesey offered a weeklong summer camp experience coupled with musical instruction at opera camps where singers as young as 7 years of age heard and sang their first arias.

Now, tomorrow night (Friday, July 23), both groups will present their final performances.

  • Opera New Jersey will present a full production of a children's opera, Brundibar, composed in Czech by Hans Krasa in 1938, on the eve of the Holocaust. A brother and a sister have no money to purchase medicine for their ailing mother, so the children compete with the organ grinder, making music for money and helped by the children and the animals of their village. Needless to say, the organ grinder is not pleased with the competition and gets nasty. The opera gained resonance when it was performed by the inmate children at Theresienstadt (Terezin) outside of Prague, a camp that was filled with musicians, writers, actors, composers—Jewish intelligentsia interned in what the Nazis called Paradise GhettoBrundibar will be performed at McCarter Theatre's Berlind Theatre in Princeton at 5:30 PM. Admission is free. Visit for more information.
  • Rutgers Summer Opera Camp will present scenes from various operas, including Mozart's Marriage of Figaro and the cigarette girl scene from Bizet's Carmen, among others. The performance will take place at the Rehearsal Hall, Room 104 at the Mason Gross Performing Arts Complex, 85 George Street in New Brunswick at 7 PM. Admission is free. For more information, visit

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

NO MAN’S LAND Takes the Stage at The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey

For the first time in 15 years, a work by Nobel Prize winner Harold Pinter will be presented on The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey’s Main Stage. Beginning on August 11 and continuing through August 29, Pinter’s 1975 modern classic No Man’s Land, directed by artistic director Bonnie J. Monte, will run at the F. M. Kirby Shakespeare Theatre. No Man’s Land contains adult language and is not recommended for children.

Full price single tickets for No Man’s Land are now on sale and range in price from $31 to $54, depending on performance day and time.  For tickets or more information, call the box office at 973.408.5600 or visit 4-play and 3-play choose-your-own discount ticket packages are now on sale. The discount ticket packages feature up to 40% percent savings off the cost of regular tickets, the best seats to all Main Stage productions; free, easy and unlimited ticket exchanges should schedules change; discounts on additional tickets; and the convenience of having tickets in hand and dates scheduled in advance. Choose-your-own 4-play and 3-Play ticket packages start at $80.

Considered one of the most influential British playwrights in modern times, Harold Pinter was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2005. In awarding the prize, the Academy referred to the playwright, screenwriter, actor and director as “a modern classic.” Some of his best-known plays include The Caretaker, The Homecoming and Betrayal. His screenplay adaptations include The French Lieutenant’s Woman, Sleuth and many of his plays. Pinter died in 2008.

This disturbing and controversial piece offers up Pinter’s biting wit and brilliant use of language. Upon its opening in 1975, the Arts Guardian of London called No Man’s Land  “a masterly summation of all the themes that have long obsessed Pinter…a living theatrical experience full of rich comedy in which one speech constantly undercuts another.”

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The New Jersey Premiere of Christopher Durang’s Latest Comedy Continues at Cranford’s The Theater Project through August 1

Just a post to remind readers/followers/subscribers that Christopher Durang's deranged comedy/satire, Why Torture is Wrong and the People Who Love Them, runs for only 2 more weekends at The Theater Project in Cranford. I loved this wacky comedy! And I am so pleased to see quoted in their press release!

Why Torture is Wrong… is a raucous and provocative satire about America’s growing homeland "insecurity" written by renowned playwright Christopher Durang. It tells the story of a young woman suddenly in crisis: Is her new husband a terrorist…or just crazy…or both? Turning political humor upside down (and inside out) and honing in on our private terrors both home and abroad, Durang oddly relieves our fears throughout this black comedy in an era of yellow, orange and red alerts.

Written by commission for NYC’s Public Theatre in 2009, Why Torture is Wrong, and the People Who Love Them was hailed by The New York Times as "Durang’s funniest play!" during its 2009 world première run. The New York Observer called it a "smashing new play with a serious taste for the blissfully, unapologetically silly!"

Audiences attending performances during the first two weeks of the production run have been raving, and published reviews have included these comments:

  • “Entertaining production…for those who have a wild sense of humor…” —Peter Filichia, Star-Ledger
  • “This demented satire is given a madcap, appropriately off-the-wall production…one has to experience the onstage mayhem...” —Ruth Ross,
  • “Clever and insightful…the play runs like a wind-up doll on steroids…” —Susan Myrill Dougherty, Westfield Leader
Performances will take place in the Roy Smith Theater at the Cranford campus of Union County College, 1033 Springfield Avenue. Performance times are Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 8 PM and Sunday matinees at 3 PM.

Monday, July 19, 2010


Don't miss Tri-State Actors Theater's 2nd New Plays Reading Series of 2010!

Mercy Mild, a new play by Deborah Finkelstein

A provocative new play in a staged concert reading with professional actors under the direction of Paul Meacham.

At Christmastime, Joey is caught between his concern and caring for his down-and-out family and his need to escape them for a different life.

Talk-back and reception for the playwright following the performance.

July 24 Only, 8 PM
Admission by Donation

The Crescent Theater
74 Main Street
Sussex, NJ

Since 2000, Tri-State has encouraged playwrights to submit new, unproduced scripts to their NEW PLAYS READING SERIES. Knowing that new writing is the life-blood of theater, the troupe rehearses and performs in concert and staged readings at least four new and untried plays every season so that the playwrights can "hear" their works read and performed by professional artists. Patrons relish the notion of helping writers find just the right "note" to play in these new works and do not hesitate to criticize and suggest what needs to be revised and what is good about these new pieces. Indeed, several of the new play readings have become productions in subsequent seasons.


 The Chatham Community Players (CCP) will host its 16th annual Jersey Voices One-Act Festival with five performances between July 30 and August 7. This year’s production will include six original short plays written by New Jersey playwrights, as well as one original dance piece.

Jersey Voices has provided a venue for New Jersey playwrights to showcase their work since 1995. "I’m constantly amazed and excited by the creativity, the resilience, the persistence of the playwrights of New Jersey whose plays we get to present every summer. Each year they write brand-new slices of life for our enlightenment and entertainment—they are the heart and soul of Jersey Voices," said Producer Bob Denmark.

Three of this year's plays were written by playwrights whose works have been featured in Jersey Voices before (Gary Shaffer, Amanda Mayer and John Allison). The other four pieces were written by newcomers to Jersey Voices (Ian August, Carmen Collins, Evan Marshall and Desiree Caro). Artistic Director Bob Lukasik added, “It seems like only yesterday, but it was actually 17 years ago that a group of young performers came to The Chatham Community Players with the idea of starting a summer theater program to promote new works, new actors and new opportunities. Now in its 16th season, we rededicate ourselves to those ideals. Modern dance, drama, comedy and mystery are featured in this year’s festival, all made possible by a very talented group of artists. 

Sunday, July 18, 2010


Several towns in Essex County have scheduled musical events for the week of July 19-25, 2010:

Wednesday, July 21
  • SOUTH ORANGE: Catherine Russell, jazz vocalist 7:30 PM at Meadowland Park, North Ridgewood Road and Mead Street. Free. 973.378.7754
Thursday, July 22
  • BLOOMFIELD:  Bobby Restaino, local musician performing 60s Rock as part of the Summer Concerts Series, 4–7 PM in Venner Park, Bloomfield Avenue & State & Liberty streets. Free. 973.429.8050.
  • WEST ORANGE: Broadway Comes to the Mountain, sing-along to hits from Broadway musicals across the decades, 8–11 PM at the Oskar Schindler Performing Arts Center, 4 Boland Drive. Tickets $10. 973.669.7385
Friday, July 23
  • BLOOMFIELD: keyboardist Alex Bugnon and guitarist Peter White as part of the 2010 Essex County Free Summer Music Concert Series, 7:30 PM at Brookdale Park, Circuit Drive. Free. 973.2683.3500
Sunday, July 25
  • MAPLEWOOD: Maplewood Jazz Fest, featuring Jazz Collective, Dan Crisci Quartet, Greg Rivkin Quartet, Holli Ross Quartet, Soul Jazztet, Bob DeVos Trio, Courtney Sappington, Sarah Partridge Sextet, 5–9 PM at Memorial Park on Valley Street. Free. 973.763.4202


The Chester Theatre Group at the Black River Playhouse in Chester presents The Ten Commandments, a hilarious comedy by Gary Hill and Perry Arthur Kroeger, based (very loosely on the film The Ten Commandments), which was based (again loosely) on the actual Ten Commandments! There will be only one performance of this production, on August 12 at 8 PM.

This saga reading of epic scale will be "performed" on an 18 by 13 foot stage by a cast of thousands (played by 9 actors)! Come see Moses, Ramses, Nefretiri, Sethi, Lilia, Sophamora, Kaka & Lugnut, the enigmatic Head of Edith (costumes) and Cecil B. DeMille as God.

For reservations, call 908.879.7304.


The Good Counselor in World Première Production at Kean University

Mothers. We can’t live with them; we can’t live without them. They give us life, care for us when we're young and often push us to achieve our dreams (and theirs). We idolize—and idealize—them, and when they let us down—being human, after all—we are disappointed, and our love can turn to hatred. Given those pitfalls inherent in motherhood, it’s a wonder any woman would choose to become a mother at all!

This prickly topic is the focus of playwright Kathryn Grant’s drama, The Good Counselor, winner of the 2010 Première Stages Play Festival, now receiving its World Première production at the Zella Fry Theatre on the main campus of Kean University in Union, where it will run weekends through August 1.

Without giving away too many of the plot’s twists and turns, suffice it to say that The Good Counselor is Vincent, a bright young lawyer in the Public Defender department in an unnamed city, who has been assigned to defend a young woman accused of killing her three-week-old son. Defending the woman, “tough cookie” Evelyn Laverty, will test Vincent’s legal skills, for he must convince the jury that this poor, uneducated mother is worthy of their sympathy, a not-inconsiderable task given that she’s paranoid about giving away personal details, very proud, very profane and a racist. This latter detail is important because Evelyn is white and Vincent black.

Complicating Vincent’s dilemma are the dynamics of his own family. The only child (of four) to attend college and, subsequently, law school, Vincent is haunted by the plight of his older brother Raymond, whom he worshipped as a kid and who has spiraled into a life of drugs that ends badly. The boys’ mother Rita, a Scripture-spouting, church-attending woman (“A sight for sore eyes when she gets the spirit,” as Ray says) has washed her hands of the “lying, thieving thug” her firstborn has become, applying tough love and vowing that “he’s not gonna take [her] down.” What Vincent cannot figure out is why Rita pushed him and abandoned his brother. Does that make her a good or a bad mother? Is she like Evelyn or different?

Saturday, July 17, 2010


"Songs of a Summer Night at Chester Theatre Group's Black River Playhouse

What do you get when you "marry" 25 glorious voices—each of them soloist quality—and terrific musical arrangements and accompaniment? Well, you get Songs of a Summer Night at the Chester Theatre Group's Black River Playhouse. But don't wait to get tickets; this blockbuster of a musical evening runs only through Sunday, July 25, and you'll be sorry if you miss it.

Under the musical direction of the gifted, Perry Award-winning Clifford Parrish, The Black River Singers treat the audience in the troupe's intimate black box theater to a variety of songs culled from the Great American Songbook and musical theater. George and Ira Gershwin and Irving Berlin are well represented, as are Andrew Lloyd Weber, David Shire, Stephen Schwartz and Claude-Michel Schonberg, along with lesser known composers as Michael Valenti, Jason Robert Brown and Craig Carnelia.

I am not a music critic, but I can tell you that this production is professional, interesting and always riveting, whether it be the voices, the arrangements or the performances themselves. Almost everyone in the ensemble had a solo or two, with the entire group providing support from time to time, along with singing entire songs together.


Engaging with Nature: American and Native American Artists (A.D. 1200-2004)
May 16, 2010 – September 25, 2011.
(Left: Mummy Cave, Canyon de Chelly, Arizona, 1978 by Philip Pearlstein (b. 1924). Sepia wash on paper. Gift of Philip Pearlstein, Montclair Art Museum, 2009.1)

This is the first exhibition ever presented by the Montclair Art Museum to integrate—around a central theme—all time periods and American and Native American art represented in the Museum's collection. More than half of the nearly 40 works have never or rarely been displayed. The works in the exhibition encompass an astonishing variety of art and artifacts, from prehistoric Native American ceramics to historical 19th-century landscape paintings to contemporary staged photographs, suggesting various conceptions of landscape and nature.

The works in the exhibition encompass an astonishing variety of art and artifacts, from prehistoric Native American ceramics to historical 19th-century landscape paintings to contemporary staged photographs, suggesting various conceptions of landscape and nature.


Last call for all shoe-lovers. This exciting and intriguing exhibit closes next weekend!

We all know that women love shoes. I mean, what better way to lift one's drooping spirits than by purchasing—and wearing—a new pair of shoes. Red ones, for me, to be exact!

Well, the Morris Museum on Normandy Heights Parkway (just off Columbia Turnpike) in Morris Township has mounted a major shoe exhibition featuring more than 250 pairs of shoes. The Shoe Must Go On! explores centuries of shoe design, and presents shoes from many different “walks” of life. The show will be on view through August 29, 2010.

Guided tours of the exhibition every Saturday at 1 PM.
The Museum is open Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays: 11 AM.-5 PM.
Thursdays: 11 AM.-8 PM
Sundays: 1-5 PM
Mondays & Tuesdays: Closed

The exhibition will explore more than fifteen themes and feature footwear of distinguished individuals who share a special connection to the state of New Jersey, including Governor Chris Christie and Thomas Edison, among others.

Friday, July 16, 2010


The month of July will come to a swinging conclusion on July 31 as the Peter Hand Big Band swings into Hackettstown, featuring the incomparable Houston Person on saxophone as guest artist. With an 8 PM performance, this will be the final concert in this year’s popular Jazz in July series at the Centenary Stage on the campus of Centenary College in Hackettstown.

Veteran Jazz-man Peter Hand has been on the New York jazz scene for many years, has written and arranged for the likes of George Coleman, and Lee Konitz, and has assembled a cadre of upper-echelon artists to play dynamic arrangements of the Great American Songbook for this special concert. An All Music Guide review hails musical artist Houston Person as” the guttiest of the gutbucket saxophonists of the soul-jazz age –with a tenor sound that is as pure as it can be, with some of the most lush, elegant tenor sounds ever heard, played with a legato finesse.” Person enjoyed a 30-year musical partnership with vocalist Etta Jones and has recorded with Lena Horne, Lou Rawls and Horace Silver. He is recognized as one of today’s leading instrumentalists.

In addition to Person on sax , the band features Valery Ponomarev, Eddie Allen, Cecil Bridgewater and Brian Paraschi on trumpets and flugelhorns; John Mosca, Sam Burtis, Vincent Gardner on trombones; Bruce Williams, Jay Brandford, Don Braden, Ralph LaLama and Kenny Gerger on woodwinds and saxophones; James Weidman on piano, Harvie S on bass and Steve Johns on drums, with leader Hand also on guitar.

Tickets for The Peter Hand Big Band with Houston Person are $30 in advance and $35 at the door and are available at the Centenary Stage Company box office at 908.979.0900 and online at

Tickets are also available In Hackettstown at Skylands Community Bank, Mama’s and Café Bacci, PrickleyPear Restaurant, Panther Valley Pharmacy, Hackettstown Trading Post and Hackettstown Floors .

Jazz in July at the Centenary Stage is made possible through the leadership of Ed Coyne and Coyne Enterprises, with the additional support of the Heath Village and Skylands Community Bank. The Centenary Stage Company is a not-for-profit performing arts series dedicated to serving as a cultural resource for audiences of the Skylands region with professional music, theatre and dance events and arts education programs throughout the year. All programs at the Centenary Stage Company are made possible in part through the visionary support of the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, the NJ State Council on the Arts and CSC Members and Sponsors.


Tri-State Actors Theater will hold its second New Play Reading of its 2010 Series with Mercy Mild on Saturday, July 24, at 8:00 PM at the historic Crescent Theater, 74 Main Street, Sussex, New Jersey, in its intimate Black Box Theater. Admission is by donation. Mercy Mild is a provocative new play by Deborah Finkelstein. A talk-back and reception with the playwright, actors and director will follow the performance. Refreshments will be served.

Staged in a concert reading with professional actors—Valerie Stack Dodge, Robert Hefley, Randall McCann, Brian Milli and Robert Mintz, under the direction of Paul Meacham. Mercy Mild takes place at Christmastime when Joey, a young man, is caught between his concern and caring for his down-and-out family and his need to escape them for a different life.

Deborah Finkelstein's short plays have been part of festivals around the United States, including the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts Page to Stage Festival; ARFTCo.'s Chicago Christmas Spectacular; Girl Play and Naked Women Fully Clothed at the Women's Theater Project, Fort Lauderdale; and Chicago Dramatists' What Scares Me the Most, with guest director Joy Meads, Literary Manager of Steppenwolf Theatre Co. Mercy Mild was Deborah Finkelstein's thesis play for her MFA in Creative Writing from Goddard College. It was read in October at The Playwright's Center, Minneapolis, MN. Deborah has a BA in theater and English from Rutgers University.

The main floor Black Box Theater is assessible for wheelchairs. Large print programs are available. For more information please contact the Box Office at 973.875.2950.

Main Street parking is limited, and patrons are encouraged to use the free municipal parking lot on Harrison Street, directly behind the theater.

Additional information about Tri-State Actors Theater and its programs and services are available on the web at Funding for Tri-State Actors Theater has been made possible in part by a grant from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts and the generous support of the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation and The Horizon Foundation of New Jersey.


The Jazz Arts Project presents Summer Jazzfest 2010, Friday and Saturday evenings through August 7. World-class jazz in an intimate café setting. All performances begin at 8 PM; approximate running time 120 minutes. You'll be seated at cozy, candle-lit cocktail tables with coffee, tea and delectable treats available from our jazz café. These will surely be the most exciting and romantic evenings you will spend all summer.

July 16–17: Valery Ponomarev Quartet (with special guest Don Braden Saturday night only)
The first great jazz trumpeter to emerge from the Soviet Union, Valery Ponomarev toured and recorded 11 albums with A r t Blakey & Jazz Messengers during his four-year tenure with the band. Mr. Ponomarev is also dedicated to education and has performed Master Classes in improvisation, ensembles, performance, jazz theory and history: Annual Summer Workshop at the Vermont Jazz Center, Putney, Vermont; Conservatory of Groningen, Holland, and he is on the faculty of Jazz For Teens Wachovia, New Jersey Center for Performing Arts in Newark NJ, The New School, New York City, and Long Island University.

Don Braden is one of the great modern saxophonists playing today. He has worked with countless artists, including Betty Carter, Wynton Marsalis, Roy Haynes and many others. Braden is also a world renowned-educator whose resumé boasts running both the Litchfield Jazz Camp and Wachovia's Jazz For Teens Programs. This summer he lends his his beautiful sound, flawless technique and most importantly his sense of swing to the lineup of the Jazz Arts Project's Summer Jazz Cafe for one night (Saturday only) with Valery Ponomarev's group.

July 23–24, 2010:  Marlene Verplanck
Throughout her career, Marlene VerPlanck has stuck to her guns, paying loving care to the great standards and new songs from our finest composers, while ignoring mediocre pop tunes. Songwriter Hugh Martin ("Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas," etc.) expressed it well: "We know our songs are safe in the hands of Marlene VerPlanck, and she will sing them better than anyone."

Appearances at Carnegie Hall, Michael's Pub and the Rainbow Room brought rave notices, and national TV shows, including Entertainment Tonight, The Today Show and CBS's Sunday Morning, have featured profiles of the in creasingly popular singer. Today, Marlene performs across North America and much of Western Europe, while a growing roster of solo CDs continues to win critical acclaim.

July 30–31, 2010: Wayne Escoffery
Since moving to New York City in 2000, tenor saxophonist Wayne Escoffery has become one of the Jazz world’s most talented rising stars and in-demand sidemen.

“[A] young, self-assured, hard-swinging tenor saxophonist.” (—Ben Ratliff, The New York Times)

August 6–7, 2010: Cecil Brooks III
A contemporary drummer and aggressive, polyrhythmic stylist, Cecil Brooks III has worked in the New York area with such musicians as Greg Osby, Geri Allen and Lonnie Plaxico. He recorded his debut album as a leader for Muse in 1989, subsequently releasing efforts including 1990's Hangin' with Smooth, 1993's Neck Peckin' Jammie and 2000's Our Mister Brooks. In addition to touring and session work in swing, hard bop and bebop settings, Cecil has also played drums for TV's The Bill Cosby Show and is the owner of Cecil's Jazz Club in West Orange, NJ.

TICKETS: $20/students with valid ID $15
Available only at
RED BANK, NJ 07701
or by telephone at 732.345.1400 or at


The following theaters are holding auditions the week of July 16 for shows to be produced in September, October and November:

The Good Doctor: The Dover Little Theatre
WHEN: Sunday, July 18, at 6 PM; Monday, July 19, at 7:30 PM
WHERE: 69 Elliott Street in Dover
Performances in September
CONTACT: 973-328.9202 or www/

Is He Dead? Studio Playhouse
WHEN: Sunday, July 18, at 6 PM; Tuesday, July 20, at 7:30 PM
WHERE: 14 Alvin Place (off Valley Road), Montclair
WHO: 4 males ages 20s-40s; 1 male age 40s-50s; 1 male ages 50s-70s; 2 females ages 20s-50s; 1 male ages 20-50s; and 1 female ages 20s-40s.
Performances in October/November
CONTACT: 973.744.9752 or

Side by Side and Last of the Red Hot Lovers Parsippany Playhouse
WHEN: Thursday, July 22, 11 AM–4 PM
WHERE: 1300 Knoll Road, Parsippany
WHAT: Prepare song, one-minute monologue and be ready to read from sides; bring photo and resume, stapled together.
CONTACT: for appointment


Located in stunning northwest New Jersey, Tri-State Actors Theater has reached an audience of thousands for 22 years. At their permanent home at the historic Crescent Theater in Sussex, the troupe performs 10 months of the year, offering audiences outstanding professional productions of comedy, drama, musicals and children's theater.

On Saturday, July 17, at 8:00 PM Tri-State presents An Old Time Variety Night, an evening of singing, dance, sketch comedy and audience talent show. Tickets are $23 and $25. For more information, call the box office at  973-875-2950.

August 4–21: Hey Ho, Pinocchio: The Musical with a book by Eleanor & Ray Harder, music/lyrics by Eleanor Harder .

A cool, hip cricket—Cricky—and a sweet Blue Fairy try to guide a willful puppet, Pinocchio, past the many temptations that cross his path and toward what will make him a real boy. Based on the classic tale with traditional characters but a very modern message. The zesty songs and dances resound with fun and good times. Great for the whole family! Appropriate for 5 years and older.

All shows are performed at the Crescent Theater at 74 Main Street in Sussex. Visit online at


Brundage Park Playhouse presents Richard O’Brien’s The Rocky Horror Show for 10 performances on July 16, 17, 22, 23, 24, 29, 30, 31 at 8:00 PM and July 18 and 25 at 2:00 PM.

A musical sensation that has played London and Broadway, The Rocky Horror Show has endured constant production since its inception in 1973 and is the basis for the 1975 late night, cult film classic.

When Brad and Janet take a wrong turn on their way home from a wedding, they end up at Dr. Frank ‘N’ Furter’s castle where a war of cultures ensues. A wild and hilarious science-fiction journey that includes the creation of a man, ray-guns, high heels and lots of songs!

But forget the movie. This is live! If you have never experienced The Rocky Horror Show in a theater with an audience and a cast, you will enjoy every moment of this campy, fantasy, rock ‘n’ roll musical.

The Brundage cast features Paul Rivers as Frank ‘N’ Furter, Dan Berman as Brad, Rebecca Pomeranz as Janet, Erik Gaden as Riff Raff, Katherine LeFevre as Magenta, Brittany Crowell as Columbia, Jon Young as Rocky and Jeffrey Thomas Meudt as Eddie. Others in the cast include Mark Carovale, Shawn Dawiskiba, Briana DiGiorgio, Neil R. Fitzpatrick, Laura Landrieu, Paige Maier, and Brett Petersen.

Richard Norman and Mark Carovale direct, with musical direction by Matthew Sullivan and choreography by Robin Pecharsky. Set design and construction are by Nola Young, costumes and lighting design are by Mark Carovale, Kaitlin Buck is the stage manager, El Andy Botwin is the assistant to the directors, and Briana DiGiorgio is the dance captain.

Please be advised: The Rocky Horror Show is appropriate for mature audiences. Parental discretion is strongly advised.

Tickets for the production are $20.00 for adults and $15.00 for Seniors. All seats are reserved. For ticket reservations, please call the theater box office at 973.989.7092.


Another great venue for free performances is Plays in the Park, located just off Route 1 in Edison, next to the Menlo Park Mall.

Roosevelt Park is easy to get to from the Garden State Parkway or the NJ Turnpike. The amphitheater seats 2000 people in lawn chairs, lined up precisely along lines drawn in the grass. There are spaces designated for handicapped patrons.

Tickets are sold on the day of performance only. No advance sales. Ticket price is $6.00 per adult; $5.00 per senior citizen 60 and over, children twelve (12) and under are free. The Box Office opens at 5:30 PM, and patrons are admitted to the seating area immediately after purchasing tickets. The box office closes at 9 PM each show night. All shows start at 8:30 PM. There are no refunds for any reason. The Box Office can be accessed from two locations: a) on the path from the parking lawn, and b) from the access path between the theater and actors' parking lots.

If you get there early, you can set up your chair and leave the theater to walk to the mall or to a nearby diner where you can get a bite to eat. Refreshments (including hot dogs) are sold at 2 concession booths.

The 2010 Summer season kicked off with a rousing and very professional production of 1776 with the inimitible David Cantor as feisty John Adams, backed up by a wonderful cast.

The second offering is a musical version of The Wedding Singer, which was originally a screwball comedy starring Adam Sandler. Performances started July 14 but runs through July 24, Thursday through Saturday evenings. There are no Sunday performances for this show. Showtime: 8:30 PM.

High School Musical closes out the season. It runs Wednesday, August 4, through Saturday, August 14. Again, there are no Sunday performances. Showtime: 8:30 PM.

The kids will love this show!


As a drama critic, summer doesn’t really begin for me until opening night of Trilogy Rep’s July production of a Broadway musical under the stars at the Pleasant Valley Park amphitheater in Basking Ridge.

Last night, the troupe opened Meredith Willson’s homage to small-town turn- of-the-20th-century life, The Music Man. Although rain the two day’s before prevented them from holding a technical and dress rehearsal, the more than 60 performers onstage acquitted themselves admirably. No, make that splendidly!

Led by seven main characters, the large cast moves fluidly around the rather shallow performance space with nary a bump nor fall--thanks to the masterful blocking by veteran Trilogy director Jaye Barre. This is especially important given Gillian Petersen’s complex choreography and the script’s need for crowd scenes at various junctures in the plot.

The Music Man's plot revolves around the efforts of a slick con-artist of a traveling salesman named Harold Hill, who blows into the Iowa hamlet of River City, ostensibly selling band instruments (and lessons and uniforms) as a way to keep the town’s youth out of trouble (“That’s spelled with T and it rhymes with P and that stands for Pool”) in the new billiard parlor that just happens to be owned by the town’s mayor. Hill is the type of man who gives traveling salesmen a bad name (as if they hadn’t one already: “Didya hear the one about the traveling salesman” is the beginning of many a bawdy joke) and he goes about his con with great style and verve. He wins over most of the townsfolk, most prominently Marion Paroo, the rather snooty librarian, only to find himself unable to leave town before he’s unmasked because he’s fallen for her, hard.

Willson’s music is a delight, a pastiche of soulful ballads, rousing marches and patter songs that rival those penned by Gilbert & Sullivan. In fact, the opening number, set in a railway coach, brims with fun and energy; the salesman talk and talk (“Whaddya talk, whaddya talk” is a refrain), all the while moving to the train’s rhythm. It’s a great taste of what’s to come.

Thursday, July 15, 2010


Summer Dance Intensive
Classes run August 16-26
Monday–Thursday 10:30 AM-3 PM. Ages 6-16
You do not have to be a JCC member to attend this program.

If you are a fan of "So You Think You Can Dance," "America's Best Dance Crew" or "Dancing with the Stars," this course is for you! Learn the moves that make dancers so beautiful on stage, screen, film, TV and Broadway (High School Musical 3, Happiness, 13, and Shrek: the Musical). Four days a week of basic technique that explores all the latest crazes and new dance forms. Improve the skills you love in ballet, jazz, tap, hip-hop, beginner acrobatics, ballroom and Latin dance. Build strength and flexibility while having a great time!

All instructors are experienced choreographers and teachers in major New York City dance schools, whose students are currently performing on Broadway, Lincoln Center, and National Tours.

Videos, movie time and snack-time included (bring your lunch). Performance date: August 26.

Please call Allyson Carolan at 201.408.1495 for more information.
Course Leaders: Vera Huff and Allyson Carolan

TUITION:  $360 Member, $440 Non-Member


The Kaplen JCC on the Palisades is sponsoring camps for aspiring musicians in August. The JCC is located at 411 East Clinton Ave Tenafly, NJ 07670. You do not have to be a JCC member to participate.

FluteStars® Summer Camp (for intermediate/advanced flutists)
August 23–27, 2010
Monday-Friday • 8 AM-3:30 PM
Noelle Perrin, Director

Daily schedule includes masterclass-style lessons, private practice time, small and large ensemble rehearsals. Emphasis will be on development of good tone and refined technique. Rehearsal schedule is mixed with plenty of free time for socializing and recreation. This exciting week culminates with a final concert in which flutists will perform solos, duets, trios, and large ensemble music. Tuition includes lunches, snacks, daily swim, and camp t-shirt.

TUITION: $515 for JCC members, $575 for non-members

For a free consultation contact:

Noelle Perrin, camp director 201.346.9065 or e-mail

* * * * *

JCC Jazz Camp (for beginning, intermediate and experienced students )
Age 12 and older
August 2-13, 2010 • 11 AM–5 PM
Vinnie Sperrazza, Director

Jazz Camp is an intensive and exciting program for campers interested in exploring jazz and improvisation. Each day campers participate in improvisation workshops, ensemble rehearsals, and daily performances. Campers also attend theory, listening and rhythm classes. Each week concludes with a student concert.

2 week program: $865 JCC members, $965 non-members
1 week program: $515 JCC members, $575 non-members

For information about scholarships contact Vinnie Sperrazza
For more information on registration, auditions or programs contact: Thurnauer School of Music x1465