Wednesday, February 22, 2012


By John Brennan

WHEN: Friday, February 24, Saturday, February 25, and Sunday, February 26, 7:00 PM
Centenary Little Theatre, located at 400 Jefferson Street, Hackettstown
TICKETS: $5 for Centenary College students, $8 for non-Centenary students/seniors, and $10 for adults
Tickets are available through the Centenary Stage Company box office at 908.979.0900 and online at

Presented as a senior thesis, Befriending Amy was written by Brennan over the past four years of his college experience.  He will be graduating Centenary College in May with a Theatre Arts degree in acting and technical theatre. (Above: Befriending Amy Rehearsal L-R: John Brennan, Prof. George Peterson, Kyle Parham, Briana Klingaman)

Set in a New York City bar in 2001, Befriending Amy centers around the relationships between a group of bar employees and regulars in the months before and after the attacks on the Twin Towers on September 11, 2001. Presented in vignettes through a young woman’s diary entries, Befriending Amy revolves around the thematic question: Does everyone have their own definition of love? Or are we all on the same wavelength?

“It took me three years to write it,” says playwright, John Brennan.  He admits,“I wrote it to explain a moral and a story to both idolize and memorialize a day that has become the focus of my generation. I never expected it to go anywhere other than an idea on my computer screen.”

“You learn how the central theme is living in the moment and not looking back on past regrets—it’s pretty much carpe diem—seize the moment, seize the day,” says theatre student and cast member, Samantha Aflalo. “There are a lot of funny moments, but it’s also serious with an edge.” As a senior thesis, Befriending Amy has been directed, stage managed, edited, and designed entirely by Centenary College students.

Colton Parsons (Hackettstown, NJ), a Centenary College student studying criminal justice and theatre arts is the director with fellow theatre arts student, Kyle Parham (Woodbury, NJ)  as assistant director. Alongside the two student directors is communications student, Alex Kays (Sparta, NJ), as stage manager and fellow theatre student, Lisa Kosak (New Providence, NJ) as assistant stage manager. Having only a cast of eight, Befriending Amy includes Centenary College students, John Brennan (Basking Ridge, NJ) as lovesick hero, Thomas Mitchell; Tara Scott (Sparta, NJ) as Amy; Briana Klingaman (Phillipsburg, NJ) as the narrator, Kate England; Kyle Parham (Woodbury, NJ) as bartender, Jack; Hillary O’Toole (Hillsdale, NJ) as the devious Michelle; and Samantha Aflalo (Lyndhurst, NJ) as Anna and the mysterious Angel. Joining the student actors are faculty members Chef Tom Sterno as the sarcastic bar owner, Paul and Professor George Peterson as the drunken Mr. Smith.