WAYNE YMCA ANNUAL GALA
WHEN: November 14, 7:30 PM
WHERE: Wayne YMCA, 1 Pike Drive, Wayne
ADMISSION: $50 each and may be purchased online at metroymcas.org/gala or at the Wayne Y’s Welcome Center at 1 Pike Drive, Wayne. For $250, a business, organization or individual may sponsor the PAC’s ‘Take Your Seat’ campaign, earning a nameplate on a seat and listing in the program.
Accomplished musical producer Scott Siegel will bring the glamour of Broadway to the newly renovated Rosen Performing Arts Center at a Nov. 14 gala benefitting the Wayne YMCA.
“This performance will stand out as the premiere of a brand new concert event I've created exclusively for this benefit,’’ said Siegel, who has produced more than 100 Broadway-style concerts, including his signature “Broadway by the Year” series at The Town Hall in Manhattan.
Siegel’s “Broadway Jukebox” traces the history of the jukebox musical — a musical that uses pop songs for its score — in jukebox musical style, featuring hits by The Four Seasons, Carole King, Elvis Presley, the Beatles, Bob Dylan, The Beach Boys, and others.
The Saturday night show, which kicks off the Rosen PAC’s 2015-16 season, stars four Broadway actors and features a performance by the Wayne Valley High School Chamber Choir. The acclaimed Paper Mill Playhouse Broadway Show Choir will open the show.
“This type of show will appeal to the Broadway lover and to a wider audience, because everyone knows the songs,’’ said Meryl Budnick, cultural arts director of the Wayne YMCA. Scheduled to perform are:
Kenita Miller, two-time Drama Desk Nominee who starred on Broadway in “The Color Purple” and “Xanadu.”
The Wayne Valley High School Chamber Choir, an audition-selected class, will sing The Beatles, “I Want To Hold Your Hand,’’ which was part of the Broadway jukebox musical “Beatlemania.’’ The performance will be the first time the 16-member choir has performed with Broadway actors, choir director Lisa Sabatino said.
“I’m so excited! Many of us have never gotten to sing with Broadway-caliber performers, and here we get to show our talent with them, on-stage together!’’ said Wayne Valley High senior Claire Debenedetto, who plans to major in theater arts and marketing in college.
Debenedetto has twice had leading roles in Rosen PAC performances, and said she is looking forward to being on the stage again. “I love that theater!’’ she said.
Guests of the Wayne YMCA gala will be the first to enjoy renovations made to the 39-year-old venue, which last year changed its name from the Rosen Theater to the Rosen PAC to better reflect the array of performances and classes offered there.
“We are proud to both host and produce top-notch plays, musicals concerts and dance shows, providing quality entertainment to the greater Wayne community and inspiring young people to pursue their dreams and express themselves artistically,’’ Budnick said.
The Rosen PAC teaches acting and dancing to children, teens and adults, and off-Broadway shows and other production companies rent the theater for rehearsals. (It is also available for meetings and conferences.)
Proceeds from the November 14 gala will pay for upgrades to the Rosen PAC’s sound system. A new lighting system was installed in 2014 and this year, the Wayne Y installed all new seats and new carpeting, Budnick said.
The Wayne Y is seeking sponsors for the Rosen PAC’s 2015-16 season. Sponsors at the $10,000 level, for example, will be mentioned in all promotional material and press through November 2016. For more information about sponsorship, go to metroymcas.org/rosenpac. The Y is a member of the Metropolitan YMCA of the Oranges, the largest association of YMCAs in New Jersey with six branches, and a proud partner of the YM-YWHA of North Jersey.
“We are grateful to all Rosen PAC supporters for helping us to both bring stellar performances to the Wayne community, and teach children and adults skills that will bring them joy throughout their lives,’’ said Wayne YMCA Executive Director Justin Ihne. “The entire Metro Y community is proud of the hard work and funds invested in the Rosen PAC, a gem that inspires a love of the performing arts in an intimate, affordable venue.’’