Sunday, July 31, 2016


By Ruth Ross

One of the joys of summer is Chatham Players' Jersey Voices, the festival of one-act plays performed by the venerable troupe for the past 22 seasons. I think I have seen all but three in my 20 years of reviewing! Some years, the offerings are uneven in writing and/or performance, but this year the company has put together a winner!

Of the seven playlets, three are dramas while the remaining four are comedies. All the entries are helmed by different directors and acted by seasoned veterans and newbies to the troupe.

It was difficult for me to select my favorites, for all the plays had something to recommend them. Of the dramas, Paper Bell was the most affecting. About to make a recording on a "diamond disk," famous singer Ruth McKintire (Lauri Macmillan) passes some time with self-described "farm boy" Charles Green (Charlie Thomson). She longs for the family life in a small town he enjoys; he seeks the adventure and travel she experiences on the road. While nothing is resolved at the play's close, the moments these two spend together certainly are bittersweet. Jessica Phelan competently directs, but she needs to get Thomson to speak louder. He was often difficult to hear even in the little black box Chatham Playhouse.

One, Three, Two – Sarah and DanOne, Three, Two by Michael Weems and directed by Lynn Polan, addresses the stranglehold technology (and its accompanying passwords and codes) has on modern life, strangling our need for simplicity. Daniel De Guzman is affecting as Jake, who has "gone fishing" instead of picking his son up at school, much to the consternation of his very capable wife Heather (Sarah Blannett Pharaon). The play moseys along rather pokily, as befits a man escaping from the rat race, but the satisfactory ending finds the couple determining a possible solution to Jake's problem.

The third drama, Not Enough, written by Chip Bolcik and directed handily by Robert Lukasik, explores a marital dilemma faced by a middle-aged couple. Their predicament is presaged by Peggy Lee's rendition of "Is That All There Is" and by the play's title. That Bob and Mary (Lewis Decker and Bridget Burke Weiss—both terrific) break the fourth wall to address the audience adds a bit of levity to the fraught situation doesn't really diminish the play's emotional punch. He wants the two to be lovers again; she chastises him for not making her feel special—a situation probably faced by many long-time couples, making the topic relevant and timely.

As for the comedies, be warned that I will not divulge details that might affect your enjoyment of them. The festival opens with a bang, presenting What Every Grown Son Wants His Mother to Know by Joann Lopresti Scanlon and directed by Kevern Cameron. Janie (Paula Ehrenberg), Donna (Colleen Grundfest) and Laura (Amie Quivey) have gathered for lunch and to complain about the lack of maternal attention paid by their college sons. Enter Donna's son David (Zach Shinske) and we get a hilarious "take" on what goes on between mothers and sons from the latter's point of view. All the actors are superb, with Grundfest best expressing the plight of "helicopter moms" who can communicate with their college student offspring by text or computer. Although we are familiar with parental complaints of neglect, Scanlon gives us the opposite point of view to great comedic effect.

Happily Ever After - Brad and KatHappily Ever After, penned by Jeanne Johnston and directed by George Seylaz, stand the Cinderella happy ending on its ear, also to great comedic effect. Broadly played by Bradley Carrington (the Prince) and Katherine LeFevre (the Princess), the two fairy tale innocents charmingly display the dilemma posed by such a sunny ending. The play provoked much laughter as it really tackled what, in real life, is a serious problem.



Bottle For A Special OccasionThe last two plays, both comedies, were especially droll. Bottle for a Special Occasion (by William C. Kovacsik and directed by Arnold Buchiane) features the great comedic actress Terri Sturdevant as the grieving widow Judith shopping at the wine store for an appropriate bottle of wine to put in the coffin of her late oenophile husband. As the clerk Martin (Duane Noch) attempts to help her, the truth of her marriage is revealed; it's not pretty, but both the playwright and Sturdevant manage to wrest comedy from it—the latter through her masterful delivery of the dialogue! She is a delight to watch.

And Fantasy Dance (by Gary Shaffer and directed by Joann Lopresti Scanlon) involves a trio of Dance Dads at a competition in which their daughters and granddaughter are competing. This playlet ended the festival with a bang appropriate to the first entry; the two acted as perfect bookends to the entire festival! Frank Bläuer (Tim), Bob Grundfest (Bob), Roy Pancirov (Frank) and TJ Ryan (Jerry) apply the jargon of fantasy sports to dance and the result is side splitting. Pancirov is especially comical; Grundfest matches his performance as a man obsessed by palindromes. Using the sport fantasy metaphor in an offbeat way is hilarious.

Jersey Voices 2016 is a delight for lovers of original one-act plays, especially by New Jersey playwrights. Every year it's like what Artistic Director Bob Lukasik paraphrased from "Forrest Gump," a box of chocolates—you never know what you're going to get. This time, it's a box of whatever your favorites may be (mine are caramel). So open the cover and dive right in!

Jersey Voices 2016 will be performed at the Chatham Playhouse, 23 N. Passaic Ave., Chatham, through August 7. For information and tickets, call the box office at 973.635.7363 or visit online.

Photos by Howard Fischer.

Friday, July 29, 2016


Website      About Us      Auditions      Interact with interACT      Contact Us


Click here to purchase your tickets

STARRING: Claushelle Achille - Aaliyah Arroyo - Vlada Borisova-Duran - Nadiya Braham Amber Brown - Leila Tai Brown - Sherese Bulluck - Christa Carlucci - Tionna Clifton - Levil Shawn DaCosta - J. Marsahll Evans - Steven Equihua - Alicia Fink - Meara Franowicz - Aidan Harn-Flood - Dana P. Hawkins - Sally Jayne - Demetrius Kee - Holly Lehren - Margaret Leone - Ian MacDonald - Diane L. McClintock - Dean Nielsen - Elyssa Nielsen Jennifer Nielsen - Laura A. Quinn - Regine Riviere - Jason Stack - Tiffany Terrell Pat Tiné - Rosemary Wall - Tasha R. Williams - David Wren-Hardin

ABOUT THE SHOW: "interACT Sings!" is our annual musical revue benefit. Each year offers a new theme. This year, "Stay Tuned" offers a look at music on television. With several Theme Songs, Background Music and Television Performances, there is something nostalgic for everyone in "interACT Sings! Stay Tuned." Join us as our cast of over 30 local talented performers present this fully staged and choreographed musical revue.

interACT Theatre Productions | | |
South Orange, NJ 07079

Copyright © 2012. All Rights Reserved.


3 Divas & Special Guest Tapper John Manzari

WHEN: Saturday, July 30th, Show time is 7 pm
WHERE: Deer Head Inn,on the corner of Main St. (PA 611) and Mountain Road, 5 minutes from Route 80 and the Delaware River.
ADMISSION: $15 music charge and dinner is served all evening.
For reservations call 1-570-424-2000 or visit the website

Sherrie Maricle, Leader of The Diva Jazz Orchestra  will bring a special trio to the Deer Head Inn in Delaware Water Gap, PA. The trio features Sherrie on drums, Amy Shook on bass and amazing pianist Jackie Warren.

Performances include John Manzari, tap dancer who appeared on the Broadway Show “Tappin Thru Life.”

This jazz club has been in operation for over 60 years!

Thursday, July 28, 2016



Since the age of seven, M`nard Derosena, also known as Kingdom Art,  had a burning desire for art. As a kid, Kingdom Art grew fascinated by it, always observing the beauty of life and its contents, and so came the passion of expressing everything from personal feelings to different ideas in his drawings, whether it was something beautiful to the eyes or an experience, he always sought to put them in visual aspect to portray his understanding of them. (left, with Amar'e Stoudemire)

Over the years Kingdom Art challenged himself to be at his best, do outdo previous efforts and to become better at his craft by surrounding himself with others that are blessed with the same gift. Kingdom Art have been inspired and influenced by most of them, but he has always been driven by creativity, always stretching his imagination exponentially to the extent that others wouldn't even think of, and that was his motivation. It was almost as if he was competing with others, whether it was freehand or anything he would lay his eyes on to reproduce, he`d always go above and beyond to show that he is the best, and that he was. At the age of fifteen, he came to America, he attended forest hill high school in Florida, and a year later, he moved to new jersey. Life wasn't easy, and so him and his family found themselves constantly moving, and due to the need for adapting to a new environment, he put down the pencil and the pad for awhile to settle in jobs that can secure him financially. The idea of learning a new language was also another challenge, and in a way he became so preoccupied in fitting into a new way of life, that unknowingly he stopped serving his gift to the point he could barely draw anymore. As the years go by, he started getting involved in music and  grew very passionate about it. Although he laid his art dormant for a while, strangely, it wouldn't die, it would hunt him mentally with overwhelming ideas and dreams that just weren't leaving his mind only because it was the only thing that matched the beat of his heart.

When Kingdom Art grew older, he started seeking purpose for his life and it dawned on him, that being a painter was what he was born to be. Unlike before in his previous years in doing art, He has come to the full understanding of his gift. He realized that it is more impacting to be effective than to be the best. Kingdom Art understood that everyone was born with different personalities even though they may have the same gift and that everything they would do (based on their character) would dictate the outcome or effect their works. He understood that there`s no such thing as a competition and that everyone is uniquely blessed with an originality according the gift they inherited. Kingdom Art renewed his thinking from constantly attempting to be the best, to being more concern in being a standout. He realized that having a gift only means that he would have to serve it to others and in serving it, they would be blessed from it, he saw it as his purpose in life. For this reason he decided to make his art more life related, to focus on the ways of man-kinds, their struggles, spiritual growth and faith. Now that he is more driven than before, he is determined to serve his gift to the world and reach to hearts and minds of the generations connected to him by the influence of his art.


Starbuck and Lizzie

By N. Richard Nash

WHEN: July 29, 30, and August 4, 5, 6, 8 PM
the outdoor amphitheater at Pleasant Valley Park, Valley Road in Basking Ridge.
ADMISSION: Admission is free, but donations are gratefully accepted. Bring lawn chairs or blankets for seating.

The play, set in a drought-ridden western state during the 1930s, tells the story of a hot summer day in the life of spinster Lizzie Curry whose brothers try to marry her off with little success, worrying both about her future and the fate of their cattle ranch  With no relief from the drought in sight, a charming, sweet-talking rainmaker, Starbuck arrives out of nowhere with the promise to bring rain for $100.  His arrival will have a profound effect on Lizzie’s life.

Directed by Hugh Wallace of Bernardsville, the ensemble cast features Nancy Jeanne McBride of Bernardsville, Peter Curley of Maplewood, Mark Szabo of Parlin, Richard Butler of Piscataway, and Bill Ward, Michael Giangreco and Hank Barre of Basking Ridge. 

“The Rainmaker” opened on Broadway in 1954, with Geraldine Page and Darren McGavin. It was revived in 1999 with Woody Harrelson.  The 1956 movie starred Burt Lancaster and and Katherine Hepburn, who earned an Academy Award nomination for her role as Lizzy.  A musical version, “110 in the Shade,” opened on Broadway in 1963, receiving four Tony Nominations; the 2007 revival starred Audra McDonald.

The partnership of Trilogy Repertory and Bernards Township has produced over three decades of family entertainment and achieved several awards for both groups for excellence in theater programming.  Most prominent are the awards from ACT (Achievement in Community Theater) and the prestigious “Excellence in Cultural Arts Programming.”  “The Rainmaker” is made possible, in part, by support from New Jersey State Council on the Arts, and is presented through special arrangement with Samuel French.

An excellent play for all groups
call 908-204-3003

IMAGE: William Ward (Starbuck) of Basking Ridge and Nancy Jean  McBride (Lizzie)


Our renowned 5-week Summer Intensive performance culminates in a performance:

An Evening of Dance

WHEN: Friday, July 29, 2016 at 6:30 p.m.
WHERE: McCarter Theatre Center's Berlind Theatre, Princeton, New Jersey
TICKETS: $27 by phone; $30 at the door
For tickets, call Princeton Ballet School Box Office 9 a.m.-5 p.m. at (609)921-7758, ext. 35 

This year, 100 dancers from our international audition tour will be featured in the performance. Students from across the United States, as well as Italy, Switzerland and Australia, have spent the last five weeks in serious dance study, under world-class faculty, in a warm and companionable atmosphere under caring and careful instruction conducive to technical and artistic progress. The program will feature works by Mary Barton, Janell Byrne, Erika Mero and Marius Petipa (staged by Maria Youskevitch).

Nutcracker in July!

Select Nutcracker performances are available for 15% during the month of July.

Click here for full information about this limited-time-only promotion and our

Nutcracker in July social media contest!


Artie Shaw Orhestra-1


WHEN: Saturday, July 30, at 8pm
Sitnik Theater of the Lackland Center, 715 Grand Ave., Hackettstown
TICKETS: $30.00 for adults and $25.00 for students.  Ticket prices increase $5.00 the day of the performance.  All ticket sales are final.
For more information or to purchase tickets visit or call the CSC box office at (908) 979 – 0900.  The box office is located in the Lackland Center; 715 Grand Ave. Hackettstown, NJ.  Box office is open Monday through Friday from 1 – 5 pm and two hours prior to each performance.

The swing keeps on swinging in the Lackland Center as Centenary Stage Company’s 2016 Summer Jamfest continues with The Artie Shaw Orchestra. Nicknamed “the king of swing” after his hit, Begin the Beguine, Artie Shaw was renowned for his innovative combination of instruments. Playing several of the original arrangements that made Artie Shaw so popular in the 40’s and 50’s, The Artie Shaw Orchestra remains one of the "swingingest" outfits around.  Featuring clarinetist Matthew Koza, the group hews to the Shaw legacy, and continues with the time-tested formula that has always pleased a full spectrum of audiences from the “Begin the Beguine” fans of yesteryear to the new jazz fans who want to imbibe in an exciting and heady evening of swing.

Centenary Stage Company’s 2016 Summer Jamfest closes on Saturday, August 6 with Desert Highway, A Tribute to The Eagles.  All performances are held in the Sitnik Theater of the Lackland Center.

The 2015-16 season of performing arts events at the Centenary Stage Company is made possible through the generous support of the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, the NJ State Council on the Arts, the Shubert Foundation, the Blanche and Irving Laurie Foundation, the Sandra Kupperman Foundation, and CSC corporate sponsors, including Premier Season Sponsor Heath Village Retirement Community, Silver Sponsors Hackettstown Regional Medical Center, Home Instead Senior Care (Washington), The Holiday Inn in Budd Lake.


WHEN: Sunday, July 31 – Sunday, August 9 
Axelrod Performing Arts Center, 100 Grant Avenue, Deal Park

In its sixth year, the festival features eight exceptional  award-winning films from Israel and the United States, covering topics as diverse as family, the Israeli state, rock and roll, dementia, the Holocaust, hummus and Israeli Cooking. 


WHEN: Sunday, July 31, 7:30pm

Opening the festival is Natalie Portman's much talked about "A Tale of Love and Darkness," based on Israeli author Amos Oz's international autobiographical best-seller about growing up in Jerusalem before the establishment of the Israeli State. Portman wrote, directed and starred in this film that Esquire called "the most revolutionary Jewish movie since 'Schindler's List.'" Portman, who is Israeli born, has been recognized for making "a new kind of Jewish film" available to American audience."

** Event Sponsor Poopa Dweck will be signing her cookbook, Aromas of Aleppo at 6:45pm before the screening of A Tale of Love and Darkness.
Cookbook price: $50.00


WHEN: Monday, August 1, 3pm & 7:30pm 

Directed by Roger Sherman, this documentary is a portrait of the Israeli people and culture told through food. Profiling chefs, home cooks, farmers, vintners, and cheese makers drawn from the more than 100 cultures that make up Israel today-Jewish, Arab, Muslim, Christian, Druze-a rich, complex human story emerges. Chef Michael Solomonov, an Israeli-born American, who's been called "the genius of Jewish cooking," is the film's guide. His celebrated restaurant Zahav is in Philadelphia. 

7:30 Film Screening Event: Chef Solomonov will be interviewed by Garrett Bess.James Beard and Emmy-Nominated Executive Producer plus q&a


WHEN & WHERE: Monday, August 1, pm - Monroe Senior Center (MSC); Tuesday, August 2, 4pm- Jewish Heritage (JHM); Thursday, August 2, 7pm - APAC

Curmudgeonly widower Nat Dayan (Jonathan Pryce) clings to his way of life as a kosher bakery shop owner in London. Understaffed, Nat reluctantly enlists the help of Muslim teenager Ayyash, who accidentally drops his stash of marijuana into the challah dough. Business booms and an unlikely friendship rises. A warmhearted, humorous story about overcoming prejudice in unexpected places.



WHEN: Tuesday, August 2, 7pm – APAC; Wednesday, August 3, 7:30pm - JHM

For many Israelis, the assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin in 1995 marked a grim turning point in the country's history. Many believe the murder ended all hope for peace in the region. In this film Amos Gitai sets out to prove that the assassination was not the act of one fanatic but rather the culmination of a right-wing hate campaign.



WHEN: Wednesday, August 3, 7:30pm – APAC; Thursday, August 4, 7pm - JHM

A spellbinding mystery of identity and illusion by director Christian Petzold. Disfigured by a bullet from a death camp, Nelly, a German-Jewish nightclub singer, undergoes reconstructive surgery and emerges with a new face. She walks into a dangerous game of duplicity as she tries to figure out if the man she loves may have been the one who betrayed her to the Nazis.




WHEN: Tuesday, July 26, 7pm – MSC; Wednesday, August 3, 4pm - APAC

A triangle of love and fatherhood ties: Fidelman, a 70-year-old antique restoration specialist, struggles to keep his workshop open and hires an apprentice, Anton. When Anton falls in love with Fidelman's son Noah's pregnant wife, the two young men compete not only over a father but also over a woman and the baby she carries. Nominated for 11 Israeli Academy Awards.




WHEN: Sunday, August 7, 4pm & 7:30pm - APAC

Zev Guttman (Christopher Plummer), a 90-year-old man struggling with memory loss, gets a mysterious package from his fellow Auschwitz survivor friend Max (Martin Landau), containing cash and a letter detailing a shocking plan of revenge. Wheelchair-bound but mentally sharp, Max, guided by Zev, embark on a road trip to bring justice to the camp guard who destroyed both of their lives.





WHEN: Tuesday, August 2, 9pm – APAC; Thursday, August 4, 9pm - APAC

A powerful exploration into the lives of musicians struggling to create art in a conflict zone, the film is an intimate portrayal of life on the edge in the war-torn city of Sderot, once known for its prolific revolutionary rock scene, which for thirteen years has been the target of ongoing rocket fire from the Gaza Strip. The film chronicles the town's trauma and reveals the enduring spirit of Sderot's diverse musicians.



Special Festival Event: Monday, August 1

  • 4:30pm: Author Meet & Greet and Cookbook Signing with James Beard Award-winning Chef Michael Solomonov of Philadelphia's famed Zahav restaurant
  • 6:30pm: Israeli Food Tasting & Cookbook signing
  • 7:30 Film plus Screening Event: Chef Solomonov will be interviewed by Garrett Bess.James Beard and Emmy-Nominated Executive Producer plus q&a

* Special Festival Event Tickets *

TICKETS: $42 Event Pass includes film In Search of Israeli Cuisine, signed copy of Michael Solomonov's Zahav and food tasting reception

$72 Gold Series Pass includes all 8 films plus food tasting and signed cookbook


Stalsworth_GetlikPLAYFEST 2017
Competition Open to Community College Playwrights Statewide

As part of its yearlong 50th anniversary celebration, Mercer County Community College (MCCC) will host “Playfest 2017” next spring, the first New Jersey community college new play festival. The competition is open to all student playwrights and actors from the state’s 19 community colleges. Community college alumni are also invited to participate. (Right: Playfest Chairman LouJ Stalsworth and Kelsey Theatre Artistic Director M. Kitty Getlik on stage at Mercer County Community College. )

Submission categories include full-length and one-act plays, as well as musicals and plays with musical accompaniment. The winning productions will be presented on stage at MCCC’s Kelsey Theatre the week of March 7 to 12, 2017. In addition, cash prizes will be awarded to the college(s) of top playwright(s); the playwright who submits the overall winning script will be awarded a slot for his/her production in Kelsey Theatre’s 2017 summer season, according to Kelsey Artistic Director M. Kitty Getlik.

Entries will be accepted from Oct. 1 through Nov. 15. Submission and production of plays will be coordinated through the playwright's community college. Playwrights should contact the appropriate department—either English or Theater—at their college to determine the contact person for the Playfest. Each school may select one full-length play and up to two one-acts for submission. Scripts will be judged by a panel of theater professionals, with the winning scripts to be announced in January.

Festival chairman LouJ Stalsworth explains that the productions will be bare bones, using the fringe festival model. “Our focus will be on the written word, not production values. Load-in and load-out times will be limited, allowing for a maximum number of plays to be seen on stage,” he said.
Stalsworth is an MCCC adjunct faculty member who teaches playwriting and world theater, and was the director of two large-scale student shows: “Romeo and Juliet” (2015) and “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” (2016). He is the artistic director for PinnWorth Productions, which performs at Kelsey Theatre, and is a former New Jersey State Fellow in Playwriting and a Virginia Center for the Creative Arts Fellow. He has an MFA from Rutgers University’s Mason Gross School of the Arts.

“Kelsey Theatre is centrally located and is home to a dozen community theater companies,” Getlik said. “We have the staff and facilities to make Playfest 2017 a success and are eager to host an event that will celebrate the rich diversity and talent of the state’s network of community colleges.” (More about Kelsey Theatre can be found at

For further details, visit Questions may be addressed to





WHEN: July 29 @ 7:30 PM; July 30 @ 1:30 & 7:30 PM
Paper Mill Playhouse, 22 Brookside Drive, Millburn

This special season finale concert features 120 of New Jersey’s most talented young performers, including Rising Star Award winners and nominees, in a musical tribute to the revivals and adaptations that make Broadway sing!

Featured performers in past Conservatory New Voices concerts have gone on to take the entertainment industry by storm! Academy Award® and Golden Globe winner ANNE HATHAWAY (Les Misérables, Rachel Getting Married), Tony® winners LAURA BENANTI (Gypsy) and NIKKI M. JAMES (The Book Of Mormon), star of Broadway’s Chaplin andHoneymoon in Vegas, Tony® nominee, ROB McCLURE, TV newcomer SHANICE WILLIAMS (Dorothy in NBC's "The Wiz Live!") all got their start on the famous Paper Mill Playhouse stage. Our alumni appear on Broadway, in National Tours and in television and films. A full list of our accomplished alumni is posted here,.





Ambitious young cast portrays Dr. Seuss’ best-loved characters

WHEN:  Friday, July 29 at 7:00 pm and Saturday, July 30th at 2:00 pm
Ridgewood Avenue School in Glen Ridge, New Jersey
TICKETS: $10.00 and are available at and at the door.

The Gas Lamp Junior Players bring the lyrical genius of Theodor Geisel, aka Dr. Seuss, to life in Seussical: The Musical, during two shows July 29 and 30. Directed by Kristy Graves and produced by Susan Knight Carlin, 76 young actors will portray characters from beloved Dr. Seuss favorites including The Cat in the Hat, Horton Hears a Who, Green Eggs and Ham, If I Ran the Circus and Oh, The Thinks You Can Think.

While the cast is comprised of girls and boys grades 1-8, the artistic team opted not for the abbreviated “junior” version of Seussical, but instead for the full length adaptation of the Broadway production that ran in 2000. The production is musically ambitious with three-part harmonies and big production numbers, but the young actors are up to the task, according to Kristy Graves, Gas Lamp Artistic Director. “The kids are willing to work hard and push their boundaries,” says Graves. “Their reward is an incredible shared experience and the accomplishment of performing a full length show complete with production-value costumes, props and sets.”

Auditions are not required for participation in Gas Lamp Junior camp. Some campers have extensive training and performance experience; others have never set foot on a stage. A professional teaching staff, aided by college and high school counselors, creates a wealth of learning opportunities. Carefully planned rehearsal schedules rotate the campers through acting, singing and movement training as well as related classes such as comic book creation to aid in character development and music mash-ups to improve musicality. The kids admire and encourage each other – and create a family dynamic over the four weeks of camp.

Seussical has so many wonderful and wacky characters -- The Cat in The Hat, Horton the Elephant, Gertrude McFuzz, the citizens of Whoville and Jojo, a little boy with a big imagination,” observes Gas Lamp Business Manager Susan Knight Carlin. “Many are familiar from Dr. Seuss story books. Nonetheless, we encourage our campers to think about these characters’ motivations and feelings. What a unique opportunity for our young actors to embody living, breathing characters.”

Knight Carlin describes her favorite song in the Show. “Alone in the Universe is a sentiment that we all can relate to,” says Knight Carlin. “There’s a sweet moment when two very different characters connect with each other and find a true friend.” Graves concurs. “Seussical delivers messages that are beautiful, insightful, powerful and hilarious,” Graves concludes. “These stories ring especially true in light of all we’re experiencing as citizens of the world today.”

Gas Lamp Junior Camp is an educational four-week performing arts workshop that offers acting, singing and dancing classes along with rehearsals and performances of a full-length musical production. Gas Lamp Players is a non-profit community theatre whose mission is to cultivate creativity, confidence, compassion and community through the performing arts. For more information, visit


Joseph Gallo in LONG GONE DADDY. Photo by Joe Epstein.

written and performed by Joseph Gallo

WHEN: July 20—August 7, Thurs thru Sat @ 8pm • Sun @ 3pm
Mile Square Theatre, 1400 Clinton Street (and 14th Street), Hoboken
TICKETS: $20 ($12/students/seniors)

"Gallo recounts his journey in a strong, moving, assured Hoboken's jewel of a theater, Mile Square Theatre. "—


Becoming a father. Being a dad. One man learns the difference (an adult comedy).

In this follow-up to his critically acclaimed Off-Broadway solo play My Italy Story (“…a compelling page turner.”—The New York Times), Mile Square Theatre playwright-in-residence Joseph Gallo checks in with his alter-ego Thomas DaGato—now a reluctant father, fighting for his right to be called Dad.

Long Gone Daddy is recommended for adult audiences.


The Strollers are turning 85 years old with our upcoming season and we would love to celebrate with you at the 85th Anniversary Gala.

The information is below and tickets, as always, are available through our website, We hope you'll be able to join us.


Wednesday, July 27, 2016


Due to an  unprecedented, entirely SOLD OUT RUN, we have ADDED A MATINEE

Don't hesitiate, tickets will go fast!

To Kill a Mockingbird
written by Harper Lee, adapted by Christopher Sergel
directed by Tom Frascatore

TICKETS: Adults $22 Seniors $17 Students $12
*additional processing fees apply

It’s 1935, and racial tensions are high in Maycomb, Alabama. Nonetheless, young Jean Louise Finch -- or Scout, as she is fondly called -- manages to live a rather carefree, privileged existence, insulated from issues of race. All that changes when Scout watches her father, Atticus Finch, defend an innocent man, Tom Robinson, against a potential death sentence, which looms threateningly against him because of prejudice due to race. Scout begins to realize that just because society portrays something as being true doesn’t mean that it actually is fact. With the the help of Atticus, and her older brother Jem, Scout learns that “growing up” often means doing what is right, even when it comes at great cost. To Kill A Mockingbird is now considered an American masterpiece about the power of childhood innocence, morality, and love. However, it is important to note that the author, Harper Lee always defined it as a simple love story.

Harper Lee’s provocative novel includes accurate and frank use of the racially-charged language of the time period. This use of language remains in this adaptation as an honest depiction of bigotry and racial injustice.
Performed with permission from Dramatic Publishing

WHERE: Duncan Smith Theater, 36 Crawfords Corner Road, Holmdel, NJ 07733

Please email with any questions.

Join us as our First-Monday-of-the-Month Play Reading Series
continues with a FREE reading of the original work

by Michelle Bergamo

Cynical hypochondriac Eva Russo needs all the help she can get after she drunkenly offers to be a surrogate mother for her sister, Kate. (Contains adult content)

Directed by Gerry Appel
Artwork by Tia Sheridan
Cast includes Laura Casey, Roger Dornbierer, John Dowgin, TJ Jones, Michele Tauber*, Jessica Damrow Sherman, Paul Whelihan* and Gordon Wiener.


Tuesday, July 26, 2016


The Clown - YPW 2015sm

Centenary Stage Company’s Young Performers Workshop

WHEN: August 5 through August 14
the Little Theater, Centenary College, Hackettstown
TICKETS: $12.50 for adults and $10.00 for children under 12.  Tickets are available on – line at or by phone at (908) 979 – 0900.  The Centenary Stage Company box office is open Monday through Friday from 1 – 5pm and two hours prior to every performance.

Celebrating over 20 years of acclaimed musical theatre training for young thespians, the Centenary Stage Company’s Young Performers Workshop returns with the annual Summer Festival of Shows. These talented young thespians between the ages of 8 and 18 will present a variety of musical theater favorites including Do Black Patent Leather Shoes Really Reflect Up?, Merrily We Roll Along, Miss Nelson has a Field Day, The Dark at the Top of the Stairs and the One-Act Festival.

Do Black Patent Leather Shoes Really Reflect Up?
With music & lyrics by James Quinn and Alaric Jans, a book by John R. Powers and based on the novel by John R. Powers, this musical captures the funniest aspects of youthful growing pains and the trying moments of adolescence.  Focusing on eight children during their Catholic elementary and high school education in the 1950s, this delightful musical tickles the funny bone of anyone who ever went to school, public or private. 

WHEN: Friday, August 5 at 8pm; Sunday, August 7 at 7pm; Saturday, August 13 at 8pm & Sunday, August 14 at 4pm.

Merrily We Roll Along
Stephen Sondheim and George Furth expertly blend the excitement and energy of a backstage musical with a poignant and emotional contemporary story about the importance of staying true to one's ideals.  Merrily We Roll Along begins in the present and moves backwards, tracing the lives of wealthy, jaded composer Franklin Shepard and his two estranged friends through each milestone of their personal and professional lives (good and bad). The show ends with a touch of rueful irony, as the three best friends at the start of their careers face a bright future: young, talented and enthusiastic about the worlds waiting to be conquered.

WHEN: Saturday, August 6 at 8pm; Sunday, August 7 at 1pm; Friday, August 12 at 8pm; Saturday, August 13 at 2pm and Sunday, August 14 at 7pm.

Miss Nelson has a Field Day
Adapted by Joan Cushing from the famous children’s novel by Harry Allard and James Marshall Miss Nelson has a Field Day is the snappy sequel to Joan Cushing’s beloved musical “Miss Nelson is Missing!”.  The Smedley Tornadoes have not only never won a football game, they have never scored a single point! Coach Armstrong goes bonkers and Miss Nelson decides to help out.  She enlists Coach Viola Swamp to whip the team into shape and save the day. 

WHEN: Saturday, August 6 at 2pm; Sunday, August 7 at 4pm; Saturday, August 13 at 5pm and Sunday, August 14 at 1pm.  YPW will be presenting a special “camp” performance of Miss Nelson has a Field Day on Thursday, August 11 at 10:30am.  Please call the box office directly for details on ‘camp’ performance.

The Dark at the Top of the Stairs
Written by William Inge, The Dark at the Top of the Stairs is a drama set in a small Oklahoma town in the early 1920s.  The story follows the Flood family and is told through a series of short stories — the fight between a husband and wife, the fear of an overly shy young girl on going to a dance, the problems of an introverted little boy who feels that the whole world is against him, the corroding marriage of Cora's rowdy sister, and the tragedy of a military school cadet who suffers from the stigma of being a Jew in an alien community. There is dark at the top of everyone's stairs, but it can be dissipated by understanding, tolerance, and compassion. 

WHEN: Tuesday, August 9 at 7pm; Wednesday, August 10 at 7pm and Thursday, August 11 at 7pm.

One-Act Festival
Finally, the Young Performers Workshop will be presenting their annual One- Act Festival on Saturday, August 13 at 11am and Sunday, August 14 at 11am.  The One – Act Festival features a selection of short plays selected to be performed in rep.  One – acts are directed by YPW staff and/or students and feature an entire YPW student cast.

The YPW program has been led by Broadway, film and television veteran, Michael Blevins, for over 20 years. YPW is dedicated to the enrichment of young lives through experience in the theatre arts, and serves as a venue for cultivating young theatre performers. The program is one of only a handful in the nation that offers both formal training and production experience for young people.

The Young Performers Workshop is part of the educational arm of the professional Centenary Stage Company, a professional Equity theatre in residence on the campus of Centenary College. The 2016-17 season of performing arts events at the Centenary Stage Company is made possible through the generous support of the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, the NJ State Council on the Arts, the Shubert Foundation, the Blanche and Irving Laurie Foundation, the Sandra Kupperman Foundation, and CSC corporate sponsors, including Premier Season Sponsor Heath Village Retirement Community, Silver Sponsors Hackettstown Regional Medical Center, Home Instead Senior Care (Washington), The Holiday Inn in Budd Lake, and Fulton Bank of New Jersey, and Centenary Stage Company members and supporters.


Photo MONJ MMS Concert Cropped


The Metropolitan Orchestra of New Jersey, now in its 45th season, is a full symphonic orchestra composed of local musicians, both professional and amateur. Under the direction of Maestro Michael Stratechuk, the orchestra plays a varied repertory performing 3 concerts each season.

Rehearsals take place on Monday evenings (7:30 – 9:30 pm) at Chatham Middle School from September through June.

Presently, there are openings in the following sections: strings (especially viola, cello and double bass), oboe, English horn, trumpet, French horn, bassoon, contrabassoon and percussion. 

If you are interested in joining this group of friendly musicians, please contact George Kafka at 201-259-2363 or email us at:



Ocean Grove "Summer Stars" Classical Music Series

WHEN: Thursday evenings at 7:30 pm
in the magnificent and historic Great Auditorium in Ocean Grove.
TICKETS: for these performances by world-class musicians are only $16.00

July 28, 2016 7:30pm

Maksim Shtrykov, Clarinet, & Misuzu Tanaka, Piano (below, left)
Sensational players with international fame, back for a
return engagement

“…clarity that’s viscerally breathtaking...
quicksilver legato made the streams and frequent torrents
of notes seem absolutely effortless. “ —Lucid Culture, New York



August 4, 2016 7:30pm

Grand Orchestra and Great Organ
Gordon Turk, Organist
Jason Tramm, Conducting The Midatlantic Opera Orchestra

Margaret Mezzacappa (below, right), Metropolitan Opera national auditions
winner; Jason Tramm (below, center), “a conductor to watch”; and Gordon Turk,
Ocean Grove’s internationally-renowned organist, join for a
dramatic Orchestra Finale, featuring famous operatic arias and
Symphonie Concertante by Jongen. Dr. Turk will be playing the Ocean Grove Great Auditorium's spectacular 108-year old, 11,010 pipe organ, one of the largest concert organs in the world.



muriel anderson aug 5 concert1MURIEL ANDERSON

WHEN:  Friday, August 5th, at 8:00 PM
WHERE: Morristown Unitarian Fellowship, 21 Normandy Heights Road, Morristown NJ.
TICKETS: $20 in advance and $25 at the door. Tickets are available online (credit card/check) at or at The Minstrel any Friday evening (cash/check).
For more information: or 973-376-4946.

Muriel Anderson’s world-renowned guitar and harp guitar playing will be highlighted by a backdrop of stunning visuals by celebrated photo-artist Bryan Allen. Together they bring you on a journey around the globe, full of joy and humanity, with new tunes, old favorites, stories and images.

Muriel is one of the world’s foremost fingerstyle guitarists and harp-guitarists, and is the first woman to have won the National Fingerstyle Guitar Championship. Her recent CD “Nightlight Daylight” has won top honors in 11 national awards. She has performed or recorded with Chet Atkins, Les Paul, Victor Wooten, and the Nashville Chamber Orchestra.

An engaging performer, Muriel’s unique approach to the instrument virtually transforms the guitar into a lyrical choir, then a marching band, then a Japanese koto, then a bluegrass band, one minute launching into a Beatles tune and the next, a Rodrigo concerto.  Her gentle sense of humor and her facility across multiple genres of music is revered by guitarists worldwide.


WHERE: New Jersey Repertory, 179 Broadway, Long Branch

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  • BROADWAY WORLD: Struck has twists and turns that keep you completely captivated.
  • THE FRONT ROW CENTER: Excellent performances.
  • CURTAIN UP: Jewish ancestry and the Holocaust collide with a mix of the hilarious and the horrifying.
  • SCENE ON STAGE: An engrossing 90-minutes.
  • NEW JERSEY FOOTLIGHTS: A top-notch production.

WHEN: Limited run thru July 31st. Performances are Thursdays, Fridays at 8pm; Saturdays at 3pm and 8pm; Sundays at 2pm. Extra performance added on Sunday, July 24th at 8pm.

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The backstage intrigue, romance, and scandal that take place during and after rehearsals of Othello are the backdrop for this comic-drama. Three extraordinary actors at the top of their game along with a well-known director rehearse a production of Othello as they whittle away at each other in this passionate, highly theatrical play.

WHEN: Limited run August 25 thru September 25. Performances are Thursdays, Fridays at 8pm; Saturdays at 3pm and 8pm; Sundays at 2pm. August 25 and 26 performances are followed by a meet-and-greet with the cast. Opening night with reception is Saturday, August 27.

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Sloane, a rich, beautiful Ivy League graduate, doesn't believe in love or marriage. She does believe in babies, however, and wants one soon. The problem is she needs a sperm donor who passes muster. Enter Brandon, who's got the right stats but the wrong attitude. Cabbage soup, a rare baseball card and a lizard named Pogo all play a part in this romantic comedy for cynical times.

WHEN: Limited run October 20 thru November 20. Performances are Thursdays, Fridays at 8pm; Saturdays at 3pm and 8pm; Sundays at 2pm. October 20 and 21 performances are followed by a Meet-and-Greet with the cast. Opening night with reception is Saturday, October 22.

NJ Rep's BUTLER in NYC at 59E59 Theaters

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BUTLER, inspired by controversial Civil War General Benjamin Butler, comes to NYC at 59E59 Theaters.

59E59 Theaters is thrilled to open the 2016/2017 Season with the NYC premiere of NJ Rep's BUTLER, written by by Richard Strand, directed by Joseph Discher and starring NJ Rep's original cast Ames Adamson, John G. Williams, David Sitler, and Benjamin Sterling.

WHEN: Now through August 28. The performance schedule is Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday at 7pm; Friday at 8pm; Saturday at 2pm & 8pm; Sunday at 3pm. There is an added performance on Sunday, July 17 at 7pm.
To purchase tickets, call Ticket Central at (212) 279-4200

It's the start of the Civil War and lawyer Benjamin Butler was just promoted to the rank of Major General at Fort Monroe, a Union hold-out in the state of Virginia. Shepard Mallory, an escaped slave, seeks sanctuary at the fort. However, the law of the land has not yet changed — slaves still are considered property and must be turned over to their "rightful owners.” Does Butler follow the letter of the law or make a game-changing move that could alter the course of U.S. history?

Based on actual events, this powerful comedic-drama, called “Splendid” by The New York Times during its run at New Jersey Repertory Company, arrives at 59E59 for its NYC premiere. Don't miss this extraordinary play!

Monday Night Salon Readings

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Mercy by Adam Szymkowicz - August 29, 2016.
Above Water written and performed by Stephanie Dorian - September 19, 2016.

Doors open at 6:30 pm and readings begin promptly at 7:00 pm, followed by a discussion.