Friday, May 25, 2018

Circle Players announces auditions for Douglas Carter Beane’s “The Nance”

Image result for THE NANCE


by Douglas Carter Beane

WHEN: Monday, June 11th, 7 to 9 pm; Thursday, June 14th, 7 to 9 pm;  Callbacks on Tuesday, June 18th, 7 to 9 pm. (Please note callbacks are by invitation only.)
Circle Playhouse, 416 Victoria Ave, Piscataway
Questions may be submitted to the theater at

The production runs Sept 28th through Oct 14th, 2018.

THE NANCE is a highly entertaining and funny exploration of gay life in 1937, a time when being openly gay was often dangerous. It is an ensemble show in which all characters, except Ned, are part of a burlesque company doing comedy sketches. Expert comic timing required. The ability to play an instrument, juggle or dance/sing, etc., especially for the female roles, is a plus, although not required. Note: the women wear burlesque costumes and do some stripping, but there will be no nudity for them. The stripping is comical rather than sexual.

The auditions will consist of readings from the show.

Cast Breakdown:

  • Chauncey Miles – 30s to early 50s.  An elegant, refined gay man, who dresses and speaks show biz every minute of the day.  In the burlesque sketches, he plays the character of “the nance,” an extremely effeminate gay character, played for laughs.
  • Ned – Brief nudity required.  20s to mid-30s, a handsome, down-to-earth butch gay guy.  He knows who he is and doesn’t like playing games about it. 
  • Sylvie – Burlesque performer, 20s to 40s.  She’s got a communist party membership card, and don’t you forget it.  Very opinionated.  Very Brooklyn.
  • Joan – Burlesque performer.  20s to early 40s.  Loves her liquor (maybe a little too much) and loves her job.
  • Carmen – Latin spitfire type, burlesque performer.  20s to early 40s.
  • Efram – 30s to early 60s.  Top banana in the burlesque sketches.  A New York Jew who tolerates communists and pansies, but doesn’t really like them, and makes sure you know it. 

Pennington Players Expose Cutthroat Real Estate World at MCCC’s Kelsey Theatre


Glengarry Glen Ross
by David Mamet

WHEN:  May 25 to June 3. Fridays, May 25 and June 1 at 8 p.m.; Saturdays, May 26 and June 2 at 8 p.m.; and Sundays, May 27 and June 3 at 2 p.m.
Mercer County Community College’s (MCCC’s) Kelsey Theatre located on the college’s West Windsor Campus, 1200 Old Trenton Road.
TICKETS: $18 for adults, $16 for seniors, and $14 for students and children.
Tickets may be purchased online at or by calling the Kelsey Box Office at 609-570-3333.  Kelsey Theatre is wheelchair accessible, with free parking next to the theater. For a complete listing of adult and children's events, visit the Kelsey website or call the box office for a brochure.

A group of desperate real estate salesmen are sharpening their knives as they prepare to sell some questionable properties really fast! Join The Pennington Players as they present David Mamet’s modern classic, Glengarry Glen Ross. (Above, from left are Daniel Gleason, Mark Violi, Andrew Timmes, Rick Purcell, Gina Hermans, Brian Jason Kelly, and Sheldon Bruce Zeff)

In the cutthroat world of Chicago real estate, a band of dodgy salesmen are prepared to use all means necessary, legal or otherwise, to sell undesirable properties to unwitting prospective buyers. Over the course of two intense days, they employ flattery, lies, bribes, threats, intimidation and even burglary in an attempt to get the job done. The plot is based on work experiences from Mamet's past – before he became a Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright.

The show had its world premiere at the National Theatre in London in 1983. It opened on Broadway in 1984, where it ran for 378 performances and was nominated for four Tony awards. A 1992 film version included actors Jack Lemmon, Al Pacino and Ed Harris.

The Pennington Players' ensemble cast features Daniel Gleason of Yardley, Pa., as Lyngk; Gina Hermans of Lawrenceville as Baylen; Brian Jason Kelly of Doylestown, Pa., as Roma; Rick Purcell of Jamesburg as Levene; Andrew Timmes of Princeton as Williamson; Mark Violi of Hamilton as Moss; and Sheldon Bruce Zeff of Newtown, Pa., as Aaronow.

The production team includes Director Kyrus Keenan Westcott, Producer/Stage Manager Vicki Kaiser, Assistant Stage Manager Lili Timmes, Scenic Designer Kate Pinner, Lighting Designer Kat Ross Kline, Costume Designer Sally Page Sohor, and Sound Designer Evan Paine. Photos are by KyrusKeenan Photography.

MCCC Gallery Hosts “Mercer County Artists 2018” May 21 to July 9

MCA_WinterMercer County Artists 2018

WHEN: May 21 – July 9; Mondays through Thursdays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., with Wednesday hours extended until 7 p.m.
The Gallery at is located on the second floor of the Communications Building on Mercer's West Windsor Campus, 1200 Old Trenton Road.

The talents of 21 Mercer County artists will be on display at the Gallery at Mercer County Community College (MCCC) in "Mercer County Artists 2018." 

The show features 28 works in a variety of media including oil, acrylic, graphite, mixed media, ceramic, wood and more. Eighty-eight artists submitted work for the jurying process. (Above, left: “Lady with Blue Bird,” a mixed media collage by Susan Winter of Hightstown)

"The Mercer County Artists Exhibition is always a great opportunity to see how invaluable the arts are to our community,” said Lucas Kelly, director of the MCCC Gallery and a professor of Fine Arts at the college.

MCA_SimmonsFeatured artists are: Angela A. Barbalace of Hamilton, Sheryl Bassman of Robbinsville, Sue Chiu of Lawrenceville (two pieces), Louis Cicchini of Princeton Junction (two pieces), Chris Cooper of Lawrenceville (two pieces), Ingrid Davis of East Windsor, James Doherty of Lawrence (two pieces), Julie Fox of Princeton, Susan Gilli of Hamilton (two pieces), Jamie Greenfield of Lawrenceville, Katarzyna Iwaniec of Princeton Junction, William Knight of Burlington, Phillip Cox Luth of Princeton (two pieces), Suzanne Migliori of Groveville, Janis Purcell of East Windsor, Libby Ramage of Princeton, Robin Robinson of Trenton, Jules Schaeffer of Belle Mead (two pieces), Janet Marion Simmons of Princeton, Larry Steele of Lawrenceville, and Susan Winter of Hightstown. (Above, right: “The Problem Solver" by Janet Marion Simmons of Princeton)

MCA_DohertyKelly notes that this year’s juror, Alexis Nutini, made difficult decisions from the wealth of talent in the works that were submitted and observed multiple connections among artists in the community. “Thematic, technical, and aesthetic strings that ran through the works were evident to him, and those connections became a main theme," Kelly said. “I focused on some of these connections in the installation of the show. What better way to honor our community than to focus on some of the connections that exist in the work that we do.” (Above: “Girl in Flower Dress” by James Doherty of Lawrence)

The exhibition is co-sponsored by and supported through a grant from the Mercer County Cultural and Heritage Commission, with funding from the New Jersey State Council of the Arts/ Department of State, a partner of the National Endowment for the Arts.

For more information about this and other exhibits at the MCCC Gallery, visit Directions to the campus and a campus map can be found at


Robber Smallest


WHEN: July 9 through August 12. Classes are broken up by age, ability and meet by section Monday through Friday from 9:00AM-4:30PM allotting approximately 15 hours of study each week.
: On the campus of Centenary University located at 715 Grand Ave., Hackettstown
The registration deadline is June 27, 2018.

New students are required to attend an initial interview session by appointment with the program director prior to acceptance. Interviews will be held on Saturday, June 2 and Sunday, June 3. The initial interview will cover in detail commitment level, previous experience, applicant goals and expectations. Parent questions and concerns will also be addressed. All students are accepted into the program.

Hailed as a “state treasure” this 5-week intensive program has been designed to meet the needs of beginning, intermediate and advance performers ages 8 – 18. The hands-on program is one of only a handful of youth programs in the nation that utilizes both the classroom and the “production process” to train young people in the theatre arts. Career minded individuals can prepare for the rigors of working in the professional industry, while students not aiming for a professional career benefit from the program with its emphasis on discipline, self-worth and the development of communication and critical thinking skills.

Once registered, students enroll in variety of core classes, including acting, tap, theatre dance, and voice/diction. Students are then offered a selection of elective classes, such as, stage combat, make-up, radio production and directing among many others. All instructors of the Young Performers Workshop are experience industry professionals.

In addition to the classes offered, the program includes the production of musicals and plays culminating in a Summer Festival of Shows which takes place the last week of the program. Once registered, students are guaranteed a part in at least one production and depending on ability, experience, desire and commitment level, could feasibly appear in more than one production. Rehearsals are held Monday through Friday after classes with the possibility of weekends pending the needs of any individual production. Students have approximately three to six hours of rehearsal daily. Rehearsals are under the guidance and direction of theatre professionals.

The Young Performers Workshop is led by Broadway, television and film veteran Michael Blevins. Blevins is an accomplished director/choreographer having choreographed the Off-Broadway production of “The Mad Forest” for the Manhattan Theatre Club. He has directed and choreographed the National Tours of “Babes In Toyland”, “Aladdin”, and “Tom Sawyer” for the American Family Theatre. Most recently he directed and choreographed the NYC revival of “Seesaw”, and his original musical “Count to Ten” at the New York Musical Theatre Festival. He has worked with many Tony and Academy Award winning Directors and Choreographers including Sir Richard Attenborough, Joe Layton, Woody Allen, Vivian Matalon, Peter Gennaro, Danny Daniels, and Bob Fosse. He has performed with many professionals including Chita Rivera, Michael Douglas, Donald O’Conner, Diane Lane, Victor Garber, Brooke Sheilds, Savion Glover, James Coco, Bebe Neuwirth, Beth Leavel, Jane Drakowski, and Robert Downey, Jr. Blevins has been featured on ABC-TV “Good Morning America” and on the covers of “Dance Magazine” and “USA Today.”

For more information or to schedule an interview contact the CSC Administrative Office at (908) 979 – 0900. Additional information and the summer registration brochure can also be found online at The Centenary Young Performers Workshop (YPW) is under the auspices of the Centenary Stage Company, a not-for-profit Equity Theatre Company in residence , NJ. The Young Performers Workshop is part of the educational arm of the professional Centenary Stage Company. Programs at CSC are made possible through the generous support of the Geraldine Dodge Foundation, the NJ State Council on the Arts, Heath Village, The House of the Good Shepherd, and CSC members and sponsors.    

Times Critics’ Pick New Musical to Open @ Two River Theater June 9

WHEN: June 9 – July 1, 2018
Two River Theater, 21 Bridge Ave., Red Bank
TICKETS: $40-$70; Groups of 10+ $36-$49

Fading country star Tammy Trip returns home to the honky-tonk that launched her music career, planning to help the son she abandoned launch his own. But will her arrival do more harm than good? Dreams, ambition, love, and heartbreak—along with a good deal of whiskey—all collide in this acclaimed new musical, based on Chekhov’s The Seagull.

Songbird premiered Off-Broadway in 2015 to much critical acclaim, earning a New York Times Critic’s Pick.

“Songbird proves to be one of the more successful attempts to transpose Chekhov’s major plays…. Powered by a terrific country score [and a] smart contemporary version of the text, the show succeeds in snugly reframing the story in the world of country music.” – The New York Times

This show will truly take your breath away with a captivating story and an excellent score.” – BroadwayWorld


NJPAC Stage Exchange Reading of Tony Meneses'

The Hombres

WHEN: Friday, June 1, at 7:00pm
NJPAC's Chase Room, 1 Center St., Newark

Co​-co​mmissioned by Two River Theater, The Hombres looks at the intimacy of male relationships through the point of view of Machismo culture. Set in New Jersey (“somewhere off a NJ Transit line”), the play follows Julián, a gay Latino yoga teacher, as he clashes with the Latino construction workers working outside his studio—particularly the older head of the crew, Héctor, who seeks from Julián something he never expected.

Meneses is a New Jersey-based playwright. His work, which always includes a Latinx point of view, gives voice to Latinx experiences. His plays are about visibility and representation; they show, in Tony’s words, “that our lives are complex and diverse even within our own community.” Two River Theater has premiered two of his plays: Guadalupe in the Guest Room (2015) and The Women of Padilla (2017).

Free Lecture on Raising Readers May 30 @ Rutherfurd Hall

WHEN: Wednesday, May 30, 2018, 7 PM
: Rutherfurd Hall, 1686 Route 507, Allamuchy or 908.852.1894 ext. 338

Thursday, May 24, 2018

A Citywide, All-Day Celebration of Art & Culture in Jersey City


Art House Productions’ JC Fridays

WHEN: Friday, June 1st, 2018
All events are free and open to the public.

Art House Productions’ JC Fridays will focus on accessibility in the arts! Jersey City’s premiere quarterly arts festival features art events that take place in restaurants, galleries, stores and event spaces in almost every neighborhood of our great city. ACCESS JC FRIDAYS will showcase a variety of happenings including visual exhibitions, live music, performance acts and educational demonstrations, all showing work from artists with disabilities or offering accessible participation options.

Rachel Handler, Art House’s Access Committee Chair notes, “Jersey City is one of the most diverse cities in the country, and that includes our residents with disabilities. Access JC Fridays should be every day!” Come out and celebrate art, ability and diversity in Jersey City!


WHERE: Cast Iron Lofts- 262 17th Street b/t Coles St and Jersey Ave, Jersey City

6:30 PM- Easterseals Disability Film Challenge Screening – We’ll be screening some of the winning films from the past four years of the Easterseals Disability Film Challenge. Films range from comedies, to dramas, to mysteries! And all of them star actors with disabilities in front of the camera and crew members with disabilities behind the camera.

8 PM- STILL STANDINGAnita Hollander (left)  is an actor with one-leg. Her one-person show, Still Standing, tells the story of her diagnosis with cancer to the very moment of the performance you’ll see on Friday, June 1st. With song, wit, understatement, great dollops of humor, but not a smidgen of self-pity, Hollander reaches out to every member of the audience. How many, after all, will share her one-legged condition?



  • Destination Jersey City
  • HarrisonRand
  • Mayor Steven M. Fulop, the Jersey City Municipal Council & Cultural Affairs
  • Jersey City Department of Housing, Economic Development and Commerce
  • Historic Downtown SID
  • PATH
  • JCEDC*
  • NJ Division of Travel and Tourism

Made possible in part by funds from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, A Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts; administered by the Hudson County Office of Cultural & Heritage Affairs/Tourism Development, and by the County of Hudson, Thomas A. DeGise, Hudson County Executive, and the Hudson County Board of Chosen Freeholders.

* Supported in part by a grant from New Jersey Department of State, Division of Travel and Tourism

Supporters: Jersey City Arts Council
Artistic Pride Productions


(performance)(music)(education) 7:30pm-8:30pm ST. PAUL’S CHURCH presents “Music and Faith of Franz Liszt.” Join pianist Yukiko Tanaka as she presents a program featuring music by Liszt, along with a talk about her life and faith. Music includes; La Campenella, Hungarian Rhapsody No. 6, Liebestraum, etc. Ms. Tanaka will be joined by Gail Blache-Gill, soprano and Minister of Music at St. Paul's. 38 Duncan Ave (Bergen/Kennedy Blvd), 201-433-4922. Family-friendly. Wheelchair Accessible.

(art)(music) 7pm-10pm IMAGO BEAUTY GROUP AT THE BASILICO presents “Hamlet Manzueta ‘The Artist.’” We will be featuring new and older work by the artist, Hamlet Manzueta. All are welcome to this exciting barrier-free event! 673 Bergen Ave. (Fairview/Duncan) (201) 332-6100. Family-Friendly. Wheelchair Accessible.


(art)(music)(film/video)(educational) 4pm-7pm PROJECT GREENVILLE presents “Project Greenville Pig Out!” Join us Friday & Saturday for an exhibit of work by-- and inspired by--pigs! That’s right, two of our participants are piggies Petunia & Hamilton who create paintings. They will be joined by Donchellee Fulwood, Diana Gonzalez, Rich Roberts and more…Live music Saturday by Sofia Oro plus vegetarian picnic snacks! 128 Winfield Ave (Ocean/Old Bergen Rd), 646-361-1858. Family-friendly. Wheelchair Accessible. Tactile tour.


(performance)(music) 5pm-10pm HISTORIC DOWNTOWN presents “Groove on Grove: A JC Fridays Showcase.” JC Downtown's weekly Wednesday night concert of local homegrown music moves to JC Fridays for a special showcase. Live Music, Artist and Makers Market, Food and Adult Libations. Band line-up Grove Street PATH Plaza (Newark/Grove), 973-219-9696. Family-Friendly. Wheelchair Accessible.

(art) 7pm-10pm MAXIMUM MOTION FITNESS presents “Roses.” Paintings by Milena Filipova. Roses are used for everything from expressions of love to adornment of kings and rebels. They are beautiful but watch out for the thorns, as all beauty comes with its price. Come view the amazing expression of these flowers from soft whites and yellows to bright exciting reds and pinks.262 Grove St (Montgomery/York), 201-985-9114. Family-Friendly. Wheelchair Accessible.

(art) 6pm-8pm SILVERMAN AND THE MAJESTIC THEATRE CONDOMINIUM ASSOCIATION presents “Doug Madill: Painting Jersey City.” Heights-based artist Doug Madill captures “plein air” (outdoor, direct observation) scenes in oil paint on canvas of Jersey City landmarks, parks, and street scenes, drawing out the remarkable from the familiar, highlighting the joy and artistry of our everyday surround. 222 Montgomery St (Grove/Montgomery), 201-435-8000. Family-Friendly. Wheelchair Accessible.

(art) 5pm-8:00pm JCITY REALTY presents “The Art Project.” Large scale abstract works by David French and Sandra DeSando. 109 Christopher Columbus Dr (Christopher Columbus Dr/Grove), 201-714-7777. Family-friendly. Wheelchair Accessible.


(art) 6pm-8pm SILVERMAN AND HAMILTON SQUARE CONDOMINIUM ASSOCIATION presents “CROSSING: Paintings by Jasmine Hsu.” A selection of vibrant new abstract paintings inspired by photography and photographic processes from Jersey City based artist Jasmine Hsu. 232 Pavonia Ave (Erie/Pavonia), 201-435-8000. Family-Friendly. Wheelchair Accessible.

(art) 6pm-8pm HAMILTON HOUSE presents “The Art Project.” Tour 7 Floors of solo artist lobby exhibitions with artists Jean-Paul Picard, Robert Egert, Roger W. Sayre, James Pustorino, Jodie Fink, Michael Ensminger, Artist Anthony E. Boone, Pat Lay, Maurizio Zuluaga, Hijo Nam and Kim Wiseman. 255 Brunswick St (9th/10th), 201-533-0333. Family-friendly. Wheelchair Accessible.


(performance)(music) 7pm-10pm ARTISTIC PRIDE PRODUCTIONS presents “HDMI featuring Glenn Coleman and Anthony Wills Jr.” A curated evening of performance headlined by Glenn Coleman who will perform covers, originals and improvised works. Followed by all access open mic. 61 Charles St. (Charles/Summit) (773) 879-8669. Family-Friendly. Wheelchair Accessible. Tactile-Tour.

(art)(educational) 6pm-9pm 107 BOWERS GALLERY & ARTSPACE presents “Experience Young Masters Children's Art Class.” Stop by to learn more about our Young Masters Children’s Art Class! We welcome children of all ages to touch and feel art materials while creating an art project to take home. View, touch and feel the work of artist Mike Dreeland from his NYC Radiator Covers series. 107 Bowers St (Central/Cambridge), 201.280.4821. Family-friendly. Tactile Tour.

(art)(performance) 7pm-9pm PRIME GALLERY presents “Creative Session.” Invite your friends, sip your favorite beverage and enjoy step-by-step instruction for creating your one-of-a-kind artwork with Ukrainian Artist, Yelena Kimelblat from our current exhibition, MONOCHROME. The subject will be sunflowers; the symbol of hope and her native country’s national flower. Ms. Kimelblat will also offer a free creativity session Children 12+. 351 Palisade Ave (Franklin/Ferry), 973-953-6497. Family-friendly. Wheelchair Accessible. Tactile tour.


(art)(music) 6pm-10pm EONTA SPACE presents “Natalie Giugni's Bones of Flight.” Every culture has shared this fascination with birds’ capacity to reach celestial horizons. This can be seen from ancient mythological tales to our contemporary superheroes soaring through the skies. In “Bones of Flight,” a new life is given to bits and pieces of birds and bones through deconstruction and abstraction of their imagery. 34 Dekalb Ave (Dead End off of Van Reypen St), 201-536-1119. Barrier-free. Family-friendly. Tactile tour.

(art) 6pm-10pm SMUSH GALLERY presents “Zero to 60 - JC Fridays Party.” Party it up at ‘Zero to 60 // fast work // sixty dollars max,’ SMUSH Gallery’s high energy group show featuring more than a dozen visual and text based artists from Jersey City, New York, and beyond. On view May 25 - June 9. All work $0-60. 340 Summit Ave (Summit/Academy).


(art)(music) 6pm-10pm GIA GELATO presents “BLACK AND BROWN.” Black and Brown is a mixed media art show featuring Jersey City artists Akil Roper (painting)and Anisa Rahim (photography). Roper and Rahim highlight and celebrate people of color through various portraits and other representations. Opening night will feature a return performance from the band Najeli Soul, who performed at Gia Gelato and Cafe last September. 281 Newark Ave (Monmouth/3rd), 201-216-0555. Family-friendly. Wheelchair Accessible. Tactile Tour.

(art) 6:30pm-9:30pm GALLERIE HUDSON presents “Magnificent Milena - Oil Paintings of Jersey City Waterfront.” A series of oil paintings of the famed skyline merging into Jersey City's waterfront. As well as a personal collection of unique art glass works. 197 Newark Ave. (Jersey/Newark) (201) 434-1010. Family-Friendly. Wheelchair Accessible.

(art) 5pm-7pm PROARTS JERSEY CITY presents “Momentum.” ProArts Jersey City announces “Momentum” a multi-media art show which will be on view at Nimbus Dance Works. 165 Newark Ave. (Columbus/Barrow) (201) 377-0718. Family-Friendly. Wheelchair Accessible.

(art)(performance) 6pm-9pm PROARTS JERSEY CITY presents “Curators Choice” art exhibition and poetry reading. The exhibit features 9 artists selected by professional curators following a one-day portfolio review event called Meet the Curators. Poetry reading by poet, teacher, and filmmaker Janet R. Kirchheimer – who looks to the past to help create a better future -- at 7:15 and 8:15. Casa Colobmo 380 Monmouth St. (1st/ 2nd), 201-771-2781. Family-Friendly.

(art) 7pm-10pm JERSEY CITY ART SCHOOL presents “Can I Kick It?” Norm Kirby will be showing new drawings, paintings, sculpture and collage. 313 Third St (Monmouth/Coles), 201-899-5492. Family-Friendly. Wheelchair Accessible.

(art) 6pm-9pm WANDA CROUDY presents “It Begins with Passion: Incandescent Expressions of Art and Design.” Art and design exhibition curated by Wanda Croudy at the Garden Level Gallery. 315 3rd St. (Monmouth/Cole), 917-627-9342.


(art) 6pm-8pm THE OAKMAN presents “The Art Project.” Take a tour of 14 solo artist lobbies including works by Injoo Whang, Ani Rosskam, Karen Nielsen-Fried, Susan Evans Grove, Bill Leech, Caridad Kennedy, Alejandro Rubin, Kerry Kolenut, Pat Lay and David French. 160 First St (Marin Blvd/Provost), 201-685-0117. Family-friendly. Wheelchair Accessible.

(art) 6pm-8pm SHUSTER MANAGEMENT/THE ART HOUSE presents “The Art Project.” Take a tour of 14 floors of solo artist lobbies-works by Bruce Halpin, Elaine Hansen, Joanie Gagnon San Chirico, David French, Timothy Heins, Rajendra Mehta, Diane Tenerelli, Bill Rybak, Harriet Finck and Deirdre Kennedy. 148 First St (Marin Blvd/Provost) 201-798-0928. Family-friendly. Wheelchair Accessible.

British Piano Great Neville Dickie And New Jersey’s Own Midiri Brothers

Neville Dickie and Midiri Brothers

WHEN: Monday, June 4, at 7:30 p.m.
Bickford Theatre is located at 6 Normandy Heights Road in Morristown, NJ, and offers free parking and full accessibility
TICKETS: $18 in advance and $20 at the door with a special price of $17 for Morris Museum members only.
Tickets may be purchased online at, by phone at (973) 971-3706, or in person at the Bickford Theatre Box Office. Box office hours for phone sales are Monday through Friday, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. Walk-up hours are Tuesday through Friday, 11:00 am to 5:00 pm.

Neville DickieNeville Dickie, one of the greatest boogie-woogie and stride pianists to ever come out of Britain, and New Jersey’s own Midiri Brothers return to the Bickford Theatre at the Morris Museum for their annual concert. photo courtesy of Pat Dickie.

Since his “Back to Boogie” album became a hit in the 1970s, Neville Dickie has been performing all over the world and returns to the United States every year. A regular part of his tour has been the annual Bickford Theatre show with Paul and Joe Midiri, twin brothers who have been entertaining audiences for years with their eclectic blend of classic jazz.

Not only is Neville Dickie a world-renowned jazz pianist, he and his wife Pat also ran one of England’s most successful jazz clubs, The Sutton Jazz Club, for 27 years until finally retiring two years ago. When not touring, Dickie devotes his time to recording and enjoying life in the English countryside with their poodle Bertie.

-Joe and Paul Midiri grew up in Runnemede, New Jersey where they played both jazz and classical music. With Joe on clarinet and Paul behind the drums, the twin brothers honed their skills playing in a swing band. Paul eventually turned to the vibes as his primary instrument and the two have become popular, acclaimed jazz musicians around the country. Joe Midiri cites several legendary musicians as his instrumental heroes including Benny Goodman, Artie Shaw, Ben Webster, and Paul Desmond. Not surprisingly, Paul’s inspirations including Lionel Hampton and Red Norvo. Billed as The Midiri Brothers, the two New Jerseyans headline at hot jazz festivals from coast to coast. Photo courtesy of Tom Salvas.

When Neville Dickie makes his annual pilgrimage to the States, he always invites Joe and Paul to perform with him and the brothers always look forward to the opportunity. “When we perform with Neville,” said Paul Midiri, “we always seem to push the boundaries of all types of classic jazz including trad, boogie-woogie, and swing. He is an amazing talent and we look forward to this opportunity to appear at the Bickford Theatre in Morristown. This annual date has become even more significant because we’re never sure if he will agree to leave his lovely wife Pat, their poodle Bertie, and their comfortable home in England to travel across the pond, but here he is again and we couldn’t be happier.” 

“Jewishish An Oy Story”—All proceeds will go to Flemington DIY

A Benefit for Flemington DIY

Written and performed by Joey Novick
Directed by Carole Montgomery

WHEN: Friday, June 8th, 7:30 pm
: 90 Main St, Flemington
TICKETS: $10, proceeds go to Flemington DIY
You may also pay at the door day of event.
Questions? Contact

Actually, it's about growing up Jewish in Brooklyn in the 1960s. With actual personal stories and actual Jewish jokes. Actually.

imageJoey Novick has been a camp counselor, editorial director, attorney, busboy, professional speaker, child actor and an elected official, but not necessarily in that order. His first solo show, "Comedian Elected to Town Council in New Jersey", was nominated for Best Comedy Performance at the Capital Fringe Festival in DC, and performed to sold-out crowds at the Jersey Fringe Festival. Joey has told stories at The Liar Show, Yum's the Word, Mostly True Things, SpeakEasy: Stories from the Backroom and Sideshow Goshko. As a stand-up comedian, Joey has opened for several comedy superstars who are now much more famous and richer than he is.

About Carole Montgomery:
In addition to her over two dozen television appearances, Carole has headlined comedy clubs & colleges across the USA. She currently stars in "Women of a Certain Age". She directed Joey in "Comedian Elected to Town Council in New Jersey."

Festival in Long Branch to Celebrate Edna Ferber

Five By Ferber

WHEN: May 31-June 3
West End Arts Center, 132 West End Avenue in Long Branch
TICKETS:  $25 per day  – Festival Pass: To all events $75. 
Free on-site parking. For tickets call 732-229-3166, visit, or click here: TICKETS.

NJ Rep is proud to present a celebration of the works of Edna Ferber including salon readings of 5 brand new one-act plays adapted from Ferber's short stories, a lecture on the story behind Show Boat told by Ferber's great niece and biographer, Julie Gilbert, and a concert reading of Selina Peake written by the Pulitzer prize winning playwright, Horton Foote, based on the Pulitzer prize winning novel, So Big.

Festival Schedule

Thursday, May 31 at 8pm - The Story Behind Show Boat - as told by Ferber’s great niece, Julie Gilbert, who was named after Julie in Show Boat. The novel that was published in 1926 was an immediate best seller, as it quickly followed Ferber’s Pulitzer Prize winning 1924 novel, So Big. The novel of Show Boat was based on research that Ferber did while living on a show boat in North Carolina. It is a considerably darker tale than the groundbreaking 1927 musical conceived by Jerome Kern and Oscar Hammerstein. Ms. Gilbert will navigate through the many differences between the novel and musical.  She will also screen scenes from all three film versions: 1927 version, which was a mostly silent film that was closest to the novel; the 1936 version starring Irene Dunne and Paul Robeson and the glossy MGM 1951 version starring Kathryn Grayson, Howard Keel and Ava Gardener.

Friday, June 1 at 8pm - Salon readings of three plays adapted from Ferber’s short stories:

  • That’s Marriage by Marisa Smith, directed by Michelle Tattenbaum – Orville and Theresa’s marriage is tested at the breakfast table one morning in Ferber’s timeless take on an age-old problem. Can this marriage be saved? And will Theresa ever serve Orville another egg?
  • The Sudden Sixties by D.W. Gregory, directed by Kelly O'Donnell – When Hannah Winter loses her footing in a hotel lobby, the gentleman who helps her up, turns out to be the boyfriend she left behind 40 years earlier. Now, after nearly a lifetime, Hannah is in the mood to rebel.
  • Mother Knows Best by Julie Gilbert, directed by Melanie Sutherland – Fanny Seldon, a domineering mother forces her daughter, Sally, to choose a career over her one chance at love.

Saturday, June 2 at 8pm - Salon readings of two plays adapted from Ferber’s short stories:

  • You’re Not the Type by Julie Weinberg, directed by Melody Brooks. It’s 1940 and the great depression is over, but not for Vivian Lande. After years of starring roles, she desperately seeks her comeback, but even her faithful agent can’t resuscitate her waning career.
  • Every Other Thursday book, music, lyrics by Sheilah Rae and Debra Barsha, musical director Rob Baumgartner, director/choreographer Laura Brandel – The time is 1927, Helmi is a Finnish maid working for the Mawson family of New York’s upper West Side. Her day off is every other Thursday. What she does on every other Thursday is her secret and hers alone, much to the consternation of the people she works for.

Sunday, June 3 at 4pm - The festival finale is a concert reading of a three-act play, Selina Peake, based on Ferber’s Pulitzer Prize winning novel, So Big, directed by Lynnette Barkley. This re-discovered, never produced play was written by Pulitzer Prize winning playwright, Horton Foote, and will be heard by audiences for the first time. This one-time reading is presented by permission of the Horton Foote Estate and the Edna Ferber Estate.

In Addition to the Ferber Festival ...

West End Art Gallery will present Summertime, an exhibit which will encompass the works of seven artists and their interpretation of what summer might be. The work includes contemporary abstract, scupture, mixed media and outsider art.

The "Summertime" artists are: Steve Cote, Kathy Dorsey, Myke Karlowksi, Demetrius Patterson, Mike Quan, George Severini and Aria Turner.

Admission is free and the works are available to purchase. The show will be available to the public May 30th thru July 6th.

Gallery Hours are Saturdays and Sundays noon to 4:30 and weekdays by appointment (732-542-1307).

The Gallery Opening & Reception will take place Wednesday, May 30th from 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm. All are welcome.

Join The Theater Project for a wine and cheese reception at 7:30 PM before Friday and Saturday performances, courtesy of Unity Bank.

WHEN: June 1, 2, 3; Friday and Saturday at 8 PM; Sunday at 2 PM
WHERE: Unity Bank, 952 Stuyvesant Ave., Union
TICKETS: Single tickets $20, students $10.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Closing Concert of the 29th Raritan River Music Festival

Raritan River Music


North & South: Music from Norway to Argentina

WHEN: Saturday, May 26, at 7:30PM
Stanton Reformed Church, 1 Stanton Mountain Road, Stanton
ADMISSION: $21.00, Students: Free (under the age of 26); Day of Concert: $25.00, Students free
For more information, call 908-213-1100 or Write

Michael Newman and Laura Oltman, Founders and Artistic Directors of the RRMF, will perform music from Norway to Argentina. Norwegian guest artists, Duo A Corda, made up of guitarist Martin Haug and violinist Birgitte Staernes in their first New Jersey appearance, will perform new Norwegian music by Marcussen and Haug. The program includes Argentine tangos by Piazzolla, as well as Baroque and romantic favorites.

Newman and Oltman’s concert tours have taken them to world cultural capitals and premiere venues across five continents, the Caribbean, and South Pacific. They have performed at Carnegie Hall, Caramoor and at the Grand Canyon. The Duo has demonstrated extraordinary stylistic breadth in their collaborations with such diverse artists as composer/conductor Marvin Hamlisch and the Pittsburgh Symphony Pops, mezzo-soprano Frederica von Stade, fiddler Eileen Ivers, pianist Clarice Assad, violinist Tim Fain, and the Calder, and Turtle Island string quartets.

Next season, Newman & Oltman will present world premier performances of a new work written and dedicated to them by renowned Cuban composer Leo Brouwer, who they recently hosted during a rare US appearance at Mannes School of Music. A recent commission, Concierto Buenos Aires composed for them by Nuevo Tango Master Daniel Binelli, was brilliantly performed by Newman & Oltman in its  world premiere with the l’Orchestre de l’Opéra de Reims in France and celebrated its US premiere with the Virginia Symphony. Previous European engagements include performances and lectures at the VI Academic Guitar Symposium (Brazil) and the International Guitar Symposium Iserlohn (Germany). The Duo returned to several Italian venues this past summer, which included performances and master classes at the Estate Musicale Frentana/Lanciano International Guitar Seminar and the Volterra Guitar Project.   The Duo will continue serving as co-artistic directors of the Lanciano International Guitar Seminar through 2017.

Champions of new music, Newman & Oltman have built a unique repertoire of works for two guitars by leading and emerging composers such as Paul Moravec, Augusta Read Thomas, Lowell Liebermann, Dušan Bogdanović, Arthur Kampela, and Roberto Sierra. 

The duo’s latest CD, Music from Raritan River, which was hailed by Fanfare Magazine as “top notch” and “a winner all around” features a collection of world premieres commissioned by the duo over the past decade.  Their artistry has also been captured on a dozen other acclaimed recordings. 

In addition to founding and serving as artistic directors of the New York Guitar Seminar at Mannes, Michael Newman and Laura Oltman are celebrating their 31th year as ensemble-in-residence at Mannes College of Music.  The NY Guitar Seminar at Mannes will be held again this July. 

For more information and hi-res images of the Newman & Oltman Guitar Duo, visit

Celebrity reading of hilarious new comedy @ George Street Playhouse

WHERE: George Street Playhouse, 103 College Farm Rd, New Brunswick
TICKETS: begin at $58. A limited number of $99 seats are available which include a post show reception and meet and greet with members of the cast.
BUY NOW or CALL 732-246-7717

Drama Desk winner and Emmy nominated writer Eugene Pack presents a staged reading of his hilarious new comedy. “Night With Oscar” centers on a family in Long Island unraveling on Oscar night.

Rob Morrow is a three time Emmy and Golden Globe nominee for Northern Exposure and currently appears in Showtime's hit series Billions.  Other TV credits include Numb3rs, American Crime Story and The Fosters.

Talia Balsam's television credits include: The Good Wife, The Newsroom, Divorce.
Mad Men, Homeland, Elementary

Robert Wuhl is a proud member of the Union (New Jersey) High School Hall of Fame. Movies: Batman; Bull Durham; Good Morning, Vietnam; The Bodyguard; Flashdance; Mistress; Hollywood Knights; Cobb; Good Burger; Open Season (also writer/director). He created and starred in the HBO series Arli$$ and Assume the Position with Mr. Wuhl.  He received two Emmy Awards for writing the 63rd and 64th Academy Awards.

Harmonium Choral Society Presents June Concert "Let the River Run"

Event Image

Let the River Run

WHEN: Saturday, June 2, 2018 at 7:30pm and Sunday, June 3, 2018 at 7:30pm
Grace Episcopal Church, 4 Madison Avenue at Kings Road, Madison, NJ.
TICKETS: General admission tickets are $25 ($20 for students and seniors - age 65+). Tickets purchased by June 1st are $20 ($15 for students and seniors). Advance ticket reservations are recommended. Free parking is available behind the church.
Please visit to purchase concert tickets. For assistance or more information, email or call 973-538-6969.

Artistic Director Dr. Anne J. Matlack leads the acclaimed 100-voice choral society in a concert featuring the Carly Simon song of the same name, as well as eclectic settings from the Renaissance to today. The program includes world music from Russia to Cuba, and composers ranging from Palestrina to Copland to Whitacre.

RESHMAKOPPARAPUPIC - Reshma KopparapuAs in past years, the June concert will also feature the winner of Harmonium’s Annual High School Composition Contest. This year’s first-place winner, Reshma Kopparapu (left), is a 12th grade student at Newark Academy in Livingston, New Jersey who plays piano, oboe and violin. Previously, her compositions earned second place in the 2015 and 2017 Harmonium Choral Society Composition Contest.

Harmonium will also perform the second-place composition by Carl Hausman (below, left), a senior at Mount Olive High School who is an accomplished cellist and member of the robotics team. In addition, several other student composers will be honored: third prize winner CJW Van Der Wende, a junior from Oak Ridge, CARLHAUSMANPIC - Carl Hausmanand honorable mentions David MacMillan, a senior at Vernon Township High School; Justin Witwick, a senior at Cranford High School; and Henry Marinovic, a freshman at Madison High School.

“I am amazed at the talent and persistence of our high school composers this year. It really gives me hope for the future of choral music!” exclaims Dr. Matlack. All students who submitted scores are to be commended, and we look forward to sharing two of the winners with the audience. As always, the rest of the program is quite eclectic and showcases the solo and percussion talents of the group made up of over one-third music teachers or professional musicians.”

Harmonium Choral Society, based in Morris County, is one of New Jersey's leading choral arts organizations. The 100-voice choral society has been recognized for its musical excellence and innovative programming, and has commissioned and premiered works by Amanda Harberg, Matthew Harris, Elliot Z. Levine, Harmonium's composers-in-residence Mark Miller and Martin Sedek, and others.

Directed by Dr. Anne J. Matlack of Madison, Harmonium’s season consists of four subscription concerts held in December, March, April, and June, as well as numerous special events and partnerships. Harmonium, known for its eclectic programming, choral excellence, and community spirit, sponsors commissions and musicianship workshops, as well as an Outreach Chorus that performs in schools, nursing homes, and other venues.

Harmonium sponsors an annual High School Student Choral Composition Contest, which celebrated its 20th anniversary in the 2016-17 season. This innovative program won the prestigious Chorus America Education and Outreach Award. Harmonium has toured internationally to England and Wales, Eastern Europe, Northern Italy, Spain and Portugal, and Greece and Turkey, and most recently traveled to the Baltics in the summer of 2016.

To learn more about Harmonium, please visit

Seven Reasons Not to Miss...Memorial Weekend Concert Event!

WHEN: Sunday, May 27, 3 PM
: Axelrod Performing Arts Center, 100 Grant Ave., Ocean Township
TICKETS: $42-$35 can be purchased online at; by phone (732) 531-9106, x14, or in person at the Axelrod Performing Arts Center, 100 Grant Ave., Ocean Township
The theater offers ample, free on-site parking and is completely handicap accessible.

Carl Topilow (Cleveland Pops Conductor), Art Topilow, Piano, plus 17-piece Swing Orchestra

Seven Reasons Not To Miss...It Might As Well Be Swing!

Back by popular demand from last season’s Ella Fitzgerald’s 100th birthday tribute, Gabrielle Stravelli swings the songs of Richard Rodgers, backed again by an amazing 17-piece swing band including Carl Topilow and Dr. Art Topilow. The catalog of Richard Rodgers includes immortals songs from his musicals with Oscar Hammerstein II (South Pacific, The Sound of Music, Oklahoma!, The King and I) as well as the standards that derive from the musicals with Larry Hart, including “Bewitched,” “My Funny Valentine,” “Where Or When,” “Blue Moon” “Isn’t It Romantic” and “Manhattan.”   LEARN MORE

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Art Center Summer Exhibitions Open on June 1

Oh, what a world! What a world! & Containment

WHEN: Friday, June 1, reception from 6:30–8:30 PM; on view throughout the summer and will close on Sunday, September 9, 2018. Gallery Hours: Monday to Wednesday and Friday 10 AM–5 PM; Thursday 10 AM–8 PM; and Saturday & Sunday 11 AM–4 PM. Please call 908-273-9121 to confirm holiday hours.
The Visual Arts Center of New Jersey is located at 68 Elm Street in Summit, New Jersey
Visit for more information.

“Oh, what a world! What a world!” are the dying words spoken by the Wicked Witch of the West as she melts away in the film, The Wizard of Oz. Despite her status as a villain, there is pathos and longing in those final words. The melting witch is an apt metaphor for the loss of control many people felt in the wake of the contentious 2016 United States presidential election. Since then, American society has become increasingly polarized, with a heightened state of anxiety about the future of the country and the world. This anxiety manifests itself in countless ways and pervades our increasingly globalized society. The group exhibition, Oh, what a world! What a world! examines how artists from the US and abroad are responding to these recent changes. With new urgency, their work addresses issues such as climate change, immigration, gender equality, race relations, policing, protest, and the very state of our Democracy. Participating artists are Olive Ayhens, Zoë Buckman, Mary Jean Canziani, David Antonio Cruz, Dahlia Elsayed, Goldschmied & Chiari, Enrico Gomez, Johannah Herr, Morgan O’Hara, Felekşan Onar, Fernando Orellana, Kern Samuel, Renée Stout, and Julie Wolfe. This exhibition will be on view in the Main Gallery.


Running concurrently in Eisenberg Gallery, Containment features artwork from a group of artists who examine the shipping containers and ships that move goods, people, and power across the oceans. The containerized shipping industry is central to international commerce and largely responsible for our increasingly globalized economy. The artists featured include David Packer, who has created a ceramic version of a shipping container, and Linda Ganjian whose sculptural installation reimagines a container-ship accident. Also included are Erin Diebboll and Gabby Miller, who have both been artists-in-residence on container ships and have created art in response to their firsthand experiences—Diebboll’s meticulous drawings illustrate the contents of shipping containers, and Miller used the ship’s engine oil as her medium for a series of paintings. Additionally, a site-specific installation by Leslie Kerby in Marité & Joe Robinson Strolling Gallery I, explores the movement of shipping containers and incorporates sculpture, mixed media works on paper, and video animation. 

About the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey
For 85 years, the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey has been exclusively dedicated to viewing, making, and learning about contemporary art. Recognized as a leading non-profit arts organization, the Art Center’s renowned studio school, acclaimed exhibitions, and educational outreach initiatives serve thousands of youth, families, seniors, and people with special needs every year.

Major support for the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey is provided in part by the Walter V. & Judith L. Shipley Family Foundation, the Wilf Family Foundations, and Art Center members and donors.

D&R Greenway Land Trust’s Spring Native Plant Sale will be held June 1 & 2

Great Spangled FritillaryD&R Greenway Land Trust’s Spring Native Plant Sale

WHEN: Friday, June 1, 3 to 6 p.m., and Saturday, June 2, 9 a.m. to noon
D&R Greenway’s Native Plant Nursery at the Johnson Education Center, One Preservation Place, Princeton.

During the Native Plant Sale, D&R Greenway nursery staff and volunteers will be available to advise on the best choice of plants for gardening projects.

Eco-conscious gardeners know that using native species provides essential food for wildlife and contributes to a healthy and biodiverse ecosystem, all while creating low maintenance plantings. D&R Greenway’s Native Plant Nursery is a community resource for regionally native plants.

Northern Crescent on Queen Ann's LaceNative plants are adapted to central New Jersey’s climate, making them more drought-resistant than most exotic plants, and also provide essential food & habitat resources for wildlife. Of particular concern are migratory species that depend on native plants for fuel before and after their long journeys, and for food and nesting materials during breeding season. Current well-known examples include the monarch butterfly and rufa red knot, dependent specifically on the milkweed and the horseshoe crab, respectively, for their survival.

Tiger Swallowtail (Yellow male on left and dark female on right)  nectoring on ThistleBecause central New Jersey’s native plants and wildlife evolved together, they are highly adapted to and dependent upon each other. Native plant resources are especially critical for wildlife at energy-intensive times of the year, such as spring and fall migration, and during courtship and breeding. In turn, native plants rely upon wildlife for pollination and seed dispersion. Whereas indigenous plants support diversity and disease-resistance, exotic invasive species form monocultures that outcompete other plants. Replacing them with native species, which co-exist, creates a complex, vibrant ecosystem vital to both plants and animals.

D&R Greenway Land Trust has preserved more than 20,000 acres of land in central New Jersey, with a mission to preserve a network of natural lands and open space accessible to the public, and to inspire a conservation ethic through educational programming, including increasing awareness of the benefits of native species. The Nursery provides plants for habitat restoration projects on D&R Greenway managed land, for use by home gardeners, and for native garden projects by schools, municipalities and other conservation non-profits.

Along with the native wildflower selection, the nursery also has many native shrubs, trees, grasses and ferns, including plants for every garden type—from dry, sunny meadow gardens to shady forest understories.

D&R Greenway Land Trust’s plants are grown from locally sourced starter plants and seed, and are raised and sold with the skilled assistance of a corps of volunteers. Plants are available in quart, gallon and two-gallon sized pots from $5 to $15. A full catalog is available online at

D&R Greenway’s Native Plant Nursery will offer summer plant sales every Friday, from June through August, from 3 to 5 p.m.

Out of Bounds: JCTC Presents Innovative Modern Dance Showcase at White Eagle Hall


WHEN: Saturday June 2, Doors 7:30/ Show: 8:00
White Eagle Hall, 335-337 Newark Avenue, Jersey City
TICKETS: $15 - $20 (Student & Senior Citizens discounts available with valid ID)
To purchase tickets, visit:
For JCTC information, call: (201) 795-5386

Jersey City Theater Center (JCTC) presents Out of Bounds, an evening of high-caliber modern dance celebrating innovative New Jersey and New York choreographers by some of the leading dance companies and dancers in the region.

Curated by Meagan Woods, co-producer of Your Move, the largest dance festival in New Jersey, the White Eagle Hall dance concert brings together a rare grouping of some of today’s most innovative practitioners of dance and movement. "Jersey City has a strong community with enthusiasm for dance,” said Woods. “Out of Bounds will offer a full spectrum of contemporary movement in a unique celebration of the thriving dance scene here."

In addition to Woods, Out of Bounds features Robert Mark Burke, Lauren Connolly, Katelyn Halpern, Joe Monteleone, Morgan Refakis, Nick Sciscione and Heather Warfel in evening of eight distinct dance vignettes. Each piece was created or selected specifically for Resistance, JCTC’s current thematic series. JCTC selects topics global in scope yet relevant to the community then explores this theme through a variety of art genres, including visual arts, readings, theatre and dance.

These dance interpretations of Resistance are all individual takes on overcoming limitations, either by pushing back against restrictions or moving beyond them. Out of Bounds also redraws boundaries of typical performance space. Dance will erupt both onstage and off with movement traversing throughout White Eagle Hall. Audience members can decide on what sightline to view each piece – either on the floor and close to the dancers or from a birds-eye view of the action from the balcony. The dance concert will be followed by a reception at White Eagle Hall where audiences can meet the Out of Bounds performers.

“This dance concert offers boundless performances, defying categories with raw, expansive movement inventions,” said Woods. “Out of Bounds offers a nod to the evening's content and structure: dancers, and audience members, engage without confines in a concert that explores nearness, escapism, rebellion, and impending change.”

“Meagan has always embraced the community and in turn the community embraces her,” said Olga Levina, Artistic Director, JCTC. “Out of Bounds has some of the most incredible dancers and choreographers that have come together to celebrate dance and the Jersey City community.”

Funding for Out of Bounds and Resistance was made possible by generous support from the Hudson County Office of Cultural & Heritage Affairs/Tourism Development, Thomas A. DeGise, Hudson County Executive and the Hudson County Board of Chosen Freeholders and the New Jersey State Council on the Arts.

Out of Bounds and Resistance was also made possible through the generosity of Ben LoPiccolo Development Group, JCTC’s Board of Directors, private donors and local Jersey City businesses.

Jersey City Theater Center, Inc. (JCTC) presents programming at Merseles Studios and White Eagle Hall. JCTC is a nonprofit, 501c3 arts organization committed to inspiring conversations about the important topics of our times through innovative and progressive performing and visual arts that celebrates diversity, bringing communities closer together and enhancing the quality of life.

Monday, May 21, 2018

The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey's Season Opener, “Tartuffe” Extends Run Due to Critical Acclaim

WHERE: The F.M. Kirby Shakespeare Theatre located at 36 Madison Avenue in Madison
TICKETS: Patrons can purchase tickets by calling the Box Office at 973-408-5600 or by going online at

The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey’s 2018 season opening production, Tartuffe, will extend its run after much critical and audience acclaim. The French masterpiece directed by Artistic Director Bonnie J. Monte, Tartuffe’s final performance will now be at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, June 10.

A “superb production that will whet your appetite for more,” as declared by NJ Arts Maven. 

“We’re thrilled that the response to Tartuffe has been so enthusiastic that we can offer an extra week of performances to our audience base. Patrons will have seven new performance options to see this wonderful cast in this brilliant comedy by Molière,” said Artistic Director Bonnie J. Monte.

Renowned translator Richard Wilbur brings Molière’s play to vibrant life for English-speaking audiences. Veteran company member Brent Harris plays the title role and is joined by STNJ favorites Patrick Toon and Victoria Mack, as well as two-time Tony Award nominee, Vivian Reed.

Tartuffe, the consummate con man, hypocrite, and womanizer, meets his match under Molière’s deft pen. A masterpiece of biting social commentary brilliantly enclosed in a swirl of witty verse, outrageous characters, and delightful machinations; the 17th century family featured in this serious comedy will feel very familiar to 21st century Americans. (Pictured: Aaron McDaniel* as Damis and Brent Harris* as Tartuffe. Photo credit: Jerry Dalia, 2018.)

Performance Times:

  • Tuesdays ­– 7:30 p.m.
  • Wednesdays – 7:30 p.m.
  • Thursdays – 8:00 p.m.
  • Fridays ­– 8:00 p.m.Saturday matinees ­– 2:00 p.m.
  • Saturday evenings – 8:00 p.m.
  • Sunday matinees – 2:00 p.m.
  • Sunday evenings – 7:30 p.m.


More Info on the Golf Outing

Let's Get Physical! (or not)
You can play a round, take a walk in the park,
or simply donate to make sure
THEATER PROJECT comes back next year!

For over 20 years, The Theater Project has entertained, informed and served the community with programs for children, playwrights, the blind, the deaf and hard of hearing. Your donations past, present and future have made all that happen. Please support us so we can continue bringing live theater to you and your community.

Check out Theater Project's 5K

Benefit Concert with Christian McBride and Friends

Benefit Concert with Christian McBride and Friends

Six-time GRAMMY-winning bassist Christian McBride will headline a concert to benefit Luna Stage Theater  at the Montclair Women's Club. This jazz luminary will be joined onstage by special guests. The program will include cocktails, dessert, a silent auction and dancing after the concert. Proceeds will support development of Luna's cutting-edge theater productions, classes in local schools, and community programming.

TICKETS: $135 and $190 for the VIP Package, which includes special seating, a gift and the opportunity to meet the musicians.

Tickets are on sale now. Click here to celebrate with us!

Can't make it? Please consider making a donation.

Event Sponsor: The Estate of Jewel Plummer Cobb

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Bickford Film Series Concludes First Season with Van Gogh Documentary


Vincent Van Gogh: A New Way of Seeing

WHEN: Wednesday, May 23, at 7:30 p.m.
The Bickford Theatre at the Morris Museum is located at 6 Normandy Heights Road in Morristown, NJ, and offers free parking and full accessibility.
ADMISSION: $15 for the General Public; $12 for Museum Members; and $10 for Students (18 & under or with valid college ID).
Tickets may be purchased online at, by phone at (973) 971-3706, or in person at the Bickford Theatre Box Office.
Box office hours for phone sales are Monday through Friday, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. Walk-up hours are Tuesday through Friday, 11:00 am to 5:00 pm.

Produced by the critically acclaimed Exhibition on Screen, this fascinating documentary not only tells the story of the artist’s life, it also draws on iconic artwork in the celebrated Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam.

Two years in the making, this 90-minute documentary was produced to celebrate the 125th anniversary of the famous artist’s death in 2015. Using beautiful images drawn from more than 200 paintings in the Van Gogh Museum, the film also includes commentary from renowned curators, art historians and contemporary artists to provide a glimpse into the remarkable life and work of the Dutch painter. Not only does the film explore who Van Gogh the artist was, it also provides a look at Van Gogh the person.

Critics loved the film when it was released three years ago. Robin Ngai of On the Box called it “one of the best I’ve seen depicting the life of Vincent Van Gogh.” Florence Waters of Christies said it was “an insightful new film” and The Upcoming proclaimed it to be “a brilliantly insightful documentary” which “provides a deeper understanding of Vincent Van Gogh, and the experiences throughout his life that contributed to his success.”

Image courtesy of the Musée d’Orsay.


By Ruth Ross

Hair styles may change, hemlines may fluctuate, but one thing never goes out of fashion: hypocrisy. And as hypocrites go, none is more outrageous than the imposter who wears a mask of righteousness to disguise carnal appetites.

Proof of the vice’s immutability is delightfully evident in Molière’s 1664 scathing attack on hypocrisy and hollow morality, Tartuffe, currently onstage at the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey in Madison. Banned by Louis XIV and vilified by the conservative church after its first performance, Tartuffe quickly became a runaway hit and has delighted audiences for over three centuries.

Be it morally flawed televangelists (think Jimmy Swaggart), religious conservatives admitting to sexual indiscretions while decrying the decadence of modern society or draping the breast of the statue of Justice so it won’t be visible while the Attorney General is giving a speech, it’s comforting to know that hypocrisy is alive and well in America.

STNJ_Tartuffe_10Pretending to be a pious religious devotee, the pauper Tartuffe manages to worm his way into a wealthy bourgeois family, completely snookering credulous patriarch Orgon and his overbearing mother Madame Pernell—while disguising his own sexual appetites (left, Brent Harris and Patrick Toon). That Tartuffe is a conniving swindler is apparent to the entire household—from lowly maid to Orgon’s wife and children. The conflict arises when Orgon decides to marry off his daughter Marianne to Tartuffe and signS over his entire fortune and holdings to Tartuffe as his sole heir. Certain of his power over his benefactor, Tartuffe attempts to seduce Orgon’s wife Elmire, and when Orgon believes his protégé’s denials, she hatches a scheme to unmask the charlatan and set things right. And because this is a comedy, all ends well, with Tartuffe in jail, Elmire’s honor intact and Marianne wed to her chosen beau.

STNJ_Tartuffe_6Molière’s appellation, “master of French comedy,” is fully evident in this production, deliciously translated from the French by Richard Wilbur. Once again, Bonnie J. Monte’s expert directorial hand is evident as the action on a lovely period set designed by Brittany Vasta and lit by Matthew J. Weisgable moves at a steady pace. She’s aided in this endeavor by a talented troupe of actors. Brent Harris’s Tartuffe (above) is a shameless, smarmy, sleazy hypocrite who continually makes the sign of the cross, sneaks a sweet into his mouth and swigs wine while his benefactor is not looking. As Orgon, Patrick Toon is an appropriately duped doofus, a man who constantly asks, “And Tartuffe?” instead of worrying about his wife’s predicament.

STNJ_Tartuffe_11William Sturdevant (right, with Toon) as Orgon’s brother-in-law Cléante commands the stage whenever he appears; with his sonorous voice, he’s the mouthpiece for Molière’s contention that science/reason trumps piety/faith, an argument central to the Age of Reason, which this play presages. And Aaron McDaniel is an absolute stitch as Orgon’s hot-headed son Damis, given to leaping in the air, prancing about the stage and jumping up and down in rage at Tartuffe’s heavy-handed sway over his father.

On the distaff side, Caroline Kinsolving is wonderful as Orgon’s elegant, wise young wife Elmire, who sets up the scheme that eventually unmasks Tartuffe. She’s very funny, especially in the scene where she permits Tartuffe to seduce her to reveal his true nature to her STNJ_Tartuffe_1 (1)husband, who is hiding under a table. Vivian Reed (left, with Victoria Mack) is equally as terrific as the quintessential control-freak battle-ax of a mother-in-law/grandmother, Madame Pernell, who continues to extol Tartuffe’s virtues even when everyone else is disenchanted with him. Her frank and obnoxious assessment of her son, his wife and her grandchildren that opens the play is hilarious.

Sarah Nicole Deaver (below right) is ditsy as Orgon’s timid daughter Mariane, whose marriage plans to Valère (Mark Hawkins with a very expressive face) are upended when she unwittingly pledges allegiance to her father’s wishes. And Victoria Mack (below right, center) is splendid as the saucy, smart-mouthed maid Dorine, who can’t keep her opinions to herself even when her master threatens her life. Sticking her nose into everyone’s business, she nearly steals the opening scene from Vivian Reed!

STNJ_Tartuffe_5Costumes by Nikki Delhomme (right, Deaver, Mack and Hawkins) are lavish and appropriate to the 17th century. The women’s wide hoop skirts provide a shelf on which to rest their elbows! And Tartuffe’s priestly “dress” of lush gilt and white brocade and his long, white hair telegraph his duplicitous nature. Bonnie Monte’s sound design includes period music to set the scene.

It’s said, “The more things change, the more they stay the same,” an axiom more accurately applied to humankind’s vices than to its virtues. Attacking such vices through comedy makes the encounter all the sweeter and sharper. It takes a genius like Molière—and his predecessor Shakespeare—to write comic, satirical plays that cross a gulf of three and a half centuries to make us confront our own modern failings. And it takes a talented troupe of actors like those at the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey to drive the message home in an entertaining way.

So, if the last time you read Tartuffe was in a college French class, this is the perfect time to renew your acquaintance with this comic masterpiece. And if you’ve never seen or read the play, this superb production will whet your appetite for more of his works.

Tartuffe will be performed through June 3. For information and tickets, call the box office at 973.408.5600 or online at

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Tenth Anniversary Season Finale - Kinnara Ensemble presents AMERICANA

WHEN: June 1, 2018 @ 7pm
WHERE: Chatham United Methodist Church, Main Street, Chatham, NJ

WHEN: June 2, 2018 @ 7pm
WHERE: Tower Hill Church, Red Bank, NJ
Admission is free for this performance.

WHEN: June 3, 2018 @ 4pm
WHERE: All Saints' Church, Princeton, NJ

Purchase Tickets

American choral music is artifactually demonstrative of the confluence of diverse peoples that defines U.S. history. From slave songs and spirituals to the folk music of Stephen Foster to American hymnody to the robust output of the many American composers of the twentieth century, our musical inheritance is not short on variety. AMERICANA will tour the jewels of choral music from our own country.

Choral music in America is thriving! Watching the evolution of the American choral sound is fascinating, and we are glad to have a part in that. Therefore, there's no better way to conclude our tenth anniversary season by singing music from our own country. We'll start our AMERICANA program with early American music of Billings and his contemporaries, move to some early hymns arranged by the American luminary Alice Parker, and tour some of the monuments of our own heritage- Stephen Foster, Irving Berlin, Hoagy Carmichael, Charlie Chaplin, and Randall Thompson. We'll end with some bluegrass arranged by Shawn Kirchner.



La Strada Ensemble Theater presents

Rainbow Festival 2018: A Celebration of LGBTQ+ Theater

WHEN: June 1-3
: Jersey Shore Art Center, 66 South Main Street, on the 3rd Floor, Ocean Grove
TICKETS: $18 adults/$12 students and senior Citizen.  A festival pass can be purchased for $45 adults and $25 for students and senior Citizens. 
For more information and to purchase tickets please visit us at

Three programs of varied, cutting edge one-act plays created by playwrights from across the United States, a production directed and performed by our youth company, and a Cabaret—right after the gay pride march in Asbury Park.


WHEN: Friday, June 1st, at 8pm and Saturday, June 2nd, at 2pm. 

MY LAST DAY ON EARTH by artistic director and local NJ Toms River resident A.J. Ciccotelli and directed by founding member Donna Ault Jacobson tells the story of Benjamin who decides after being called by his doctor about a pending diagnosis and hereditary condition that he will die before the day's end, so how does a man who has lived a life time of restraint cram in everything he wants to do in his final hours?  A New Jersey Premiere. 

SUNNI SIDE UP by Chicago resident and founding member Gerry Ringwald and directed by Ensemble Member Gary C. Walter: Blind gay dates are awkward enough, but what if one gal's phone app turns the evening into an unexpected threesome?  That's the dilemma in this world premiere. 

BREAKING POINTS by Jersey City Resident Brad Forenza and directed by Ensemble Member Gian Carlo Durland:  Two roommates cope with the suicide of their friend amidst the backdrop of a small college town. Sometimes coming of age also means coming to grips.

WORDS IN HER HEAD, PEOPLE IN HER HEART written and directed by Jackson resident Emma Cornine:  Sawyer, a teenage aspiring playwright, struggles with trying to come up with the perfect story, balancing what the world wants to read and what she wants to write in.  A finalist in the Young Playwrights competition of New Jersey.

BEA AND MAY by internationally renowned New York State resident and honorary member Edwin Sanchez and directed by A.J. Ciccotelli:  A serial bride's wedding caterer makes one last attempt to win her back in this New Jersey premiere.

NED by Ensemble Member and New York City resident W. Allen Wrede and directed by Founding Member Donna Ault-Jacobson:  A lead role on a new break through television series means full time work for a once Hollywood Golden boy who has long faded.  Will Ned jump at the chance of playing an aged gay detective in a Murder She Wrote type of show when he hasn’t even come out of the closet yet?  A world premiere.

AFTER BRUNCH by legendary and honorary member and Los Angeles resident Robert Patrick and directed by A.J. Ciccotelli:  a hilarious play-let about the joys of love, partnership and brunch, of course.  

COPE by Ensemble Member and Neptune resident Gian Carlo Durland and directed by A.J. Ciccotelli:  sometimes it only takes the events of one night to change your life. Two men are forced to confront their lives, the politics of the day and most importantly their relationship with each other in this world premiere. 

With:  Evan Black, Doug Bollinger, A.J. Ciccotelli, Zack Caruso, Gian Carlo Durland, Candy Fox, Eric Hackler, Marissa Harding, Yolanda Hamilton, Joseph Iozzi, Phil Korz, Rebecca Lettice, Nathan Magno, Benjamin McGowan, Evan Merk, Rudy Palma, Alexandria Puscucci, Melissa Melisa Pascucci, Sherri Rase and Madison Wicker


WHEN: Saturday, June 2nd, at 8pm.

DOG SEES GOD: CONFESSIONS OF A TEENAGE BLOCKHEAD by Bert V. Royal is a reimagining of the Charles Shultz’ characters and who doesn’t love the peanuts?  CB’s dog dies from rabies triggering him to question the existence of an afterlife.   He meets an artistic kid who is the target of bullying and offers him a friendship that pushes teen anxiety to its fullest levels.  A haunting examination of drug use, suicide, eating disorders, teen violence, rebellion and sexual identity.   Directed by Ashley Friedman and assistant directed by Joseph Iozzi.  It stars Michael Aaron, Emma Casertano, Hannah Drew, Emma Harken, Griffin Holland, Aiden Lupo, Alexa Spinowitz and Madison Wicker.  Dog Sees God: Confessions of a Teenage Blockhead is performed with special permission from the Dramatist Play Service.


WHEN: Sunday, June 3rd, at 3pm.

RAINBOW 2018 CABARET, an afternoon of sketches, singers, comedians and odd talent!  And the ever-popular Auction of Strange and Wonderful Items!  We guarantee some strange and wonderful items especially on Pride Sunday!  Don’t miss this special event with tremendous talent and hosted by Frank Calo who has been hosting these Fantabulous shows for two decades.  Reception is part of the admission!  So, before you hit the town drinking and partying come party with us and maybe take home some strange and wondrous!