Thursday, January 31, 2019

The Growing Stage Presents Two World Premiere New Plays

The Growing Stage, The Children’s Theatre of New Jersey, is proud to present the world premiere productions

by Elise Forier Edie

WHEN: February 8th through 10th Friday evenings at 7:30 PM and Saturday and Sunday matinees at 4:00 PM.
Historic Palace Theatre on Route 183 in Netcong, New Jersey
TICKETS: $18. SPECIAL DEAL: Purchase a ticket to John Henry & A Better Place To Be for ONLY $25.  To purchase tickets, please visit our website at or contact the Box Office at (973) 347-4946.  Special group rates are available.

by Stephen L. Fredericks

WHEN: February 15th through 17th. Friday evenings at 7:30 PM and Saturday and Sunday matinees at 4:00 PM.
:  Historic Palace Theatre on Route 183 in Netcong, New Jersey
TICKETS: $18. SPECIAL DEAL: Purchase a ticket to John Henry & A Better Place To Be for ONLY $25.  To purchase tickets, please visit our website at or contact the Box Office at (973) 347-4946.  Special group rates are available.

Both productions are under the direction of Stephen L. Fredericks, TGS’s Founder/Executive Director.

JOHN HENRY, the 2018 Laurie Award Winner from the New Play-Reading Festival, brings to life the traditional American folk-ballad about the “steel driving man,” John Henry.  This new play blends music, history and storytelling to tell the tale of the first African American folk-hero. In the story, we’re introduced to Young Jayjay and his best friend Grace, who are the children of railroad workers and live in a camp in the Allegheny Mountains, just after the Civil War. When their fathers’ jobs are threatened by the invention of a steam drill, Jayjay’s dad challenges it by proposing a race though the mountain to prove a man can work better and faster than a machine. The race is on, but when John Henry’s conquest ends in sudden tragedy, Jayjay must find a way to honor his father’s legacy, while still being true to himself. Despite setbacks, and with the help of his friends and family, he finds a way to go forward, and to take his place in the burgeoning, industrial world.

JOHN HENRY features the talents of 9 Professional Equity and Community Artists: Steven Michael Martin, of Manhattan (TGS Debut) as John Henry; Natalie Marie Bailey of Edison (TGS debut) as Polly Ann; Sean Quigley of Lodi (Boy Sees Flying Saucer), as Dan Flynn;  Nicole Elizabeth Zimmerman of Westfield (TGS Debut), as Agnes Bligh; Donald Danford of Rockaway (Babes in Toyland) as Walker Jerry; Daniel C. Gleason of Yardley, PA (TGS Debut) as Boss Huntington; Niall Ng of Maplewood (Babes in Toyland), as Vinnie and rounding out the cast are two young performers: Marcellus Brown of Hackettstown and Jadelyn Anderson of Budd Lake as Jayjay and Grace Flynn.

A BETTER PLACE TO BE, An original piece commissioned by the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) and the New Jersey Theatre Alliance’s Stage Exchange program, brings together the immigration journeys of two young women. First that of TGS Founder/Executive Director Stephen L. Fredericks great-grandmother’s voyage to America in the late 1800’s and that of a young Syrian girl coming today. Weaving poetry, music and folktales from each time and place, the play celebrates our similarities and opens the door for a better appreciation for our differences.

A BETTER PLACE TO BE features 4 Professional Equity Artists: Lori B. Lawrence of Hackettstown (The Wizard of OZ) as Actor 1; Cara Ganski of Avenel (Disney’s The Little Mermaid) as Actor 2; Ashley Leone of Lodi (Box of Stories) as Actor 3 and Philipe AbiYouness (TGS Debut) as Actor 4.

JOHN HENRY and A BETTER PLACE TO BE are funded in part from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts and the ongoing support from The Growing Stage’s corporate, foundation, family and individual partners.

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Pioneer Productions Opens 2019 Season With a Double Feature


In These Shoes: Season Opening Gala

WHEN: February 9 at 8:00 PM
The George Frey Center for the Arts, Fair Lawn Community Center, 10-10 20th St., Fair Lawn
TICKETS: $30, the ticket price includes refreshments

Love, Loss & What I Wore
By Nora & Delia Ephron

WHEN: February 15 & 16 at 8:00 PM, February 17 at 3:00 PM
The George Frey Center for the Arts, Fair Lawn Community Center, 10-10 20th St., Fair Lawn

Audiences may purchase a combined ticket for both events for $50. The combined ticket includes admission to both shows, refreshments and a photo from the gala’s photo booth at In These Shoes and for Love, Loss, & What I Wore special reserved seating and a goodie bag with treats and a piece of handcrafted jewelry. Combined tickets and single benefit tickets may be obtained at

Pioneer Productions is kicking off its 2019 season with a double feature, two shows on two consecutive weekends.

The cast of Love, Loss & What I Wore—Melissa Broder, Barbara Gurskey Belfatti, Savannah Lloyd, Lillian Rey & Jade Delos Santos—will host the opening gala. “This is our chance to gather some of our favorite performers in one place and let them do what they do best,” says Dan Vissers, Pioneer’s Artistic Director. “We chose our theme, In These Shoes, not only because it ties in nicely to our first production of the season, but also because it’s the very essence of what Pioneer is all about.  Our goal is to create an experience that allows an audience to put themselves into someone else’s life, to see the world as they see it.”

That idea carries over into Love, Loss & What I Wore. According to the show’s director, Wendy-Lane Bailey “The play is deceptive. Its tone is lighthearted and there’s a temptation to dismiss it as fluff, but as it unfolds you realize how truly deep it goes. Here are women onstage telling their stories, in their words, without a filter and without apology. It’s not really about clothes, it’s about those defining moments in our lives that make us who we are.”

The Double feature is just the start of what Pioneer has planned for 2019. In April the company’s Stage Craft education program will offer a four session song performance workshop taught by Wendy Lane Bailey. July brings The Who’s Tommy directed by Douglas McLaughlin. The season wraps up in September with The Living Room Series, an intimate concert in a non-traditional performance space. This year’s offering will be In the Works, an evening featuring material by up and coming local composers.

Monday, January 28, 2019

Somerset Valley Players Open 52nd Season With “Biloxi Blues”

WHEN: opens on Friday, January 25, and runs weekends through February 10.  Friday and Saturday performances begin at 8 p.m.  Sunday matinees start at 2 p.m.
Somerset Valley Playhouse, 689 Amwell Road (Route 514) in Hillsborough (air conditioned, barrier free, and wheelchair accessible)
For tickets and show times go to

Directed by Todd R. Bennington, Biloxi Blues, by Neil Simon, is a comedic memoir of Simon’s own service in the US Army during World War II.  The play centers on five mismatched Army recruits and their experiences in basic training in Biloxi, MS.

Biloxi Blues is produced by Dominick and Karen Abbatiello and the stage manager is Holly Lessing.  The show is sponsored in honor and loving memory of World War II veterans Henry E. Bennington and Ralph N. DeMarco.



Click here to reserve your tickets

At a large, tastefully-appointed Sneden's Landing townhouse, the Deputy Mayor of New York has just shot himself. Though only a flesh wound, four couples are about to experience a severe attack of Farce. Gathering for their tenth wedding anniversary, the host lies bleeding in the other room, and his wife is nowhere in sight. His lawyer, Ken, and wife, Chris, must get "the story" straight before the other guests arrive. As the confusions and miscommunications mount, the evening spins off into classic farcical hilarity.



WHEN: February 16 through June 2; registration deadline is February 4
: Lackland Performing Arts Center, 715 Grand Ave., Hackettstown
TUITION: $395 per student. A $75 non-refundable registration fee applied towards tuition is required. Tuition must be paid by the first session. There is a $30 late fee for registration received after the registration deadline.
All new applicants must complete an interview with the program director prior to acceptance. No experience is necessary.
To schedule an interview please contact the Centenary Stage Company box office at (908) 979 – 0900.
For more information, to register or to schedule an interview visit or call the Centenary Stage Company box office at (908) 979 – 0900. The box office is located in the Lackland Performing Arts Center at 715 Grand Ave. Hackettstown, NJ and is open Monday through Friday from 1 – 5pm. Centenary Stage Company can also be found across social media platforms; Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Like and follow to receive the latest in CSC news and special offers.

Centenary Stage Company’s critically acclaimed Young Performers Workshop is now seeking new and returning applicants for the 2019 Spring Session. The 15-week session culminates with the annual Spring Festival of Shows.

Hailed as “a state treasure” the Centenary Stage Company Young Performers Workshop (YPW) is a musical theatre training program for children 8 – 18 years old and operates under the auspices of the Centenary Stage Company, a not-for-profit Equity Theatre Company in residence at Centenary University. Dedicated to the enrichment of young lives through the use of theatre arts, the Young Performers Workshop is one of a few youth theatre programs to offer both formal training along - side practically production experience. Career-minded students can prepare for the rigors of a professional career, yet students not aiming for a professional career benefit from the program with its emphasis on discipline, self-worth and development of communication skills.

Under the direction of Broadway, film and television veteran, Michael Blevins, the 15-week spring session has been designed to meet the needs of beginning, intermediate and advanced performers. The program includes the full production of at least two major American musicals. Once registered, students are guaranteed a part in the production. The spring session will begin Saturday, February 16 with performances scheduled for May 24 – June 2.

Although no experience is necessary to participate, all new applicants must complete an interview process with program director, Michael Blevins, prior to acceptance. 

The 2018-2019 season of Centenary Stage Company’s performing arts events 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 and The House of the Good Shepherd, Silver Sponsors HMC Atlantic Health, Home Instead Senior Care (Washington), Fulton Bank of New Jersey, and Centenary Stage Company members and supporters.

2nd Annual Dance Union Festival Brings Together Dance Fans of All Ages

2nd Annual Dance Union Festival

WHEN: February 1 – 3, 2019. While the Friday master classes are fully booked, the free open rehearsal from 1:00 to 3:00 on Friday still has openings.
:Hamilton Stage, 360 Hamilton St.,  Rahway. There is ample free parking available
TICKETS: Tickets for Saturday’s Open Level Dance Class for all ages are only $15.00 and runs from 11:00 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. The gentler dance class for seniors and people with disabilities runs from 12:45 – 1:30 p.m. and is free. The Sunday performance runs from 3:00 until 5:00 with General Admission tickets only $15.00 and $9 for seniors, students (with ID), military and persons with disabilities. Super Bowl fans are assured that they can be home for kick-off.
Sunday performance tickets are available through UCPAC (Union County Performing Arts Center), online at, or through the box office at 732-499-8226. For general information on the festival and tickets to the Saturday dance class, go to or call 908-687-8855.

The critically-acclaimed modern dance ensemble, Carolyn Dorfman Dance, joins with Buggè Ballet and the Union County Performing Arts Center to bring the Second Annual Dance Union Festival to Rahway. The festival, designed for dance fans of all ages, includes master classes, school-time programs, community events, and a culminating performance by Carolyn Dorfman Dance and other talented dancers from across Union County. This arts program is made possible in part by a HEART (History, Education, Arts Reaching Thousands) Grant from the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders.

The popular event begins on Friday, February 1, with school-time master classes led by dancers from both Carolyn Dorfman Dance and Buggè Ballet. In the afternoon, the community is invited to enjoy a free open rehearsal from 1:00 until 3:00 pm. Advance registration is required by calling 908-687-8855 or sending an email request to

Saturday, February 2, is entitled “Community Dance Day” and festival organizers stress that everyone is invited and no dance experience is required.

“Our Saturday programs are designed to give everyone the opportunity to enjoy the sheer fun of dancing,” explains founding Artistic Director and choreographer Carolyn Dorfman. “Starting at 11:00 a.m. we will have an open level dance class for all ages, followed by a 12:45 p.m. program geared to seniors and people with disabilities. We know that everyone will have a wonderful time.”

The open class has a small $15.00 fee and the afternoon program for seniors and people with disabilities is free. Everyone planning to participate is asked to register by calling 908-687-8855.

The Dance Union Festival wraps up on Sunday, February 3rd, with a 3:00 p.m. performance by the stunning dancers of Carolyn Dorfman Dance and Union County-based public high schools, dance studios, and professional companies. The participating dance companies include Buggé Ballet, Contento Dance, Rahway Dance Theatre, The Well Performance Project, and LeAnn Yannelli Dance. The two dances studios to be included are Harmony Dance Center and Susie Karlik's Dance Sensation and the high school dance programs come from Alexander Hamilton Preparatory Academy, Cranford High School, Plainfield High School, Thomas Jefferson Arts Academy, and Union County Academy for Performing Arts.

Carolyn Dorfman Dance will perform two works: Snap Crackle Pop, a groundbreaking collaboration between choreographer Carolyn Dorfman and Renée Jaworski, Co-Artistic Director of PILOBOLUS, and Sextet which features a powerful and driving score by jazz composer Horacee Arnold and explores the energy, rhythm, and power of six dancers as they connect, divide, and regroup.

A new addition this year is art work on display in the lobby from the Union County ARC and the Westfield and Rahway Senior Centers. There will also be a special performance during the concert by a choir from the Union County ARC.

Carolyn Dorfman Dance is a multiethnic company renowned for incorporating gripping narratives and powerful story into technically demanding dance. Dorfman’s work connects life and dance in bold, athletic and dramatic terms, taking audiences on intellectual and emotional journeys that illuminate and celebrate the human experience. Noted dance critic Robert Johnson praised Carolyn Dorfman’s works because “they speak directly to the heart” and longtime journalist Kevin Coughlin wrote that the company’s dancers “are artists and athletes. Superb athletes.”

IMAGE:  photo courtesy of Anthony Johnson.

“Birthright Citizens, A History of Race and Rights in Antebellum America" @ Rutgers Law School Feb. 6

WHERE: Rutgers Law School, 123 Washington ST., Room 080  Newark, New Jersey 07102


Dreamcatcher’s Summer Theatre Program For Teens and Tweens Begins Enrollment

Dreamcatcher Junior Summer Theatre Program
for students entering grade 5 through 12

WHEN: July 8 through July 26, 2019, Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 pm (with a special performance July 26 at 7:00 pm)
Oakes Center, 120 Morris Avenue in Summit
TUITION: $825 for all three weeks, with limited need-based scholarships available. 
Discounts are provided for those who register before April 15.
Admission is on a first come, first served basis until the program is filled or until the deadline of June 1, and applications for Dreamcatcher Junior and more information on the program may be obtained by calling Dreamcatcher’s business office at 908-514-9654, emailing or may be downloaded at

Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre, professional Theatre in Residence at the Oakes Center in Summit, will hold a three-week theatre experience which combines training, in which students build skills and study with theatre professionals in a variety of subjects, with the opportunity for students to create and perform their own play.

At Dreamcatcher Junior, we believe in having fun while developing real skills under the guidance of professionals. DRT JR is an enjoyable way for students in grades 5 through 12 to explore their interest in the performing arts during their summer vacation. Students receive individual attention, constructive feedback, and the support needed to achieve their personal goals.

In the first week, the ensemble begins to come together through classes and workshops in acting, improv, playwriting, singing and movement. These and other skills will be explored as the group builds the foundation for their creative process.

The second week focuses on the development and writing of an original play, which will also include music and movement. Students have the opportunity to shape their own characters and performances, which might include new subjects explored in the first week such as stage combat and physical comedy.

In the third week, the cast and their director, musical director and choreographer hone and refine their original work in preparation for its presentation on the final evening of the program.

Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) corporation, incorporated under the laws of the State of New Jersey.


La Vie Galerie 1 2

I'd like to introduce you to a new art gallery in Livingston. The Director is Valdimir Rios. They draw participants and audiences from New York City, as well as New Jersey.

WHEN: February 1 through March 17.  Opening Reception is Sunday, February 3, from 11:00AM to 4:00PM.  Their Receptions are always enjoyable with music, refreshments and special entertainment.
La Vie Galerie, 106 Naylon Ave., Livingston, NJ.


Special post-show event

WHEN: immediately following the Tuesday, February 5th performance of Eleanor Burgess’ The Niceties
WHERE: McCarter’s Berlind Theatre, 91 University Pl., Princeton

McCarter Theatre Center’s world-premiere production of Eleanor Burgess’ The Niceties is sparking thousands of conversations about race, history, and power. Directed by Kimberly Senior (Disgraced on Broadway), The Niceties features Lisa Banes and Jordan Boatman as a white professor and a black student involved in a polite clash of perspectives which quickly explodes into an urgent and dangerous debate threatening to ruin both their lives.

Now, McCarter is furthering the conversation by reaching out to people and organizations active in the social justice and racial and cultural literacy communities throughout the state of New Jersey.

All are welcome to share in a performance of Eleanor Burgess’s The Niceties and join in a post-show conversation—structured as a facilitated sharing circle of listening and reflection—followed by person-to-person networking.

In addition to creating a space for personal reflection on the experience of the play in performance and the resonance of its story and themes, McCarter seeks to provide an opportunity for the attending organizations to boost their signals and share-out about their missions and work.

Visit for more information on The Niceties, running now through February 10.


with the New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players & Orchestra

WHEN: Saturday, February 9, 2019 at 8 p.m.
Matthews Theatre 91 University Pl., Princeton
TICKETS: start at $25 and can be purchased online at, by phone at (609) 258-2787, or in person at the McCarter Ticket Office. (Limited Availability)

Savoyards rejoice! The masterful New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players return with one of the duo’s all-time favorites, The Pirates of Penzance. Set sail with this musical comedy that boasts one of the most famous patter songs in musical theatre history.


WHEN: Sunday, February 10 at 3 p.m.
Matthews Theatre
TICKETS: start at $25 and can be purchased online at, by phone at (609) 258-2787, or in person at the McCarter Ticket Office. (Limited Availability)

Swan Lake, a full-scale production, set to the unforgettable music of Pyotr Tchaikovsky and based on Russian folklore and German legend, follows a heroic young prince as he works to free the beautiful swan maiden from an evil spell.

In their first national tour visit to the States, the legendary National Ballet Theatre of Odessa brings 55 of the brightest and most talented ballet stars to delight McCarter audiences.


WHEN: Wednesday, February 13, 2019 at 7:30 p.m. 
Matthews Theatre
TICKETS: start at $25 and can be purchased online at, by phone at
(609) 258-2787, or in person at the McCarter Ticket Office

With five Grammy awards (most recently for 2015’s Beautiful Life) and recognition as a 2018 NEA “Jazz Master,” Diane Reeves’ voice is magical and timeless, but it’s the sheer force of her performance that sets her apart. She returns to McCarter with a Valentine’s Day program highlighting her effortlessly powerful sound and unusually broad spectrum of sensual repertoire. Reeves inhabits every story she spins into song, captivating listeners with her expert dynamics and dramatic flair.

(l-r, facing front) Laurena Allan, Gary Wilmes, Scott Shepherd, Annie McNamara, Kate Scelsa, and Vin Knight. Photo by Mark Barton.)

Based on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby

WHEN: February 15-17. Each performance will begin at 2 p.m., and will include two intermissions and a dinner break. Information on dinner packages may be found here.
WHERE: Berlind Stage, 91 University Pl., Princeton
TICKETS: $25-$150 and can be purchased online at, by phone at (609) 258-2787, or in person at the McCarter Ticket Office.

McCarter Theatre Center will present Elevator Repair Service’s multi-award-winning play, Gatz, the critically-lauded performance of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, for three performances,  February 15 – 17 on the. Gatz will be presented as a marathon eight-hour event, including two intermissions and a dinner break.

Not just a retelling of the Gatsby story, Gatz is a thoroughly entertaining dramatization of Fitzgerald's American masterpiece, word for word. Including its acclaimed 2011 run at McCarter, this theatrical tour-de-force has enjoyed over twenty-five engagements world-wide since its premiere; and holds particular significance for the greater Princeton community given Fitzgerald’s artistic endeavors while enrolled at Princeton University.

View a trailer for the production here.
Read the full press release on here.

This appearance of Elevator Repair Service is sponsored by Cargot Brasserie.

Sara Watkins, Sarah Jarosz, and Aoife O’Donovan with opening performance by Billy Strings (solo)

WHEN: Saturday, February 16 at 8 p.m.
Matthews Theatre
TICKETS: start at $25 and can be purchased online at, by phone at (609) 258-2787, or in person at the McCarter Ticket Office.

I’m With Her has honed a special, family-like chemistry, garnering acclaim for their unique blend of instrumental interplay combined with their indelible harmonies, as The New York Times describes of a live performance, “…when the three women sang together, their voices became one instrument, sharing every breath.”

Four years after their formation at an impromptu show in 2014, the band released their debut album, See You Around (Rounder Records), in February 2018.  See You Around has garnered praise from NPR, who instantly hailed the collection as "willfully open-hearted” and The Guardian calling their sound both "ethereal and purposeful.”

From their early contributions in bands such as Nickel Creek and Crooked Still, these three musicians are noteworthy for their recent and extensive solo career successes, including several Grammy awards.

Tous les matins du monde

WHEN: Friday, February 22 at 8 p.m.
Matthews Theatre
TICKETS: start at $25 and can be purchased online at, by phone at (609) 258-2787, or in person at the McCarter Ticket Office.

Jordi Savall, the world’s most celebrated gambist, has brought humanity, unique artistry,
and virtuosity to his tireless exploration of early music that has spanned half a century. A conductor of three ensembles —including Le Concert des Nations with which he performs for this engagement—his 250 recordings have earned him six Grammy nominations. In his McCarter debut, his ensemble will play the music inspired by the 1992 French hit film Tous le matins du monde (starring Gérard Depardieu) by Marin Marais, Couperin, Lully, Rameau and others.


WHEN: Saturday, February 23, 2019 at 8 p.m.
Matthews Theatre
TICKETS: start at $25 and can be purchased online at, by phone at (609) 258-2787, or in person at the McCarter Ticket Office

The grandson of legendary flamenco founder “El Farruco,” Farruquito is a modern-day repository of a tradition dedicated to preserving the art in its purest form, having performed continually with his grandfather from the time he was four until El Farruco’s death in 1997. The concept of his flamboyant dancing as he describes it is simple: “musicians play, I dance, everyone improvising in the moment.” The New York Times referred to his 2016 return after a long absence as “a king reclaiming his realm.” 

ERIC OWENS, bass-baritone and LAWRENCE BROWNLEE, tenor

WHEN: Sunday, February 24, 2019 at 3 p.m.
Matthews Theatre
TICKETS: start at $25 and can be purchased online at, by phone at
(609) 258-2787, or in person at the McCarter Ticket Office.

Two titans of opera stages join forces for the first time in a unique vocal collaboration. Bass-baritone Eric Owens is equally at home in orchestral, recital, and operatic music. His triumphs range from Wagner’s Ring Cycle to John Adams' Doctor Atomic. Tenor Lawrence Brownlee has made a specialty of the most difficult bel canto roles, and his album Virtuoso Rossini Arias  earned him a
Grammy nomination. Together, they form a team of operatic royalty in a program that will feature works from the operatic repertoire and beyond.


WHEN: Tuesday, February 26, 2019 at 7:30 p.m.
Matthews Theatre
TICKETS: start at $25 and can be purchased online at, by phone at (609) 258-2787, or in person at the McCarter Ticket Office.

The Chieftains are the embodiment of Irish music and dance. Led by Paddy Moloney, the master of the pipes and tin whistle, their nucleus includes Sean Keane (fiddle), Matt Molloy (flute), and Kevin Conneff (bodhran drum). A Chieftains show always incorporates a host of other performers and guest artists to keep you guessing.


WHEN: Friday, March 1, 2019 at 8 p.m.
Matthews Theatre
TICKETS: start at $25 and can be purchased online at, by phone at (609) 258-2787, or in person at the McCarter Ticket Office.

The award-winning fashion icon/designer, storyteller, author, singer, and talk show host Isaac Mizrahi makes his McCarter debut with his new show: I&Me.

I&Me is a collage of Isaac's creative talents -- stories, songs, and even a regift segment. This is Mizrahi’s next chapter in his recent life as an entertainer for which The New York Times called him a “founding father of Alt Cabaret.”

I&Me is a fun, casual look at life through his eyes, from growing up gay in a small
Jewish community in Brooklyn, to scaling the heights of the fashion world. I&Me
also features the dazzling sounds of the Ben Waltzer Jazz Quartet.


Dear Readers,

You may have noticed a silence on the part of the NJ Arts Maven last week. I was having email problems; in fact, my email had “fallen” offline, so I wasn’t getting email at all.

When I tried to post from emails I had saved, a glitch in the posting program prevented me from posting with photos and graphics.

Well, I attempted a workaround using Google Photos, but imagine my horror to find blank rectangles in the posts where I used this method.

It seems that there’s a problem with Google interfacing with the posting program.

I tried another workaround, and it seems to have worked. The photos are there now!

Because I will be away with no access to email and posting for the next 2 weeks, I’ll try to post ahead, but you may notice a silence.

Never fear, your intrepid arts maven will return to post after February 12.

Thanks for your loyalty and kind indulgence during a maddeningly difficult time.


Ruth Ross
NJ Arts Maven




WHEN: FEBRUARY 8 – 17, 2019; Friday through Saturday at 7:30pm and Sunday at 3pm
The Mill Hill Playhouse, 205 E. Front Street, at the corner of Montgomery Street in Trenton, NJ. On-street parking will be available.
TICKETS: $27. Student, group and senior discounts available.
Both To My Unborn Child: A Love Letter from Fred Hampton and Bicycle Face contain adult language and themes.
To purchase tickets, call (609) 392-0766, or visit

Passage Theatre Company, Trenton’s Barrymore Award-winning professional theatre company, will present two plays this February as part of their audience-favorite Solo Flights series. To My Unborn Child: A Love Letter from Fred Hampton, written and performed by Richard Bradford and directed by John Doyle, will perform from February 8-10. Bicycle Face, written and performed by Hannah Van Sciver and directed by David O’Connor, will perform from February 15-17.

To My Unborn Child photoIn To My Unborn Child, Richard Bradford revives the voice of Fred Hampton, a visionary Black Panther murdered by Chicago police at 21 as he lay by his pregnant lover. Hampton preached a humane, compassionate revolution against racist brutality, child hunger, poverty, and capitalism. This powerful play about change, love, and legacy sheds fresh light on a little-understood period of our country’s history, and was originally produced by Iron Age Theatre.

Set in Philadelphia and framed by a feminist theory class taught one hundred and fifty years in the future, Bicycle Face takes audiences on a multidisciplinary, multimedia theatrical joyride through the feminist movement and its unlikely relationship with the bicycle. Using live music, projections, and puppetry, Hannah Van Sciver navigates the ever-changing landscape of feminism, censorship, and cycling. This show was originally developed and produced by The Greenfield Collective.

Passage’s Artistic Director, Ryanne Domingues, says, “I saw To My Unborn Child: A Love Letter from Fred Hampton in the 2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival and was blown away by this part of history that I had never heard before. I had learned about the Black Panthers in my high school history class, but this show gives us their story through the lens of one incredible man, and reminds us how relevant their legacy is to what is happening today. Similarly, when I came across Bicycle Face, I was immediately intrigued by how the history of women’s cycling tells a much broader story about gender in today’s world. Both of these shows remind us how important it is to know our past so that we can better navigate our present and change our future.”

To My Unborn Child: A Love Letter from Fred Hampton was conceived for the purpose of engaging folks in a conversation of ideas,” says Richard Bradford, the play’s writer and performer. “And to shed light on an important but not often talked about hero.” Passage is thrilled to welcome him back after his appearance in this season’s hit Salt Pepper Ketchup.

Bicycle Face photoHannah Van Sciver says, “I first wrote and performed Bicycle Face in 2015 – I’d read an article online about this invented woman’s malady from the 1890s, and it became this glorious entry point for thinking about “women” and “feminism” in the past, present, and future. Every time I resurrect the show, it has to change a bit, to stay in conversation with the present. Ultimately, Bicycle Face presents snapshots of three women trying and sometimes failing to fight the patriarchy with the tools of their time period. It examines how, as things get easier, sometimes they get much harder too.”

Sunday, January 27, 2019


State Theatre New Jersey presents

Frozen Sing-Along

WHEN: Sunday, February 10, 2019, 3pm
15 Livingston Ave, New Brunswick
For tickets, more information, or group discounts, call State Theatre Guest Services at 732-246-SHOW (7469), or visit us online at State Theatre Guest Services, located at 15 Livingston Ave, New Brunswick NJ, is open Monday through Friday from 10am to 6pm; Saturday from 1pm to 5pm; and at least three hours prior to curtain on performance dates unless otherwise specified. Additional ticket and transaction fees may apply.

This special screening of Frozen Sing-Along is the Disney fan favorite film, with the addition of the lyrics for each song on the big screen. Fans will be able watch their favorite characters like Anna, Olaf, Elsa, and Sven and sing-along to “Let It Go” “Do You Want to Build a Snowman,” and more.

About Frozen

Accompanied by mountain man Kristoff and his loyal reindeer Sven, Anna sets off on an epic journey to find her sister Elsa, whose icy powers have trapped the kingdom of Arendelle in eternal winter. Encountering Everest-like extremes, mystical creatures, and a hilarious snowman named Olaf, Anna, and Kristoff battle the elements in a race to save the kingdom.

For tickets, more information, or group discounts, call State Theatre Guest Services at 732-246-SHOW (7469), or visit us online at State Theatre Guest Services, located at 15 Livingston Ave, New Brunswick NJ, is open Monday through Friday from 10am to 6pm; Saturday from 1pm to 5pm; and at least three hours prior to curtain on performance dates unless otherwise specified. Additional ticket and transaction fees may apply.

About State Theatre New Jersey

The theater exists to enrich people’s lives, contribute to a vital urban environment, and build future audiences by presenting the finest performing artists and entertainers and fostering lifetime appreciation for the performing arts through arts education. State Theatre New Jersey’s programs are made possible by funds from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts. Grant funding has been provided by the Middlesex County Board of Chosen Freeholders through a grant award from the Middlesex County Cultural and Arts Trust Fund. United is the official airline of the State Theatre.

Pop Up Bollywood Class for Adults in Hoboken this Thursday

Adult Bollywood Pop Up Class
with  Pooja Uberoi

WHEN: January 31st, 7:30pm-8:30pm
1018 Washington St 2nd Floor at Garden Street School of the Performing Arts in Hoboken
FEE: Only $10

Don't miss your opportunity to take this high energy, upbeat, fun class! Everyone is welcome—all levels!

Pooja Uberoi is the founder and owner of the Artistic Dance Company—IKIGAI USA which operates in USA and India.

Pooja Uberoi is the Producer for the NYC Dance Week and Founder of Funkar—aNYC10 Initiative. She has more than 13 years experience as a dancer and teacher in Jazz schools, the Bollywood Industry in Mumbai, India and New York City. She was a Board Member and Head of Nation Dance School in India before moving to NYC. Pooja was running a dance school with 800 students in India. She has also choreographed full length Bollywood Musicals and kids musicals. She has choreographed and taught at dance schools, events, shows, to celebrities and has over 10 years of performing experience in India and the USA.

Pooja has performed her choreographies and taught at the prestigious CBS This Morning, Dance USA Dance, and in schools in India, NYC, California, Canada, Puerto Rico, Israel and Mexico.

She is the Brand Ambassador For Dance USA Dance, NYC, and Hotstar, USA. She is also a consultant for a music school, a fitness start up, and runs international arts management company called Artists East West.

She believes in spreading art as a means of education and happiness, which is the meaning and vision of her company IKIGAI - a Japanese term for a state of happiness where you do what you love and what the world needs.

Bollywood Dance originated from the Bollywood (Hindi) Movie Industry as a free style dance fused with elements from Indian classical and folk dance forms. It has been and still a song and dance sequence with larger than life expression through various different moves, grandeur sets, picturesque locations and large ensemble.

In recent times, Bollywood expanded and emerged into a dance style of its own kind with a creative amalgamation as it carried the culture and tradition of India along with various different classical and folk dance forms fusing it further with elements from western dance forms like Jazz, Hip hop, Latin and many other old (Rock n Roll / Twist / Etc.,) and modern dance forms making it into an appealing dance form for all age groups and tastes.

Bollywood music ranges from traditional to extremely modern & western and from soulful compositions to feet tapping numbers. The soulful compositions make one want to get in touch with their emotions while the feet tapping numbers exude the upbeat energy making one want to dance letting them get in (re)touch with their inherent light and fun side. 

Fantastic ideas for getting kids excited about participating in the arts

Dear readers,

Aaron Thompson ( has shared the following websites with me.

He writes, “Creative arts—whether visual- or performance-based—have all kinds of benefits for people of all ages, but did you know they offer unique advantages to children? I think it’s really important that children be encouraged to express themselves creatively, whether through music, painting, performing skits, writing, or anything in between!

Since it seems like you’re just as passionate about the arts, I thought you may like to add these great resources to one of your website’s pages, as they offer some great ideas for getting kids to channel their inner artists.”

The How-To Guide for Creating a Music Room in Your Home

Art Therapy Projects & Activities for Children with ADHD

Home Design-Inspired Activities for Kids

10 Art Projects for Kids with Sensory Issues

25 Creative and Simple Art and Craft Ideas for Teenagers

12 World-Class Museums You Can Visit Online

Enjoy (and thank you to Aaron for sharing them)!

Ruth Ross
New Jersey Arts Maven

February Events for Children, Adults at Morven in Princeton

Children’s Art Afternoons At Morven Museum & Garden


WHEN: Wednesdays, February 6 through March 13, 2019 from 4:00 to 5:30 p.m.
: Morven Museum & Garden. 55 Stockton Street, Princeton
TUITION: $135; $110 for members of either Morven or Arts Council of Princeton
Ages 5 to 9
Limited to 12 children

Dive deep into Morven’s history through this 6-week class with Arts Council of Princeton’s Veronica Olivares. Focus on crafts and art forms created during the Revolutionary War era, explore historically based projects including miniature portraits, pen and ink landscapes, doll-making, quilt-making, silhouettes and basketry. Master artists of this era such as John Singleton Copley, Benjamin West, John Trumbull and Gilbert Stuart will be introduced.

Architectural Drawing & Painting for Adults at Morven

WHEN: Thursdays, February 7 through March 14, 2019, from 10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
WHERE: Morven Museum & Garden. 55 Stockton Street, Princeton
FEE: $220; $195 for members of either Morven or Arts Council of Princeton

Join local artist and published illustrator Barbara DiLorenzo on a guided exploration of Morven interiors and exteriors. Explore the historical architecture of this Princeton landmark using a variety of media, including pencil, watercolor, watercolor pencil, and gouache. Please bring basic drawing and painting supplies to the first class, including pencils (include H & B pencils), a basic watercolor set (we recommend Winsor & Newton), sketch book and/or watercolor book (90 lb or 140 lb weight), as well as any other materials you might like to work with (please no oils or acrylic paint for use inside Morven’s buildings).

To view Barbara's work, visit her website here For additional details, email


Victorian Pressed Flower Workshop

WHEN: Saturday, February 9 from 11:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
WHERE: Morven Museum & Garden. 55 Stockton Street, Princeton
FEE: $25; $15 for members of Morven

Spend a wintry afternoon as Victorian women, such as Harriet Stockton might have, and create pressed flower art with Morven’s Curator of Education Debra Lampert-Rudman. Learn the “love language” of flowers, suggestions for planning a pressing garden, and create valentine or notecard and beribboned bookmark of your own special design. All flowers, materials, and art instruction provided. No previous experience required and space is limited, ages 12 and up.


Theater Creations Camp - Calling all 7 to 11-year-olds!


Calling all 7- to 11-year-olds who love performing!

WHEN: Monday, Aug 5, 2019 - Friday, Aug 16, 2019; Weekdays, 9:00 am - 12 noon
WHERE: Chatham Playhouse, 23 N. Passaic Ave., Chatham
TUITION: $325 per camper
For more information, visit the Theater Camp web page or email

Come make magic with us!  Be part of The Chatham Community Players Theater Creations Camp.

Our campers will learn the fundamentals of acting onstage while using their imaginations and artistic creativity to develop their very own play!  Through various games and exercises, our campers will also learn about different theatrical elements and how they are used to shape a performance.  An original script will be created using the campers chosen story-line and characters.

This work will be rehearsed and ultimately presented on stage at the Chatham Playhouse in a full performance with no scripts in hand for family and friends.

“King Lear” Opens Friday, February 8th at CTG

By William Shakespeare
Directed by Kevern Cameron

WHEN: February 8, 9, 15, 16, 22, 23 at 8:00 PM; February 17, 24 at 2:00 PM
Black River Playhouse, Corner Grove & Maple Streets, Chester
TICKETS: $20; $18 seniors/students

King Lear is the story of an 80-year-old King of Britain, who divides his realm unequally between his daughters. As a result, Lear experiences a dark betrayal and decent into despair and madness.

King Lear is one of William Shakespeare's most famous tragedies. It was derived from the legend of Leir of Britain, a mythological pre-Roman Celtic king. The play has been widely adapted for the stage and motion pictures, with the title role coveted by many of the world's most accomplished actors. Most recently, Anthony Hopkins appeared in a BBC film version for Amazon Video.

The talented cast of King Lear includes Jack Roberts of Morristown in the roles of Captian and the Duke of Cornwald; Madelyn Barkocy of Rockaway in the role of Cordelia; Keith Hoovler of Maplewood in the roles of the Duke of Albany and the Old Man; Derek Egidio of Columbia in the roles of Edgar and the Duke of Burgundy; Matt Meier of Long Valley in the role of the Earl of Gloucester; Mike Harvey of Morristown in the role of the Earl of Kent; Mike Yoder of Bedminster in the role of Edmund; Sarah Henley of Washington in the role of the Fool; Lisa Barnett of South Orange in the role Goneril; Erik Craft of Bernardsville in the role of the King of France; George LaVigne of Beattysville in the role of Oswald; Sky Monroe of Morristown in the role of Regan and Christopher Gibbs of Fanwood in the role of King Lear. Rounding out the cast are Amie Quivey of Convent Station, Jim Quikstad of Morris Township and Ted Holland of Long Valley. The production is directed by Kevern Cameron.

The Chester Theatre Group performs in The Black River Playhbouse, an intimate, 100-seat theater in the heart of Chester Borough’s historic district. The venue’s in-the-round format ensures that every seat offers an engaging, memorable experience for each audience member. The theater is located on the corner of Grove Street and Maple Avenue. For more information, visit the CTG website at


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WHEN: The new exhibit will open on February 1, 2019 and be on display through March 17, 2019 with an Opening Reception on Sunday, February 3, 2019 from 11am - 4 pm. Gallery hours Monday through Friday 9 am to 4 pm and by appointment on the weekends. 
106 Naylon Avenue in Livingston

After both a successful opening and special exhibition for World AIDS Day, La Vie Galerie LLC , a new fine art gallery in Livingston, New Jersey, is honored to announce the opening of a new exhibit in honor of Carnevale.    

Carnevale features the photography skills of award-winning photographer Lester Blum in Gallery A. The other galleries will explode with powerful, dynamic artwork executed by 24 skilled artists most of who are from Essex County, New Jersey and the surrounding area.

Curated by Vladimir Rios, entrepreneur, artist and owner of La Vie Galerie LLC, the work presented includes paintings, pastels, photography, digital painting, silverpoint, sculpture, ceramics, and jewelry. The styles, media, and background of the artists are varied and diverse offering the viewer a visual experience with artistic diversity.

Artists and/or their work will be rotated approximately every six weeks to offer the viewer a different experience on each gallery visit. Periodically throughout the year, special exhibits pertaining to social issues will be presented such as the I Still Remember exhibit on World AIDS Day. The focus of these exhibits will be to educate the viewer through visual arts.

La Vie Galerie LLC is a multi-room gallery which exhibits emerging, mid-career, and established artists creating contemporary paintings, fine art photography, sculptures, ceramics, and jewelry. The gallery is all inclusive – not restricting the artists because of background or credentials.  The mission of the La Vie Galerie LLC is to provide its artists greater exposure to a new market.

Photos, videos and additional information can be found on the La Vie Galerie LLC Facebook page. Kindly LIKE the page.

This exhibit is sponsored by FCC Products, Inc. located in Livingston, New Jersey.

Friday, January 25, 2019

Montclair Studio Players mount “Some Girl(s)”

Some Girl(s)
by Neil LaBute

WHEN: Thursdays to Sundays, January 18th – February 2nd at 8pm, except 3pm on Sundays.
Studio Playhouse is located at 14 Alvin Place, off Valley Road near the Acme, in Upper Montclair.
TICKETS: $25 for adults and $20 for students and seniors (discounts available for prepaid groups of 20 or more).
Tickets can be purchased online at or by calling 973-744-9752.

Some Girl(s), directed by Amy Fox (Verona), features a soon-to-be-married writer, feeling guilty about past relationship transgressions, who embarks on a cross-country trip ostensibly to make amends. As he revisits the ghosts of girlfriends past, the story takes on a darker edge that is at once loathsome, deliciously evil, and funny. New York Magazine said, “Some Girl(s) follows the Neil LaBute recipe—bad behavior with a twist, served ice cold—to a fault.”

The cast features Seth Kaplan (River Vale), Allyssa Hynes (Belleville), Lisa Vasfalio (Roselle), Angela Grippo (Fair Lawn), Megan Hatem (Denville), and Brittany Haydock (Glen Ridge).

IMAGE: Seth Kaplan (seated), L to R: Megan Hatem, Ann Grippo, Allyssa Hynes, Brittany Haydock; Lisa Vasfalio (foreground). Photo courtesy of Amy Fox

D&R Greenway Offers Two-Part Event Honoring the Human Connection to the Wisdom, Beauty and Sacred Power of Trees


WHERE: D&R Greenway’s Johnson Education Center, 1 Preservation Place, Princeton.
ADMISSION: Free, but registration is required: 609-924-4646.

D&R Greenway Land Trust continues its celebration of trees with two days of events that include a book talk, workshop and outdoor walk. On Thursday, January 24, 7 p.m., “In the Company of Trees” author Andrea Fereshteh will discuss how lands preserved by D&R Greenway and other local conservation groups inspired her writing about the ancient and enduring wisdom of trees. Then, on Thursday, March 21, 5 p.m., the author will lead a meditation workshop focused on trees, healing and nature. Beginning at the Johnson Education Center, participants will walk through Greenway Meadows Park, pausing to ignite the senses at different points and experience the benefits of being immersed in nature.

Andrea Fereshteh found her peace and passion in the woods near her home in Pennington. A native of the mountains of Asheville, N.C., Fereshteh grew up climbing all the trees in her yard and hiking near the Blue Ridge Parkway. After moving to New Jersey in 2011, her journeys on local trails led her to write a blog post for the Association of Nature and Forest Therapy that led to Simon & Schuster asking her to author an inspiring and poetic book about trees.

The newly published book, In the Company of Trees, is full of short essays, inspirational quotes and color photographs that can be enjoyed piece-by-piece, allowing the reader to savor the experience.

Fereshteh credits the lands preserved by D&R Greenway and other local conservation groups as having inspired her writing about the ancient and enduring wisdom of trees. “Practicing being present in nature has been a truly transformative experience for me,” Fereshteh says. “We are so lucky to have so many amazing preserved natural spaces in our area. They are incredible resources for experiencing firsthand the magic of nature, and I am thrilled to encourage others to get outside and take advantage of our local trails by sharing this new book.”

A graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Georgetown University, Fereshteh writes for educational institutions, nonprofits and freelance publications. She has been practicing yoga and meditation for more than a decade and leads weekly meditation sessions in the tradition of John Main, OSB, the Roman Catholic priest and Benedictine monk who presented a form of meditation using a prayer-phrase or mantra.

Fereshteh’s interest in blending mindful and contemplative practices with nature led her into the woods of central New Jersey where she has practiced forest bathing for the past two years.

Rediscover your connection to the world outside during these two events focused on trees, healing and nature.

Bergen County Players Presents MISSION:IMPROV-ABALE 3

Bergen County Players, inc.

Mission: Improv-able 3
Directed by Terri Caust

WHEN: Saturday - January 26, 2019 2:00 PM; Sunday - January 27, 2019 7:00 PM
Bergen County Players, 298 Kinderkamack Road, Oradell, NJ

Perhaps our season’s greatest mystery of all: what exactly will come out of the mouths of our quickwitted, fast-talking improvisation artists when they are provided scenarios and have zero time to prepare? There’s only one way to find out…buy your ticket now to our third iteration of an evening of improvisational comedy as there are only two scheduled performances.

Strollers’ 2018–2019 Season Continues With New Family Favorite, “The Day the Rainbow Broke Up”

The Day the Rainbow Broke Up

WHEN: Friday, February 1 and 8 at 7:00 p.m.; Saturday, February 2 and 9, and Sunday, February 3 and 10. Each day will feature two performances, at 1:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m.
The Burgdorff Center for the Performing Arts in Maplewood
TICKETS: $10 each
Visit for information and to purchase tickets, or call 973-761-8453 to reserve tickets.

First produced as a world premiere by the Strollers in 2017, the show was an instant crowd pleaser; soon after its initial run, plans were already underway for an encore production. The story poses the question of what might happen if all the colors of the rainbow decided to strike out on their own. As each single-color rainbow encounters a colorful creature from nature, it learns about cooperation, friendship, and the beautiful power of diversity. All ends well as the rainbow is once again united and brilliantly arched across the sky.

The Day the Rainbow Broke Up is directed by Dena Daniel and Amanda Feliciano, with choreography and costumes by Carol Cornicelli and production by John Mendlovitz and Ken Lordy. Portraying the rainbow colors are Violet Hanson, Camryn Olszowy, Jack Gonyea, Dylan Graham, Finn Goring, Alanna Veneziano, and Anushka Pimplaskar. Other cast members include Carol Cornicelli, Ryann Garcia, Poppy Miller, Vinnette Richardson, Zoe Hanson, Amelia Lisco, Rebecca Ryan, Samantha Seals, Vicki Ridley, Emilie Clitus, Eleanor Qureshi, Anastasia Gangemi-Berger, Mary Clare Cardoni, and Beth Seales.

One-Act Comedy Festival at Hackensack Performing Arts Center (HACPAC) to support live professional theatre in Bergen County

WHEN: Shows are Saturday, January 26, at 8pm and Sunday, January 27, at 3pm.
HACPAC located at 102 State Street Hackensack, NJ.
TICKETS: All tickets are only $20.
Children under 4 are not permitted into the theatre. Children under 16 not permitted without parent.
Reserved Seating:

Fair Lawn resident Teddy Coluca who plays Mr. Brimley on NBC’s The Blacklist is producing and leading the ensemble in The Company Theatre Group’s Winter One-Act Comedy Festival at The HACPAC. This is a 2 night only special production featuring veterans of The Company as well as new faces. Managing Artistic Director Lou Scarpati and Ken Melamed will direct the four one-acts by writers Richard Vetere and Michael Schwartz.

An associate Member of the New Jersey Theatre Alliance, The Company Theatre Group is the only professional theatre company in residence at the HACPAC located at 102 State Street Hackensack, NJ.

Mr. Coluca has appeared in multiple commercials, TV shows (The Blacklist, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Blue Bloods, Bull, and the Netflix Series The Good Cop) and films (The Week Of (Adam Sandler), Hot Air (Steve Coogan & Neve Campbell) and the Independent films The Mimic, Abe & Low Tide). He is a proud member of The Company and appeared in their productions of Breaking Legs and The Underpants.

Founded in 2007, The Company Theatre Group is a non-profit, professional company of actors, writers, and directors in residence at The Hackensack Performing Arts Center, Hackensack, NJ.

Drawing inspiration from the acclaimed Group Theatre, The Company is dedicated to developing and nurturing artists in an imaginative and safe setting, while at the same time pushing the boundaries of contemporary theatre with its non-choreographed style of production. Like the Group Theatre, The Company creates heightened authentic human behavior on stage or “Life in Fiction” as we like to call it. Our actors truly live in the moment, so no two performances are ever the same.

The Company creates an entertaining environment and a thought-provoking experience where each audience member can feel like a 'fly on the wall', watching the lives and events of real people in real situations unfold (and sometimes unravel) right before their eyes.

Visit for details.

Monday, January 21, 2019

Celebrate Yasko’s Birthday in Newark on January 25


2019 Coladarci and Ehlers Arts Scholarship extend deadline

Image result for 2018 Coladarci and Ehlers Arts Scholarship

L-R: 2018 Scholarship Honorable Mention and Recipients, visual artist Coral Coad (Honorable Mention), actress Nicole Giordano (Coladarci Scholarship) and pianist John Nguyen (Ehlers Scholarship) with Morris Arts Executive Director Tom Werder

2019 Coladarci and Ehlers Arts Scholarship

WHEN: no later than 5PM on Friday, January 25, 2019. Winners will be notified on or after February 20, 2019.
Application information has been sent to all Morris County high school guidance offices for distribution. Applications are available through high school guidance offices as well as online at the Morris Arts website. For more information, please call Morris Arts at (973) 285-5115, ext. 10.

Given the storm conditions of the past week along with the Martin Luther King holiday, Morris Arts has extended the deadline for its 2019 Coladarci and Ehlers Arts Scholarship application. Each year, Morris Arts offers these two scholarship opportunities for graduating high school seniors who have exhibited artistic excellence in dance, drama, music, or visual arts and plan to pursue post-secondary studies at an accredited institution or acknowledged arts school or fine arts program. The Elaine Ehlers Arts Scholarship, in the amount of $5,000, and The Eugenie Coladarci Arts Scholarship, in the amount of $1,500, were created to recognize artistic excellence, encourage the artists of the future, and to celebrate the value of the arts to the human experience.

Morris County high school seniors graduating in June 2019 who are currently attending public, private, or parochial school in New Jersey are eligible. Applicants must (a) be Morris County residents, (b) plan to pursue post-secondary studies at an accredited institution or acknowledged arts school or fine arts program, and (c) have demonstrated artistic excellence in any one of four (4) arts disciplines: dance, drama, music, or visual arts.

The Elaine Ehlers Arts Scholarship was established in 2002 in memory of Elaine Ehlers (1953-2001), a health-care administrator by profession, who had a voracious appetite for all things artistic and musical.  She derived intellectual and emotional sustenance from the arts and supported programs at many museums and musical institutions.  By establishing this scholarship, an enduring legacy has been created to reward those who possess artistic talent and who plan to further their arts education. Former Ehlers winners include pianist Daniel Shleyenkov; pianist and flutist Joshua Min; harpist, Ashley Jackson; singer/composer/lyricist/pianist, arranger/community musical organizer Deborah Neigher; jazz guitarist Alex Wintz; singer/composer Tom Barth;  visual artist Marissa Rich;  pianist Yuqing Meng; ballroom/Latin dancer Daniel Knapp; ballet-modern dancer/ choreographer Madelyn Eltringham; trumpeter Joseph Soriano; actor Rachel Moss, percussionist Neal McNulty,  percussionist Reed Puleo, composer Zachary Catron, oboist Ethan Whang and most recently, pianist John Nguyen.

The Eugenie Coladarci Arts Scholarship was first awarded in 1999 in memory of Eugenie R. Coladarci, who was Vice President of Marketing and Public Relations at Chase Manhattan Bank and an active member of Morris Arts for eleven years. She was completing her first term as Board Chair when she passed away in 1997.  As a statewide champion of the arts, Gene encouraged the development of young artists and believed in the value of the arts to the quality of life.  The idea of a scholarship to assist talented young people wishing to continue their study in the arts was very important to her. Past winners include violinist Rebecca Racusin; visual artist Robert Douglas Fritz III; dancer Lauren Muraski; actor Ethan Saks; operatic soprano Chelsea Friedlander; visual artist Emily Trenk; visual artist Kaitlyn DeBiasse; dancer Edward Teddy” Tedholm; soprano Alessandra Altieri; visual artist Catalina Ouyang; industrial designer Miriam Buchwald, industrial designer Daniel Hounsell, soprano Katherine Merwin, ballet dancer Tori Hey, visual artist Tyler Harker, soprano Lila Dunn and most recently, actress Nicole Giordano. 

Applicants will be judged by a committee consisting of panelists representing each artistic discipline. All panelists are professionals with a high level of expertise in university arts education and/or professional experience in the arts. Selection will be based on artistic excellence as demonstrated by the quality of the work samples and on the basis of application materials submitted to the panel.

Morris Arts, located in Morristown, NJ, is a not-for-profit organization founded in 1973 dedicated to building community through the arts. Using the arts to inspire, connect and engage, Morris Arts serves as a resource for Morris County with a special focus on arts programming in the schools and in the community, creative placemaking, arts advocacy, and support of the Morris Area community of artists and arts organizations.

Luna Stage Presents World Premiere of “Roan @ The Gates”

Image result for LUNA STAGE ROAN @ THE GATES

Roan @ The Gates
by Christina Gorman
directed by Michelle Tattenbaum

WHEN: Thursday, January 31 | Opens: Saturday, February 2 | Closes: Sunday, February 24. Performance Schedule: Thursday at 7:30 pm, Friday & Saturday at 8 pm, Sunday at 3pm
Luna Stage, 555 Valley Road, West Orange
TICKETS: $16-39, and are available at or by calling 973.395.5551. A limited number of premium Opening Night tickets are available for $59, including the post-show party with cast and creative team.

Luna Stage will launch 2019 with the World Premiere of Christina Gorman’s cyber-security romance Roan @ The Gates. An exploration of internet privacy and the risks of whistleblowing, this suspenseful new play examines the cost of doing the right thing. Running time: 70 minutes, no intermission

Inspired by a shadowy photograph of Edward Snowden's girlfriend, Roan @ The Gates is a fictional investigation into cyber-security. Roan is a data analyst for the NSA, and her wife Nat is a lawyer committed to human rights advocacy. When their personal life collides with national security, it launches a beautiful, high-stakes adventure that illuminates the cost of secrecy.

Roan @ The Gates springs from my alarm at the rapid pace at which our supposedly private online data is being swept up and catalogued by individuals, companies, and governments,” says playwright Christina Gorman. “Now that virtually everything about ourselves exists in electronic form, is the battle already lost? Is the very notion of privacy gone for good?”

Michelle Tattenbaum, the play’s director, adds “We’re all inhabiting two worlds at once. Living two lives at once. We're living our tangible, physical lives, in our homes, with our loved ones, and then we are living a virtual life that is hidden from us, the life of all the data points we accumulate and disseminate by our actions. And this play tells the story of a couple whose tangible, physical life is devoured by their life of data and computing.”

Gorman is fascinated by whistleblowers. “What are the personal consequences of making such a radical gesture? What happens not only to the idealistic individual, but to the loved ones who are forced to live with the aftermath? And, in the end, is the action of a whistleblower selfless…or selfish?”

Luna’s new Artistic Director Ari Laura Kreith chose the play for her inaugural season because “Roan @ The Gates inspires us to look at our own relationships to moral choices, and ask ‘What matters to me enough that I would risk everything to do what is right? What is the moral breaking point for me?’ These questions are terrifying but vital.”

PictureChristina Gorman’s plays include Fidelis (The Public Theater); American Myth (American Blues Theater, Theatre Artists Studio, winner of TCG Edgerton Foundation New American Play Award); On the Outs (Ensemble Studio Theater); Split Wide Open (NYC Summer Play Festival), and she is currently at work on her new play Shiver, about a woman obsessed with recovering her partner’s body from the death zone of Mount Everest. Gorman is an inaugural member of The Public Theater Emerging Writers Group, a former New York Foundation for the Arts Fellow, Ensemble Studio Theatre New Voices Fellow, Stella Adler Studios Harold Clurman Playwright-in-Residence, and Women’s Project Playwright Lab member. She is an Artistic Affiliate at American Blues Theater. She is published by Samuel French.

Image result for MICHELLE TATTENBAUMMichelle Tattenbaum most recently directed Peter and the Starcatcher at Cape Fear Regional Theatre. Previous projects with Itamar Moses include the world premiere of the musical Nobody Loves You at the Old Globe (San Diego Theatre Critics Circle nomination: Best Director) and the NY premiere at Second Stage; Love/Stories (World Premiere, The Flea) and The Four of Us (LA Premiere, Firefly: Theater & Films). Ms. Estrada by the Q Brothers Collective (World Premiere) at the Flea, where she is an Associate Artist. Member: SDC. Two-time Drama League Directing Fellow.

Luna Stage develops and produces vibrant plays about local and global experiences. Luna brings communities together for artistic events that catalyze conversations and create understanding and change. Firmly rooted in New Jersey's Valley Arts District of Orange and West Orange—a crossroads of cultures—the Company celebrates the diverse voices that surround us. Luna Stage is dedicated to eliminating barriers to participation and nurturing the next generation of audiences and artists.

Luna’s classes for children and adults, and its developmental programs for early career artists, inspire community members to nurture their own creativity and vision.

Luna Stage has contributed to the development of over 80 new works for the stage, earning a reputation for artistic excellence. Some of those plays have gone on to productions in New York City and beyond. Luna’s unique approach to producing, as well as the work itself, fosters an environment of inclusivity, understanding, and infinite possibility.

Roan @ The Gates is the third play in Luna’s 2019-2020 season, which centers around the question of how we bridge cultural divides. Each play is set in at least two locations (Roan takes place in Washington D.C. and Russia) and grapples with contemporary human connection and communication. Earlier this season Luna produced J.Stephen Brantley’s Pirira, set simultaneously in the African nation of Malawi and midtown Manhattan, and Camilo Almonacid’s The Assignment, an interview-inspired piece exploring gun violence and reconciliation. Coming in April is Gabriel Jason Dean’s Heartland, set in Nebraska and Afghanistan, which explores family, loss, and love.