Tuesday, August 3, 2021

Premiere Stages at Kean University Announces Return to In-Person Performances this Fall

Premiere Stages at Kean University has announced its return to in-person, indoor performances, with a full production in the Bauer Boucher Theatre Center in September and a staged reading in the Liberty Hall Academic Center in October.

Premiere Stages 17th condensed season will kick off with Erik Gernand’s Year One, a finalist of the 2020/2021 Premiere Play Festival, the theatre’s annual competition for unproduced scripts written by playwrights affiliated with the greater metropolitan area. In Mr. Gernand’s Year One (September 9-26, Bauer Boucher Theatre Center)a populist’s rise to power exacerbates mounting political and social divisions. When Anna’s brother Max arrives unexpectedly, harboring a dangerous secret, the family matriarch is forced to choose between embracing a radical new country or saving those she loves. Gernand’s play, The Beautiful Dark, premiered at Premiere Stages to rave reviews in 2013. The production was nominated for an American Theatre Critics Association New Play Award and the play was subsequently produced in New York by the Barrow Group. Tickets for Year One are now on sale. Prices range from $15-$35, with discounts available for groups, seniors, and students.

Following Year One, will be the staged reading of Certain Aspects of Conflict in the Negro Family (October 29-31, Liberty Hall Academic Center) by Tylie Shider (right), recipient of the 2021/22 Liberty Live Commission. The Liberty Live commission is awarded biennially, in partnership with Kean University’s Liberty Hall, and seeks to develop and produce new plays that celebrate New Jersey’s rich and diverse history. Certain Aspects of Conflict in the Negro Family explores a family's internal divisions in response to the 1967 Plainfield, New Jersey, riots. As tensions reach an all-time high between Newark residents and police, racial and civil unrest begins spilling into surrounding communities. Clif and Peach moved their family to Plainfield for the promise of a better future, but as the riots begin, the family contemplates a return to the South. Performances of Certain Aspects of Conflict in the Negro Family will be produced under Premiere’s AEA production contract. Certain Aspects of Conflict in the Negro Family is made possible in part by a 2021 HEART (History, Education, Arts Reaching Thousands) Grant from the Union County Board of County Commissioners. Admission to Certain Aspects of Conflict in the Negro Family is free, but there is a suggested donation of $10

“We greatly appreciate how supportive our patrons have been of our virtual and outdoor events, but there is nothing like the shared experience of watching a live performance in a theatre,” said Producing Artistic Director John J. Wooten. “We are so pleased to welcome our audiences and artists back to Premiere!”

To ensure the safety of all patrons and staff, Premiere Stages will be implementing specific safety protocols for all indoor performances

  • All artists and staff will be fully vaccinated. 
  • Masks will be required for audiences attending indoor performances, regardless of vaccination status. 
  • All seating will be sanitized between performances and hand sanitizing stations will be available throughout the lobby. 
  • Touchless ticketing as well as, printed and digital playbills will be available for all patrons. 
  • Premiere’s safety protocols can be found on

Premiere Stages also offers a series of free post-show discussions in conjunction with select performances. To purchase tickets, please call the box office at 908-737-7469 or visit

Premiere Stages offers affordable prices, air-conditioned facilities and free parking close to the theatre. Premiere Stages also provides free or discounted tickets to patrons with disabilities. All Premiere Stages facilities are fully accessible spaces, and companion seating is available for patrons with disabilities. Assistive listening devices and large print programs are available at all times; publications in alternate formats are available with advance notice. Sign-interpreted, audio-described and open-captioned performances are available upon request; please call 908-737-4077 at least two weeks prior to your desired performance. For more information, please visit Premiere Stages online at

Premiere Stages is made possible in part through funding from W. John Bauer and Nancy Boucher, The New Jersey State Council on the Arts, The Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, The Shubert Foundation, The Dubose and Dorothy Heyward Foundation, The Northfield Bank Foundation, The Hyde and Watson Foundation, The Union Foundation, E.J. Grassmann Trust, Carol Shaffer-Koros and Robert Koros, The New Jersey Theatre Alliance, Investors Foundation, The Union County HEART Grant and through the generous support of individual patrons and local organizations. Discover Jersey Arts is our marketing partner. Visit for more information about other arts programming happening around the Garden State. 

Premiere Stages is committed to producing topical plays and interactive programs that reflect people of all ethnic and racial backgrounds, religious groups, gender identities, ages, abilities, disabilities and sexual preferences.