New Jersey Stage

Friday, January 28, 2011

NJ Film Fest Presents "DEFORCE"

(NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ) -- On February 5, the New Jersey Film Festival presents "DEFORCE" -- a documentary that has been described as " unflinching look at the politics of the American inner-city." The film was an official selection of the 20th Annual Message to Man Documentary Festival, St. Petersburg, Russia; 12th Annual Waterfront Film Festival, Saugatuck, MI; 5th Annual Hells Half Mile Film Festival, Bay City, MI – Voted Best Documentary; and 10th Annual New Hampshire Film Festival, Portsmouth, NH. "DEFORCE" will be shown at Voorhees Hall on Saturday, Februrayr 5th at 7pm.

DEFORCE is a study of the political conflict that has suppressed one of the most diverse and dynamic cities in America. From New Deal housing policy to the modern Drug War the film focuses on the tools that divided the city economically and socially. Themes that are common in most cities, but the extremes shown make it uniquely Detroit.

The film feature's candid interviews from Detroit's foremost authors, historians and journalists including ML Elrick- a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist. Elrick's investigative reporting helped lead to the felony conviction of former Mayor Kilpatrick's and his recent indictment on charges of extortion and corruption. And with its 86 minute running time, the documentary is able to go beyond the headlines and reveal the history that fostered such corruption.

From Pastor's to Drug-Dealers the films interviewees pose diverse opinions about the causes and effects of Detroit's troubles. Combined with extensive archival materials and beautiful original footage, DEFORCE presents a captivating lesson on the historical divisions of American cities.

A Selection of the New Jersey Film Festival, DEFORCE screens one-time only- Saturday, February 5th at 7pm, Vorhees Hall (71 Hamilton St. in New Brunswick). This is the Film's only showing in New Jersey. The Director is scheduled to be in attendance to take questions from the audience.

You can view the trailer(s) and read more about the film by visiting To find out about ticket availability, prices and other films showing at the festival visit

About the Director
Born in Detroit and raised in Oakland County's working class, Daniel Falconer studied at NYU's Tisch School of Arts. Started in 2008, Falconer co-wrote, directed and produced DEFORCE- his first feature-film. He will be in attendance at Sunday's showing to take questions.

David Staller and Amanda Dehnert To Direct Final Two Shows of Season for Two River Theater Company

(RED BANK, NJ) -— Two River Theater Company announces that directors David Staller and Amanda Dehnert will helm the final two shows of the company's current season, Shaw's Candida and the musical revue Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris, respectively.

David Staller is the founder and artistic director of the New York-based company the Gingold Theatrical Group, through which he produces Project Shaw, a concert-reading series devoted to the work and human-rights activism of George Bernard Shaw. Through this series, he is the first person ever to direct and produce every play that Shaw ever wrote—65 in all. The next Project Shaw event, Androcles and the Lion, will be produced with an all-critic and arts journalist company on January 24 at the Players Club.

Candida, one of Shaw's most popular comedies, will run March 22-April 10.

Amanda Dehnert most recently directed Peter Pan (A Play) for Chicago's Lookingglass Theatre; her production of Julius Caesar will open in March at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Among her numerous musical-theatre credits are Cabaret for the Stratford Shakespeare Festival, My Fair Lady for Actors Theatre of Louisville and Cleveland Play House, The Fantasticks for Arena Stage and Long Wharf Theatre (for which she received a Helen Hayes nomination), and many productions at Trinity Repertory Company, including West Side Story and Annie.

Jacques Brel features conception, English lyrics, and additional material by Eric Blau and Mort Shuman, based on lyrics and commentary by Jacques Brel. Two River's production of the celebrated revue will run May 17-June 5.

"I'm pleased to welcome David Staller and Amanda Dehnert to our company this season," says Artistic Director John Dias. "David is a director, actor, producer—and a unique Shaw enthusiast who is one of the country's leading experts in Shaw's work and style. Amanda brings an exciting and original vision to how audiences experience the art form of the musical theater. Both of them are looking at these beloved classics, Candida and Jacques Brel, with fresh eyes and perspectives, and we look forward to sharing their passions about these productions with our audiences."

Two River Theater's next production, Herb Gardner's comedy A Thousand Clowns, directed by Davis McCallum, runs February 1-20, with an opening on February 5. For additional information about the season, visit

TWO RIVER THEATER COMPANY, under the leadership of Artistic Director John Dias, produces world premiere, classics, contemporary plays and innovative education programs in a state‐of‐the‐art theater complex that opened in 2005. Founded in 1994 by Joan and Dr. Robert M. Rechnitz, Two River Theater is a member of the League of Resident Theaters (LORT), Theatre Communications Group (TCG), The New Jersey Theatre Alliance and ArtPride New Jersey.

State Theatre Presents STOMP

(New Brunswick, NJ) -— State Theatre presents STOMP, the international percussion sensation on Friday, February 11, 2011 at 8pm and Saturday, February 12 at 3pm and 8pm. From its beginnings as a street performance in the UK, STOMP has grown into an international sensation over the past 13 years, having performed in over 350 cities in 36 countries worldwide. STOMP is part of the State Theatre's winter festival, Hub City Carnivale, three weeks of performances, activities, and attractions for all ages. Prior to each STOMP performance there will be a FREE chocolate tasting in the State Theatre lobbies, courtesy of Thomas Sweet in New Brunswick (with purchase of STOMP ticket). Tickets range from $32-67.

"We're making STOMP very affordable for all audiences this February. So share this exhilarating show with your whole family!" states Daniel Grossman, Vice President of Marketing at the State Theatre. "Just mention STOMP7 when you call for tickets and you'll save $7 per ticket. That means Broadway quality close to home for as little as $25 per ticket, or $60 for the best seat in the hall. What a deal!"

STOMP OUT HUNGER! State Theatre in partnership with Elijah's Promise will hold a food drive during the performances of STOMP to benefit the Elijah's Promise Food Pantry in New Brunswick. People can help by bringing in non-perishable food items such as: canned fruits and vegetables, tuna, pastas, rice, and beans when they come to see STOMP. Those who cannot make the show can still drop off food items at the Ticket Office from February 11-13 during office hours.

STOMP, an overwhelming success marked by rave reviews, numerous awards, and sell-out engagements, is the winner of an Olivier Award for Best Choreography (London's Tony Award), a New York Obie Award, a Drama Desk Award for Unique Theatre Experience, and a Special Citation from Best Plays. The young performers "make a rhythm out of anything we can get our hands on that makes a sound," says co-creator/director Luke Cresswell. Stiff-bristle brooms become a sweeping orchestra; Zippo lighters flip open and closed to create a fiery fugue; wooden poles thump and clack in a rhythmic explosion. STOMP uses everything but conventional percussion instruments—trashcans, tea chests, plastic bags, plungers, boots, and hubcaps – to fill the stage with compelling and infectious rhythms.

Critics and audiences have raved: "STOMP is as crisp and exuberant as if it had opened yesterday," says The New York Times. The San Francisco Chronicle declares "STOMP has a beat that just won't quit!" The Los Angeles Times exclaims: "Electrifying! Triumphs in the infinite variety of the human experience." "A phenomenal show! Bashing, crashing, smashing, swishing, banging and kicking—a joyous invention!" says the Chicago Tribune.

STOMP is directed and created by Luke Cresswell and Steve McNicholas.

For tickets or more information, call the State Theatre ticket office at 732-246-SHOW (7469), or visit us online at The State Theatre ticket office, located at 15 Livingston Ave, New Brunswick NJ, is open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, 10am to 6pm; Wednesday 11am to 7pm; Saturday 1pm to 5pm; and at least one hour prior to curtain on performance dates. For information on group outings and discounts, call 732-247-7200, ext. 517.


(GLASSBORO, NJ) -– "Jazz Goes to Broadway" when the 41th Annual Rowan Jazz Festival concludes with a gala concert event on Friday, February 11, 2011 at 8 pm in the university's Pfleeger Concert Hall.

Festival director and acclaimed jazz artist Denis DiBlasio welcomes noted jazz trumpeter and clinician Joe Mosello to share the bill for the evening's performance. They join George Rabbai, Rowan's Lab Band and Jazz Band, as well as vocalist Marian Stieber, for a program highlighting jazz arrangements of classic tunes from the history of Broadway.

"The festival is a lively event filled with great playing and great educational experiences wrapped up in a friendly atmosphere," DiBlasio notes. "The non-competitive environment allows for groundbreaking, loose, interactive moments that have become the cornerstone of the festival."

Hosted by the Maynard Ferguson Institute of Jazz Studies at Rowan, the concert caps a three-day festival (February 9-11) that focuses on providing a non-competitive, educational environment. Schools from throughout the region take part in adjudication sessions, workshops and performances aimed at teaching, as well as spotlighting high school and middle school jazz musicians.

The daily schedule – from 9 am to 5 pm in Wilson Hall – gives each participating ensemble an opportunity to perform in front of clinicians, guests and other schools. Members of the Rowan jazz faculty and visiting artists work with each band and provide valuable feedback. A clinic in the middle of each day can include anything from addressing specific topics to students performing for each other. These daily events are free and open to the public.

Mosello, a resident of Marlboro, NJ, is among the most respected trumpet players around today. A graduate of the Eastman School of Music, he was a student of Chuck Mangione. Mosello was lead trumpet for the Jazz Ambassadors of the U.S. Army Field Band after college and toured and recorded with Maynard Ferguson's band for five years. He was part of the Philip Morris Superband, has been in the pit for a dozen Broadway shows and is been a fixture in the New York music scene for years, playing jazz, rock and classical music for television, movies, and commercials. He's performed with Frank Sinatra, Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin, Sarah Vaughn, B.B. King, Julie Andrews, Sammy Davis Jr., Johnny Mathis, Nancy Wilson, Wayne Newton, The Temptations, Vic Damone, The Four Tops, Blood Sweat & Tears and many more.

Tickets for the concert are $15 each, and free for Rowan students with valid ID. Purchase tickets online at or call the box office at 856-256-4545. Admission to the daytime events is free. For more information on the festival and the daily schedule, contact Denis DiBlasio at 856-256-4500, ext. 3528. Pfleeger Concert Hall is located in Wilson Hall on the campus of Rowan University, Route 322 in Glassboro.

New Jersey Rep Presents the World Premiere of Puma by Julie Gilbert and Frank Evans

(LONG BRANCH, NJ) -– The New Jersey Repertory Company, located at 179 Broadway in Long Branch, is proud to present the world premiere of Puma by Julie Gilbert and Frank Evans, February 24 thru April 3, 2011.

What happens when two heavenly bodies collide? That is exactly what we encounter in Puma, a play that explores the life-long, obsessive and tempestuous love affair between Marlene Dietrich, the German actress who became a Hollywood icon, and Erich Maria Remarque, the celebrated author of All's Quiet On The Western Front. As the inevitable conflagration of World War II loomed over Europe, both Dietrich and Remarque fled Nazi Germany to the United States. Remarque was already an acclaimed wunderkind and Dietrich had made her mark and had gained international fame with her performance as Lola in the film, The Blue Angel directed by Josef von Sternberg.

The play takes the audience through their unconventional relationship over the decades as they both work to establish themselves in their new homeland while struggling with the challenge encountered by all immigrants, displacement. Along the way they meet and sleep with an impressive cavalcade of Hollywood's luminaries while at the same time attempting to accommodate their respective marriages. Jimmy Stewart and Paulette Goddard are also featured in the play as they are pulled into the powerful and seductive orbit of these two larger-than-life characters. Puma provides a glimpse into a time in history when the true world order was being destroyed, and when long established cultures and societies were being swept aside while at the same time the fantastical illusion that we know as Hollywood was being created.

This compelling play is based on the personal diaries of Erich Maria Remarque that had been kept in a vault for years and were translated from the German and made accessible for the first time to Julie Gilbert, one of the playwrights. As a result it reveals previously unknown details about the lives of many of Hollywood's most famous personalities. The authors are seasoned writers. Julie Gilbert was born into a literary and theatrical family. Her mother was the actress, Janet Fox, and her great aunt was the renowned writer, Edna Ferber. Julie is a novelist and biographer who was nominated for a National Book Critic's Circle Award for her biography, Ferber, and also received a Pulitzer Prize nomination for Opposite Attraction: The Lives Of Erich Maria Remarque and Paulette Goddard. Frank Evans is the lyricist for the off-Broadway musical, Abie's Island Rose and Back Home, The War Brides Musical.


(GLASSBORO, NJ) -– Paula Vogel's emotionally gripping drama How I Learned to Drive comes to Rowan University's Tohill Theatre on February 11, 12, 18 and 19 at 8 pm and February 13 and 20 at 3 pm.

Directed by Dr. Elisabeth Hostetter, the Pulitzer Prize-winning play presents the complex memories of a woman struggling to keep her charismatic uncle's sexual attentions at bay. Uncle Peck claims to have loved his young niece since the day she was born and expresses his affection by teaching her to "drive like a man." But stepping into his 1956 Chevrolet Bel Aire sports coupe comes with strings attached and Li'l Bit has to carefully define the boundaries to avoid being victimized by her Uncle's seductive power.

The Department of Theatre & Dance includes the play in its season to honor the work of one of America's most celebrated contemporary female playwrights.

"The strength of the play lies in the balance between the male and female characters," Hostetter states. "Paula Vogel is masterful in presenting the vulnerability and strength of both the uncle and the young woman. She tells the story of survival but avoids reducing the female character to a mere voiceless, pitiful victim."

Rowan senior Carly Dufford, of Jackson, portrays Li'l Bit opposite professional Philadelphia-based actor Christopher Fluck, as Uncle Peck.

Regarding the challenges of playing a woman who has been deeply scarred by her dysfunctional family, Dufford notes," "This role has been a challenge yet an incredible learning experience. I am learning about issues that I, thankfully, never had to deal with growing up. It is interesting that a person like Lil' Bit could really be anybody and we can all learn from her because she uses her scars to come out stronger."

The cast also features the ensemble performances of Jessica Evans of West Creek, Jenna Garrison of Middletown, Michele Mizeski of Califon and Jimmy Quartuccio of Avenel. The design team includes Stephanie Nichols (costumes), Robert Thorpe (lights), David Cimetta (sound), Anthony Hostetter (projections) and Rowan junior Justine Curran (set).

Tohill Theatre is located in Bunce Hall on the campus of Rowan University, Route 322 in Glassboro, NJ. Tickets are $10, general admission; and $5 for seniors, non-Rowan students, Rowan staff & alumni. Rowan students are admitted free with valid ID. For tickets and information, visit or call the box office at (856) 256-4545.

Writer's Digest Partners with Author Solutions, Inc., to Launch Self-Publishing Division—Abbott Press

Writer's Digest, the oldest and most respected media company dedicated to the advancement of writers, announced today it is partnering with the leading self-publishing company, Author Solutions, Inc., (ASI), to launch Abbott Press—a self-publishing division. Named in honor of Richard K. Abbott, the legendary Writer's Digest editor, Abbott Press is devoted to helping writers improve their work and realize their dreams of getting published.

"In keeping with the mission of Writer's Digest, and in order to provide our consumers with the most complete information, inspiration, products and services to further their craft, we are proud to expand our portfolio to address a real desire of aspiring writers—to get published, be it by indie publishing or by traditional means," said Sara Domville, president, F+W Media. "Fully supported by the trusted experts at Writer's Digest, Abbott Press brings the same respectability, integrity, and commitment to editorial excellence as our Writer's Digest brand, while maintaining a unique identity of its own, for the benefit of our authors."

Through this strategic partnership, Author Solutions will manage Abbott Press on behalf of Writer's Digest, taking responsibility for sales and publishing activities, while delivering a comprehensive array of publishing, marketing, and book-selling services, designed specifically for Abbott Press authors. The educational and editorial services provided to authors fall under the respected Writer's Digest brand umbrella of Writer's Digest Books, Writer's Digest University, The Writer's Digest Conference, and Writer's Market.

"This is a landmark alliance, as Writer's Digest has been the relied-upon source for support and education for writers for more than 90 years. Its entry into the self-publishing arena further exemplifies the sea change toward indie publishing which puts the control squarely with the author," said Kevin Weiss, Author Solutions president and CEO. To learn more about the publishing packages available through Abbott Press, visit or call 866-697-5310.

About Abbott Press
Abbott Press, a division Writer's Digest—the oldest and most respected publisher devoted to the education and advancement of writers—is an indie-publishing service provider dedicated to helping writers bring their literary vision to print. Author Solutions, Inc., a leader in indie book publishing, will fulfill publishing, sales, and marketing services for Abbott Press. To learn more about the publishing packages available through Abbott Press, visit or call 866-697-5310.

About Writer's Digest
Writer's Digest is devoted to helping writers develop their literary skills and hone their publishing acumen to enable them to be successful and get published or find an agent. Since 1920, Writer's Digest Magazine has chronicled the culture of the modern writer and today continues this tradition through relevant first-person essays, interviews with bestselling authors and profiles with emerging talent. Writer's Digest also features practical technique articles, and tips and exercises on fiction, nonfiction, poetry and the business-side of writing and publishing. The Writer's Digest Community includes Writer's Digest Books, Writer's Digest University, The Writer's Digest Conference, and Writer's Market. Writer's Digest is a division of F+W Media, Inc.

About Author Solutions, Inc.
Author Solutions, Inc. (ASI), is owned by Bertram Capital, and is the leader in indie book publishing—the fastest-growing segment of publishing. ASI's self-publishing brands —AuthorHouse, AuthorHouse UK, iUniverse, Trafford, Xlibris, and Wordclay—have helped more than 85,000 authors self-publish, promote, and bring to market more than 120,000 new titles. Through strategic alliances with top trade publishers and writer's organizations, ASI is making it possible to develop new literary talent efficiently and provide authors a platform for bringing their books to market. Headquartered in Bloomington, Indiana, ASI also operates offices in Indianapolis. Visit for more information. For the latest news, follow us on Twitter @authorsolutions.

Kean University Hosts Three Music Programs In February

(UNION, NJ) -- Kean University in Union, NJ is hosting three exceptional music programs during the month of February. Rapidly gaining a reputation as a cultural hub in the metropolitan area, the university boasts state of the art recital halls, three theatre venues and five art galleries. A string quartet, an a Capella troupe from South Africa and internationally acclaimed musicians highlight the month's offerings.

On February 20 at 3:00 pm, the O'Connor Quartet, lead by Grammy winning violinist Mark O'Connor performs their classical crossover concert of bluegrass selections. Joined by Kelly Hall-Tompkins on violin, Gillian Gallagher on viola and Patrice Jackson on cello, the group provides a spectacular journey through recent American music.

A product of America's rich aural folk tradition as well as classical music, Mark O'Connor's creative journey began with a pair of musical giants: innovating folk fiddler Benny Thomasson, and French jazz violinist Stephane Grappelli. Between these marvelous musical extremes, O'Connor absorbed knowledge and influence from the multitude of musical styles and genres he studied. His first recording for the Sony Classical record label, 'Appalachia Waltz', was a collaboration with Yo-Yo Ma and Edgar Meyer.

As one of New York City's most in-demand violinists, Kelly Hall-Tompkins's dynamic career spans solo, chamber, and orchestral performance as a member of the Florida-based Ritz Chamber Players. She has performed extensively with Orpheus Chamber Orchestra and New York Philharmonic and is a member of the NJ Symphony.

Gillian Gallagher is already making a considerable name for herself as a chamber musician, having collaborated with eminent violinists, pianists, flutists and the Tokyo String Quartet. The gifted young cellist Patrice Jackson was awarded first place in the Senior Laureate Division of the nationally renowned Sphinx Competition, and has performed with the Atlanta, Detroit, Dallas, New Jersey, Milwaukee, Omaha, Cincinnati, St. Louis, Grand Rapids, Nashville, Hartford, Chautauqua, Colorado and Mississippi Symphonies, as well as with the Philadelphia Orchestra.

The concert will be performed in the Gene and Shelley Enlow Recital Hall, Kean University's masterful performance facility specifically designed for acoustic music. Home to the only Fazioli 10 foot grand piano in the region, this stunning performance space is alluring and dramatic for performers and audiences alike.

Next in Enlow Hall on February 27 at 3:00 pm is the renowned Ladysmith Black Mambazo. Having won multiple Grammy awards, with the power of gospel and the precision of Broadway, the members of the ensemble are the undisputed kings of mbube, South African a Cappella singing. The group first rose to fame through their landmark collaboration with Paul Simon on his Graceland album, and has performed with artists as diverse as Dolly Parton, Stevie Wonder and Paul McCartney.

Assembled in the early 1960s in Durban, South Africa by Joseph Shabalala (who continues to lead the group), their mission is clear: "To bring this gospel of loving one another all over the world," said Shabalala. However, he's quick to point out that the message is not specific to any one religious orientation. "Without hearing the lyrics, this music gets into the blood, because it comes from the blood," he continued. "It evokes enthusiasm and excitement, regardless of what you follow spiritually."

In addition to their work with Paul Simon, Ladysmith Black Mambazo has recorded with numerous artists from around the world. Their film work includes an appearance in Michael Jackson's Moonwalker video and Spike Lee's Do It A Cappella. They provided soundtrack material for Disney's The Lion King, Part II as well as Eddie Murphy's Coming To America, Clint Eastwood's Invictus, Marlon Brando's A Dry White Season, Sean Connery's The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen and James Earl Jones' Cry The Beloved Country. Their performance with Simon on Sesame Street is legendary and is one of the top three requested Sesame Street segments in history.

Tickets for both the O'Connor Quartet recital and Ladysmith Black Mambazo concert are $40.

The strength and hope inspired by spirituals -- the music of mourning, comfort, and the celebration of the African Diaspora -- is presented as a tribute to Black History Month on February 27 at 3:00 pm in the university's intimate concert venue, Kean Hall. Spirituals features Richard Hobson (baritone), Robbin Gordon-Cartier (harp) and Allison Brewster Franzetti (piano) in a stirring and beautiful performance.
Richard Hobson is acclaimed for the strong dramatic persona he brings to his performances, appearing throughout the USA with companies including the Metropolitan Opera, New York City Opera, The Dallas Opera, Baltimore Opera, Mississippi Opera, Shreveport Opera, and Michigan Opera Theater. In his Italian operatic debut, he was heard as Amonasro at the Teatro Strehler (Milano, Italy) in the new Franco Zeffirelli production of Aida.

Robbin Gordon-Cartier graduated from Montclair State University Magna Cum Laude with her summers spent in Dublin, Ireland, studying at the Royal Irish Academy of Music. She performs with the New Philharmonic Orchestra of New Jersey, is the President of the North Jersey Chapter of the American Harp Society. A multiple Grammy nominee, Allison Brewster Franzetti has received international acclaim from critics and audiences alike for her stunning virtuosity and musicality, both as a soloist and chamber musician.

Admission to Spirituals is $15. Tickets for all events can be purchased by calling the Kean Stage box office at 908.737.7469 or on-line at Kean University is located at 1000 Morris Avenue in Union, with Enlow Hall immediately across the street on the east campus at 215 North Avenue, Hillside. For further information, visit the university website at

The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey LaunchES 15TH sEASON of educAtional touring company Shakespeare LIVE!

(MADISON, NJ) -— The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey's acclaimed educational touring company, Shakespeare LIVE!, will launch its fifteenth season in February, traveling to schools and other venues throughout the tri-state state region with 65-minute versions of two of Shakespeare's most popular plays – A Midsummer Night's Dream for grades 3 and up and Julius Caesar for grades 6 and up. Bookings are now being accepted. To inquire about bringing Shakespeare LIVE! to a school or venue, call 973-408-3980 or e-mail

Since 1997, Shakespeare LIVE! has presented more than 1,500 performances to 400,000 young people at over 800 schools and other venues throughout New Jersey and the Mid-Atlantic region. This energetic troupe of young professional actors performs abridged productions of Shakespeare's plays, engages in post-show discussions with students and family audiences, and conducts interactive theatre workshops. Although the plays are abridged to be performed within a class period, Shakespeare LIVE! prides itself on keeping Shakespeare's text intact.

The company is renowned for its dynamic and visually creative productions, and for its ability to make Shakespeare's plays appealing and accessible to all ages. The program not only enables young people to experience Shakespeare's work as it was meant to be experienced — in performance — but also enables teachers to fulfill specific New Jersey Core Curriculum Content Standards in the areas of Visual and Performing Arts, Language Arts Literacy and Social Studies.

Shakespeare LIVE! is part of Shakespeare for a New Generation, a national program of the National Endowment for the Arts in cooperation with Arts Midwest. The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey is one of 40 professional theater companies selected to participate in Shakespeare for a New Generation, bringing the finest productions of Shakespeare to thousands of middle- and high-school students in communities across the United States. This is the eighth year of Shakespeare in American Communities, the largest tour of Shakespeare in American history. Additional funding for Shakespeare LIVE! is provided, in part, by The Turrell Fund, The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey, the Ambrose and Ida Frederickson Foundation, and the Provident Bank Foundation.
The 2011 Shakespeare LIVE! Tour The 2011 Shakespeare LIVE! tour features Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream – a fresh, imaginative take on this perennial favorite. When starry-eyed young lovers and zany would-be actors cross paths with mischief-making fairies in a magical forest, the result is one of the world's most uproarious comedies. A Midsummer Night's Dream is the ideal "first Shakespeare" for elementary grades, and a riotous roller-coaster ride for teens (and teachers). A Midsummer Night's Dream will tour from February 8 through June 10, 2011.

Shakespeare LIVE! presents a brand-new staging of Shakespeare's Julius Caesar – a searing drama about a nation at a political crossroads. Rome's leaders are faced with a choice between loyalty and duty, between patriotism and propaganda – a choice that will have fatal consequences. As retold by Shakespeare, history has never been more exciting! This hour-long adaption is perfect for students in grades 6 and up. William Shakespeare's Julius Caesar will tour from February 8 through June 10, 2011. Reservations are currently being accepted for the spring 2011 Shakespeare Live! tour. To inquire about bringing Shakespeare LIVE! to your school or venue, call 973-408-3980 or e-mail

Prior to each performance, teachers receive a comprehensive study guide that contains invaluable tools for enhancing students' appreciation and understanding of Shakespeare, developed especially for this program by Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey educators. The study guide provides important historical information, an introduction to the language, a synopsis of the play and thematic perspectives, as well as classroom exercises, curriculum tie-ins, and topics for discussion. The Shakespeare LIVE! experience also includes a post-performance discussion with the actors, during which students and teachers have the opportunity to ask questions and explore aspects of the play. Shakespeare LIVE! performance fees are $900 for a single performance and $1,700 for two performances on the same day. Travel fees may apply. For reservations and information call 973-408-3980 or e-mail

The acclaimed Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey is an independent, professional theatre company located on the Drew University campus. One of the leading Shakespeare theatres in the nation, serving 100,000 adults and children annually, it is New Jersey's only professional theatre company dedicated solely to Shakespeare's canon and other world classics. Through its distinguished productions and education programs, the company strives to illuminate the universal and lasting relevance of the classics for contemporary audiences.

Luna Stage Presents Mercy and the Firefly

Luna Stage presents MERCY AND THE FIREFLY by Amy Hartman and directed by Cheryl Katz. Soaring prose and aching emotion stalk this powerful new play in which a woman drives non-stop from LA to Pittsburgh, back to the home she fled. She returns with a spirit in need, a troubled girl, and a secret that could endanger those who love her.

Developed as part of Luna Stage’s new play program, Mercy and the Firefly is a story of finding forgiveness, even in the midst of darkness. Starring Alicia Riva, Marcie Henderson, Christopher Daftsios, and Andrea Gallo.

Previews take place February 10 – 17. Show officially opens February 18 and runs through March 13, 2011. Shows are on Thursdays at 7:30pm, Fridays & Saturdays at 8:00pm, and Sundays at 2:00pm. Admission for the previews is $20; regular performances for Thursdays/Fridays/Sundays are $25 and Saturdays $30.

The Luna Stage is located at 555 Valley Road in West Orange NJ. Call 973-395-5551 or visit for further information and reservations. Luna Stage is wheelchair accessible.

Love Is in the Air at Liberty Hall Museum

(Union, NJ) -- Liberty Hall Museum at Kean University celebrates Valentine's Day with a series of special events throughout the month of February. Visitors can enjoy seasonal activities and take in the museum's impressive collection of artifacts in the historic Victorian mansion of New Jersey's first elected governor, William Livingston.

On Wednesday, February 9 from 2:00 to 4:00 pm, Liberty Hall hosts its Sweetheart-Valentine's Afternoon Tea. The afternoon teas are a monthly tradition at the museum and each are offered with a different timely theme.

"It's the perfect place to sip tea, lunch on finger sandwiches and enjoy desserts while gazing at the formal English garden – beautiful even in the snow -- from the comfort of our glass-enclosed porch," says William Schroh, director of museum operations. A tour of Liberty Hall will follow the tasty repast, and is included in the program fee of $35 per person.

Will You Be Mine? is a crafts workshop especially designed for children and their families on Saturday, February 12th from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm. Recommended for 7 to 12 year olds, participants are guided in designing and constructing their own old-fashioned Valentine's craft.

"That special someone will love the hand-made gift the children make at our ‘Hearts and Crafts' workshop," added Schroh. The fee for the workshop is $10 per child, and all workshop materials are included.

A special Valentine's Day menu, a historic couples fashion show and a presentation about the history and traditions of Valentine's Day are the highlights of Liberty Hall's Annual Valentine's Day Afternoon Tea. The event takes place on Sunday, February 13 from noon to 3:00 pm; the cost is $55.00 per couple.

Reservations are required for all these programs, and can be made by calling Liberty Hall Museum at (908) 527-0400.

The on-going exhibit at Liberty Hall is Stitches in Time: Three Centuries of Hemlines, Necklines & Everything in Between. The exhibit features over 40 pieces of clothing and accessories from the vast fashion collection of the Liberty Hall Museum. The fashions on display range from 18th century shoes and fans to 20th century Christian Dior cocktails dresses, featuring elegant gowns, glittering accessories, refined evening attire and vintage undergarments (in a display called "Victorian Secrets").

Liberty Hall Museum at Kean University, chronicling more than 200 years of American history is a treasure trove of significant riches. Along with forgotten letters from Thomas Jefferson, Liberty Hall also houses extensive collections of antique furniture, ceramics, textiles, toys and tools owned by seven generations of the Livingston and Kean families. The Firehouse is the latest addition to the Museum's complex housing antique fire engines and a collection of fire memorabilia.

General admission to the museum for regular visits is $10 for adults, $6 for students and free to children under three, Liberty Hall Museum members and Kean University students, faculty and staff. Liberty Hall is located at 1003 Morris Avenue in Union, New Jersey. It is open to the public Monday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For reservations and further information, call (908) 527-0400, e-mail or visit

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Interview With James Dalton About "Asbury Blues" -- A New Blues Club In Asbury Park

Tell me about Asbury Blues. Where is it located? Is it a full bar? Restaurant?
Asbury Blues is located just a block off the path at 610 Bangs Avenue in the old Asbury Park Press building. We are a music venue with a full bar and a full menu of BBQ, Cajun and Southern inspired dishes.

What will the average week of shows look like?
Well, we are a blues club, so that is our focus, but we've got a country rock/southern rock night of music every Tuesday, live band Karaoke on Thursdays, Sunday evenings will be a blues inspired singer/songwriter night and Mondays, being our service industry night, is going to be a more open forum. we've got plans for a real "speakeasy" one Monday a month...

Will Asbury Blues go after regional and national acts as well as locals?
Asbury Blues loves the locals and we have some of the best from the area on our schedule, but yes, we do have regionals in the rotation and we are going after some national acts, too. I think we are going to really surprise people with the diversity and high level of talent that we're featuring on our stage.

How did you get involved with Asbury Blues and what is your position/affiliation there?
I've been telling people that my role is "still undefined" but really, what I've meant is that I am doing a little bit of everything. We have an amazing staff at the club, from the servers to the sound guys and me, I am helping out with the curating and the booking. In the beginning, really, I was just on the sidelines, quietly, acting as a consultant, and now, I am there all the time!

For years, Jason's was a blues institution in Belmar and Crossroads had a nice run in Asbury Park. Is he hard to believe there really hasn't been a true blues club in the area for quite a while?
I can believe it, sure. Part of the reason for that is because a lot of non music venues some years back tried to get in on the action. Jason's, which I loved and was lucky enough to do some playing in before it shut it's doors, was not only just a music venue, but really, it was a niche one and I remember suddenly all these competing places, dirty bars or Italian restaurants all moving tables out of the way and calling themselves "juke joints". Granted, I can dig the enthusiasm they had, and, of course, all the bands found new places to play and work, despite bad sound and such, but it spread it all pretty thin. Suddenly, you could hear this music everywhere, even though a lot of the times, the quality wasn't as good. So, Jason's, which was the best of them all, lost a lot of it's clientele.

I think it's pretty exciting that not only is someone opening a new blues place in AP, but it is someone treating the process with respect. Having been lucky enough to have played a number of them across the country and around the world, and since I am working presently as a manager of the only blues club in NYC, I think I have an informed perspective. Yes, opening a spot with a dirty floor, a bad sound system and basically presenting a rough spot and calling it a "blues club" may seem romantic to some people in a Chicago, or a backwoods Southern kind of way, but Asbury Blues didn't do that. There's a little more elegance, if you will. Granted I am NOT saying that you can't come in to our club, smear BBQ sauce on your face, drink a lot of rye whiskey and try to score with the most unattractive person in the room, not saying that at all, but I am saying that this music can be treated with respect. You CAN put on a nice suit and drop in to the local blues club and you can leave before it all goes wrong. You bring anyone, people of all ages to celebrate this music, and it doesn't have to be some dirty, crazy cliche...

New Jersey Rock and rollers Blondsense take The Stone Pony stage in support of our troops

(ASBURY PARK, NJ) -- The alternative rock band Blondsense has stepped into the serious arena of U.S. troop support. Teaming with several organizations for a January 22nd 2011 show at The Stone Pony in Asbury Park, NJ. Blondsense joins organizations such as Adopt A Soldier Platoon, NJ Elks Army of Hope, Operation Jersey Cares, Lt. Dennis W Zilinski II Foundation, and American Recreational Military Services (A.R.M.S) in an effort to raise money and care packages for our troops fighting on behalf of our country.

The Adopt A Soldier Platoon was formed back in 2003 after a minor car accident involving a mother who had more on her mind than her driving (her son was leaving for Iraq) and the organization hasn't looked back since. Helping with care packages and contact from people who care here in the U.S.A. has made all the difference.

The NJ Elks Army Of Hope also steps forward to assist families who have had a father or mother called to active duty with the military reserve or National Guard. An Army of Hope, comprised of carpenters, electricians, mechanics, plumbers, attorneys, doctors, accountants, teachers, and professional people and tradesmen of every type, has been mobilized by the Order of Elks. Their Website makes no qualms about it. We are still at war. The casualties in Afghanistan increase every day at an even more alarming rate. These are not single deaths, with the death of a loved one, part of a family, neighborhood and community dies. The parents, the children or grandchildren, aunts and uncles, friends, neighbors, co-workers all lose part of their hearts.

Another group that will be participating is Operation Jersey Cares. A group comprised of Veterans and other proud Americans. This group dedicated volunteers who give freely of our time and talents to ensure that our "Combat Veterans" are getting the support they need for the sacrifices they are making.

Operation Jersey Cares send packages to our men and women to let them know that 'America' is behind their efforts. Other groups involved are Lt. Dennis W Zilinski II Foundation, and American Recreational Military Services (A.R.M.S) and the concentrated goal of everyone is to let our troops know that we all care.

All band proceeds from Blondesense downloads, the purchase of Blondsense CD's, and tickets for the upcoming show at the legendary Stone Pony on January 22, 2011 will be donated to the brave men and women that selflessly serve our nation and protect our freedom with their very lives. To me, it's a great cause for a great group of people. Special guests throughout the night will include Lisa Bouchelle, Christine Martucci, Cookiehead, and the very traditional performance of Shamrock & Thistle Pipe & Drum.

While donations are accepted at any time, these organizations really need you to come to the show for support. Shows like this rely on door draws and immediate numbers to continue operating. Any assistance towards that goal would be greatly appreciated. For further information please contact Blondsense directly at: and check out the Website at: And of course see it over at

Strand Theatre Presents A Birthday Tribute to Johnny Cash - "Michael Patrick's Ring of Fire Band"

(Lakewood, NJ) -– The historic STRAND Center for the Arts presents "A Birthday Tribute to Johnny Cash – Michael Patrick's Ring of Fire Band" on Sunday, February 27, 2011 at 8pm.  All seats are $15 (plus service charges).

Michael Patrick's "Ring of Fire" band stems from central NJ and is an offspring of the successful country-rock group entitled "The Suburban Hillbillies." While the original band continues to tour locally, it's members have put together this special project, a tribute show to honor and pay homage to one of their musical icons - Mr Johnny Cash!

In recent years the group and its members have shared the stage with "Cash Family" members: Rosanne Cash, Joanne Cash and Kathy Cash They have also performed nationally with Randy Travis, Marty Stuart, Carlene Carter, Billy Joe Shaver and more.

With annual tours down south & sellout shows from New York City to Boston, Ring of Fire is a hot ticket. The music of the legendary Johnny Cash Will live on forever and fan attendance at the bands' shows proves it over and over again. 

Make your ticket reservations online at or call 732-730-5925.The Strand box office, 732 – 367 - 7789, is open on Thursday and Friday, between 12 pm and 5 pm and 3 hours before each show. The Strand Theater is located at 400 Clifton Avenue in Lakewood, NJ.

Strand Theatre Presents Sherlock Holmes, Murder Mystery – Dinner Theater

(Lakewood, NJ) -– Grab your spyglass, your deerstalker hat and prepare yourself for a classic murder mystery comedy show. Pit your wits against the world famous sleuth Sherlock Holmes as he unlocks the secrets of a maddening Manor on the stage of the historic Strand Center for the Arts!  Performances are scheduled for Saturday, February 12 at 12:00pm and 7:00pm and again on Sunday, February 13 at 12:00pm.  Tickets are $36 for a table of 8 or more; $41 for single seats.

Riddlesbrood Touring Theater Company has created a who-done-it loaded with twists and turns, a host of wacky characters, outrageous laughter and a mystery that’s to die for! If you can solve the crime... you can win a prize! With plenty of audience participation and improvisation, you can't help but be pulled into the show... Literally! This is a murder mystery fit for the whole family!

Buffet Meal served prior to show:
Lunch - Rotini Pasta Ragout with Gemillini Pomodoro Sauce, Home-style Meatloaf with Wild Mushroom Sauce, Tricolor Roasted Potatoes and Mixed Vegetables, assorted Mini Sandwiches, Tossed Salad, Three Tier Cookie Tray, Coffee, Tea & Water. Other beverages available for purchase.

Dinner - Stuffed Pork Loin with Roasted Pepper and Sauteed Baby Spinach in Burgundy Demi-glace, Grilled Flank Steak with Caramelized Onion and Mushrooms, Tricolor Roasted Potatoes and Mixed Vegetables, Field Green Salad with Dried Cranberries, Candied Walnuts and Goat Cheese Served with a Balsamic Vinaigrette, Dinner Rolls, Three Tier Pastry Tray, Coffee, Tea & Water.

Other beverages available for purchase.

Make your ticket reservations online at or call 732-730-5925. The STRAND box office, 732–367-7789, is open on Thursday and Friday, between 12 pm and 5 pm and 3 hours before each show.

State Theatre Presents 5th Annual Hub City Carnivale

(New Brunswick, NJ) -- New Brunswick's State Theatre is proud to present the 5th annual Hub City Carnivale, a three-week winter festival, February 2 - February 25, 2011, with performances ranging from the Off Broadway sensation STOMP to a glow-in-the dark puppetry performance of The Very Hungry Caterpillar, to a romantic Valentine's weekend concert and U.S. premiere tour, of the Philharmonic of Poland. Also featured this month are various workshops; social events such as Thomas Sweets' pre-show chocolate tastings, and much more—suited for audiences of all ages. This year, the theater continues its mission to bring the best artists and entertainers to central New Jersey at an affordable price by offering a "MakeNoise" promotion of either $23 or $13 per ticket for every Hub City Carnivale main attraction. For a complete listing of events and prices, visit

"A winter festival for all ages is a wonderful way to bring families together during this cold weather season. I have heard nothing but rave reviews about Hub City Carnivale, and I look forward to experiencing this festival firsthand," said President & CEO Mark W. Jones. 

"Come in from the cold and enjoy one of the many great performances during the Hub City Carnivale. This is a great opportunity to join with family and friends to experience a great live performance at a great price" said New Brunswick Mayor Jim Cahill.

The official Hub City Carnivale kicks off with Brooklyn's extreme dance group STREB and their new show, BRAVE (2/4/11). STREB's performances combine dance, gymnastics, circus skills, and stunt-work with high-tech, cutting-edge set design. In their new show BRAVE, STREB joins forces with adventurous artists from other disciplines, including composer David Van Tiegham, the MIT Media Lab, and the trapeze virtuosos, Noe and Ivan España. Prior to the performance will be the Hub City Carnivale opening festivities, from 7pm-8pm in the State Theatre lobby. The pre-show celebration will include live musical performances and free popcorn for the first 50 people in attendance.

Also in the first week of February, Chicago's 500 Clown—a troupe of three actors that use physical comedy, improvisation, and audience participation to tell their stories—open up the month with five performances of their wild, unpredictable, and hilarious deconstruction of Shakespeare's classic Macbeth (2/2-5/11).

Other festival shows include: three performances of the explosive international percussion sensation STOMP (2/11-12/11); a U.S. premiere tour performance by the Philharmonic of Poland (2/13/11) in a program of Strauss, Liszt, and Chopin; The Philadelphia Dance Company, Philadanco (2/17/11) with a program that includes Bolero Too and Jawole Willa Jo Zollar's By Way of the Funk (music by Parliament-Funkadelic). Additionally, on the night of the Philandanco performance, college students majoring in science or technology will take part in the FREE Scientists Exploring the Arts event. The program offers young scientists an opportunity to learn about the arts and to meet personnel from National Starch, a world leader in creating unique ingredients for the food and paper making industries. For more information on the program or to register call 732-246-7469, ext. 545. (Eligibility requirements apply.)

Also included in February's line-up are six-time Grammy® Award-winners, The Chieftains (2/18/11); a John Lennon 70th Birthday Celebration with Glen Burtnik & Friends (2/19/11); and the exhilarating, percussion and marching band theatrical presentation, DrumLine Live (2/20/11) featuring performers from Florida A&M, Southern University, the University of Georgia, and more.

Continuing a Hub City Carnivale tradition, Presidents Day (2/21/11) is Family Day at the State Theatre. Families can spend the school-day holiday enjoying dozens of performances, workshops, and hands-on activities—many of them free—plus costumed characters, the Philadelphia Zoo's Zoo on Wheels, face painting, balloon animals, a live deejay, food, and more. The festival, which runs from 10am to 4pm, encompasses multiple venues: the State Theatre, George Street Playhouse, Crossroads Theatre, United Methodist Church, and the popular Herr's Hub City Big Top, an enormous tent set up in front of the State Theatre. The mainstage event for Family Day is The Very Hungry Caterpillar and other Eric Carle Favorites (2/21/11), a delightful black-light puppetry performance by Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia.

Closing out the Hub City Carnivale is a special performance by Australia's dance-circus group, Circa (2/25/11). From daring free-falls and acrobatic stunts to graceful aerial work and brilliantly-integrated sound and lighting design, Circa's highflying "circus re-imagined" is simply breathtaking as they barrel, bolt, and balance at breakneck speeds. Closing festivities to be announced.

The Hub City Carnivale also features a number of school-day performances, all at 10:30am: STREB (2/4), 500 Clown Macbeth (2/4), Philadanco (2/17), Drumline Live (2/22), and Circa (2/24). For information and ordering, call the State Theatre Education Department at 732-246-7469, ext. 545.

Festival partners and event sponsors include American Repertory Ballet, The Blanche & Irving Laurie Foundation, Gannett Foundation, The Garback Agency, George Street Playhouse, Herr's, Magyar Bank, Mason Gross School of the Arts, Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, Miller's Rentals, New England Foundation for the Arts, Pennsylvania Performing Arts on Tour, the Philadelphia Zoo, PSE&G Foundation,, Roberts Florals, and Rutgers Student Life.

Hub City Carnivale Event Calendar:

8pm     Performance of 500 Clown Macbeth @Crossroads Theatre
Tickets: $30 ($13 "Make Noise" tickets available)

8pm     Performance of 500 Clown Macbeth @Crossroads Theatre
Tickets: $30 ($13 "Make Noise" tickets available)

10:30am          School Performance of STREB: BRAVE
Tickets: $12

10:30am          School Performance of 500 Clown Macbeth @Crossroads Theatre
Tickets: $10

7pm     Hub City Carnivale Kickoff Festivities with live performances in the State Theatre lobbies and free popcorn for the first 50 people!

8pm     Performance of STREB: BRAVE
Tickets: $22-42 ($23 "Make Noise" tickets available)

8pm     Performance of 500 Clown Macbeth @Crossroads Theatre
Tickets: $30 ($13 "Make Noise" tickets available)

3pm & 8pm     Performance of 500 Clown Macbeth @Crossroads Theatre
Tickets: $30 ($13 "Make Noise" tickets available)

FRI, FEB. 11
7pm     Chocolate Tasting with Thomas Sweet (free with ticket to STOMP)

8pm     Performance of STOMP
Tickets: $32-67 ($23 "Make Noise" tickets available)

SAT, FEB. 12
2pm & 7pm     Chocolate Tastings with Thomas Sweet (free with ticket to STOMP)

3pm & 8pm     Performance of STOMP
Tickets: $32-67 ($23 "Make Noise" tickets available)

SUN, FEB. 13

2pm     Philharmonic of Poland Pre-Performance Insights at the United Methodist Church (323 George Street in New Brunswick)

2pm     Chocolate Tasting with Thomas Sweet (free with ticket to Philharmonic of Poland)

3pm     Performance by Philharmonic of Poland
Tickets: $32-72 ($23 "Make Noise" tickets available)

TUE, FEB. 15
7:30pm                        Smart Talk Media LLC presents SmartTalk ConnectedConversations: Barbara Corcoran
Tickets: $25-75

THU, FEB. 17
10:30am          School Performance by Philadanco-The Philadelphia Dance Company      
Tickets: $10

6pm     Scientists Exploring the Arts

8pm     Performance by Philadanco-The Philadelphia Dance Company
Tickets: $32-52 ($23 "Make Noise" tickets available)

FRI, FEB. 18
8pm     Performance by The Chieftains        
Tickets: $32-62 ($23 "Make Noise" tickets available)

SAT, FEB. 19
8pm     Performance – John Lennon Birthday Celebration with Glen Burtnik & Friends
Tickets: $22-42 ($23 "Make Noise" tickets available)

SUN, FEB. 20
8pm     Performance of DrumLine Live
Tickets: $32-67 ($23 "Make Noise" tickets available)

MON, FEB. 21 –Family Day on Presidents Day!

10-4pm            Free facepainting and balloon animals, live deejay, food, games, and more

10:30am, 1pm, & 3:30pm       Performances of The Very Hungry Caterpillar
Tickets: $15-25 ($13 "Make Noise" tickets available)

All workshops are $8

10am               Making Character Masks (George Street Playhouse) Ages 4-8

10:15am          Create a Butterfly Mobile (Community Room at Crossroads Theatre) Ages 4-8

10:15am          "Hand-in-Hand" with American Repertory Ballet (4th Floor at Crossroads Theatre) Ages 3-4

11am & 2pm   Decorate a Picture Frame (4th Floor of Crossroads Theatre) Ages 4-8

11:30am          Making Character Masks (George Street Playhouse) Ages 9-13

11:45am & 2:45pm     Paper-bag Puppets (Community Room at Crossroads Theatre) Ages 4-8

12pm               "Intro to Ballet" with American Repertory Ballet (4th Floor at Crossroads Theatre) Ages 5-9

12:30pm          Make A Zoo Visor (4th Floor of Crossroads Theatre) Ages 4-8

1pm                 The Very Hungry Caterpillar: From Page to Stage (George Street Playhouse) Ages 4-8

1:30pm                        "Dancing with Eric Carle" with American Repertory Ballet (4th Floor at Crossroads Theatre)

Ages 4-8

2:30pm                        Intro to Improv (George Street Playhouse) Ages 12+

3pm                 "Hip-Hop Dance" with American Repertory Ballet (4th Floor at Crossroads Theatre) Ages 10+

TUE, FEB. 22
10:30am          School Performance of DrumLine Live
Tickets: $24

THU, FEB. 24
10:30am          School Performance of 46 Circus Acts in 45 Minutes by Australian troupe, Circa
Tickets: $10

FRI, FEB. 25

7pm     Hub City Carnivale Closing Festivities

8pm     Performance by Australian dance-circus troupe Circa
Tickets: $22-42 ($13 tickets available)

For tickets or more information, on Hub City Carnivale visit The State Theatre ticket office, located at 15 Livingston Ave, New Brunswick NJ, is open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, 10am to 6pm; Wednesday 11am to 7pm; Saturday 1pm to 5pm; and at least one hour prior to curtain on performance dates. For information on group outings and discounts, call 732-247-7200, ext. 517.

The Theater Project Presents Script-in-Hand Staged Reading of New Play by NJ Playwright Jewel Seehaus-Fisher on January 29

(Cranford, NJ) -- The Theater Project, Union County College's Professional Theater Company, will perform a script-in-hand staged reading of "Person of Interest", a new play by New Jersey playwright Jewel Seehaus-Fisher on Saturday, January 29 at 3pm. The production will be followed by a lively discussion with the playwright, director, actors and audience.

The performance will take place in the Roy Smith Theater at the Cranford campus of Union County College, 1033 Springfield Avenue. Admission is free. If bad weather closes the college, the reading will take place the following Saturday, February 5 at 3pm.

Based on historical evidence, "Person of Interest" focuses on a microbiology professor who is reluctantly pulled into an FBI investigation of an anthrax mailing that killed six people. Her closest friend and mentor is named as a person of interest and she is torn between her loyalty to her friend and her own suspicions.

Reservations are not required. For more information, contact The Theater Project at (908) 659-5189 or by email at

The Theater Project (Mark Spina, Artistic Director) is Union County College's Professional Theater Company, bringing artists from all over the state and New York City together in its productions. Well-known for its intimate "Studio on Stage" where the audience sits within arm's reach of the performers, the company is celebrating its 14th season of producing new works and contemporary classics. The Theater Project has been recognized by grants from the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, the New Jersey State Arts Council, The Union County College Foundation, the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders, and the Union County Office of Cultural and Heritage Affairs. To learn more, visit: or call (908) 659-5189.

Monroe Township Author Publishes New Book

(Monroe Township, NJ) -- Mouse in My House, a new book by Kathy Karva, has been released by RoseDog Books.

This is a true story (except for the mouse part.)

My son Roy was an adult diagnosed with many different ailments. Actually no doctor was able to help him or pinpoint his problem.

He traveled far and wide looking for a cure. He went to a research hospital in Tennessee. They told him they would be able to help him. He was to stay for two weeks. They sent him home in two days.

He was a kind, honest and a loving human being.

There was always a crowd around his bed. There were never enough chairs for all who came. One day one such visitor yelled "Was that a mouse?" Roy sat up in bed and said "What a Mouse in My House?" Hence the origination of this book.

He was often asked why he would go through all new experiments. His answer to his Father was "Dad if I could save just one person isn't it worth it?"

We lost Roy to his unknown ailments. He requested his body to be donated to Mayo Clinic for research.

Read to your children. Love them. There is no greater pain than the loss of your child, regardless of their age.

Mouse in My House is a 32-page hardcover with a retail price of $16.00. The ISBN is 978-1-4349-9668-8. It was published by RoseDog Books of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.   Visit their online bookstore at

The Feelies Release First Record In 19 Years

After a 19 year break, the Feelies are back with "Here Before", an album of all new original material on Bar/None Records. The new album touches on different styles from the Feelies' long history while adding new grooves and musical ideas to the mix. Electric and acoustic guitars melt together in archetypal Feelies fashion on songs like "Nobody Knows" and "Should be Gone. " Elsewhere there are slabs of driving garage rock like "When You Know" and  "Time Is Right" and the down-tempo "Bluer Skies," and harmonically rich  "Later On."

Here Before was recorded at Water Music in Hoboken, New Jersey produced by Feelies founders Glenn Mercer and Bill Million. Besides Glenn on rhythm/lead guitar and lead vocals, and Bill on guitar and vocals, the album features Feelies mainstays Brenda Sauter (bass, vocals), Stanley Demeski (drums), and Dave Weckerman (percussion).

The Feelies quickly became one of the most zealously touted acts on the highly competitive late 70s New York scene and underground heroes in their native New Jersey.  They were signed to the trendsetting British label Stiff and released their debut album Crazy Rhythms in 1980. Rolling Stone, Spin and countless other magazines would eventually declare the album one of the greatest of that era but it was not a commercial success upon its initial release. The Feelies soon felt stifled by their dealings with Stiff and took a six year "hiatus" from recording while its members continued to write, record and perform together and in collaboration with friends and neighbors under names like "the Trypes," "Yung Wu" and "the Willies."  Feelies' music wound up in a number of films including Smithereens and Jonathan Demme's Something Wild.

The Feelies proper re-emerged with a new rhythm section (the line-up they've had ever since and that appears on Here Before) in 1984 and recorded The Good Earth, co-produced by Million, Mercer and REM's Peter Buck). The album was released 1986 on the Coyote label (run by Steve Fallon, owner of Hoboken, NJ's Maxwells, and the group's manager for a spell), followed by two further releases on Coyote through Twin/Tone/A&M: Only Life (1988) and Time For A Witness (1991).  The band shared bills with Patti Smith, LouReed, REM and Bob Dylan during this period and toured nationally.

In 1992 Bill Million left the music business, moving his family to Florida and effectively putting the band on what turned out to be a very long hiatus. Meanwhile, Glenn and Dave continued playing together in Wake Ooloo, Stanley was a founding member of the band Luna and Brenda played in a number of groups including her own Wild Carnations. Glenn Mercer put out
his first solo album in 2007.

In 2008, the Feelies re-united to open for long time admirers Sonic Youth at Battery Park and then resurrected their tradition of playing low key gigs around national holidays (many at their old home base, Maxwell's) rather than doing lengthy tours. In 2009 Bar/None re-issued Crazy Rhythms and The Good Earth, this being the first band-sanctioned CD release of the former; both titles were also issued on heavyweight vinyl and with download cards for access to bonus tracks. A highlight of the All Tomorrows Parties festival in New York state that year was the Feelies playing Crazy Rhythms in its entirety for the very first time. They also introduced new songs written by Mercer and Million raising fans' hopes for a new album eventually materializing.

In 2010, using the basement studio in Mercer's New Jersey home, Glenn and Bill resumed writing songs and working out arrangements for new Feelies songs in the midst of rehearsals for live shows in Boston, Philadelphia and D.C. with Bill commuting back and forth from Florida for this.  By Fall that year, the band had worked up 13 songs. Basic tracks were cut at Water Music in October with the classic Feelies line-up of Mercer, Million, Demeski, Sauter and Weckerman; tracking dates were engineered by Sean Kelly who also helped out with overdubbing sessions in November and mixing in December.  In addition to their main instruments Brenda played violin and sang backup vocals,  Glenn contributed keyboards and Bill, Stan, Glenn and Dave all pitched in on percussion.

Skyline presents original musical reading based on the life of Eleanor Roosevelt

(Bergen County, NJ) -- Skyline Theatre Company is presenting a unique theatre event and continuing to bring professional theatre to Bergen County. A reading of the original musical, Eleanor: An American Love Story will be performed on Wednesday, March 2, at 7:00pm at the Fair Lawn Community Center/George Frey Center for Arts and Recreation.

This event is part of the New Jersey Theatre Alliance's Stages Festival for 2011. STC was awarded generous support from the Theatre Alliance to fund this performance focused on bringing families into our New Jersey professional theatres.

The musical, originally conceived and successfully produced across the country with a large cast, is now being cleverly being re-imagined by its creators with a cast of nine. This will be the public premiere of this new version of the show. Author Jonathon Bolt, composer Thomas Tierney, and lyricist John Forester will all take part in a post show discussion with the audience.

"This is a wonderful opportunity for Skyline and our audiences," said Sam Scalamoni, STC's Managing Artistic Director. "We are grateful to the New Jersey Theatre Alliance and the writing team for their support in bringing this new and innovative work to the stage."

Skyline Theatre Company is Bergen County's newest professional theatre company. STC brings professional performers, designers, and staff from New York City and the surrounding area together to produce an exciting array of musicals and plays.

Look for other STC productions and events this season.  The annual "Broadway for the Arts" gala benefit is April 9, 2011, at the Saddlebrook Marriott Hotel.  In the spring, the Neil Simon classic Barefoot in the Park will also be presented at the George Frey Center for Arts and Recreation in Fair Lawn May 12-15, 2011.

Come and be a part of the creative process and bring your family out for an evening of musical theatre and history all rolled into one. Eleanor: An American Love Story, Wednesday, March 2nd at 7:00pm at Fair Lawn Community Center's George Frey Center for Arts and Recreation (10-10 20th Street in Fair Lawn).  There is a $5 suggested donation for this event and there are no reservations required. For more information about STC please call 1-800-474-1299 or visit

João Guilherme Ripper Appointed Kean University Concert Artist Composer-in-Residence

Dr. Anthony Scelba, Director of the Kean University Concert Artist Program announces the appointment of Brazilian composer Dr. João Guilherme Ripper as 2011-2012 Concert Artist Composer-in-Residence.

In this new capacity, Dr. Ripper will write original works especially for the Concert Artists series performed at the recently restored Gene and Shelly Enlow Recital Hall on Kean University's East Campus.  His compositions will include a string quintet and a piano quintet, among other works making their debuts in upcoming seasons.  The Concert Artist Series is a fully professional chamber music program performed by internationally renowned musicians who also serve as faculty at Kean University.  The Series offers 12-15 productions a year including a jazz program on the Main and East campuses.

Dr. Ripper was born in Rio de Janeiro and has worked there since 2004 as Director of Sala Cecília Meireles, a leading concert hall.  He is former Dean of the School of Music of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), where he served previously as a faculty member in composition and Director of Graduate Programs. The UFRJ School of Music has approximately 700 students in its undergraduate and graduate programs and approximately 80 faculty and staff members.

Dr. Ripper has guest-conducted many of Brazil's noted orchestras.  His compositions, including operas, orchestral and chamber works, songs and piano pieces, have been performed in concert halls throughout Brazil and abroad.  Dr. Ripper has had work commissioned and performed by the Orquestra Sinfônica do Estado de São Paulo and he was the featured Composer-in-Residence of the 39th International Music Festival of Campos do Jordão.  The Orquestra Petrobras Sinfônica commissioned an opera from him that was premiered in November 2010.

João Guilherme Ripper is a member of the Brazilian Academy of Music, an institution that honors outstanding Brazilian composers, conductors and musicologists.  His appointment as Kean University concert artist composer-in-residence follows those of Swiss-American Frank Ezra Levy, 2008-2009; fellow Brazilian Liduino Pitombeira, 2009-2010; and Mexican-American and Juilliard Faculty member Samuel Zyman, 2010-2011.  Dr. Zyman's Quintet for Piano and Strings, written for the concert artist series, will receive its world premiere in Enlow Hall at the Ars Vitalis concert on April 28, 2011 at 8:00 P.M.  Also on that program will be Dr. Zyman's Guitar Quintet.

Dr. Ripper is expected to attend performances of his works, providing the opportunity for audience, artists and performers to interact with the composer during the 2011-2012 Concert Artist Series.

Founded in 1855, Kean University has become one of the largest metropolitan institutions of higher education in the region, boasting a richly diverse student, faculty and staff population. Kean continues to play a key role in the training of teachers and is a hub of educational, technological and cultural enrichment, offering more than 50 undergraduate degrees and more than 45 options leading to a master's degree, doctorate, professional diploma and/or state certification(s). Five undergraduate colleges and the Nathan Weiss Graduate College now serve more than 15,000 students.

Roxey Ballet Presents An Evening Of Love And Romance

(Lambertville, NJ) -- Roxey Ballet will be performing for all audiences in February--young and old, couples and families and those who want to experience first class choreography and dance by the acclaimed Lambertville, NJ performing troupe.  "The idea is to entertain our local community and to share the art of dance with all who enjoy it"  says Mark Roxey, Artistic Director of the company. Roxey has created this years valentine celebration entitled "A Concert of Romance and Dance" which will feature 4 original world premiers by Stuart Loungway, Ronnie Carney, Giovanni Ravelo and his work entitled "Jonathan".  The performances will also include several revivals of works created for this special holiday program.

"If families come and experience the beauty of dance and enjoy the personal connection to dance they will come to appreciate the dance Roxey Ballet has to offer our community. The dancers are so giving of their talents" he says.

Roxey's touring dance troupe, is acclaimed and has performed around the country. Many will remember the Roxey Ballet for the Inaugural Ball performance for Barack Obama. The company is currently in rehearsals for four more weeks before it presents "A Concert of Romance and Dance" which will be presented at the Canal Studio Theater in Lambertville. "Here, the community can see professional dance up close and very personal," Roxey says.

"We really want to keep the arts here and we want our neighbors to understand the value and  importance of having the arts in their backyard," adds Roxey. 

Roxey Ballet's world-class cast of professional performers include Kim Se Yong, Julie Cobble, Evalina Carbonel, Joanna De Felice, :"Kwikstep" Gabriel Dionisio, Sergio Alverez, Janessa Cornell, and Jillian Mitchell , who will all be featured in this years romantic dance event.

Tickets and more information about "A Concert of Romance and Dance" can be found at Tickets are $20 for children and $25 adults for all shows, Performances begin February 4th 2011 and continue through the February 13th. Call Roxey Ballet at (609)397-7616 for information.

The Roxey Ballet is a non-profit, world class contemporary ballet company, dedicated to delivering artistic  and cultural excellence through professional dance performances and educational programs. Roxey Ballet's programs are funded 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, The Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, the Wachovia Foundation, The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey and the Hunterdon County Cultural & Heritage Commission. The Roxey Ballet is accessible to all Individuals, call for details.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Kelly Zullo In Online Campaign To Raise Funds For New Record

Somehow between touring Europe twice, playing consistently in the states, and writing over 100 new songs this year, Kelly Zullo found time also to further a new style of guitar playing.  Featured in the forthcoming release, "Firecracker", Zullo puts the skill of a brilliant funk/slap acoustic guitar styling with equally as impressive song material, and on top of that a very decent voice.  If you're a fan of Michael Hedges, Ani Difranco, or The John Butler Trio, this album is for you.

Currently there is an online 'campaign' to help raise funds for the production of the album.  The campaign is located at:

"The impact comes in selling the first 100 copies of the cd, to cover the cost of duplication, as well as, to have the ability to mail out 100 copies to independent radio and media for reviews, and to go on the road again," explained Zullo.  "Because I've done all of the recording in my own space, and used no help with musicians, the cost of the cd is relatively low.  Any funds not used in that process will help get me around the country this feb and march when I go on another tour.  Many of the events I do are for a cause or tips."

Samples of the cd can also be heard at

Here are special offers for the donations:

$20 pledge(USA only, overseas add $5) -- you get a copy of the new disc, Firecracker, & her 2006 disc 'Case of Truce', both signed by Zullo.  Or if you have 'Case of Truce', you can choose from 'Thin Line' (fromm 2001) or.. a bootleg she will burn.  

$40 pledge -- you'll get the 2 aforementioned cd's, as well as 1) a half hour guitar skype lesson or 2) entrance to one of her upcoming guitar workshops to be held in certain cities in the midwest this winter.

$250 pledge -- in addition to the cd's, Zullo will play a house concert at the venue or home of your choice in the state of Indiana, NJ, NY, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Kentucky, Maryland, Vermont, Connecticut or Tennessee between the dates of Feb 19- March 5.  Or if you live overseas, Zullo will be available in Germany/Austria from March 26- April 6th.
You can even sell tickets for the event if you want. Zullo will provide the sound system, her music, and even an opening act.

$500 pledge -- Zullo will play a concert as mentioned above, provide 2 cd's, and write a song about or for you and record it. 

Two River Theater Company Presents "A Thousand Clowns"

(RED BANK, NJ) -— Two River Theater Company, under the leadership of Artistic Director John Dias, continues its season with Herb Gardner's comedy A Thousand Clowns, directed by Davis McCallum. Performances will begin at Two River Theater, 21 Bridge Avenue, on Tuesday, February 1 and continue through Sunday, February 20. The opening night performance is Saturday, February 5 at 8pm.

Herb Gardner received a 1963 Tony Award nomination for A Thousand Clowns and won the Variety Critics Poll as Outstanding New Playwright. For his 1965 film adaptation of the play, which was a nominee for Best Picture, he received an Academy Award nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay and won the Best Screenplay Award from the Writers Guild. In this classic—and subversive—comedy, a whip-smart kid named Nick lives with his far-from-conventional uncle in 1960s New York. When child services knocks on his door, Uncle Murray is forced to make a decision: hold on to the kid, or hold on to his life of free-spirited fun.

Matthew Gumley, a veteran of four Broadway productions (Elf, The Addams Family, Mary Poppins and Beauty and the Beast) plays Nick and Michael Nathanson (The Lion King National Tour and Romeo and Juliet at Lincoln Center Theater) plays Murray. Also featured in the cast are Crystal Finn (Sandra Markowitz), Brad Heberlee (Albert Amundson), Tony Award nominee and Asbury Park resident Lou Liberatore (Arnold Burns), and Nick Sullivan (Leo Herman).

Tickets are available from, over the phone from 732.345.1400 or at the Two River Theater Box Office, 21 Bridge Avenue. Single ticket prices start at $35. Discounts are available for groups, seniors, students, and patrons aged 30 and under.  This production is sponsored in part by RBC Wealth Management.

Says Artistic Director John Dias, "I'm very excited to have Davis McCallum at Two River to direct A Thousand Clowns; he is someone whose work, intelligence and spirit I have admired for a very long time. His vision for this play captures the moment in a time that is so beautifully evoked by Herb Gardner, the early 1960s, with a dynamic immediacy and a real understanding of the characters—and the conflicts they face as the world changes around them."

Herb Gardner made his Broadway debut with A Thousand Clowns. He received the 1986 Tony Award, Outer Critics Circle Award and John Gassner Playwriting Award for I'm Not Rappaport and was a 1992 Pulitzer Prize finalist for Conversations with My Father. One of the contributing writers to Free to Be...You and Me, he wrote the screenplays for Who Is Harry Kellerman and Why Is He Saying Those Terrible Things About Me?, which starred Dustin Hoffman, and adaptations of his plays I'm Not Rappaport, The Goodbye People (both of which he also directed) and Thieves. At the beginning of his career he wrote a comic strip, "The Nebbishes," which started in the Chicago Tribune and was syndicated in more than 40 newspapers; he retired the cartoon to concentrate on writing fiction and published his only novel, A Piece of the Action, in 1958. In 2000, he was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Writers Guild of America. He died in 2003 at the age of 68.

Davis McCallum directed Namaste Man at Two River Theater earlier this season as part of the "Flashes of Brilliance" series. Other recent work in New York includes world premieres of Sam Hunter's A Bright New Boise (Partial Comfort) and Five Genocides (Clubbed Thumb), Greg Moss's punkplay (Clubbed Thumb), Charles Mee's Queens Boulevard (Signature Theatre), Quiara Alegría Hudes' Elliot, A Soldier's Fugue (P73; Pulitzer Prize finalist), Laura Marks' Unbound: The Journals of Fanny Kemble, and Rob Urbinati's West Moon Street (Prospect Theater Company). For the Acting Company, he directed The Turn of the Screw (adapted by Jeffrey Hatcher), Jane Eyre (adapted by Polly Teale) and Shakespeare's The Tempest and Henry V, the last of which was co-produced by The Guthrie and presented in New York at the New Victory. His regional credits include the Old Globe, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Williamstown and many other theaters.

The creative team for A Thousand Clowns includes scenic designer Jason Simms, costume designer Jessica Ford, lighting designer Matthew Richards, composer/sound designer Mark Bennett and ukulele coach Paul Heaney. The casting is by Janet Foster, C.S.A. and the stage manager is Amanda Michaels.


(New York, NY) -- Dan Bern is best known for his prolific songwriting and magical stage presence. He has released some dozen albums since 1997, while performing everywhere from small clubs to Carnegie Hall.  Bern begins a national tour on January 19th, 2011 that will take him across the country and back, his longest such tour since 2007.  Select dates will include Common Rotation, the Los Angeles-based trio of multi-instrumentalists with whom Bern has performed and recorded for the past two years.  The tour goes through April 3rd in Los Angeles.

Fresh off the heels of 2010's Live in Los Angeles, Bern will release, Live in New York for this tour.  The two live records include some of his best-loved songs, including "Jerusalem," "God Said No," "I'm Not the Guy" and "Tiger Woods," as well as a slew of brand new songs and previously live-only material.  2010 also saw the release of Bern's first kid's album, Two Feet Tall.  His first-ever Songbook, which has sheet music for 18 of his songs, will be available on the tour as well.

"If you do have to try and squeeze Dan Bern into a box, Live in Los Angeles suggests that the best type would be one with a mic, a stage, and a crowd willing to be taken on a beautiful, and often unusual, ride."
- Consequence of Sound

Recently, Bern has focused much of his talent and sharp wit on writing songs for movies and other projects.  He composed over a dozen songs for the Jake Kasdan/JuddApatow spoof Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story, starring John C. Reilly, and contributed several more songs to Apatow's Get Him to the Greek, starring Russell Brand and Jonah Hill.   He wrote the title song for Jonathan Demme's 2008 documentary, Jimmy Carter: Man From Plains, and also contributed original songs for Demme's 2010 off-Broadway production of Family Week, which included a Bern duet with Emmylou Harris.

Bern has several new projects in the works, including a studio album with Common Rotation, a country-tinged album of songs he wrote while living in New Mexico, and an album of songs he wrote with Mike Viola, his frequent collaborator on movie projects.

Meanwhile, he is looking forward to hitting the road once again!

 Wed, Jan 19 – San Diego, CA – LeStats – with Common Rotation
Thurs, Jan 20 – Phoenix, AZ – The Compound Grill – with Janos
Fri, Jan 21 – Flagstaff, AZ – Coconino Center For The Arts – with Janos
Sat, Jan 22 – Santa Fe, NM – Santa Fe Brewing Company  – with Janos
Sun, Jan 23 – Albuquerque, NM – The Cooperage Restaurant – with Janos
Tues, Jan 25 – Oklahoma City, OK – The Blue Door
Wed, Jan 26 – Dallas, TX – Poor David's Pub
Thurs, Jan 27 – Austin, TX – Catus Café
Sa, Jan 29 – New Orleans, LA – The Blue Nile Balcony Room
Wed, Feb 2 – Nashville, TN – The Bluebird Café
Thurs, Feb 3 – Athens, GA – The Melting Point
Fri, Feb 4 – Decatur, GA – Eddie's Attic
Wed, Feb 9 – Columbia, SC – The White Mule
Thurs, Feb 10 – Charlotte, NC – Evening Muse
Fri, Feb 11 – Raleigh, NC – The Pour House
Sat, Feb 12 – Winston-Salem, NC – The Garage
Sun, Feb 13 – Asheville, NC – The Grey Eagle
Thurs, Feb 17 – Washington, DC – Jammin Java
Fri, Feb 18 – Easton, MD – Nightcat
Sat, Feb 19 – Philadelphia, PA – Tin Angel – with Common Rotation
Sun, Feb 20 – New York, NY – Highline Ballroom – with Common Rotation
Tues, Feb 22 – Boston, MA – Club Passim – with Common Rotation
Wed, Feb 23 – Boston, MA – Club Passim – with Common Rotation
Thurs, Feb 24 – Portland, ME – One Longfellow Square – with Common Rotation
Sat, Feb 26 – Northampton, MA – Iron Horse Music Hall – with Common Rotation
Sun, Feb 27 – Teaneck, NJ – Mexicali Live – with Common Rotation
Wed, Mar 2 – Cleveland, OH – Beachland Tavern
Thurs, Mar 3 – Pittsburgh, PA – The Thunderbird Café
Sat, Mar 5 – Dayton, OH – Canal Street Tavern
Tues, Mar 8 – Ann Arbor, MI – The Ark
Wed, Mar 9 – Chicago, IL – S.P.A.C.E.
Sun, Mar 13 – Iowa City, IA – The Mill
Sat, Mar 19 – Denver, CO – Soiled Dove Underground
Sun, Mar 20 – Carbondale, CO – Steve's Guitars
Fri, Mar 25 – Seattle, WA – Tractor Tavern
Sat, Mar 26 – Portland, OR – The Alberta Rose Theatre
Sun, Mar 27 – Eugene, OR – Tsunami Books  
Tues, Mar 29 – Sacramento, CA – Harlow's – The Momo Lounge – with Common Rotation
Wed, Marc 30 – Chico, CA – 1078 Gallery – with Common Rotation
Thurs, Mar 31 – San Francisco, CA – Freight & Salvage – with Common Rotation
Fri, Apr 1 – Santa Cruz, CA – Crepe Place – with Common Rotation
Sun, April 3 – Los Angeles, CA – Bootleg – with Common Rotation

NYC's Famous Alice's Tea Cup Comes to NovelTeas in Red Bank

(Red Bank, NJ) -- NovelTeas proudly welcomes sisters and owners of Alice's Tea Cup on Sunday, February 6th from 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM located at 78 Bridge Avenue in Red Bank, New Jersey. The delightful sisters and owners of "Alice's Tea Cup," Haley and Lauren Fox, will be making a visit to NovelTeas to discuss their wildly successful NYC tea room and their new cook book, filled with recipes of Alice's Tea Cup staples. Admission includes a copy of the book and a special afternoon tea using recipes from the Alice's Tea Cup cookbook.

Registration is at

Event Pricing:
Individual (Includes Book, Afternoon Tea with Authors)  $35
Couples (Two Same household admissions, one book)  $55
Children (Admission, no book, 15 years or under)  $25

Since its flagship location opened in December 2001, Alice's Tea Cup has become a destination in New York City for locals and tourists who crave a classic afternoon tea with delicious food, served without pretension. Sisters and owners Haley and Lauren Fox learned at an early age that tea was more than just a beverage-it was an event to be shared and protected-and they divulge their tea-making philosophy and delectable recipes, including one for their world-famous pumpkin scones.

Haley and Lauren also provide inspirational ideas for "Curiouser and Curiouser" tea parties for every occasion, advice on brewing the perfect cup of tea, and even instruction on using tea to dye cherished linens. Named the best tea salon in New York by Time Out, Alice's has a charm and whimsy that has everyone from kids to celebrities lining up for the perfect New York tea experience.

Fun Fact on Celebri-teas:

Madonna, Katie Holmes, Jennifer Lopez, Kelly Ripa, Hillary Clinton, Ewan McGregor, Jessica Lange, Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen, Tony Kushner, Julia Roberts, and Scarlett Johansson have all raved about their teatime experiences at Alice's Tea Cup.

This beautifully designed and lavishly photographed cookbook lets cooks enjoy Alice's mouthwatering recipes without leaving home.

About the Authors:

Haley Fox, an NYU film school graduate, started her career as an aspiring director. She went into film development at MGM in California and worked with various film companies before moving back to New York to open Alice's with her husband, Michael Eisenberg, and her sister. She lives with Michael and their two children in Manhattan.

Lauren Fox started her career as an actress and writer, splitting her time between Los Angeles and New York, before opening Alice's with her sister. She has appeared in many independent films, such as Pi, Revolution Summer, and Noon Blue Apples. She now juggles her time between acting, writing, and Alice's. She lives in Manhattan.

Cranford's The Theater Project is Home to Second Weekend of Performances of Heartwarming Comedy "Astonishment"

(Cranford, NJ) -- The Theater Project, Union County College's Professional Theater Company, will present the second weekend of a two-theater two-weekend run of "Astonishment," a new adaptation of Maplewood resident Jan Slepian's book of the same title, on Friday, January 21 at 8:00pm and Saturday, January 22 at 3:00pm. Performances take place the Roy E. Smith Theater on the Union County College Campus, 1033 Springfield Avenue in Cranford.

The first weekend of performances will be held on January 15-16 at Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre at The Baird, 5 Mead Street in Meadowland Park, a few blocks from the center of downtown South Orange. Tickets for each performance are $15 at the door and $12 in advance.

"Astonishment" is a bittersweet, insightful, and laugh-out-loud funny cornucopia of reflections on aging with humor and grace. Based on the published retirement community newsletter columns of Maplewood resident and children's author Jan Slepian, the play has been adapted by Laura Ekstrand, Dreamcatcher's Artistic Director, and will be directed by Mark Spina, The Theater Project's Artistic Director.iences.

The cast features familiar New Jersey professional actresses Noreen Farley of Clinton, Daaimah Talley of Plainfield, and Terri Sturtevant of Hillsborough. Acting as understudy for all the roles is Nancy Lee Ryan of West Orange. Original music will be provided by Don Slepian, a professional musician and son of the author.

Jan Slepian is the author of 28 children's books and novels for young-adult readers. Her picture book, THE HUNGRY THING, is now a classic and her young-adult novel, THE ALFRED SUMMER was honored by a National Book Award nomination and inclusion on the School Library Journal's list of 100 books that shaped the century. She is married to noted mathematician David Slepian, has lived in Paris, Hawaii and New Jersey, and has three children and four grandchildren.

Reservations are encouraged but not required. Tickets are $15 at the door and $12 if purchased in advance over the internet at or by calling Brown Paper Tickets at 800-838-3006. For more information, contact The Theater Project at (908) 659-5189 or by email at