New Jersey Stage

Thursday, January 13, 2011

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