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Vanguard Theater Company Presents "Runaways" by Elizabeth Swados
originally published: 01/08/2019
Vanguard Theater Company will present Runaways, by Elizabeth Swados, for four performances only on January 18-20 at the American Theater for Actors, 314 W 54th Street, NY, NY. Runaways is a musical collage about the hopes, dreams, fears, frustrations, loneliness, humor and anger, of young people estranged from their families and searching for themselves. Written, composed, choreographed and originally directed by Elizabeth Swados, the characters were taken from workshops conducted by Swados with real-life runaways in the late 1970s.
Runaways is presented by Vanguard Theater Company, directed by Janeece Freeman Clark, with choreography by Izryel Mathis, musical direction by Terri Gorgone, and fight choreography by Branden Mangan. It features a cast of 45 performers from New York and New Jersey.
One in 7 kids between the ages of 10 and 18 will run away from home at some point. That's equivalent to almost seven kids in the Runaways cast. On any given night, The National Runaway Switchboard estimates that there are more than 1.3 million homeless youths living unsupervised on the streets, in abandoned buildings, with friends or with strangers. These young people are at a much higher risk of physical abuse, sexual exploitation, mental health disabilities, substance abuse, and death. Over 5,000 unaccompanied youth die each year on the streets as a result of overdose, assault, illness, or suicide.
Vanguard’s production of Runaways is part of a special program called DREAM VTC, made possible in part by generous grants from the New Jersey Council on the Arts, and TeeRico by Lin-Manuel Miranda. Because of their generosity, Vanguard was able to create several special opportunities to help the cast go deeper into their characters. At one rehearsal, VTC arranged to have a young man visit the cast who had previously found shelter at Covenant House, an organization that, for more than four decades, has helped transform and save the lives of more than a million homeless, runaway and trafficked young people. Hearing his story, and reading the stories of over 25 homeless youth in a photo and biography gallery Vanguard created at another rehearsal, affected the Runaways’ cast deeply. They decided that they wanted to do something to help. As one of their initiatives, at the conclusion of each show, they will share a bit with audiences about Covenant House and ask for donations, inspired by Broadway Cares, Equity Fights Aids. They have also begun the process of organizing a "sleep-out" in March; the cast will "sleep out" - so homeless kids have the opportunity to "sleep in."
Founded in 2015, Vanguard Theater Company is a 501 (c) 3 not for profit arts organization committed to producing transformational theater with an emphasis on D.R.E.A.M - Diversity, Reciprocity, Education, Awareness, and Mentorship.
Circle Players Presents "After The Revolution" (PISCATAWAY, NJ) -- Circle Players presents After the Revolution by Amy Herzog, weekends from February 1st to February 17th. The production is directed by Alicia Harabin. In the play, Emma Joseph is a bright, hard-working, law school graduate continuing her family’s business of fighting for progressive ideals. Black Box PAC Presents "Significant Other" (TEANECK, NJ) -- Black Box PAC's first main stage show of 2019 is Significant Other by Joshua Harmon. BBPAC is no stranger to Harmon’s work, as one of the first hits at the Black Box Performing Arts Center was Harmon’s hit Bad Jews. Significant Other follows the perpetually single Jordan Berman and his trio of girl friends as they navigate dating, relationships, and supporting those you love. Performances run from January 24 to February 10th.The Theater Project Presents 5th Annual One-Act Play Competition (MAPLEWOOD, NJ) -- Which play will be voted Audience Favorite – the romance, the thriller, or the comedy? And which author will take the $500 Judge’s Award?Dreamcatcher Presents World Premiere of "Psychodrama" (SUMMIT, NJ) -- Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre will present the World Premiere of Psychodrama by Montclair playwright Phoebe Farber. This seriocomedy unfolds in a divorce support group where a new leader introduces unorthodox methods that just might work. Psychodrama runs February 14-March 3.Centenary Stage Presents Henrik Ibsen's "Enemy Of The People" (HACKETTSTOWN, NJ) -- Randall Duk Kim and Anne Occhiogrosso headline Centenary Stage Company’s production of Henrik Ibsen’s An Enemy of the People, February 15 through March 3 in the Sitnik Theatre of the Lackland Performing Arts Center, Hackettstown, New Jersey. Adapted by John Alan Wyatt and directed by Anne Occhiogrosso, the production will feature Randall Duk Kim as Doctor Thomas Stockmann supported by an acting company of professional and local talent from the tri-state area and Centenary University. The full-scale production marks the culmination of the 2018 Gates Ferry Lecture Series: “What is Truth?”
Emmy-Winning South Oranger, Andre Braugher “I’m Andre Braugher and I’m here at the South Orange Performing Arts Center, SOPAC, rehearsing a new play by Julia Doolittle called ‘Tell Them I’m Still Young.’”Laiona Michelle Talks About "Little Girl Blue: The Nina Simone Musical" This might be the right time for Nina Simone—15 years after her death. That’s what Laiona Michelle thinks, and, in a way, Michelle will be testing that idea by bringing the singer-activist to life in a world-premiere musical show at George Street Playhouse.
Michelle wrote the show—“Little Girl Blue: The Nina Simone Musical”—and she will appear in the title role at the New Brunswick theater from January 29 through February 24.It's "Apple Season" at NJ Rep Every family has stories. Some are funny. Some are sweet. Some are sad. And some are never shared.
Those are often the most powerful.Rise of the Goatman Theater For The New City presents Beltsville/Rockville, Part 1: Rise of the Goatman, an original play by Englewood resident Matt Okin (Artistic Director of Black Box Studios), from December 27 through January 13. In this pseudo-Southern Gothic dark comedy, a vibrant group of teens from two very different suburban neighborhoods clash over class differences, drugs, and sex - and the existence of the legendary ‘Goatman’ in 1986. Cut to 2013, and the adolescent kids of those very same teens are struggling to make sense of their family histories - and the same “mythological” creature - that could be holding them back in life.PHOTOS from "The Winter's Tale" at Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey (MADISON, NJ) -- The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey’s concludes its 56th season with its sixth and final Main Stage production, The Winter's Tale. Last seen at The Shakespeare Theatre in 2008, Artistic Director Bonnie J. Monte directs this production of Shakespeare’s tragicomedic romance. Veteran company members Jacqueline Antaramian, Jon Barker, Erin Partin, John Keabler, Raphael Nash Thompson,Seamus Mulcahy, Patrick Toon, and Ames Adamson are among a cast of 20 actors. Performances run now through December 30.
From Our Magazine
Laiona Michelle Talks About "Little Girl Blue: The Nina Simone Musical"
This might be the right time for Nina Simone—15 years after her death. That’s what Laiona Michelle thinks, and, in a way, Michelle will be testing that idea by bringing the singer-activist to life in a world-premiere musical show at George Street Playhouse.
Michelle wrote the show—“Little Girl Blue: The Nina Simone Musical”—and she will appear in the title role at the New Brunswick theater from January 29 through February 24.
Emily Mann To Retire As McCarter Theatre's Artistic Director Following 2019-2020 Season
(PRINCETON, NJ) -- In an email sent to McCarter Theatre Center subscribers on January 11, 2019, Reginald M. Browne, Interim President, McCarter Board of Trustees delivered the news that Emily Mann would be retiring from her position as Artistic Director following the 2019-2020 season. Mann has served as the company's Artistic Director and Resident Playwright since 1990.
Rise of the Goatman
Theater For The New City presents Beltsville/Rockville, Part 1: Rise of the Goatman, an original play by Englewood resident Matt Okin (Artistic Director of Black Box Studios), from December 27 through January 13. In this pseudo-Southern Gothic dark comedy, a vibrant group of teens from two very different suburban neighborhoods clash over class differences, drugs, and sex - and the existence of the legendary ‘Goatman’ in 1986. Cut to 2013, and the adolescent kids of those very same teens are struggling to make sense of their family histories - and the same “mythological” creature - that could be holding them back in life.
An Actor's Carol
There’s something absolutely wonderful about A Christmas Carol, the holiday classic penned by Charles Dickens in 1843. The story has been told in countless films, plays, and cartoons. It is performed on stages around the world towards the end of every season and is universally loved. But imagine being one of the many actors of a certain age who get typecast as Scrooge and are forced to relive that nightmarish night over and over again each year.