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The Public Has Spoken: The 2017 NJ Stage Award Winners Are Announced

originally published: 12/03/2017

The Public Has Spoken: The 2017 NJ Stage Award Winners Are Announced(BELMAR, NJ) — The winners of the 2017 NJ Stage Awards were announced in New Jersey Stage magazine Issue 41.  Voted on by the public, the awards help promote places to experience the arts throughout the Garden State.  Categories included art, comedy, dance, film, music, and theatre, as well as one for best town for an arts night out.

Mayo Performing Arts Center in Morristown was the big winner this year with two gold awards (for first place in the category) and three silver awards (for second place).  Mayo took first place honors for Best Place To See Live Comedy and Best Place to See A National Musical Act.  It received silver awards for Best Place To See Live Dance Performances, Best Place For Classical Music; and Best Place To See A Touring Theatrical Performance.

“The NJ Stage Awards are run in two phases,” explained Gary Wien, publisher of New Jersey Stage.  “The first phase runs from October 1-14 and includes public voting on an expansive list for each category. During this phase, we encourage any arts organizations not listed to contact us to be put on the list.  After two weeks of voting, we create a list of 10 finalists for each category based onh the top vote getters for each category and our own staff picks.  The public then votes on the list of finalists for the final two weeks of October.”

This was the third year of the NJ Stage Awards and each has received more votes than before. The 2017 results included four repeat winners from the previous year: Elephant Talk Indie Music Festival (Atlantic City) continued its hold on the Best Annual Music Festival; New Jersey Performing Arts Center (Newark) was voted Best Place For Classical Music for the third straight year; Crossroads Theatre (New Brunswick) remained on top for Best Place To See A World/NJ Theatrical Premiere; and State Theatre New Jersey (New Brunswick) was once again voted Best Place To See A Theatrical Touring Production.

Organizations winning for the first time included The Art School at Old Church (Demarest) for Best Place To View Art; Jersey Tap Fest (Bloomfield) for Best Place To See Live Dance Performances; Monmouth Film Festival (Red Bank) for Best Film Festival; D’s Soul Full Cafe (Hoboken) for Best Coffeehouse or Non-Traditional Venue For Live Music; and Morristown for Best Town For An Arts Night Out.

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“The beauty of the NJ Stage Awards is that even the smallest arts organization or venue has a chance to win,” explained Wien.  “Much of marketing today is based around social media and email newsletters.  Any organization can utilize those to get their fans and customers to vote for them.  All organizations receiving a Gold, Silver, or Bronze award are permanently recognized on the website with links back to their own website in our awards section, and Gold award winners are promoted throughout the year with a special graphic that appears throughout the entire website.”

New Jersey Stage is planning to hold an official awards ceremony for future awards.

“Our goal is to keep increasing the awareness of the NJ Stage Awards and to make it something arts organizations can look forward to each year,” added Wien.  “We hope to shine a spotlight on the great work they all do throughout the state and hopefully introduce the public to some places to experience art near them that they were not aware of.”

For a complete list of 2017 NJ Stage Award winners click here.

Rider University Art Gallery presents Mel Leipzig: Octogenarian
(LAWRENCEVILLE, NJ) -- The Rider University Art Gallery will present an exhibit of works by Mel Leipzig, titled Mel Leipzig: Octogenarian Wednesday September 26 through Friday, October 26.  Leipzig, born in Brooklyn in 1935, resides in Trenton, NJ.
Monroe Township Presents Artrageous
(MONROE TOWNSHIP, NJ) -- The Monroe Township High School Performing Arts Center presents Artrageous on Sunday, November 11th at 4:00pm. Artrageous is a unique interactive arts performance that incorporates many different art forms on the same stage. The audience experiences live speed painting art, music, dance, and life-sized puppetry.  
"Trumpets, Weird and Wonderful" opens at the Morris Museum October 7
(MORRISTOWN, NJ) -- The Morris Museum in partnership with the National Music Museum (Vermillion, South Dakota) presents the exhibit Trumpets, Weird and Wonderful: Treasures from the National Music Museum — 44 fascinating instruments from five continents, on view at the Morris Museum from October 7 to March 17, 2019. Dating from the late 17th to the late 20th centuries, the instruments are on loan from the National Music Museum’s Joe R. and Joella F. Utley Collection of Brass Instruments, and most of them have never been on public exhibit.
JCTC's Connection Series Explores How We Do & Don’t Connect in Today’s World
(JERSEY CITY, NJ) -- Technology connects people all over the world, yet why do we so often seem disconnected to our communities, families and each other? Jersey City Theater Center (JCTC) launches its 2018/2019 season with Connection, a series of visual arts, theater, dance and readings that explores the truly modern conflict of pervasive isolation in an era of hyper-communication.
GlassRoots Honors The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey & Laureen Meehan at Annual Gala
​(NEWARK, NJ) -- GlassRoots announced that its annual Gala and Auction, this year entitled Glowing + Growing will be held on October 18, 2018, and will celebrate the nonprofit's 17 years of impact by paying tribute to the deep connections among organizations invested in arts education by honoring Horizon Foundation for New Jersey and Lauren Meehan of the Newark Arts Education Roundtable.

Basking Ridge Resident Returns to Matheny to Help Assist in Strategic Planning for 'This Amazing Place'
When Ellen Lambert was director of development at the Matheny School and Hospital in Peapack, NJ, from 1993 to 1995, one of her major achievements was the formation of a fundraising plan for what would eventually become the Robert Schonhorn Arts Center. The concept of Matheny's Arts Access Program  -- which enables people with disabilities to create art, assisted by professional artist-facilitators  -- was emerging in '93, and the arts center was eventually built in 2000.
City Without Walls and Aljira To Shine At Newark Arts Festival
Two long-running art spaces, City Without Walls (“cWOW”) and Aljira, A Center for Contemporary Art (“Aljira”), will house pop-up exhibits during the Newark Arts Festival, October 4-7, 2018.  Though both spaces are now in a period of transition, through the support of Newark Arts, they will activate with fresh exhibits during Newark’s citywide annual festival of the arts. 
The Healing Power of Art
Entering the office to see a neurologist can be a terrifying experience.  I know because I’ve had to do it for years.  Thankfully, when I see my doctor I am surrounded by his photographs on the walls. It’s more than a hobby for Dr. Noah Gilson, it’s a lifelong passion.
What Is The Artist’s Role In Gentrification?
About a year ago, I attended a local community meeting here in Newark for citizens concerned about the changing face of the city. You see, Brick City, after 50 years of neglect, economic disenfranchisement, and disproportionate criticism fueled by racism, xenophobia and class discrimination, is going through a revitalization. Or a “renaissance” if you’re the poetic type.
Fossils And Boomers At Morris Museum
You won’t find many places where Billy Joel and Erin Brokovich rub shoulders with ancient shark teeth and fossilized raindrops. But such is life — for at least the next few weeks — at the Morris Museum in Morristown, where you can take two very different trips through American history in two separate exhibits.

Event calendar
Tuesday, Sep 25, 2018


Cafe Tacvba with special guest Ruen Brothers – Niu Gueis Tour 2018 @ Prudential Hall @ New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC), Newark - 8:00pm

Seuls en Scene French Theater Festival - "Gonzo Conference" @ Donald G. Drapkin Studio at Lewis Arts complex, Princeton - 8:00pm

Joan Baez @ Count Basie Center For The Arts, Red Bank - 8:00pm

Record Club: Pink Floyd's The Dark Side of the Moon @ Pollak Theatre @ Monmouth University, West Long Branch - 7:30pm


West End Festival of the Arts- Children's Storytelling @ West End Arts Center, Long Branch - 4:00pm

View all events


For more on our awards, click here

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