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Articles By Gina Marie Rodriguez

Pioneer Productions Proudly Presents 'Godspell'

Are the 1970s making a comeback? Pioneer Productions Company would have us believe so, and they are the ones leading the charge for the resurgence. Their upcoming production of "Godspell" brings forth all of the joy and vibrancy of the original production while taking its cues from the 2012 Broadway revival.

published on 06/13/2024

Jersey Arts Podcast: Two River Theater's 'Pride on the Plaza' Welcomes All

This episode honors Pride Month, most specifically a particular celebration in Red Bank, NJ called "Pride on the Plaza" hosted by Two River Theater.

published on 06/13/2024

The Many Iterations of Chazz Palminteri's 'A Bronx Tale'

"The saddest thing in life is wasted talent." Those words have served to inspire and haunt me for nearly two decades.

published on 06/06/2024

Jersey Arts Podcast: The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey Welcomes New Artistic Director

The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey is New Jersey's largest professional theatre company dedicated solely to Shakespeare's canon and other classic masterworks. Previously under the leadership of artistic director Bonnie J. Monte since 1990, the theater has since welcomed Brian Crowe as the new Artistic Director as of January of 2024.

published on 06/06/2024

Jersey Arts TV: Revisiting the Concept of Impermanence with Grounds for Sculpture

Jersey Arts visit the Grounds for Sculpture campus to speak with some of the artists behind “Slow Motion.”

published on 05/16/2024


Jersey Arts Podcast: American Theater Group Presents the World Premiere of "Canned Goods"

First-time playwright Erik Kahn has managed to showcase the beauty of overcoming one's circumstances. Set on August 31st, 1939, his play "Canned Goods" details the little-known false flag operation that preceded the start of the Second World War. Three men were code-named "Canned Goods" by Himmler and were used by the SS to justify Hitler’s invasion of Poland.

published on 05/02/2024

Jersey Arts Podcast: Jonathan Larson's "Tick Tick... BOOM!" Rocks George Street Playhouse

Musical theater nerds can rejoice, George Street Playhouse is bringing back "Tick Tick... BOOM!," the posthumously produced musical by Jonathan Larson, best known for having written the widely known rock opera, "Rent."

published on 04/11/2024

Jersey Arts TV: Newark's Own Atelier to Runway

Our clothing makes a statement. It tells the world who we are at any given moment and allows for a sense of expression that words cannot convey.

published on 04/04/2024

Jersey Arts TV: MPAC Sees Pilobolus Return with "re:CREATION"

"Pilobolus is a rebellious dance company. Since 1971, Pilobolus has tested the limits of human physicality to explore the beauty and the power of connected bodies. We continue to bring this tradition to global audiences through our post-disciplinary collaborations with some of the greatest influencers, thinkers, and creators in the world."

published on 03/28/2024

Jersey Arts Podcast: Violinist Claire Chan Chats Strings and "Music at Bunker Hill"

In honor of Women's History Month, their program "100 Years of Women Composers" will grace the stage of Music at Bunker Hill in Sewell on March 17th. In advance of this performance, Jersey Arts spoke with violinist Claire Chan, a member of their String Quartet.

published on 03/07/2024

Jersey Arts Podcast - Flower & Flame: A New Documentary Highlighting Glasswork Artist, Paul J. Stankard

Paul J. Stankard is an internationally acclaimed artist and pioneer in the studio glass movement. His lifelike, nature-based glassworks have changed the paperweight world over his forty-year artistic career. Having begun his career working in scientific glassblowing, it was through this industry that he found creativity and learned that he was indeed an artist.

published on 02/22/2024

"The Cher Show" Celebrates the Life and Legend of a Musical Icon at the State Theatre

People's Choice. Billboard Music. Kennedy Center Honor. Golden Globe. Emmy. Grammy. Oscar. No, I’m not just naming awards for fun; this is but a tiny sampling of the accolades amassed by the one, the only, the wholly inimitable, CHER.

published on 02/01/2024

Jersey Arts TV: Celebrating the Lunar New Year with Nai-Ni Chen at NJPAC

New Year, New Fortunes! Once again the lunar New Year is upon us, with those celebrating ushering out the old year and bringing forth a year of prosperity and good fortune. The Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company honors this tradition annually at the NJPAC with a cross-cultural, immersive dance performance.

published on 01/25/2024

Jersey Arts Podcast: East Meets West with CelloGayageum

Over a decade ago, a Korean musical genre known as KPop rose in popularity amongst US audiences. We can probably thank Psy and his song "Gangnam Style" for that. But there is so much more to Korean music than KPop! And U.S. audiences are in for a treat when they discover CelloGayageum.

published on 01/25/2024

Jersey Arts Podcast: Getting 'Fun & Slutty' with Jonathan Van Ness

A nonbinary hero himself, Jonathan Van Ness rose to fame as the hairstylist to heroes, the name Netflix's "Queer Eye" reboot gives to its episodic guests. But Jonathan's been an artist long before "Queer Eye." Beyond the artistry required in his work as a stylist, Jonathan has been on stage as a comedian for years. His web series "Gay of Thrones," a weekly comedic recap of HBO's "Game of Thrones," where he starred as none other than an opinionated hairstylist, was a hit for Funny or Die. He is also the host of his very own podcast, "Getting Curious with Jonathan Van Ness." And in addition to all of that, he is also a New York Times Best Selling author.

published on 01/18/2024

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Jersey Arts TV: Black Nativity Brings Blessings to the Basie

Jersey Arts speaks to Darrell Lawrence Willis, Sr., Artistic Director of Dunbar Repertory Company and his team as they celebrate their latest production of "Black Nativity."

published on 12/21/2023

Jersey Arts Podcast: Ring in the New Year with The Jersey Tenors at Surflight Theatre

Jersey Arts speaks with Brian Noonan about what it takes to be a Jersey Tenor ahead of their Bubbly Bash at the Surflight Theatre on New Year’s Eve.

published on 12/21/2023

Jersey Arts Podcast: Nancy Reed Dishes on Duke Ellington's "Nutcracker" and Morris Museum's new "Grinch Suite"

Duke Ellington was a jazz composer and bandleader in the early 1900s. He is quite possibly one of the greatest jazz composers of all time. Written alongside collaborator, Billy Strayhorn, "The Nutcracker Suite" is a jazz reimagining of Tchaikovsky’s" Nutcracker Suite."

published on 12/07/2023

Christmas Fiddle and Fun: A Conversation with Eileen Ivers

Eileen Ivers has been called "the Jimi Hendrix of the violin," as reported by the New York Times. A master of the violin, which is also known to be a fiddle, dependent on the way in which it is played, Ivers is known to be the pre-eminent exponent of the Irish fiddle in the world today.

published on 11/30/2023

Get Ready for Christmas with "A Charlie Brown Christmas: Live On Stage"

Join us in the latest Jersey Arts Podcast with Gina Marie Rodriguez as we dive into the timeless charm of "A Charlie Brown Christmas," a beloved holiday classic that continues to dazzle audiences after more than 70 years. In our recent episode, we had the pleasure of speaking with director Robbie Simpson about his journey in the arts and his unique take on the stage adaptation of this cherished Christmas tale. From his early days as a child actor in the rich cultural milieu of Western Massachusetts to his current successes, Simpson shares how his experiences shaped his career in theater and led him to direct a production that captures the nostalgic joy and sophistication of a Broadway show.

published on 11/09/2023

"Lost in Yonkers" Finds Its Way to Morristown

Pioneer Productions Company is dedicated to sharing the collective human story through live theatrical performance by producing shows that are relevant to our time and inspiring audiences to attend live theatre.

published on 10/19/2023

Art House Productions Brings "Tracy Jones" to Life

"Tracy Jones" is a touching comedy of individual connection in an increasingly busy world. And the play will mark the first fully staged production in Arthouse Production's new space.

published on 10/12/2023

Patricia Quinn Celebrates 48 Years of "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" and Magenta

It's officially Spooky Season and quite possibly, the best season for a night of debauchery with "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" 48th Anniversary Spectacular Tour. On October 25th at the Bergen Performing Arts Center in Englewood, NJ, Rocky Horror fans will be treated to a screening of the original unedited film alongside a live shadowcast. Audience participation is encouraged and expected.

published on 10/12/2023

Pulitzer Prize Finalist Play "Bulrusher" Hits the Stage at McCarter Theatre

Music, humor and clairvoyance are soon to thrill audiences at McCarter Theatre Center in the form of Eisa Davis' Pulitzer Prize finalist play, "Bulrusher." A period piece set in 1950s California, "Bulrusher" is the coming-of-age tale of a multiracial young woman bestowed with the gift of clairvoyance as she navigates life in her mostly white town. More than a fish out of water story, Bulrusher highlights the beauty, complexity and compassion that make life the nuanced ride that it is.

published on 08/31/2023

Premiere Stages Launches "Satellites"

"Satellites" will make its world premiere this July at the aptly named Premiere Stages at Kean University. Having previously won the 2022 Premiere Play Festival, the show penned by Erin Breznitsky will celebrate its first full stage production under the direction of Premiere Stages' Artistic Director, John J. Wooten.

published on 06/29/2023


The Boxmasters Rock New Jersey

You may know Billy Bob Thornton as an Oscar-winning writer, Oscar-nominated actor, and award-winning director, or maybe you simply know him as "Bad Santa,” but did you know he is also an accomplished singer and songwriter?

published on 06/15/2023

Mile Square Theatre Hits It Out of the Park With "7th Inning Stretch"

As the birthplace of baseball, Hoboken is the perfect New Jersey city to celebrate our national pastime; and Mile Square Theatre, the perfect venue.

published on 06/02/2023

"101 Humiliating Stories" Made Vivid

Laura Ekstrand is the Producing Artistic Director of Vivid Stage in Summit, New Jersey, as well as its next leading lady. Starring in 101 Humiliating Stories by Lisa Kron, she will headline the first performance of Vivid Stage's Solo Series from April 13-16.

published on 04/08/2023

A Lightning Thief On The Growing Stage

"When teenager Percy Jackson discovers he's a demigod, he and his friends embark on an epic journey to find Zeus's missing lightning bolt and prevent a war among the gods."  That is the synopsis for "The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical," produced by The Growing Stage, The Children's Theatre of New Jersey, in Netcong March 10-26, 2023.

published on 03/02/2023

"Clean Slate" Marks a Fresh Start With World Premiere in Trenton, NJ

A rehabilitation camp for disaffected teens, a haunted wood plagued by lost souls, and a path to redemption for all — this is but a taste of the upcoming musical "Clean Slate."

published on 03/02/2023

Axelrod Celebrates the 50th Anniversary of the Tony Award-winning Musical "Raisin"

What happens to a dream deferred?

published on 02/25/2023

Carmen Matarazzo Talks "Sweeney Todd" and Crafting the Role of Tobias

Carmen Matarazzo, a graduate of Pinelands High School in New Jersey, is an actor/drummer who has been seen in multiple productions at his high school and several theaters across the state including Mary Poppins (Robertson Ay), Clue: On Stage (Professor Plum), Spring Awakening (Ernst), The Addams Family (Lucas), The Sound of Music (Captain Von Trapp).

published on 02/09/2023

"The Night Falls" -- A New Dance-driven Production at PEAK Performances

PEAK Performances, together with Ballet Collective Inc., will present the world premiere of The Night Falls, a dance-driven music theater production, in the Alexander Kasser Theater at Montclair State University Feb. 9-12. 

published on 01/26/2023

NJ Ballet's "New Direction" Marks First Residency at Mayo Performing Arts Center

Under the direction of new Artistic Director Maria Kowroski, the New Jersey Ballet will present their latest production, "New Direction," at the Mayo Performing Arts Center (MPAC) on Nov. 19. The 2022-2023 season is the NJ Ballet's first as the resident ballet company of the MPAC.

published on 11/10/2022

Shakespeare Theatre of NJ Highlights Two Plays by African-American Playwright Alice Childress

The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey presents two one-act plays, “Florence” and “Mojo: A Black Love Story,” by Alice Childress Oct. 26 to Nov. 13 at the F.M. Kirby Shakespeare Theatre in Madison, New Jersey.

published on 10/27/2022

A Chat With Evelyn Colbert About Montclair Film, Its Festival and Tribute to Daniel Craig

Evelyn "Evie" McGee Colbert is an arts advocate, a film producer, and one of the founding board members of Montclair Film, a nonprofit that produces a festival that “connects global filmmakers with audiences in a diverse, culturally vibrant community” and more, “presenting … year-round programs that engage, entertain and educate through the power of visual storytelling.” 

published on 10/20/2022

Kinetic Light's "Descent" Inspires Education at Rutgers University

The world-renowned disability arts ensemble Kinetic Light will perform “Descent” at the New Brunswick Performing Arts Center Sept. 30, sponsored by the Dance Department at Rutgers University’s Mason Gross School of the Arts.

published on 09/16/2022

Meet the Decima: David Broza & Trio Havana Share the Art of Cuban Music

Israeli superstar David Broza together with Cuban dynamo Trio Havana finally returned to the South Orange Performing Art Center on Sept. 17.

published on 08/18/2022

The future may be closer than you think in "The Hummingbirds," a comic-drama of menace

The future may be closer than you think in “The Hummingbirds,” a comic-drama of menace.

published on 07/28/2022

VIDEO: Benjamin Britten’s Comic Opera “Albert Herring” a Coming-Of-Age Story at the Princeton Festival

A reluctant May King, a meddling mother, refreshing libations, and liberation combine for a hilarious coming-of-age story.

published on 06/03/2022


VIDEO: Bravely Broaching Machismo and Bravado, "The Hombres" Makes its World Premiere at Two River Theater

"The Hombres" is a brand new play by Tony Meneses. Originally set to have its world premiere in March of 2020, the play was postponed and, in that time, given new life. Join Gina Marie as she chats with director Annie Tippe and playwright Tony Meneses about the journey to their world premiere at Two River Theater.

published on 03/30/2022

VIDEO: 40 Years of Memories - "CATS" at State Theatre

Andrew Lloyd Webber's timeless classic "CATS" is coming to State Theatre New Jersey March 18-20 for four performances of its 40th Anniversary Tour. This beautiful revival show is sure to create magical memories for new and old audiences alike. Gina Marie chats with cast members about the return to live theatre, why more people should be fans of "CATS," and the incredible power and importance of swings and understudies.

published on 03/12/2022

Celebrated Jazz Artist Cécile McLorin Salvant Comes to McCarter Theatre

A three-time Grammy winner, Cécile McLorin Salvant won the coveted Thelonious Monk Int’l Jazz Competition in 2010 and has since received the 2020 MacArthur Fellowship and the Doris Duke Award. She has made quite the mark on the jazz world, but is also a talented visual artist, with her work being featured in the upcoming animated and fully orchestrated feature film "The Ogresse." Here, correspondent Gina Marie Rodriguez chats with McCarter Theatre's long-time Director of Special Programming, Bill Lockwood Jr., about Cécile, jazz, and the return to live at McCarter.

published on 12/08/2021

The Great Return - Fall Dance Plus at NBPAC

These are exciting times in the world of performance. The jubilation is palpable as stages return to live shows. This weekend, seven choreographers and their student dance companies present their work at the stunning New Brunswick Performing Arts Center.

published on 11/12/2021

One of the Great Ones -- "A Bronx Tale" at Axelrod PAC

"A Bronx Tale, The Musical" was written by Chazz Palminteri with music by Alan Menken and lyrics by Glenn Slater. The show initially premiered in 2016 at the Paper Mill Playhouse in — you guessed it — New Jersey, followed by a two-year run on Broadway. Here, our correspondent Gina Marie chats with the cast of "A Bronx Tale, The Musical," now running through November 14 at the Axelrod Performing Arts Center in Deal.

published on 11/12/2021

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