Top 10 Arts Events of Week: Hoboken Arts and Music Fest, NJ Folk Fest, Chiller Theatre, more

hoboken arts and music fest may 1

IVAN JULIAN

Here is a roundup of arts events taking place around the state, through May 5.

MUSIC

• The Ivan Julian Band will headline the 2022 edition of the annual Hoboken Spring Arts & Music Festival, taking place on Washington Street in downtown Hoboken, May 1 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. This free event usually attracts thousands of people to downtown Hoboken, with two music stages, a children’s entertainment stage and hundreds of art displays, food vendors and other attractions lining Washington Street. Formerly a member of the punk band Richard Hell & The Voidoids, Julian is now a solo artist. Other performers will include Pierce Turner, Frankie Morales and his Mambo of the Times Orchestra, The Counterfeiters, The Brooklyners, Gentlemen of Soul, Widely Grown, Ruby Bones and Max Feinstein.

In tribute to Meat Loaf — who died on Jan. 20, at the age of 74Remember Jones will perform the 1977 blockbuster album Bat Out of Hell in its entirety, as well as other material, at the Axelrod Performing Arts Center in Deal, April 29-30 at 8 p.m. and May 1 at 7 p.m. Max Weinberg, the E Street Band drummer who played on three of the album’s seven songs (“Paradise by the Dashboard Light” and “You Took the Words Right Out of My Mouth,” in addition to the title track), will play on all of the Bat Out of Hell material. Adam Weiner of the band Low Cut Connie will also make a guest appearance.

IAN O’NEIL

Ian O’Neil — a member of the band Deer Tick as well as a solo artist — will be among the performers at the free New Jersey Folk Festival, taking place outdoors at the Eagleton Institute of Politics on the Douglass Campus of Rutgers University in New Brunswick, April 30 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Other performers — representing many different musical traditions — will include Kuf Knotz & Christine Elise, Ukrainian Village Voices, Grupo Galante, Pete McDonough, Spook Handy, Laki Bali, Stephen Sanfilippo and the bomba and plena group Cimarrones, with various workshops and demonstrations offered as well. (O’Neil, Handy, Knotz and Elise will offer a songwriting workshop at 1:45 p.m.)

Jazz guitarist John Scofield will bring his Yankee Go Home band — keyboardist Jon Cowherd, bassist Vicente Archer and drummer Josh Dion — to The Vogel at the Count Basie Center for the Arts in Red Bank, May 1 at 7:30 p.m. In promotional material, Scofield describes the project as featuring “Americana/Rock hits and jazzed-out folk songs, with a few original tunes in the roots/rock/jazz vein” and says, “I’m reconnecting with a lot of my teenaged Rock ‘n Roll roots – naturally colored by my 50 years of Jazz practices. For me this is a play on we ‘Yankees’ taking up the music of our homeland.” Covers from recent shows have included Bob Dylan’s “Mr. Tambourine Man,” Neil Young’s “Only Love Can Break Your Heart,” The Grateful Dead’s “Uncle John’s Band” and the Glen Campbell hit “Wichita Lineman.”

BRANTLEY GUTIERREZ

CONRAD TAO

The New Jersey Symphony performs at Prudential Hall at NJPAC, April 28 at 1:30 p.m. and April 30 at 8 p.m.; Richardson Auditorium at Princeton University, April 29 at 8 p.m.; and the Mayo Performing Arts Center in Morristown, May 1 at 3 p.m. Jader Bignamini will conduct and Conrad Tao will play piano on the East Coast premiere of his Spoonfuls for Piano and Orchestra. The program will also include Shoshtakovich’s Symphony No. 9, and Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1.

Singer-songwriter Janis Ian (“At Seventeen,” “Society’s Child”) brings what she is calling her final North American tour to the Newton Theatre, May 1 at 8 p.m.; the Scottish Rite Auditorium in Collingswood, May 5 at 7:30 p.m.; and the Ocean City Music Pier, May 6 at 8 p.m. Livingston Taylor and Tom Chapin will open in Collingswood and Ocean City only.

COMEDY

Attention, fans of “Breaking Bad” and its prequel “Better Call Saul”: Lavell Crawford, who played master pickpocket Huell Babineaux on the former and currently plays him on the latter, will perform standup comedy at the Stress Factory in New Brunswick, April 28 at 7:30 p.m. and Aug. 29-30 at 7 and 9 p.m.

Crawford’s “The Comedy Vaccine” was nominated for a Grammy this year, in the Best Comedy Album category, though he ended up losing to Louis C.K. — as did Kevin Hart, Lewis Black, Chelsea Handler and Nate Bargatze.

(Also, “Saturday Night Live” cast member Chris Redd will be at the Stress Factory, May 1 at 7:30 p.m.)

MARIANNE MENKE

Members of Familie Flöz in “Hotel Paradiso.”

THEATER

As part of the Peak Performances series at Montclair State University, the masked Berlin-based Familie Flöz company will make its United States premiere, presenting “Hotel Paradiso” at the Kasser Theater, May 5-6 at 7:30 p.m., May 7 at 8 p.m. and May 8 at 3 p.m. According to the company, it uses “clowning, acrobatics, magic, and improvisation” and “Hotel Paradiso” is “a comedic thriller chock full of eccentric characters including a pajama-wearing front-desk clerk, a kleptomaniacal maid, and a cook who chops up more than just pork.” (see video below)

The Passage Theatre Company presents the world premiere of “Group” — a musical with lyrics by Eloise Govedare, music by Aleksandra M. Weil and a book by Julia B. Rosenblatt — at the Mill Hill Playhouse in Trenton, May 5-7, 12-14 and 19-21 at 7:30 p.m. and May 8, 14-15 and 21-22 at 3 p.m. The musical is about six women who meet in therapy and “examines moments of fear, celebration, and everything in between as these women grapple with their mental health in the face of sobriety,” according to a press release.

OTHER

The annual Chiller Theatre Toy, Model and Film Expo takes place at the Hilton Parsippany, Aug. 29-May 1, with autograph sessions featuring Micky Dolenz of The Monkees, Christopher Lloyd (“Back to the Future,” “Taxi”), Melissa Gilbert (“Little House on the Prairie”), “M*A*S*H” actors Loretta Swit and Jamie Farr, Lea Thompson (“Back to the Future”), boxers Larry Holmes and Gerry Cooney, Russ Tamblyn (the original “West Side Story” movie), comedians and “That Metal Show” co-hosts Jim Florentine and Don Jamieson, and many others, plus vendors, costume contests and other attractions.

REVIEWS

“The Wanderer” at Paper Mill Playhouse, Millburn. (Extended through April 28)

“Carlos Villa: Worlds in Collision” at Newark Museum of Art. (Through May 8)
“Elizabeth Colomba: Repainting the Story,” presented by Princeton University Art Museum at Bainbridge House, Princeton. (Through May 8)

“Tenacity & Resilience: The Art of Jerry Pinkney” at Montclair Art Museum. (Through June 26)

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