Top 10 NJ Arts Events of the Week: Montclair Film Festival, Celebrating David Bowie, Mary Fahl, more

montclair film preview

Daniel Craig will be interviewed by Stephen Colbert as part of the Montclair Film Festival.

Here is a roundup of arts events taking place around the state, through Oct. 27.


New Jersey’s leading film festival, the Montclair Film Festival, takes place Oct. 21-30, with more than 100 films, plus many interviews and conversations, and appearances by Daniel Craig, Brendan Fraser, Eddie Redmayne, Stephen Colbert and others.

“Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery,” starring Craig, opens the festival with a screening, Oct. 21 at 7:30 p.m. at the Wellmont Theater. Craig will will be interviewed by Colbert at NJPAC in Newark, Oct. 28 at 8 p.m.

“The Good Nurse,” co-starring Redmayne and Jessica Chastain as hospital co-workers, will screen at The Wellmont, Oct. 22 at 7:30 p.m., with Redmayne and director Tobias Lindholm participating in a post-screening Q&A with Colbert.

Fraser stars in director Darren Aronofsky’s family drama “The Whale,” which will screen Oct. 23 at 7:30 p.m. at The Wellmont Theater, with Fraser joining Colbert for a post-screening Q&A session.

Also, Elegance Bratton will be honored with the fest’s Breakthrough Director & Writer Award after a screening of his “The Inspections,” Oct. 22 at 3:30 p.m. at The Wellmont. And the Mark Fletcher-directed “Patrick & the Whale,” about whale expert Patrick Dykstra, will screen as the fest’s Nonfiction Centerpiece, Oct. 23 at noon at The Wellmont, with Dykstra participating in a post-screening Q&A session.

Carey Mulligan, left, and Zoe Kazan in “She Said.”

Maria Schrader’s “She Said,” co-starring Carey Mulligan and Zoe Kazan as New York Times reporters whose work helped to launch the #MeToo movement, will screen as the festival’s closing film, Oct. 30 at 7:45 p.m. at the Montclair Kimberley Academy’s Upper School.

The festival’s Storyteller series will include conversations with “Welcome to Night Vale” and “Unlicensed” podcast creators Jeffrey Cranor and Joseph Fink at the Clairidge Cinema 5, Oct. 22 at noon; author and political strategist Huma Abedin (“Both/And: A Life in Many Worlds”) and author and CNN anchor Zain Asher (“Where the Children Take Us”), Oct. 23 at noon at Montclair Kimberley Academy’s Upper School; and others.


The Lizzie Rose Music Room in Tuckerton has presented only outdoor shows (at its Pavilion in the Pines Concert Series at the Atlantic Shore Pines Campground) during the pandemic, but will return to indoor shows starting with the Western swing trio, Hot Club of Cowtown, Oct. 23 at 7:30 p.m. Other indoor shows on the schedule include Bell Bottom Blues (Eric Clapton tribute), Oct. 28; The Paul Nelson Band, Nov. 4; Paul Rishell & Annie Raines, Nov. 5; and Vanessa Collier, Nov. 6.

belew rundgren bowie

Adrian Belew, left, and Todd Rundgren.

Todd Rundgren and Adrian Belew will be among the artists participating in the Celebrating David Bowie Tour, which comes to the Union County Performing Arts Center in Rahway, Oct. 27 at 8 p.m., and Harrah’s Resort in Atlantic City, Oct. 29 at 8 p.m. Other performers will include Royston Langdon of Spacehog, Angelo “Scrote” Bundini and Jeffrey Gaines.

Belew played guitar for Bowie on tour in 1978, 1979 and 1990, and performed on Bowie’s 1979 Lodger album; Bowie also made vocal and songwriting contributions to Belew’s 1990 album, Young Lions.

Light Opera of New Jersey presents Leonard Bernstein’s “Candide” at the Dorothy Young Center for the Arts at Drew University, Madison, Oct. 22 at 8 p.m. and Oct. 23 at 3 p.m. The operetta is based on Voltaire’s classic philosophical novella of the same name, about an optimistic young man who tries to make sense of the evils of the world.

Glenn Alexander & Shadowland, with special guest Southside Johnny, will headline Pig Gig 7, taking place at the Italian American Hall in Scotch Plains, Oct. 23 from 2 to 8 p.m. Alexander, who promises that this year’s edition of the annual event will be “bigger and better than ever,” is the longtime guitarist for Southside Johnny’s Asbury Jukes, and his rock/R&B band Shadowland features other Jukes members as well. Other performers will include singer-songwriter James Maddock, the roots band The Lonesome Pines, and Alexander’s Blue Americana duo with his daughter, singer Oria.

The admission charge is $60, but that includes a pig roast with lots of other food, as well, and drinks, in addition to the six hours of music. All proceeds will go to the Fibrolamellar Cancer Foundation in honor of Alexander’s nephew Jay Alexander, who died of the disease in 2011.


On her most recent album Can’t Get It Out of My Head, Mary Fahl, formerly of the band The October Project, covers favorite songs by artists such as The Electric Light Orchestra (the title track), Neil Young (“Don’t Let It Bring You Down”), The Moody Blues (“Tuesday Afternoon”) and The Rolling Stones (“Ruby Tuesday”). She will perform at the Avenel Performing Arts Center, Oct. 22 at 7:30 p.m., with Jesse Lynn Madera opening.


Alice Childress, who died in 1994 at the age of 77, performed on Broadway in the mid-’40s and early ’60s. But she was also a prolific writer whose work was performed on Broadway for the first time in late 2021 and early 2022, with a Tony-nominated production of her “Trouble in Mind.” The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey at Drew University in Madison will present two of her one-act plays, “Florence” (1949) and “Mojo” (1970), together, from Oct. 26 to Nov. 13.


The Hoboken Historical Museum‘s poet-in-residence, Danny Shot, has organized and will host a free event there titled “Hoboken Celebrates Marsha P. Johnson,” Oct. 23 at 3 p.m. The late Johnson was a gay and trans activist who lived in Hoboken for 12 years before dying in 1992, at the age of 46. The event will feature performances and memories by activist Randy Wicker, musician and spoken word artist Linda La, poet and photographer Bobby Miller, performance artist and writer Penny Arcade, writer and editor Sanina L. Clark and others. The event will also be streamed live on the museum’s YouTube channel.

The cover of Bill German’s “Under Their Thumb: How a Nice Boy from Brooklyn Got Mixed Up with the Rolling Stones (and Lived to Tell About It).”

From the late ’70s to the mid-’90s, Bill German published a Rolling Stones fanzine, Beggars Banquet, and became something of a band insider in the process. His 2009 book about the experience, “Under Their Thumb: How a Nice Boy from Brooklyn Got Mixed Up with the Rolling Stones (and Lived to Tell About It),” remains one of the best books about the band. In honor of the band’s 60th anniversary, this year, he has updated the book with 40 new pages of text, plus three dozen previously unpublished photos, and will give a talk, and sign copies of it, at Pulp Asbury in Asbury Park, Oct. 22 at 5 p.m.


A TED Talk — independently organized but licensed by TED (which originally stood for Technology, Entertainment and Design, but has expanded to include many other topics) — will take place Oct. 25 from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Madison Community Arts Center, titled TEDxMorristown and focusing on the topic, “Drawing on Your Own Creativity.” Speakers will include choreographer and artistic director Carolyn Dorfman (of Carolyn Dorfman Dance), television and film writer, entrepreneur and radio producer Andy Breckman (“Monk,” WFMU’s “Seven Second Delay”), James Howard (designer, entrepreneur, teacher and creator of the Black Inventors Hall of Fame), Morris Arts board member Conor Evans, and others.


“Woyzeck” at Black Box Performing Arts Center, Englewood. (Through Oct. 23)

“Cherry Hill” at Black Box Performing Arts Center, Englewood. (Through Oct. 23)

“On Your Feet! The Story of Emilio & Gloria Estefan” at Paper Mill Playhouse, Millburn. (Through Nov. 6)

“Alexis Rockman: Shipwrecks,” presented by the Princeton University Art Museum at Art@Bainbridge. (Through Nov. 27)

“American Stories: Gifts From the Jersey City Museum Collection” at Zimmerli Art Museum, New Brunswick. (Through Dec. 30)

“New Jersey Arts Annual: Reemergence” at State Museum, Trenton. (Through April 30)

“George Inness: Visionary Landscapes” at Montclair Art Museum. (Through June 30, 2024)


Since launching in September 2014,, a 501(c)(3) organization, has become one of the most important media outlets for the Garden State arts scene. And it has always offered its content without a subscription fee, or a paywall. Its continued existence depends on support from members of that scene, and the state’s arts lovers. Please consider making a contribution of any amount to via PayPal, or by sending a check made out to to 11 Skytop Terrace, Montclair, NJ 07043.


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