Here is a roundup of arts events taking place around the state, through April 27.
• The George Street Playhouse will present veteran Hollywood star Steve Guttenberg (“Cocoon,” “Police Academy,” “Three Men and a Baby,” “Diner”) in his autobiographical comedy, “Tales From the Guttenberg Bible,” April 25 to May 21 at the New Brunswick Performing Arts Center, with the official opening night on April 28. Guttenberg and three other actors will play more than 90 characters as, according to a press release, the play “takes the audience from the Guttenberg’s family home on Long Island to the glamour of Hollywood as Guttenberg himself tells-all — i.e. how he broke into the Paramount Lot — to his run-ins with everyone from Paul Reiser to Tom Selleck, Kevin Bacon to Merv Griffin.”
• The Dunbar Repertory Company will present “Tell Pharaoh” at the Pollak Theatre at Monmouth University in West Long Branch, April 22 at 8 p.m. and April 23 at 4 p.m. Written by Loften Mitchell, the play is described on the Monmouth website as “a concert drama about Harlem, our nation’s foremost Black community, from the time of slavery all the way through the 21st century” and a “recitation of a history that began long before the slave trade.”
• Judy Collins will perform her 1967 album Wildflowers in its entirety, with a symphony orchestra, April 23 at 7:30 p.m. at the Count Basie Center for the Arts in Red Bank. The show will also feature a set by Madeleine Peyroux.
Wildflowers was the first album of Collins’ career for which she wrote some of the songs (she wrote three). Other songs on it included Joni Mitchell’s “Both Sides Now” and “Michael From Mountains,” Leonard Cohen’s “Hey, That’s No Way to Say Goodbye” and Jacques Brel’s “La chanson des vieux amants (The Song of Old Lovers).”
• The Summit-based Discovery Orchestra‘s sixth educational television special, “Discover Saint-Saëns’ ‘Organ’ Symphony,” will premiere on WNET’s ALL ARTS channel, April 22 at 11 a.m., and be distributed nationally on public television starting on May 1. Discovery Orchestra founder and artistic director George Marriner Maull hosts the one-hour program, and organist Mark Miller will be featured along with the 91-piece orchestra, filmed at the Pingry School in Basking Ridge in September.
You can watch a trailer for the program below, and download a listening guide at discoveryorchestra.org/discover-saint-saens.
• Gina Schock, best known as the drummer for The Go-Go’s (“Our Lips Are Sealed,” “We Got the Beat,” “Vacation”), will make an appearance at The Stone Pony in Asbury Park, April 22 at noon. She will perform with her own band and also sign copies of her 2021 book, “Made in Hollywood: All Access with the Go-Go’s,” which is both a coffee table book and a memoir.
• The New Jersey Symphony will premiere composer Steven Mackey’s RIOT at the Richardson Auditorium at Princeton University, April 21 at 8 p.m.; Prudential Hall at NJPAC in Newark, April 22 at 8 p.m.; and the State Theatre in New Brunswick, April 23 at 3 p.m. NJ Symphony music director Xian Zhang will conduct, and Mackey, who teaches at Princeton University, will play guitar. RIOT features texts by Tracy K. Smith, who formerly taught at Princeton and was Poet Laureate of the United States from 2017 to 2019.
Mackey and Smith began working on the piece in the summer of 2020 and were influenced by the death of George Floyd and the subsequent protests. Mackey has said that Smith’s texts “trace a trajectory that culminates in positive affirmation and a celebration of hope, perseverance, commitment, and community. The music aspires to honor that trajectory.”
The concert also will feature Mozart’s Symphony No. 25 and Overture to Don Giovanni; and Bruckner’s Te Deum.
In addition to Mackey, musicians joining the orchestra will include include soprano Felicia Moore, mezzo-sopranos Jennifer Johnson Cano and Alicia Olatuja, tenor Sean Panikkar, bass-baritone Nathan Berg and the Princeton University Glee Club (directed by Gabriel Crouch).
• William Paterson University Jazz Studies Program will celebrate its 50th anniversary with a concert at the Shea Center for Performing Arts on the university’s Wayne Campus, featuring the program’s former and current directors — Rufus Reid and Bill Charlap, respectively — plus the William Paterson University Jazz Orchestra and others, April 23 at 4 p.m.
In addition, a “Sittin’ In” meet-the-artist session, open to all ticket-holder at no additional cost, will be held at 3 p.m. at Shea Recital Hall 101.
• Singer-songwriter and guitarist Richard Lloyd, best known as a member of the groundbreaking band Television, will bring his own group, featuring bassist David Leonard and drummer Kevin Tooley, to the Outpost in the Burbs at the First Congregational Church in Montclair, April 22 at 8 p.m., with Rebecca Turner opening. The show is actually a bit of a homecoming, since Lloyd spent some of his teenage years in Montclair, in the late ’60s and early ’70s.
• Actors, directors and teachers Anne Occhiogrosso and Randall Duk Kim will make the 7 p.m. April 23 edition of their “Great Authors Out Loud” series a “Celebration of Shakespeare,” in honor of his birthday (which is traditionally celebrated on April 23 though it is not definitively known) and the 400th anniversary, this year, of his posthumous First Folio — the first published collection of his plays. The event — which is sponsored by Centenary Stage Company and takes place at the Kutz Theatre at the Lackland Performing Arts Center in Hackettstown — is free, though advance reservations require a $5 donation.
• Actor Rainn Wilson, best known for his Emmy-nominated work on television’s “The Office,” will sign copies of his book “Soul Boom: Why We Need a Spiritual Revolution” at Books & Greetings in Northvale, April 26 at 6:30 p.m.
“The Shot” at New Jersey Repertory Company, Long Branch. (Through April 23)
“Romeo and Juliet” (modern verse translation by Hansol Jung) at Two River Theater, Red Bank. (Through April 30)
“New Jersey Arts Annual: Reemergence” at State Museum, Trenton. (Through April 30)
“Jairo Alfonso: Objectscapes” at Visual Arts Center of New Jersey, Summit. (Through June 4)
“vanessa german: … please imagine all the things i cannot say …” at Montclair Art Museum. (Through June 25)
“Ladies and Gentlemen … The Beatles!” at Grammy Museum Experience Prudential Center, Newark. (Through June 25)
“Komar and Melamid: A Lesson in History” at Zimmerli Art Museum, New Brunswick. (Through July 16)
“Each One Teach One: Preserving Legacy in Perpetuity” at Morris Museum, Morris Township. (Through Aug. 27)
“George Inness: Visionary Landscapes” at Montclair Art Museum. (Through June 30, 2024)
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