Top 15 Arts Events of Week: NJ Symphony Centennial, NJ Hall of Fame induction ceremony, more

nj centennial



Here is a roundup of arts events taking place around the state, through Nov. 17.


New Jersey Symphony, founded in 1922, celebrates its 100th birthday with a “Centennial Gala and Concert,” Nov. 12 at 7:30 p.m. at Prudential Hall at NJPAC in Newark. Music director Xian Zhang will conduct, Yo-Yo Ma will be featured on Dvořák’s Cello Concerto, and New Jersey Ballet will perform during Ginastera’s Four Dances from Estancia. The program also will include Wynton Marsalis’ Herald, Holler and Hallelujah (an NJS co-commission).

The gala will feature a cocktail reception and dinner at 5 p.m., and a dessert party after the concert.

The NERFA Music Conference (Northeast Regional Folk Alliance) takes place in Asbury Park, Nov. 10-13, at various locations, with concerts, workshops, panel discussions, open mics and more. Dar Williams and Vance Gilbert will be among the workshop leaders, and keynote speeches will be given by Sarah Craig, executive director of Caffe Lena in Sarasota Springs, N.Y.; singer-songwriter Jean Rohe; and composer and multi-instrumentalist David Amram. A 6 p.m. Nov. 12 “Artist Showcase” at The Stone Pony will feature The Rough & Tumble, Rees Shad & the Conversations, Rod Abernethy, Jess Klein, Kemp Harris, The Sea The Sea, Billy Woodward, Aaron Nathans & Michael G. Ronstadt, Lynne Hanson and Jonathan Byrd.

A new “Cabaret in the Loft” series at The Loft at the South Orange Performing Arts Center begins Nov. 13 at 7 p.m., with Ginna Claire Mason, joined by guests Mary Kate Morrissey and Sam Gravitte, performing her “Dream a Little Dream: An Evening Inspired by Doris Day” show. Mason has performed in the Broadway productions of “Wicked” and “Kristin Chenoweth: For the Girls.”



A jazz brunch series at The Vogel at The Count Basie Center for the Arts in Red Bank began, Oct. 15, with jazz trombonist and singer Jeffery Miller’s quintet, and there will be a second jazz brunch on Nov. 19, featuring singer Aubrey Johnson and pianist Randy Ingram. But before that, on Nov. 13, there will be another Brunch at the Vogel, featuring Tarriona “Tank” Ball, frontwoman of the Grammy-nominated group Tank & the Bangas. This one is not being promoted as jazz brunch, though there is a jazz influence in the music Ball has made with the Bangas. But there are other many influences there, too, including funk, soul, hip-hop, gospel and rock.

The brunch starts at 11 a.m., with the music at noon.

The hunger organization WhyHunger (originally known as World Hunger Year) holds a Hungerthon every November, and in conjunction with it, Zion Lutheran Church in Rahway will host a WhyHunger Benefit Concert, Nov. 13 at 2 p.m., with Miss Emily, Bob Polding, Jon Caspi, Joe D’Urso, Sharon Lasher, Joe Rapolla, Stella Mrowicki, Helen O’Shea, Seth Saltzman and Jake Thistle.

Guitarist Ritchie Blackmore was a co-founder of Deep Purple and later founded the group Rainbow, and for the last 25 years, has been performing in the more folk-oriented group Blackmore’s Night (with his wife, singer Candice Night) in addition to other projects. Blackmore’s Night has, in fact, just released a deluxe 25th anniversary edition of its debut album, Shadow of the Moon. The group will perform, with Wizard’s Consort opening, at the Music Box of Borgata Hotel Casino and Spa in Atlantic City, Nov. 11 at 8 p.m.

The tribute group The THE BAND Band will present a tribute to The Band’s landmark November 1976 concert The Last Waltz at the South Orange Performing Arts Center, Nov 12 at 8 p.m., with a dozen guest performers helping to re-create the varied sounds of The Last Waltz itself. One of them will be fiddler Larry Packer, who actually was part of the supporting cast at that 1976 show.

The THE BAND Band co-founder Gary Solomon was there in ’76, too, as an teenager attending the concert. “I knew that what I was seeing was not just another rock concert, which was what I thought I had bought a ticket for,” he said in a press release. “It was a once in a lifetime moment.”

J. Max Baker in “One Christmas Carol.”


J. Max Baker will play 34 characters in “One Christmas Carol,” his father Douglas Baker’s one-man adaptation of Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol, Nov. 16-20, 25-27 and 30 and Dec. 1-4, 7-11, 14-18, 21-23 and 27-30 at Cape May Stage. (see video below)

Trilogy Repertory Theater will present “It’s a Wonderful Life” — best known, of course, as the 1946 film co-starring James Stewart and Donna Reed — as a radio play, Nov. 11-13 and 18-19 at the Sieminski Theater in Basking Ridge.


Peak Performances at Montclair State University will present the Weiland, Ontario-based Femmes du Feu Creations’ “In the Fire,” Nov. 10-11 at 7:30 p.m., Nov. 12 at 8 p.m. and Nov. 13 at 3 p.m. at the Kasser Theater. Created and performed by Holly Treddenick, it is described on the Peak Performances website as “a solo dance/aerial circus show about Holly Treddenick’s father, based on his experience as a firefighter. The production uses rescue equipment as invented apparatuses — including boots, a rope loop, and an aerial ladder.”



This year’s New Jersey Hall of Fame induction ceremony will take place in the form of a special on MY9TV, and, Nov. 12, with a later showing on NJPBS television. Inductees will include E Street Band drummer Max Weinberg; comedian, writer and talk show host Chelsea Handler; former Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Ron Jaworski; the late Richard J. Hughes (who served as New Jersey’s governor from 1962 to 1970); photographer Margaret Bourke-White; and three-time Olympic soccer medalist Heather O’Reilly.

For the complete list of inductees, visit

Presenters will include Jon Bon Jovi, Gov. Phil Murphy and First Lady Tammy Murphy, Danny DeVito and Melba Moore.

The ceremony will air Nov. 12 at 6 p.m. on MY9TV, Facebook and YouTube; Nov. 13 at 4 p.m. and Nov. 20 at 11 p.m. on MY9TV; and Nov. 16 at 8 p.m. on NJPBS television.

Music and dance will be combined at two upcoming shows of the TD James Moody Jazz Festival, taking place at the Victoria Theater at NJPAC in Newark.

Jazz singer Dee Dee Bridgewater and tap-dance innovator Savion Glover will team up for a show titled “Interpretations,” Nov. 12 at 3 and 7 p.m. And “Jazz Legends and the Power of Now!,” Nov. 16 at 7:30 p.m., will feature choreography by Carolyn Dorfman and Juel D. Lane, live music by violinist Regina Carter, and the classic recordings of Louis Prima.

Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Paul Muldoon will read his work, and singer-songwriter-guitarist Chris Harford and drummer Ray Kubian will perform songs written with Muldoon for Muldoon’s band Rogue Oliphant, Nov. 11 at 8 p.m. in “An Evening of Poetry and Song” at Studio 17 in Hopewell. The event celebrates the opening of Studio 17, a new art gallery and performance space.


• Garrison Keillor, the longtime host of the syndicated radio series “Prairie Home Companion” and a best-selling author, will perform in the At the Tabernacle series at the Mt. Tabor Tabernacle in Parsippany, Nov. 12 at 7:30 p.m. The one-man show is described as “an intimate evening of stand-up, storytelling, sonnets, limericks, audience participation and poetry.”

The Nov. 15 installment of “The Atelier@Large: Conversations on Art-making in a Vexed Era” series features Run-DMC’s Darryl “DMC” McDaniels; writer, historian and former ballet dancer Jennifer Homans; and singer Iarla Ó Lionáird (formerly of the band Afro Celt Sound System). The talk takes place at the Richardson Auditorium at Princeton University at 7:30 p.m, with Paul Muldoon moderating.


“Florence” and “Mojo,” two one-acts by Alice Childress at Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey at Drew University, Madison. (Through Nov. 13)

“Richard II” at Luna Stage, West Orange. (Through Nov. 13)

“Eden Prairie, 1971” at New Jersey Repertory Company, Long Branch. (Through Nov. 20)

“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)

“Thread Hijack” at the Hunterdon Art Museum, Clinton. (Through Jan. 8)

“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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