Posts Tagged ‘musical’

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In the Mood – A 1940s Musical Revue!

November 3, 2010

By Kelly Blithe, Director of Public Relations

In the Mood, now in its 17th year, began as a celebration of American music from the 1940’s a time when big bands were drawing record crowds, and when the music of the time, swing music, played a pivotal role in maintaining American morale through WWII. Now, it makes it’s way to the State Theatre for a return engagement on Sunday, November 14th.

In the Mood has played a number of sellout concerts for the National Archives in Washington, DC, including the 50th Anniversary of WWII, as well as a series of USO tours. Since then, In the Mood has visited Europe and in 1997, the band and singers were selected to be part of the entertainment for the 53rd Presidential Inauguration Ball for President and Mrs. Bill Clinton.

More than a concert, In the Mood is a Big Band theatrical swing revue, featuring a company of 19 on stage including the In the Mood singers and dancers with the sensational String of Pearls Big Band Orchestra, performing the music of Glenn Miller, Tommy Dorsey, Artie Shaw, Benny Goodman, Harry James, Erskine Hawkins, The Andrews Sisters, Frank Sinatra, and other greats of the 1940’s.

So, come on down and swing with us on November 14th, as we celebrate the big band era of the 1940s!

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Review of 2009 NYC Fringe Festival Events

August 27, 2009

New York City’s Annual Fringe Festival is a chance for artists to come together to showcase what they have been working on to friends, family, industry and theater fans. I attended two shows at the Connelly Theater on the East Side at this year’s festival to see if there was anything out there that our school groups might enjoy seeing in future seasons and I was pleasantly surprised. The first show, Sinking Ship Production’s Powerhouse, is the story of composer Raymond Scott and his passion in discovering new ways to create music. Actually, the entire play leads up to his invention of “The Electronium” (a machine that produced sounds and melodies randomly so you could always listen to something new). The show, which naturally incorporated a lot of Scott’s own music along with other sounds of the time, was well done and well acted with some very amusing puppets acting out the cartoons that Scott had composed for (even though sometimes I wasn’t really sure what the puppets were doing). It was touching and I laughed, but I don’t think school groups would be too interested in seeing this show with slightly more adult themes.

Later that day I got to see a great musical version of the Edgar Allan Poe classic, The Fall of the House of Usher from the Woodberry Forest School. When I decided to go see it, I thought, as I’m sure many high schoolers think, that Poe is going to be dark and depressing and kind of boring. I was pleasantly surprised. The music covered several different genres and added a definite tone to the show that helped the audience get into the mindset of the original poet who wrote over 200 years ago. I was impressed with the acting and how passionate they were in their roles and how exciting it was compared to other Poe works, such as “The Raven”. I thought this version is one that high schoolers could very much enjoy if they don’t think so much that they are “learning.”

All in all, I think it was a pretty successful first outing at the Fringe Festival. I enjoyed both shows and got to see what people in the industry were doing. The Festival only runs until August 30th, but I’m already looking forward to next year.

–Jenn Cunha, Education

The State Theatre is located at 15 Livingston Ave in New Brunswick, NJ. For information or to purchase tickets call 732-246-SHOW (7469) or visit http://www.statetheatrenj.org/. Check us out on Twitter, Facebook, Myspace, and YouTube.