BIG GAY TRILOGY Creator Anthony Wilkinson Named Operations Manager for Future Avenel Arts Center

BIG GAY TRILOGY Creator Anthony Wilkinson Named Operations Manager for Future Avenel Arts CenterMayor John E. McCormac today announced the appointment of Anthony Wilkinson - creator and star of the Big Gay Italian Trilogy series Off-Broadway, three-time Emmy Award winner and Best Supporting Actor Daytime Emmy nominee - as coordinator of the Woodbridge Township Arts initiatives and Operations Manager of the future Avenel Arts Center.

"I am excited to announce that Woodbridge Township is destined to become the regional mecca for the performing arts with the appointment of Anthony Wilkinson as coordinator of Woodbridge Township's arts initiatives and Operations Manager of the future Avenel Arts Center," said Mayor McCormac. "Over the past ten years, we have established Woodbridge as a regional destination for entertainment and performing arts with the ever-expanding Mayor's Summer concert series and Music on Main Street, the Barron Arts Center's established musical performances, Poets Wednesday and art exhibitions by internationally renowned artists, the Woodbridge Community Players (WCP) summer-stock performances at the newly renovated Theatre at Woodbridge Middle School, and the ever-expanding entertainment opportunities at the Woodbridge Community Center (WCC). And, with the arrival of the Avenal Arts Center - slated to open for performances in 2018 - Woodbridge will stand as the 'Best Town Around' for the performing arts."

According to Mayor McCormac, Wilkinson, winner of three Daytime Emmy Awards and four-time recipient of the Directors Guild of America Award, served as Associate Director of ABC's One Life To Live for 14 years. Anthony's original production of My Big Gay Italian Wedding opened Off-Broadway in 2003 at the Actor's Playhouse and later moved to Theatre Four in the spring of 2004. In 2006, Anthony wrote and starred as "Rio La Rocca" in the Off-Broadway production of Boys Just Wanna Have Fun. Anthony restaged My Big Gay Italian Wedding in September of 2009 at the St. George Theatre and a revival on Restaurant Row with a full Equity cast in April of 2010 - the performance played in multiple cities in the United States, Edinburgh, London, Vancouver, Hong Kong and parts of France. In June of 2013 Anthony opened the sequel to My Big Gay Italian Wedding, My Big Gay Italian Funeral, which ran for over two years at St. Luke's Theater in New York City. Wilkinson's final chapter to the Trilogy, "My Big Gay Italian Midlife Crisis," opened at the Theater Center Off-Broadway in November of 2015. Anthony is currently performing on Amazon Prime's hit series "Tainted Dreams" which recently landed him a nomination for Best Supporting Actor in a Digital Drama Series. (Tainted Dreams received a total of five Emmy nominations including Best Show.)

"I am looking forward to the challenge of bringing Broadway-style shows, performances and productions to Woodbridge Township and the Avenel Arts Center. Mayor McCormac and the entire Woodbridge Township administration are committed to establishing Woodbridge as the regional performing arts center and I am excited to bring a new level of theatre and entertainment to the Avenel Arts Center," said Wilkinson.

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