Centenary Stage Co Announces YPW: SUMMER FESTIVAL OF SHOWS & FALL REGISTRATIONCelebrating over 20 years of acclaimed musical theatre training for young thespians, the Centenary Stage Company's Young Performers Workshop returns to the Little Theater August 4 through August 13 with the annual Summer Festival of Shows. These talented young thespians between the ages of 8 and 18 will present a variety of musical theater favorites including; The Robber Bridegroom, She Loves Me, Schoolhouse Rock Live Jr., Neil Simon's Brighton Beach Memoirs and the ever-popular One-Act Festival.

With a book and lyrics by Alfred Uhry and music by Robert Waldman, The Robber Bridegroom is a rousing, bawdy Southern fairytale from the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Driving Miss Daisy and is one of the only genuine bluegrass scores ever heard in a Broadway musical. Set in eighteenth-century Mississippi, the show follows Jamie Lockhart, a rascally robber of the woods, as he courts Rosamund, the only daughter of the richest planter in the country. The proceedings go awry, however, thanks to a case of double-mistaken identity coupled with an evil stepmother, a pea-brained henchman and a hostile talking head-in-a-trunk, making for a rollicking country romp. Performances are Saturday, August 5 at 8pm; Sunday, August 6 at 1pm; Friday, August 11 at 8pm; Saturday, August 12 at 2pm and Sunday, August 13 at 7pm. Performances of The Robber Bridegroom will be held in the Little Theatre located at 400 Jefferson Street, Hackettstown.

Considered by many to be the most charming musical ever written, She Loves Me is a warm romantic comedy with an endearing innocence and a touch of old world elegance. Featuring music by Jerry Bock and Sheldon Harnick (Fiddler on the Roof) and book by Joe Masteroff (Cabaret), She Loves Me was nominated for five Tony Awards in 1964. The 1993 Broadway revival won the Olivier Award for Best Musical Revival, the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Revival of a Musical and the 1994 Critics Circle Award for Best Musical. Set in a 1930s European perfumery, shop clerks, Amalia and Georg, more often than not, don't see eye to eye. After both respond to a "lonely hearts advertisement" in the newspaper, they now live for the love letters that they exchange, but the identity of their admirers remains unknown. Amalia and Georg embark on a journey to discover the identity of their true loves... and of all the twists and turns along the way. Performances are Friday, August 4 at 8pm; Sunday, August 6 at 7pm; Saturday, August 12 at 8pm and Sunday, August 13 at 4pm. Performances of She Loves Me will be held in the Little Theatre located at 400 Jefferson Street, Hackettstown.

The Emmy Award-winning Saturday morning educational cartoon series and pop culture phenomenon comes to life as one of the most fun musicals ever to hit the stage, Schoolhouse Rock Live! JR. Follows Tom, a young schoolteacher, who is nervous about his first day of teaching. Tom tries to relax by watching TV, when various characters representing facets of his personality emerge from the set and show him how to win his students over with imagination and music. Featuring such emorable songs as "Just a Bill," "Lolly, Lolly, Lolly" and "Conjunction Junction" bring his lesson plans vividly to life. Performances are Saturday, August 5 at 2pm; Sunday, August 6 at 4pm; Saturday, August 12 at 5pm and Sunday, August 13 at 1pm. Performances of Schoolhouse Rocke Live! Jr. will be held in the Little Theatre located at 400 Jefferson Street, Hackettstown.

Neil Simon's hysterical coming of age comedy Brighton Beach Memoirs is part one of Simon's autobiographical trilogy. Dreaming of baseball and girls, Eugene must cope with the mundane existence of his family life in Brooklyn: formidable mother, overworked father, and his worldly older brother Stanley. Throw into the mix his widowed Aunt Blanche and her two young (but rapidly aging) daughters and you have a recipe for hilarity, served up Simon-style. Performances are Tuesday, August 8 at 7pm; Wednesday, August 9 at 7pm and Thursday, August 10 at 7pm. Performances of Neil Simon's Brighton Beach Memoirs will be held in the Lackland Performing Arts Center at 715 Grand Ave. Hackettstown.

Finally, the Young Performers Workshop will be presenting their annual One- Act Festival on Saturday, August 12 at 11am and Sunday, August 13 at 11am. The One - Act Festival features a selection of short plays selected to be performed in rep. One - acts are directed by YPW staff and/or students featuring an YPW student cast.

Tickets for the Young Performers Workshop Summer Festival of Shows are $12.50 for adults and $10.00 for children under 12.

The YPW program has been led by Broadway, film and television veteran, Michael Blevins, for over 20 years. YPW is dedicated to the enrichment of young lives through experience in the theatre arts, and serves as a venue for cultivating young theatre performers. The program is one of only a handful in the nation that offers both formal training and production experience for young people.

Centenary Stage Company's Young Performers Workshop will also be holding Fall Session interviews by appointment only on Saturday August 12 and Sunday August 13 in the Little Theatre located at 400 Jefferson Street in Hackettstown. The Fall Session runs 15 weeks from September 9 through December 17. The program culminates in a two-week Festival of Shows featuring two fully realized productions of American musical theatre favorites. Additionally, students of the Young Performers Workshop Fall Session will also have the opportunity to participate in Centenary Stage Company's professional main stage Family Holiday Musical, Disney's Newsies. Classes meet Saturdays by section between the hours of 10am - 6pm. Students will rehearse productions while also studying voice, dance, and acting. Registration is open to students 8 - 18 and no prior experience is required.

For more information, to schedule your YPW Fall session interview or to purchase tickets to the Young Performers Workshop Summer Festival of Shows visit centenarystageco.org or call the box office at (908) 979 - 0900. The Centenary Stage Company box office is open Monday through Friday from 1 - 5pm and two hours prior to every performance. Centenary Stage Company's Young Performers Workshop is sponsored by Panther Valley Pharmacy.

The Young Performers Workshop is part of the educational arm of the professional Centenary Stage Company, a professional Equity theatre in residence on the campus of Centenary College. The 2016-17 season of performing arts events at the Centenary Stage Company is made possible through the generous support of the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, the NJ State Council on the Arts, the Shubert Foundation, the Blanche and Irving Laurie Foundation, the Sandra Kupperman Foundation, and CSC corporate sponsors, including Premier Season Sponsor Heath Village Retirement Community, Silver Sponsors Hackettstown Medical Center, Home Instead Senior Care (Washington), The Holiday Inn in Budd Lake, and Fulton Bank of New Jersey, and Centenary Stage Company members and supporters.

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