Executive Director Saily Avelenda to Speak at Luna following ROAN @ THE GATES on February 15

Executive Director Saily Avelenda to Speak at Luna following ROAN @ THE GATES on February 15

Luna Stage is thrilled to welcome Saily M. Avelenda, Esq., Executive Director of local political organization NJ 11th for Change, who will speak at Luna on Friday, February 15. Her conversation will follow the 8pm performance of Roan @ The Gates, a new play about cybersecurity, loss of privacy, and whistleblowing. Avelenda will discuss her own experiences as a whistleblower, and relate it to the journey of the play's fictional character, NSA Analyst Roan Wells.

Until May 2017, Avelenda was Senior Vice President and Assistant General Counsel at a community bank in northern New Jersey. Avelenda left her position after almost seven years with the company, shortly after her congressman, Rodney Frelinghuysen (R; NJ-11), sent a fundraising letter to a member of her employer's Board of Directors singling out Avelenda for her involvement with NJ 11th for Change. Congressman Frelinghuysen subsequently announced his retirement.

Written by Christina Gorman, Roan @ The Gates is receiving its World Premiere at Luna Stage through February 24, under the direction of Michelle Tattenbaum. Set in Washington D.C. and Russia, the play explores what happens when personal lives collide with national security, and the cost of blowing the whistle.

BroadwayWorld describes the play, which stars Mel House as Roan and Aaliyah Habeeb as her wife Nat, as a "gripping story of cybersecurity and romance." Baristanet calls it "a tight, well-acted morality play about whistleblowing and its implications" and adds, "The play's exploration of widespread data collection by companies and the government is very relevant today."

NJ 11th for Change is an unaffiliated organization dedicated to advocating for all people of New Jersey's 11th Congressional District. NJ 11th for Change fosters an engaged and informed community with the power to shape its political representation to be transparent, responsive, and accountable, and to reflect the values of fairness, compassion, inclusivity, and a decent quality of life. Find out more at NJ11thForChange.org.

Tickets to Roan @ The Gates are $16-39, and are available at LunaStage.org/Roan or by calling 973-395-5551. Entrance to post-show conversations is included in admission, and ticket-holders to any performance are invited to attend post-show conversations of other performances as long as there is space.

Luna Stage develops and produces vibrant plays about local and global experiences. Luna brings communities together for artistic events that catalyze conversations and create understanding and change. Firmly rooted in New Jersey's Valley Arts District of Orange and West Orange-a crossroads of cultures-the Company celebrates the diverse voices that surround us. Luna Stage is dedicated to eliminating barriers to participation and nurturing the next generation of audiences and artists.

Luna's classes for children and adults, and its developmental programs for early career artists, inspire community members to nurture their own creativity and vision.

Luna Stage has contributed to the development of over 80 new works for the stage, earning a reputation for artistic excellence. Some of those plays have gone on to productions in New York City and beyond. Luna's unique approach to producing, as well as the work itself, fosters an environment of inclusivity, understanding, and infinite possibility.

Roan @ The Gates, a world premiere by Christina Gorman

Directed by Michelle Tattenbaum

At Luna Stage, 555 Valley Road, West Orange, NJ | 973 395 5551

Begins: Thursday, January 31 | Opens: Saturday, February 2 | Closes: Sunday, February 24

Performance Schedule: Thursday at 7:30 pm, Friday & Saturday at 8 pm, Sunday at 3pm

Tickets: LunaStage.org/Roan

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