NEWSIES Returns to New Jersey With Some of Broadway's Best

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NEWSIES Returns to New Jersey With Some of Broadway's BestSome of Broadway's best performers will grace the stage for Disney's Tony Award-winning musical "NEWSIES," at the Axelrod Performing Arts Center June 1 - 17. The acclaimed musical, which had its start at New Jersey's Paper Mill Playhouse before heading to Broadway and a national tour, is finally returning to its roots in New Jersey.

As New Jersey's newest professional theater, the Axelrod PAC will present the smash hit musical, directed and choreographed by Broadway veteran Marcos Santana ("On Your Feet," "Guys and Dolls," "In the Heights"), for 14 performances.

Sanata directs an award-winning cast that includes Jim Schubin in the lead role of Jack Kelly; James Judy, as publisher Joseph Pulitzer, and N'Kenge, returning to APAC as Medda, theater owner and part-time mom to the ragamuffin newsies.

With a score written by Alan Menken ("Beauty and the Beast," "Aladdin," "Little Shop of Horrors"), "NEWSIES" is based on the true story of the Newsboys' Strike of 1899, which interrupted the empires of two New York publishers.

Schubin starred in the Off-Broadway phenomenon "The Fantasticks" and appeared in the national tour of "The Sound of Music" and on HBO's "Boardwalk Empire."

Judy brings his experience from the national tour of "NEWSIES" and Broadway credits including "Into the Woods," "The Scarlet Pimpernel," "Jekyll & Hyde," and "A Christmas Carol," among others.

International, award-winning singer N'Kenge was dubbed "Electrifying" in her role as Mary Wells, which she originated, in Broadway's "Motown: The Musical." Motown founder Berry Gordy describes her as, "The most versatile artist I know." She made her Broadway debut in "Sondheim on Sondheim" opposite Vanessa Williams and Barbara Cook and has headlined solo concerts at Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center and the Library of Congress.

Katherine Plumber, the feisty female reporter and Jack's love interest, is played by Lilly Elliot and Patrick Tombs, who plays Jack Kelly's sidekick Crutchie, is a NY-based actor, singer and cellist who is thrilled to be tackling this challenging role.

In addition to Schubin, the cast features several New Jersey natives including Henry Berry (Rumson) who plays Les, and Newsies Jonathan Duvelson (Union), Anthony Lloyd Fania (Califon), Matteo Marretta (Brick) and Matthew Donzella (Howell). Rory Cabrera Connolly, who also plays a Newsie, is a graduate of Westminster College of the Arts at Rider University.

The cast also features Laura Alagna, Danny Caraballo, Brian Elliott, Jevorn Henry, Braden Allen King, Ashleigh Kiven, James Little, Jonathan D. Mesisca, Spencer Micetich, Lane Northcutt, Matthew Oster, Stephanie Eve Parker, Kylan Ross, Richard Spitaletta and Michael Thompson.

"NEWSIES" runs from June 1 - 17. Tickets, ranging from $37 to $46, are available online at or by calling 732.531.9106, ext. 14. Axelrod Performing Arts Center is located at 100 Grant Ave., Ocean Township. The theater offers senior and student discounts, as well as ample, free, on-site parking and is completely accessible.

The Axelrod Performing Arts Center is New Jersey's newest professional theater, offering main-stage musicals with casts and production teams from New York City and beyond as well as original concerts throughout the year. The Axelrod fosters artistic excellence by showcasing varied and distinct cultural programs that enrich the imaginative, intellectual, and creative soul, while cultivating an appreciation of diverse communities through the pursuit of the arts. For more information, please visit

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