The 514-seat Victoria Theatre at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark, NJ, opens officially on Oct.24 with six performances by Theatre Sans Fil, Canada's foremost puppet theatre.
The puppet troupe will present one of its signature pieces, The Dream Catchers, a family-oriented play inspired by actual studies of children's dreams.
The Dream Catchers is based on the dreams of 500 children and features 30 puppets -- including the "good monsters" and "bad monsters" that pop up frequently in the dreams and nightmares of kids.
The New Jersey Performing Arts Center, a $180 million glass shelled structure, opened on Oct. 18 to cheers and standing ovations from a black tie audience including Paul Newman and James Earl Jones. The performers that evening included Kathleen Battle, Chita Rivera, Savion Glover, Wynton Marsalis, and the Alvin Ailey dancers.
Upcoming performances at NJPAC include Umbatha: The Zulu Macbeth on Oct. 28; San Francisco Western Opera Theater in Bizet's Carmen on Nov. 2; the Crossroads Theatre Company's production of August Wilson's early play Jitney, Nov. 5 - 9; Mandy Patinkin in his one-man show on Dec. 9; David Copperfield on Dec. 10 and 11; and Simple Gifts, a family-oriented Christmas and Hannukah play by the comedy team of Gould and Stearns, on Dec. 14. The Dream Catchers puppet performances are Fri, Oct 24 at 8 PM; Sat., Oct. 25 at 2 and 7 PM; Sun, Oct. 26 at 2 PM; and Sat., Nov. 1 at 2 and 7 PM. For ticket and other information, call (888) 466-5722.
-- By Rebecca Paller