Wednesday, November 11, 2015

CSC Fringe Festival with ‘Call Mr. Robeson: A Life, with Songs’


Tayo PR

New Jersey-born  actor, singer, athlete and activist Paul Robeson  was known as one of  the most prominent African American actors of his time.  Born in Princeton, NJ, Robeson was known in the theatrical community for being the first African American actor to play Othello on  Broadway,  and for his commercial success with both the stage and film versions of Showboat (in which his rendition of “Ol Man River” brought the house down) and Eugene O’Neill’s Emperor Jones. In addition to his fame as a singer and Paul_Robeson performer,  Paul Robeson (right) has been logged in the annals of history as a pioneer that helped shape the social and cultural landscape of this country.   Now, Nigerian-born, London-based actor Tayo Aluko (photo above) brings this iconic figure to life for the CSC Fringe Festival with Call Mr. Robeson:  A Life, with Songs November 12 through 15 in LPAC - the Lackland Performing Arts Center.

Best Musical Performance at the Atlantic Fringe in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, August 2013,

Best Solo Show at the Stratford-upon-Avon Fringe, June 2013 and

Argus Angel Award for Artistic Excellence and the Best Male Performer Award at the Brighton Fringe, May 2008. 

Winner, Best Musical Performance, Atlantic Fringe, Halifax, Nova Scotia, September 2013

Winner, Best Solo Show, Stratford-upon-Avon Fringe, June 2013

Triple Winner (Impresario Award, Best Actor, Best Original Work) London Fringe, Canada, June 2012

Double Winner (Playwright & Performer), Ogeyinka Merit Awards for Excellence, London, October 2010

Winner, Angel Award for Artistic Excellence & Best Male Performer, Brighton Festival Fringe, May 2008

               A victim of the notorious McCarthy Blacklist, Robeson’s outspoken criticism of the racism and the establishment resulted in his being branded a traitor to his country, harassed, and denied opportunities to perform or travel.  Just as physical, emotional and mental stress threaten to push him over the fine line between genius and madness, he is summoned to appear before the House Un-American Activities Committee, to give the most difficult and important performance of his career.

ShowBoat-1936-759636 This roller-coaster journey through Robeson’s remarkable and eventful life highlights how his pioneering and heroic (but largely forgotten) political activism led many to describe him as the forerunner of the civil rights movement.  It features much fiery oratory and some of his famous songs, including a dramatic rendition of his famous Ol' Man River.   Robeson is accompanied by New York pianist, Dennis Nelson.

Robeson was an Alumni of Rutgers University- only the 3rd black student to ever attend at that time, as well as Columbia Law, where he received his law degree in 1923.

Performances of Call Mr. Robeson:  A Life, with Songs are Thursday, November 12 at 7:30pm, Friday, November 13 and Saturday, November 14 at 8pm and Sunday, November 15 at 2pm.  Tickets are $22.50 for adults on Friday evening and Sunday afternoon.  Saturday evening performance is $25.00 for adults.  Thursday Evening performance is $22.50 for all seats also enjoy a buy one get one free when tickets are purchased in person at the CSC box office two hours prior to performance time.

1007LacklandBldg For more information or to purchase tickets visit or call the box office at (908) 979 – 0900.  The box office is open Monday through Friday from 1 – 5pm and two hours prior to every performance.  The CSC box office is located in the David and Carol Lackland Center on the campus of Centenary College; 715 Grand Ave. Hackettstown, NJ.

The 2015-16 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 Regional 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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