Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Theater Project Jr presents Wizard of Oz at Rahway’s Hamilton Stage


Nick Koloski (Elmwood Park), Emma Cusmano (Piscataway), Kayla Lugo (Cranford), Kayleigh Pierce (Cranford), Alexis Page (Piscataway


Seventeen New Jersey young people will present THE WIZARD OF OZ, this year’s presentation by THEATER PROJECT JR. Each summer, the program takes students (ages 8 & up) through an eight-week course that culminates in four performances for friends, family and the community. Along the way, students sing, dance, act, build confidence in themselves, make friends and have a wonderful time. The show will be presented at the Hamilton Stage in Rahway, August 11-13

“The kids are thrilled about performing in such a prestigious environment,” says the program’s director/producer Mary Iannelli, who has helmed the program for over 10 years. “Doing the show in such a beautiful venue really validates their hard work.”

Theater Project Jr has been getting rave reviews from parents and children who return to the program year after year. “Mary challenges each of her kids, and every year they learn and grow as actors. Mary has also created a family atmosphere where the kids all look out for one another and enjoy performing together,” says one parent. “I just can't say enough wonderful things about the program.”

The young people performing in the show are drawn from Union County and beyond by the program’s reputation for providing a happy, supportive setting for budding actors. This year’s cast includes:

Berkeley Heights:  Sasha Raab

Cranford:  Miles Burcher, London A. Hodge, Keira Coakley, Kayla Lugo, Danny Pierce, Ashleigh Poszyler

Elmwood Park:  Nicholas Koloski

Gilette:  Shaye Bundonis

Iselin: Lily Torri

Mountainside: Toby Pasternak

Piscataway:  Emma Cusmano, Alexis Page

Rahway: Sharonda Watkis-Davis

Springfield:  Adam Kaunfer

Westfield:  Gerard Lang, Kayleigh Pierce

The Hamilton Stage, part of the Union County Performing Arts Center, is located at 360 Hamilton Street in Rahway. Tickets to the production are available at Hamilton Stage Box Office or at

The Theater Project, a professional theater company presenting events in Cranford, Maplewood and Union, is celebrating 23 years of bringing productions of the best contemporary plays to New Jersey. Their mission is to enhance the cultural richness of the community by producing new or lesser-known plays on challenging themes, by introducing children to the joys of live theater, and by providing avenues for creative expression for New Jersey’s playwrights, actors and directors.

For more information on THEATER PROJECT JR, call 908 809-8865 or visit

Cast Pic.jpgThe cast of OZ:

Back row:  Adam Kaunfer (Springfield), Shaye Bundonis (Gilette), Sasha Raab (Cranford), Nick Koloski (Elmwood Park), Emma Cusmano (Piscataway), Kayla Lugo (Cranford), Kayleigh Pierce, Alexis Page (Piscataway), Sharonda Watkis-Davis (Rahway), Gerard Lang (Westfield).

Front row:  London A. Hodge (Cranford), Miles Burcher (Cranford), Danny Pierce (Cranford), Lily Torri (Iselin).

Missing (Toby Pasternak (Mountainside),  Ashleigh Poszyler (Cranford), Keira Coakley (Cranford).



2017 production by Theater Project Jr’s summer musical theater class for kids 8 and up.

WHEN:        August 11 at 8 pm
August 12 at 2 pm and 8 pm
August 13 at 2 pm

WHERE:      UPAC’s Hamilton Stage, 360 Hamilton Street, Rahway 07065

Phone: 732-428-4604

TIX: $18. Go to or Hamilton Stage Box Office


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