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Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Nine Short Plays and Monologues Written by New Jersey Writers to play in Montclair


Montclair, NJ—Skinny jeans battle with sweatpants. Neighbors bond over cake. A married couple tries to find the right time for intimacy: could it be 10:10 p.m.?
In A Collection of One-Act plays and Monologues, an evening of short plays and monologues written by New Jersey playwrights, presented by Apricot Sky, relationships in all their comic and poignant complexity are the subject. The plays run two weekends, Nov. 8-10, and Nov. 15-16, at The Grove Street Theatre, 130 Grove St., in Montclair.
This is the fourth time Apricot Sky Productions, based in the Grove Street Theater, has presented a festival of plays. “I want to show the community how much talent we have in town,” said Eric Alter, producer, whose plays also appear in the evening. “We could do another evening just with the plays we can’t produce this time around. There is a lot of native theatrical talent here.” The playwrights and directors are all from New Jersey.
 The playwrights include:  Eric Alter (producer, playwright, Livingston), Lisa Annitti (Montclair), Lyle Landon (Montclair), Elaine Molinaro (Montclair), Gwen Orel (Millburn), Brian Parks (Bloomfield) and Stefanie Sears (Bloomfield)
The Directors are:  Colleen Brambilla, Helen Exel (Montclair), Bob Lowy, Elaine Molinaro and Gwen Orel.
In the company are:  Lona Alpert, Jon Beeler, Laurie Bloch, Richard Douglass, Celeste Fasone, Jeff Foote, Adam Gelles, Aaron Gutterman, Angela Leavens, Matt Masiello, Christine Orzepowski, Will Palazzolo, Florence Pape, Jessiah Paul, Elizabeth Quinones, Alyson Wood and Kirk Woodward.
Elaine Molinaro, of Culture Connection Theater, is directing again in the festival. She directed Orel’s “News” in 2018. This year, for the first time, Molinaro appears as a playwright. Her piece, “Pants Story,” was written in a playwriting class taught by Gwen Orel. That kind of connection is just what Molinaro likes to foster in her own company. “The Montclair theatrical community grows by working together, and Eric helps to make that happen,” she said. “The theater makers have an amazing opportunity to see their work come to life, and the audience has a chance to get to know them.”
In her play, a pair of baggy sweatpants and a pair of skinny jeans have it out, while their owner tries to get ready for date night. But other plays are serious: in “The Upside Down Grief Cake,” by Eric Alter, two neighbors suffering a loss realize they have more in common than they think. In Orel’s “P.L.” a teenage boy’s driving lesson calls up haunting memories of a mass shooting. And then there’s “The Sandwich,” by Stefanie Sears, a monologue that explores how the universal meal reflects the human condition.
“All of the pieces are under 15 minutes, so if you don’t like one, another is coming up,” said Alter of the seven-play, two-monologue event.
The shows run on Friday, Nov. 8 and Saturday, Nov. 9, at 8 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 10 at 2 p.m., and Friday, Nov. 15 and Saturday, Nov. 16, 8 p.m. Suggested audience is 12 and older. The Grove Street Theatre is handicapped accessible.  
Tickets can be purchased at the door (cash only), and reserved by calling 973-509-2350.  For more information please visit:  www.apricotskyproductions.com 

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