A new era began on Sept. 5 as the New Brunswick Performing Arts Center, located on Albany Street, held its ribbon cutting ceremony followed by the showing of their first performance, “Paul Robeson.”
Residents from all over, local officials and dignitaries flooded the streets to witness this momentous occasion which took almost 12 years to come to fruition.
The NBPAC features more than 200 apartment units, two theaters, six rehearsal spaces, a lobby/bar area, office space and a 344-car parking garage.
The center will be home to four companies; American Repertory Ballet, George Street Playhouse, Rutgers University Mason Gross School of Arts and Crossroads Theatre Company.
New Brunswick Mayor Jim Cahill was among the several guest speakers at the event.
“It goes back to the 1970s when New Brunswick was a city in decline — when community change makers, local artists and elected officials reinvigorated the arts here in our city as a transformative force in New Brunswick, serving as an economic engine but also fueling the heart and soul of our community,” he said.
Other speakers included Christopher Paladino, President of New Brunswick Development Corporation, one of the Managing owners of the New Brunswick Performing Arts Center, New Brunswick City Council President John Anderson, Middlesex County Freeholder Director Ronald Rios and Interim Executive Director of the New Brunswick Cultural Center, Tracey O’Reggio.
The curtain rose on NBPAC with Crossroads Theatre Company’s “Paul Robeson.” Written by Phillip Hayes Dean, the show chronicles the glorious and complicated life of the scholar, athlete and activist. The production coincides with Rutgers’ commemoration of the 100th anniversary of Robeson’s graduation from the university.
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