Tag Archives: New York City

2 Performance Artists Request & Receive Weeded Books from Library for Art Installation Honoring The Book

THE PAUSE THAT REFRESHES – Performance Artists Antonia Wright (L) and Ruben Millares (R) of Miami, Florida, recently came to the Jersey City Free Public Library in search of books for the latest incarnation of their art installation – a wall of books. With 14 boxes of weeded books to spare at the Main Library shown packed into their vehicle, Antonia and Ruben built a small wall, checking out a couple of titles. Notice Ruben is reading Ray Bradbury’s seminal work, Fahrenheit 451, a book after his own heart, for this wall is an homage to books!

JERSEY CITY, NJ   April 4, 2012 – Performance artists Ruben Millares and Antonia Wright recently came to the Main Library in Jersey City to abscond with 14 boxes of books that were weeded from the library branches’ collections. The use for the books can raise an educated eyebrow…

            They came in search of books for their art installation at the Fountain Art Fair, which was held in mid-March in New York City. From Miami, both artists have been doing this installation of books as a “homage to the book, a celebration” and a commentary on how reading in libraries has gone digital. Continue reading 2 Performance Artists Request & Receive Weeded Books from Library for Art Installation Honoring The Book

Jonathan Singer’s “Botanica Magnifica” Exhibit Opens on January 28th at the New Jersey State Museum


By Evelyn Bonilla


“Open your eyes and you will see the beauty from within”, these are the words that come to mind, as I explain the photographs of Jonathan Singer. Described as a “force of nature” Singer brings to life “rare exotic flowers and plants” using photography and his extraordinary vision; the compilation of the two brings to fruition photographs which bring to mind the works of Rembrandt.

 On January 28th the public will have the opportunity to view the one of a kind photographs by Jonathan Singer. The exhibit “Botanica Magnifica” will be presented in two parts. “Part One” is on view January 28 through April 15, and “Part Two” will be on view April 21 through August 26 at the New Jersey State Museum. Continue reading Jonathan Singer’s “Botanica Magnifica” Exhibit Opens on January 28th at the New Jersey State Museum

Searching for the Echo-Book and Film Shine Light on 1960s Street Corner Acappella Groups

Bookmark and Share



By Sally Deering

Acappella groups – four or five guys singing harmonies with no back-up band – bridged the gap between 1950s Doo-Wop and 1960s rock and roll, but until now, little has been written about that time in music history when teenagers harmonized on street corners, inside subways and underneath train trestles searching for the echo that gave them their sound.

Abraham Santiago and Steven Dunham author's preserving a music genre of the 1960s

Abraham Santiago grew up in Jersey City and remembers the days he sang tenor in The Concepts,concepts a street corner acappella group of fellow students from Ferris High School in Jersey City. Santiago, who now resides in Chicago, took his memories of those days and collaborated on a book and documentary about the acappella era with Steve Dunham, an acappella enthusiast and music producer in Las Vegas with a mammoth acappella record collection and a passion for singing street harmonies.

 “Acappella Street Corner Vocal Groups:  A Brief History and Discography of 1960s Singing Groups,” (Mellow Sound Press, Chicago,167 pgs;) chronicles every street corner acappella group ever recorded from that time like  heartaches-cover-of-albumJoanne and the Heartaches, the Royal Counts royal-countsthe-persuassionsand the Persuasions; and the record companies that produced their songs, like Snowflake, Relic and Catamount. The documentary, “Street Corner Harmony: The Missing Link in Rock and Roll History,” narrated by record producer Wayne Stierle delves deeper into the singers’ lives and the genre of acappella music. Both the book and the documentary are touchstones to a bygone era, the time between the 1950s and 1960s, when musical tastes shifted to British rockers like The Beatles and short-haired teens singing acappella became as old-hat as the Hi-Fi record players that spun their songs.         Continue reading Searching for the Echo-Book and Film Shine Light on 1960s Street Corner Acappella Groups

Jersey City Film Producer PJ Leonard Lends a Helping Hand With The Premiere of Falling Faithful

Executiver Producer PJ Leonard
Here’s Lookin’ at You, Kid!


 Film Producer PJ Leonard Rolls out Red Carpet for Little Curly Top at NYC Premier of “The Fallen Faithful”

 By Sally Deering

 Film producer PJ Leonard grew up in Jersey City at a time when mothers taught sons to do the right thing with a smack in the back of the head. He’s one of those tough-talking types with the heart of a marshmallow, like when Bogart says bye-bye to Bergman in “Casablanca.”  Bogey, too, had to do the right thing and maybe his mama cracked him good because he ended up sacrificing his only crack at freedom for the woman he loved.

fallenfaithfullposter_final-001web1 “The Fallen Faithful” is Leonard’s second crack at filmmaking as Executive Producer doing what producers do best – making a movie from script-reading to film screening. As Executive Producer of Other Side of the River Productions Leonard raises money, puts creative teams together, hires actors, negotiates contracts and scouts locations – the bim, bam, boom of movie-making. It’s also his job to get his new film seen, which is exactly what Leonard put in place for Monday, October 25th at the Director’s Guild Theater in New York City where “The Fallen Faithful” makes it’s NYC premiere. It promises to be a glitzy night with the film’s stars Sonny Marinelli and Obba Babatunde attending and one special name on the guest list that isn’t in the credits. 

maggierusso1 Meghan “Maggie” Elizabeth Russo, a curly-topped two year-old from Staten Island was diagnosed with retinoblastoma, a rare form of cancer that forms in the eye. Currently in treatment at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City, little Meghan has a tough road ahead as she prepares for a bone-marrow transplant and a series of chemo. Her dad, Mike is a NYC Firefighter and mom, Mary Beth, left her full-time job to care for Maggie, her older brother Michael and baby sister Mary Kate. Keeping the family healthy and happy are Mike and Mary Beth’s number one priority, and according to Leonard, “they look like the happiest people in the world, always doing things together,” but they can use a helping hand paying for necessities like Pampers and babysitters. That’s where Leonard plays a part.


Continue reading Jersey City Film Producer PJ Leonard Lends a Helping Hand With The Premiere of Falling Faithful

Business Travel-New Complimentary Shuttle Service at The Westin Jersey City

Newport Helps Business Travelers Save on Transportation


FREE Shuttle takes hotel guests to locations within a 3 mile radius of the hotel

JERSEY CITY, NJ (August 10, 2010) – The Westin Jersey City Newport, located just 10 minutes from downtown Manhattan, has just announced a new service for its business travel guests that will help them save time and money – a complimentary shuttle service. The hotel’s new shuttle service now operates, 7 a.m. – 9.a.m. and 4:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. daily, and drives guests to meeting destinations within a three mile radius of the hotel including, Exchange Place and Harborside Financial area. The hotel’s shuttle is branded with a Westin logo making it instantly recognizable to guests.


  Continue reading Business Travel-New Complimentary Shuttle Service at The Westin Jersey City

Saving the Stacks with a Stacked Hollywood Blonde

Marilyn Monroe Memorabilia to Help Fund Library Capital Improvements

 by Sally Deering

another-marilyn-copyHollywood legend Marilyn Monroe lit up the silver screen with her simmering sexuality, bootyliscious bod and a killer smile that warmed film-lovers hearts.  Playing the bubble-headed blonde roles producers cast her in, Monroe delivered sex-appeal by the D-cupful with an added twist of vulnerability, like her character Sugar Kane in “Some Like it Hot.”  When Sugar tells “girl musicians” Josephine and Daphne, (played Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon,)  “I’m tired of getting the fuzzy end of the lollipop,” the chord strikes like an arrow threw the heart and although the line belongs to writer/director Billy Wilder and his co-writer I.A.L. Diamond, the delivery is all Marilyn.


Continue reading Saving the Stacks with a Stacked Hollywood Blonde

COVER STORY-Leading The Kennedy Dancers

Diane Dragone (still) has the Dancer in Her Soul


by Sally Deering 

 In the 1920s, when Shirley Temple tapped into America’s hearts with her bouncing ringlets, ruffled crinolines and shiny black tap shoes, mothers from Canarsie to Kenosha trundled their daughters off to their local dance school dreaming of their baby girl’s name in lights. Nowadays, child stars go by first names like Britney, but the local dance school still thrives as the only training ground for kids who dream of a dancing career.

 One local dance pioneer who has kept the stage lights burning in her neighborhood dance studio for the past 34 years is Diane Dragone, Artistic Director of The Kennedy Dancers, a professional dance company and dance school that stands in the wings of New York City.  Through her school and with her years as a teacher and choreographer, Dragone has trained and enriched the lives of thousands of inner-city kids – some who became professional dancers — and she has brought modern and classical dance performances to the multi-cultural and economically-diverse Hudson community. Continue reading COVER STORY-Leading The Kennedy Dancers

Does George Washington – Owes Library Fines, about $100,000 in Late Fees?


According to the website Lowering the Bar  President George Washington has been accused by a New York Library for failing to return valuable library materials checked out during his presidency. It seems the former President  took out two books on in October of 1789, one  on international law and another that contained transcripts of debates in Britain’s House of Commons.  The books were due back November 2, 1789.  If it’s found to be true, that neither book was ever returned this would mean that , setting aside the value of the items themselves, and adjusting for inflation, Washington currently owes about $100,000 in late fees.

Source: boingboing

Read more Lowering the Bar

Attic Ensemble Presents WORKING

River View Observer “Best Pick”

Local Theater Performance

April 23-May 9


 Fridays and Saturdays at 8pm, Sundays at 3pm;  Thursdays, April 29 and May 6 at 7pm. ms, joys and concerns of the average working American are the focus of this unique, extraordinary musical. That the everyday lives of “common” men and women should be so compelling and moving will  surprise and inspire anyone who has ever punched a time clock.  Based on Studs Terkel’s best-selling book of interviews with American  workers, Working paints a vivid portrait of the men and women the world  so often takes for granted: the schoolteacher, the parking lot attendant, the  waitress, the millworker, the mason, the trucker, the fireman, the  housewife, just to name a few. It’s a highly original look at the American landscape that’s simply impossible to forget.
Charge tickets Online. Cash and checks are accepted at the box office.  NJ Arts Cards are accepted for discounted ticket pricing.     The Barrow Mansion is handicapped accessible and barrier free. Large print program available upon request; please call one week in advance to arrange for a large print program. Assisted listening devices will be available for the Thursday May 6th 7 p.m. performance. Please call one week in advance to reserve a device.

The Attic Ensemble Inc