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Community Roots: Selections from the Local Legacies Project
Collage of Local Legacies
Inaugural season of "Jazz for Teens" at NJCPA
Inaugural Season of "Jazz for Teens," New Jersey Center for the Performing Arts. Photo: Julie Lenberger

New Jersey Performing Arts Center

NJPAC has attracted more than a million visitors since its October 1997 opening in Newark. Many performances have been sold out, and their diversity is apparent from a sampling: the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, violinist Itzhak Perlman, The Sound of Music starring Richard Chamberlain, pop singer Sting, jazz great Sonny Rollins, Nutcracker on Ice, the Flying Karamazov Brothers, and Ladysmith Black Mambazo. Nine out of ten New Jersey residents call NJPAC one of the state's major accomplishments of the last quarter century. The building of the facility resulted from a 1987 study of the present and future needs of New Jersey's performing arts organizations. The study found that no existing facilities in the state were adequate for the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, the New Jersey State Opera, the various New Jersey dance and theater companies, or national and international touring companies. The decision to build a new complex rather than upgrade existing buildings was based on the consultants' experience in the performing arts, which confirmed the importance of "critical mass" in attracting patrons and spurring the growth of a new cultural district. This judgment proved correct; NJPAC has played a pivotal role in returning nightlife to the state's largest urban community.

Originally submitted by: Donald M. Payne, Representative (10th District).

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The Local Legacies project provides a "snapshot" of American Culture as it was expressed in spring of 2000. Consequently, it is not being updated with new or revised information with the exception of "Related Website" links.

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