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TWO RIVER THEATER OUR MISSION We create great American theater by developing and producing new works and world masterpieces that most richly direct our gaze to the life of the human spirit. We cultivate an audience that cherishes the intimate joy of theater, enriched when shared by a community of others.

VISION To be a theater whose work contributes to the canon of world theater and is a vital cultural resource for our community.

CORE VALUES ARTISTIC EXCELLENCE We challenge and nurture the visions of adventurous theater artists. Our commitment to the artistic process is sustained over time through an investment in people, their creative process, and our dedication to the highest artistic standards. EDUCATION AND COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT We make our theater a welcoming resource for all. We create engagement programs and partnerships that encourage all voices to come together in conversation around the stories we tell. We invest in the next generation of artists and audiences by introducing students and lifelong learners to the possibility and adventure that theater brings to our lives. EQUITY, DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION We believe that the essence of theater is diversity: it invites us to adopt other points of view, if only for a brief time in a darkened theater. We aspire to build an environment in which artists, audiences, employees, and Board members from different backgrounds and experiences together form an institution that is equitable, diverse, and inclusive. OPERATIONAL EXCELLENCE We are dedicated to the highest standards in our governance, management, operational, and financial practices. We are committed to developing and retaining an experienced and accomplished staff, an engaged and informed Board of Trustees, and a working environment that attracts staff, volunteers, and artists of the highest caliber.

Cover pictures, clockwise from top: Dee Hoty and Michael Cumpsty in The Lion in Winter; Arnetia Walker in August Wilson’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom; Zuzanna Szadkowski, Jason O’Connell and Nicole Lewis in The Merry Wives of Windsor; Teal Wicks and the Company of The Ballad of Little Jo; Nikiya Mathis, Kate Wetherhead, Becca Blackwell, and Danielle Skraastad. in Hurricane Diane; and the Company of The Women of Padilla. Photos by T. Charles Erickson.


ABOUT US Joan and Robert Rechnitz, Founders

Photo by Lisa Campbell.

TWO RIVER THEATER is a professional 501(c)(3) nonprofit theater that produces plays and musicals—including classics, contemporary works, and world premieres—under the leadership of Artistic Director John Dias and Managing Director Michael Hurst. Our state-of-the-art facility in Red Bank, New Jersey includes two theaters; the Joan and Robert Rechnitz, a 349-seat theater; and the Marion Huber, a flexible performance space that seats 110. We are proud to note that while we do enjoy two performance spaces, there is no “second stage” at Two River—all of our productions are challenging, fully realized works performed in whichever space best serves the play. Two River Theater was founded in 1994 by Joan and Robert M. Rechnitz. In 1997, the theater moved from its first home on the campus of Monmouth University to the Algonquin Arts Theatre in Manasquan. Following a community effort led by Bob and Joan Rechnitz, in 2005 Two River moved into its current home in Red Bank. The theater has received numerous accolades throughout its history, including its designation as a Major Arts Institution by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts. We present a host of world-class productions, educational programming, and free events that draw our audiences even further into the artistic experience. We are proud to welcome more than 45,000 patrons. The theater contributes significantly to the $32 million economic impact of the arts on Monmouth County each year. Dias and Hurst are now in their seventh full season at Two River. We are proud that the theater is receiving critical acclaim and “best of” citations from national and New York press including The New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Huffington Post. At the heart of our mission, our goal is to cultivate, develop and produce new work, while continuing to produce extraordinary plays from the past. We are making Two River a home for adventurous theater artists to come and try out their biggest and boldest ideas. And we continue in our efforts to build a theater that is a vital cultural asset to our local and artistic communities. Thank you for investing in our home for great American theater.



Company of The Women of Padilla. Photo by T. Charles Erickson.

PIPELINE FOR NEW WORK Two River believes in producing a wide range of new works. To that end, we invest a variety of resources in the process that leads to final production. Our new-play commissioning program was launched in 2010 to create a pipeline for such work, and we are committed to sustaining and expanding the program. For playwrights and their collaborative artists, we host residencies, retreats, readings and workshops. We also nurture collaborations with other theaters and artists engaged in new-play development, such as Clubbed Thumb and New York University’s Graduate Musical Theater Writing program. New works developed for production in the 2016/17 Season included three plays and a musical: Hurricane Diane, a commissioned play written by our first Playright-in-Residence, Madeleine George; The Women of Padilla by Tony Meneses; a new adaptation of The Merry Wives of Windsor by Eric Tucker; and The Ballad of Little Jo, a musical by Grammy Award-winning Nashville songwriter Mike


Reid (composer, co-bookwriter), Sarah Schlesinger (lyricist, co-bookwriter), and John Dias (co-bookwriter). The Ballad of Little Jo, which had only one previous American production (at Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre Company in 2000) represents a kind of theater that Two River Theater believes is vastly underserved: works that have already had world-premiere productions but very much deserve another chance to be explored and staged. As part of our commitment to new work, we have resolved to actively seek out some of these pieces, to give them (and their creators) a chance at further development and a new life. Our pipeline included developmental workshops of four large-scale musicals, including a Two River commission, Middle School Mysteries by Daniel Maté and Marshall Pailet, which was directed by Jessica Stone (A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, 2015). We continued to develop Oo-Bla-Dee, a jazz musical by Regina Taylor, with music by Diedre L. Murray, directed by Ruben Santiago-Hudson, and Radiant Baby, a musical about Keith Haring with a book by Stuart Ross, music by Debra Barsha, and lyrics by Ira Gasman, Stuart Ross, and Debra Barsha. We also invested resources in

“Two River must always be a theater that is –first and foremost– of and for its community; its primary audiences and supporters will always be the people of New Jersey who envisioned it, built it, and sustain it. But it’s ripe for being a theater in the clear and immediate site of artists, funders, and audiences from all over the country but especially New York. An exciting way to accomplish that goal – and to become a theater of real consequence—is to develop and produce new American plays and musicals, and to support previously produced works that are worthy of additional cultivation.”— Artistic Director John Dias

Pamela’s First Musical, based on a children’s book by Wendy Wasserstein, written by composer Cy Coleman, lyricist David Zippel, and Wasserstein, whose book was further developed by Christopher Durang; Graciela Daniel directed a starry Broadway cast including Stephen Bogardus, Marin Mazzie, Emily Skinner, and Chip Zien. To maintain the consistency of our ambition, we strive to commission two plays a year, and maintain up to six projects in the pipeline of development. We typically invest $15,000 in a new play commission and an additional $25,000 to develop a play for production through workshops, readings and dramaturgical support. Other commissions currently in development include plays and musicals by Sarah DeLappe, David Greenspan (The Bridge of San Luis Rey, scheduled for production in 2017/18), Lisa Kron (2.5 Minute Ride, 2013 and Broadway’s Fun Home), Martin Moran (A Map of the Soul, 2014), Tanya Saracho (Nosotros), and the team of Joe Iconis and Joe Tracz (Be More Chill, 2014).

LOOKING AT THE CLASSICS WITH FRESH EYES Our commitment to artistic excellence applies to the production of classics and masterpieces, which we invite artists to revisit with a fresh eye to better connect with contemporary audiences. Programming classic plays is an opportunity for engagement with the highly skilled interpretive talents of great directors and actors. Our goal is to afford these artists the time, resources, and financial support they need to fully explore classic plays. In the 2016/17 Season, in addition to Eric Tucker’s adaptation of The Merry Wives of Windsor, we produced vital new productions of August Wilson’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, under the direction of consummate Wilson interpreter Ruben SantiagoHudson and James Goldman’s The Lion in Winter, under the direction of Tyne Rafaeli.

Company of The Ballad of Little Jo. Photo by T. Charles Erickson.


LATINO OUTREACH CROSSING BORDERS (CRUZANDO FRONTERAS) FESTIVAL Two River Theater launched the Crossing Borders (Cruzando Fronteras) festival in 2011 to create opportunities for Latino theater artists and foster a stronger relationship between the theater and Red Bank’s Latino residents. Crossing Borders has since become a mainstay within the Latino artistic community. Each year the festival attracts more than 700 audience members, artists, businesses, and civic leaders. In addition to developing new plays that have gone on to full productions at Two River and elsewhere, it has helped spark other audience engagement initiatives at Two River, including Nosotros, an artistic outreach program. In 2016/17, Crossing Borders (Cruzando Fronteras) celebrated the broadest range of voices and experiences by reflecting the diversity of stories being told by Latino playwrights. The festival brought together writers and stories from all over the country to explore questions of individual and national identity, and what it means to be a part of the Latino diaspora. A keynote address by theater scholar Brian Herrera kicked off the five-day event, which also included a neighborhood party with food and live music, and conversations following every reading. A company of actors, writers, directors, and other artists were in residence throughout the five-day festival. Brian Herrera, the keynote speaker, noted the following in his opening remarks: “Two River is among the few theaters nationally to demonstrate a sustained commitment to producing complex and provocative new works by Latino writers (in addition to works in translation by Latin American writers). I believe it is profoundly important not only for young people and first-time theatergoers, but also for longtime theater patrons to encounter the breadth and complexity of the Latino theatre tradition in its most contemporary iterations. The Crossing Borders festival provides that opportunity, while also permitting the communities of Red Bank to encounter each other as well.”


Crossing Borders Festival.

The following plays were included in the 2016/17 Crossing Borders (Cruzando Fronteras) festival: MALA By Melinda Lopez Directed by David Dower August 4/2017 EL COQUÍ ESPECTACULAR AND THE BOTTLE OF DOOM By Matt Barbot Directed by Nelson Eusebio III August 5/2017 NEIGHBORS (read in both English and Spanish) By Bernardo Cubria Directed by Lou Moreno August 6/2017 FADE By Tanya Saracho Directed by Jerry Ruiz August 7/2017 the 2016/17 Crossing Borders (Cruzando Fronteras) festival was sponsored by

NOSOTROS In addition to producing plays by Latino writers, Two River engages Latino artists and audiences through an ongoing initiative called Nosotros (“Us”), which launched with our 2015 production of Tony Menses’ play Guadalupe in the Guest Room. Originally built around a series of storytelling workshops created and led by playwright Tanya Saracho and director Jerry Ruiz, Nosotros has evolved and expanded to include Spanishlanguage programming and family events at the theater throughout each of our seasons. In connection with our production of The Women of Padilla in the spring of 2017, we curated three special events for both Spanish-speaking and Englishspeaking audiences. In March, we hosted “Family Day at the Theater: A Salute to Our Troops.” Events included writing letters to troops, arts and crafts, face painting and theater games. Participants also enjoyed a complimentary lunch provided by Urban Coalhouse. We also presented “Beauty in Two Language: An Evening of Spanish-Language Poetry in English Translation.” Poems by noted Spanish writers including Federico García Lorca and Pablo Neruda were read by cast members from The Women of Padilla and members of the Two River community. In April, we were pleased to bring audiences a special Spanish-language reading of The Women of Padilla (Las Mujeres de Padilla), free and open to the public. Directed by Leyma López (who directed in our 2015 Crossing Borders festival of plays by Cuban and Cuban-American playwrights), the reading featured special guest actors from New York, as well as The Women of Padilla cast member Keren Lugo.

Día de la Familia Attendees

“Thanks for once again inviting our Casa Freehold community to enjoy one of your very special shows and the warm hospitality you always give us,” she wrote. “One thing I noticed on this visit to Two River Theater is that, along with the people who came with us, there were others who came to know Two River Theater on previous Casa Freehold visits. This time they came on their own. Casa Freehold exists to welcome newly arrived immigrants and refugees, and empower them to fully engage in their new communities. Participating in your theater is a wonderful part of that process.”

In December, we offered a special Día de la Familia performance of our family show, A Very Electric Christmas, offering free tickets to Spanish-speaking audience members. After the performance, one of our Nosotros partners, Rita Dentino, Executive Director of Casa Freehold, wrote to us:



August Wilson’s MA RAINEY’S BLACK BOTTOM Directed by Ruben Santiago-Hudson RECHNITZ THEATER


Two River Theater opened its season with an extended four-week run of August Wilson’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Two River’s fourth production from August Wilson’s American Century Cycle. Wilson’s incendiary drama, set in the 1920s, took audiences into the world of legendary singer Ma Rainey (the real-life “Mother of the Blues”) as she laid down tracks with her band in a Chicago recording studio. “You know you’re in good hands with director Ruben SantiagoHudson. If he’s directing a mounting of a play from Wilson’s Century Cycle anywhere in the country, you know it’s going to reach a certain standard. And so I was happy to venture out of New York City for my first (but not last) trip to Two River Theater in Red Bank, New Jersey to see my first full production of Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.” – The Huffington Post

James A. Williams, Arnetia Walker, Brian D. Coats and Harvy Blanks in August Wilson’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom. Photo by T. Charles Erickson

AUDIENCE REACTIONS: “In my opinion, Two River has established itself as the world’s preeminent venue for the plays of August Wilson. Your Wilson productions should be a destination for his fans everywhere. It is a privilege to attend them. Thank you.”


“The performances, pre-play and after show discussion were outstanding. The subject matter was so relevant as to what is happening in the world today. I applaud the actors and the audience for the Q&A session which was honest, perhaps uncomfortable but necessary and so relevant.”

“This theater is a great asset to our community. I thank the sponsors who keep it going. I love the layout of the theater. It is a pleasure to attend a performance at Two River Theater.”


THE LION IN WINTER By James Goldman Directed by Tyne Rafaeli RECHNITZ THEATER


Tony Award nominee and Obie Award winner Michael Cumpsty and three-time Tony Award nominee Dee Hoty starred as Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine in this American classic. Set during Christmas 1183, The Lion in Winter crashed through castle doors as King Henry II of England, his wife Eleanor of Aquitaine and their sons Richard, Geoffrey and John fought over who would rule the land after Henry’s death. What made The Lion in Winter feel so immediate and fresh was how it bridged great political posturing with intense personal and domestic intrigue. “This exciting story, laced with humor and romance, has many twists and turns as the royals plot their vengeful schemes….. The seven-member cast of The Lion in Winter couldn’t be better.” –

The Company of The Lion In Winter. Photo by T. Charles Erickson

AUDIENCE REACTIONS: “I drive an hour each way from Bordentown to attend shows at Two River, and it’s always worth the long drive! The selection of plays is engaging and diverse, the performances are stellar, and there doesn’t seem to be a bad seat in the house! (or if there is, I haven’t found it yet.)”

“We love attending shows at Two River Theater. The whole experience is wonderful. The productions are professional and excellent. The staff at the theater is very courteous, helpful and friendly. And as my husband says ‘we can see a broadway production and be home PRODUCTION in 10 minutes!” SUPPORTED IN PART BY:

“I have been looking forward to this show since I first got the 2016-17 season accouncement. I was not disappointed. The Open Rehearsal gave me even more things to watch for and think about. Which is a good thing!” LEAD PRODUCTION SPONSOR:


HURRICANE DIANE By Madeleine George Directed by Leigh Silverman MARION HUBER THEATER


Set in a slightly larger-than-life version of Red Bank, Hurricane Diane was a “wild comedy” about climate change. Two River commissioned this world premiere from Madeleine George, our first Playwright-inResidence, who said, “I was eager to write a play that both rolls out a welcome mat in front of the theater, inviting people in and making jokes that specifically enfranchise them, and also offers people the chance to interrogate their own feelings about these climatic shifts that are happening whether we’re ready for them or not.” “…puckish and brainy…. Ms. George, whose interest in the layers of history includes the recent past, has her reasons for setting — and telling — this tale in a hurricane-ravaged place. She is sounding an alarm, examining the damage, looking to see who’s hurt.” – The New York Times

Mia Barron in Hurricane Diane. Photo by T. Charles Erickson

AUDIENCE REACTIONS: “What a privilege it was to see this world premiere! A truly pioneering attempt to wake people up to the importance of taking action to slow down global climate change; to make them aware of permaculture as one option when living in the ‘burbs; and the huge contribution of having a trans person as a star playing a role that is just GREAT.” 10

“We love the theater and its artistic team, their mission (nurturing new writers, pushing boundaries, exploring provocative and cultural issues) and the opportunities they provide for face to face interactions with audience members outside of the actual production. We look forward each month to the wonderful, thoughtful literary and social experiences.”

“Excellent! Thank you for sponsoring a playwright. The play was a little rough around the edges, but hilarious and so pertinent to New Jersey’s culture! We had a great time!”


THE MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR By William Shakespeare Directed by Eric Tucker MARION HUBER THEATER

FEBRUARY 25-MARCH 26, 2017

Shakespeare’s great comedy was performed by only three actors— Nicole Lewis, Jason O’Connell, and Zuzanna Szadkowski—in an exuberant feat of imagination, energy, and theatricality. In the play, the lecherous buffoon John Falstaff (perhaps Shakespeare’s greatest comic character) decides to seduce both Mistress Page and Mistress Ford, respectable married women of Windsor. Adapted and directed by Eric Tucker, of Bedlam Theater, the production explored the darker undercurrent of one of Shakespeare’s silliest comedies. “…adventurous and refreshing. The dark raciness put forth here does not feel imposed. The aesthetic is rather an alternative view of the play refracted through a fresh, unexpected lens.” – The Star-Ledger

Zuzanna Szadkowski, Jason O’Connell and Nicole Lewis in The Merry Wives of Windsor. Photo by T. Charles Erickson

AUDIENCE REACTIONS: “My sister, mother and I attend Two River shows several times a year now, and we have been consistently delighted. Merry Wives was especially innovative and entertaining - great cast, great staging, wonderfully creative adaptation.”

“I enjoy every 2RT show. The variety & scope stretch my imagination and give me lots to think about & discuss w/friends. All the staff are friendly & helpful, make me feel welcome. Plus coffee in the Library is an elegant treat.”


“The show brought us into Red Bank for the first time, which we found charming...The show itself was fantastic—we are Bedlam groupies and traveled from Massachusetts to see it.”


THE WOMEN OF PADILLA By Tony Meneses Directed by Ken Rus Schmoll RECHNITZ THEATER

The Women of Padilla, written by Tony Meneses—author of Two River’s much-loved world premiere Guadalupe in the Guest Room—and directed by Ken Rus Schmoll, told the story of eight women married to eight brothers. Through the power of food, faith, laughter and each other, these eight very different sistersin-law found a way to carry on life at home while their husbands fought an unnamed war. “…spellbinding and genuinely moving…. The Women of Padilla is an astounding achievement for a young playwright on the brink of a major career. “ – Talkin’ Broadway

APRIL 8-30, 2017

The Company of The Women of Padilla. Photo by T. Charles Erickson

AUDIENCE REACTIONS: “I really enjoyed writing a note to the soldiers in the Army and placing our cares, thoughts and desires onto the birds and placing them onto the brick Wall... The show was a pleasant surprise. It ministered to me in so many ways. The ending was very positive. Be the Light, Show love and Let go of sorrow was the uplifting message that I took away.” 12

“A very moving production, which brought up deep universal themes of the human experience. What a creative use of props for the birds! A very fine cast.”


“Every Two River Theater experience stretches the imagination and touches the heart.”

THE BALLAD OF LITTLE JO Music by Mike Reid Lyrics by Sarah Schlesinger Book by Sarah Schlesinger, Mike Reid and John Dias Based on the film The Ballad of Little Jo by Maggie Greenwald Orchestrations by Danny Larsen Music Supervision and Vocal Arrangements by Patrick Vaccariello Music Direction and Dance/Incidental Arrangements by John O’Neill Choreography by Marc Kimelman Directed by John Dias RECHNITZ THEATER

JUNE 3-25, 2017

This soaring musical about the American West was inspired by the real-life story of Josephine Monaghan—a young woman from Boston who, in the late 19th century, made a new life in an Idaho mining town disguised as a man called “Jo.” Two River was proud to celebrate a highlight of John Dias’s tenure as Artistic Director with this powerful musical, which he wrote with Grammy-winning Nashville composer Mike Reid and lyricist Sarah Schlesinger, and which he directed here in his Two River debut. “Graced by the tall timbers of Michael Carnahan’s set, and the costume designs of Tony winner Jess Goldstein, The Ballad of Little Jo is ultimately a worthy companion to the playbook of Two River premieres; an intriguing revisit, put forth with passion and polished production values, to a work that explores the frontiers of identity and community.” – Asbury Park Press

The Company of The Ballad of Little Jo. Photo by T. Charles Erickson

AUDIENCE REACTIONS: “My husband and I thoroughly enjoyed the show—perhaps even more so because of our attendance at the movie and the open rehearsal. It’s one of the most interesting musicals we’ve seen in a long time, and we do love musicals! The actors were all exceptional! As was the direction and the tantalizing choreography.”

“I attended with three other attendees and we were all so positively and emotionally affected by this extraordinary play. The actors, music, script, direction and even the set design were so excellent. Exceptionally well done!”

“A touching historical rendition filled with age-old lessons important to us today. The story, the music, the acting, the set—all memorable in every way!” LEAD PRODUCTION SPONSOR:


A Very Electric Christmas




Our holiday show for young audiences was a festival of lights and music in A Very Electric Christmas, produced by New Orleans-based company Lightwire Theater. Dancers and puppets decked in neon lights presented the magical story of a young bird named Max, trying to fly South for the winter. The rollicking show featured holiday musical classics such as “Jingle Bell Rock,” “What a Wonderful World,” “Dance of the Sugarplum Fairies” and “Baby Got Back.” “It’s hard not to smile watching Lightwire’s dancers—who wear puppet-like costumes outfitted with electroluminescent wires and perform in the dark—bring to life tales of colorful creatures for children and adults alike.” — New Orleans

“This show is not just for little kidsas an adult, I really loved it!”


THE MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR By William Shakespeare Adapted and Directed by Nicole A. Watson RECHNITZ THEATER


AUDIENCE REACTIONS: “My kids really loved it, and I know they’ll be talking about it for days!”


“A great concept, and such an innovative group of people.”


“This is the best Little Shakespeare yet!” “This was fantastic. These kids are just so talented. It was so much fun!” SPONSORS:

Company of A Little Shakespeare: the Merry Wives of Windsor. Photo by Scott Friedman

Two River Theater’s education program A Little Shakespeare entered its fourth season with the Bard’s madcap comedy The Merry Wives of Windsor, featuring a full cast of 18 high school students, representing 12 area schools. The program introduces young artistic talents and audiences to Shakespeare’s works through a condensed 75-minute adaptation of the play, professionally produced and staged. Ten students also worked backstage, shadowing Two River Theater’s technical staff as lighting, sound, and costume design assistants.

The Way Back Home. Photo by Anita Murphy.

THE WAY BACK HOME Based on the book by Oliver Jeffers Produced by Teater Reflecksion (Denmark) and Branar Téatar (Ireland), associate producer Barbaró International Arts Festival for Children MARION HUBER THEATER

JUNE 8 – JUNE 11, 2017

We concluded our season with a journey into outer space, along with an imaginative young boy, his hardy airplane, and his new alien friend. Recommended for children between the ages of 4 and 8 and entirely non-verbal, the production told a simple yet profound tale about friendship and conquering the fear of the unknown. The Way Back Home also included the first Relaxed Performance at Two River Theater, providing a judgement-free theater experience for people with autism spectrum disorders and other sensitivity issues or special needs. “The Way Back Home is visually charming, and quite amusing to entertain both kids and the parents alike. Without words, it requires the audience to bring just that little a bit of their own imagination to what is shown before them, which can only be encouraging.” — The Public Reviews

AUDIENCE REACTIONS: “I always love the Little Shakespeare productions.”

“When I grow up, I am going to have two jobs—one is going to be a puppeteer.” “Cute, and very sweet.”

“That was a great show, mom!”



ARTS EDUCATION STUDENT MATINEES More than 2,400 students from elementary, middle and high schools throughout New Jersey came to the theater for one of our 13 student matinee performances. Every teacher received a Curriculum Guide to help them integrate the work on stage with work done in the classroom. Following each performance, schools were invited to participate in question-andanswer talkbacks with members of the casts, helping to inspire relevant and interesting discussions and study topics for classrooms, afterschool clubs, and groups.

Madeleine Rogers (Alais in The Lion in Winter) leads a pre-show workshop. Photo by Teja Anderson

NO SEATS EMPTY & NO SEATS EMPTY: TOTAL EXPERIENCE Two River’s No Seats Empty program makes theater accessible to all students by providing free tickets and transportation to lowincome schools attending student matinee performances. No Seats Empty: Total Experience ingrates the experience of seeing Two River’s productions with in-depth examinations of each show’s literary, historical and social context during in-school pre- and postshow workshops. These season-

long partnerships further stimulate students’ social and academic development. During the 2016/17 school year, 939 students from low-income schools in Monmouth, Ocean, Atlantic, Essex, Mercer and Union Counties were introduced to the theater through No Seats Empty. 150 underserved youth participated in No Seats Empty: Total Experience, and participated in 30 pre- and post-performance workshops conducted by Two River.

The Lion in Winter Stage Manager Jenny Kennedy leads a Stage Management workshop for TheaterWorks participants.




THEATERWORKS TheaterWorks connects at-risk youth to the spectrum of vocational opportunities available in theater through study of the behind-thescenes work that goes into putting up a professional play. We facilitate workshops at the theater on topics including: stage management, acting, painting techniques, assembling props, costume design, playwriting, and sound design. Participants in this program met for pre- and post-show career workshops and talkbacks, in addition to attending Saturday matinee performances. During the 2016/17 school year, we reached 109 participants from Asbury Park High School’s “The Spot,” Red Bank Regional High School’s “The Source,” the Monmouth County Cotillion, and the Friends in Need Children’s Center.

At Two River Theater, we believe that arts education promotes two central goals: supporting the artist within each student and building future audiences. We inspire empathy, risk-taking and a sense of adventure; and we support academic achievement and life-long learning.

2016/17 Metro Scholars.

MONMOUTH UNIVERSITY AMBASSADOR PROGRAM METRO SCHOLARS Two River’s Metro Scholars program is an immersive year-long opportunity for high school juniors from across the state of New Jersey to be part of the work of Two River Theater. The program is free for participating students. In 2016/17, we welcomed 11 students (some of whom were past participants in TheaterWorks, No Seats Empty and A Little Shakespeare) from 9 local high schools to the theater. Metro Scholars assist Two River staff in departments including Education, Development, Marketing and Production. In addition to seeing every show at Two River for free, the students participate in moderated conversations following each production, and take specially designed master classes with professionals working at the theater on subjects including directing, season planning and casting, and set design.

Each year, students from Monmouth University join Two River Theater as Interns, Box Officers, or participants in a new partnership called the “Ambassador Program.” In the 2016/17 Season, three students were appointed to serve as Ambassadors. In this capacity, they signed up student ushers for each show; spread the word on campus about the theater’s productions and free annual events; and helped create programming and learning opportunities for the University’s students, all led by Two River artists and staff.

Michael Kevin Baldwin leads a master class for summer campers.

SUMMER THEATER CAMP In July 2016, a total of 116 children in 1st through 12th grades participated in our Summer Theater Camp; 26 of them received full or partial need-based scholarship. Celebrating its 12th year, the Summer Theater Camp focuses on developing the artist inside every child. Each summer, camp participants include aspiring actors, students who enjoy working behind the scenes, and young people who simply love the theater. All of the classes are taught by professional, experienced teaching artists, and are designed to be fun, challenging, and inspire creativity and a sense of adventure.


- Cast member


INSIDE TWO RIVER BEHIND THE SCENES The artistic process behind the curtain was revealed at three open rehearsals, which took audiences inside the rehearsal room, and a broadcast recording and interview with WBGO Jazz 88.3 FM and the cast of August Wilson’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom. LITERACY CLUBS AND FILM SCREENINGS To better illuminate the productions onstage, audience members jumped into different mediums to dive deeper into the performances, through a poetry reading, book clubs, Shakespeare play-reading group, and a film screening.

Anika Chapin and attendees at Poetry Night: Beauty in Two Languages

CULTURE AND COMMUNITY Two River opened its doors to families and the Red Bank community with festivals, food, crafts, and programming for all ages!

CONVERSATION AND PLAY Two River used the 2016/17 season to open up conversations about our culture and society, including panel discussion, lectures, partnerships with TEDxNavesink, and a staged mock trial on climate change.

Michael Cumpsty, Brandon J. Dirden, Ruben Santiago-Hudson, Arnetia Walker, and Doug Doyle at the live MBGO Jazz broadcast recording.


For the 16/17 Season, Inside Two River events reached over 3,900 patrons through 31 events. All events were open to the public and most were free!

Attendees at A Taste of the Blues

The Ghostlight Project at Two River Theater. Photo by Danny Sanchez.

Holiday Crafting and Carols

Family Day At The Theater A Salute to Our Troops

Permaculture TEDxNavesink Salon

Mother Earth vs. the World’s People

Open Rehearsal

Shakespeare Play Reading Group

Plant Night



THEATER ACCESS Two River is committed to making our facilities and performances accessible for all patrons, actors, and employees. BARRIER-FREE ACCESS The theater provides barrierfree access for patrons using wheelchairs or walkers with on-grade entrances, elevators, railings, and wide doorways. Integrated seating for patrons in wheelchairs, accessible restrooms, wheelchair requests, and wheelchair storage space during the performance are also available. ASSISTED LISTENING DEVICES Assistive Listening Devices are available for individuals with hearing loss to assist with amplification and clarity. Lightweight headsets, with no wires or cables, are available free of charge for all Two River Theater performances. LARGE PRINT PROGRAMS Large print programs are available for free at the box office. AUDIO-DESCRIBED PERFORMANCES Scheduled audio description performances for patrons with vision loss are offered for each of our subscription series productions. Using a lightweight headset, with no wires or cables, which operate with an infra-red system, patrons can hear a live, objective, and concise description of the action on stage.*


Arnetia Walker in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom. Photo by T. Charles Erickson.

OPEN CAPTIONING Scheduled open captioned performances for patrons with hearing loss are offered for each of our subscription series productions. A screen, which projects dialogue as the action occurs live on stage, is placed to the side of the stage, and no additional special equipment is necessary.* AMERICAN SIGN LANGUAGE INTERPRETATION Scheduled American Sign Language interpreted performances for patrons with hearing loss, and fluency in ASL, are occasionally offered.*


RELAXED PERFORMANCES Scheduled relaxed performances are designed to provide a welcoming and judgement-free theater experience for people with autism spectrum disorders and other sensitivity issues or special needs. REDUCED-TICKET PRICES Discounted tickets are available for patrons utilizing these features.

AUDIENCE ENGAGEMENT MULTIMEDIA For each production, Two River offers audiences the opportunity to delve further into the world of each play with digital media available on our website. Each production page features content including photos, videos and trailers, interviews, electronic versions of our production program, and links to social media pages. In our lobby, we also offer a photo booth featuring production-related props for visitors to take photos which can share on social media. BEFORE & AFTER PLAY In our 2016/17 Season, Two River facilitated Before and After Play discussions, reaching to patrons with context and background about our shows. Our popular Before Play series features a free pre-performance talk about the themes of our work given by a cast member or a member of the Artistic department. Our After Play series features moderated talkbacks designed to further engage the audience in more indepth discussions. Audiences are invited to share their questions and responses to our work in conversation with a staff member and members of our casts. Two River held lively and informative After Play discussions following every performance of Hurricane Diane, and select performances of the other plays in the season.

Before play talk in the lobby for The Women of Padilla.

LOBBY DISPLAYS Our in-depth lobby displays enhance the audience’s experience of the productions in each season, whether by providing additional context and background for the play or by allowing the audience to interact with the themes of the play. During our 2016 season, displays included panels on the real Ma Rainey and the business of music recording for Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom; an installation of the complicated web of the Plantagenet family tree for The Lion in Winter; a virtual permaculture garden to provide background for Hurricane Diane; an interactive wall featuring bird decals onto which audience members could write wishes to their loved ones, to tie into the themes of The Women of Padilla; and literary

and historical background for both The Merry Wives of Windsor and The Ballad of Little Jo. VIP LOUNGE Open to current subscribers and members of our Backstage Pass donor program, the Victoria J. Mastrobuono Library offers an elegant and comfortable space to relax before performances and during intermissions.

The Victoria J. Mastrobuono Library



DONOR EVENTS EVENING IN CAMELOT Each season, members of Backstage Pass—Two River’s donor incentive program—are entitled to exclusive benefits including invitations to special events, including: OPENING NIGHT CELEBRATIONS Two River’s supporters are invited to select opening night performances throughout the season which include a post-performance celebration in our Lobby with the casts and creative teams of our shows. SEASON ANNOUNCEMENT Prior to our season announcement event in the spring, donors are invited to a VIP reception at the theater with the artists involved in the upcoming season. This year, close to 100 of Two River’s closest supporters joined us for this annual tradition. JITNEY TO JITNEY Throughout the season, the theater hosts several VIP events for our supporters. This March, we were delighted to take a small group of donors to New York City to see August Wilson’s Jitney on Broadway, followed by an informal meet and greet with cast members and Two River favorites, Brandon J. Dirden and Harvy Blanks. NYU CABARET In conjunction with select events, play readings, and performances, Two River donors are invited to enjoy private receptions in the Library and reserved seating for events. This season, we hosted a pre-show reception prior to the NYU Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program’s Cabaret of New Songs for Musical Theater. Photo by Lisa Campbell


HALLOWEEN BALL THANK YOU TO OUR EVENT SPONSORS WHO’S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WEREWOLF ($10,000) Mary Jane and Rick Kroon Joan and Robert Rechnitz Riverview Medical Center LONG DAY’S JOURNEY INTO NIGHTMARE ($5,000) Victoria and William Marraccini Monmouth Medical Center ZOMBIE MORE CHILL ($2,500) Diane and Robert Butters Meaghan and David Carr Lauren and Augie Carton Central New Jersey Hand Surgery Carolyn and Neil DeSena Susan and Brett Flynn Lanae and Todd Herman Sarah and JB Kiley Sharon and Jonathan Lustgarten Lisa and Quinn McKean Monmouth University Susan and Ty Olson Kathryn and Rob Patton Liz and Adam Rechnitz Karen and Omar Saad Ann and Thomas Unterberg

ON OCTOBER 22/2016, in lieu of a traditional gala, Two River invited guests to the Théâtre du Deux Rivière — an abandoned and spooky Vaudeville Era playhouse. Those brave enough to enter took part in a booze and blood soaked evening featuring a midnight costume contest, lively dance floor, and music by New Life Crisis.

THE SEAGHOUL ($1,000) Jennifer and David Anderson Jen and Adam Cavise Barbara and Joseph Hollander Health Care Software, Inc. Marcia Sue Clever, MD and Jim Hickey Jones and Associates (Shea and Chuck Jones) Lambs & Wolves Gerri and Brett Lawrence Nyire and Greg Melconian Debbie and Dave Memmott JP Nicolaides and The Honorable Ed Zipprich Melissa Stark and Michael Lilley MaryAnne and Mark Strulowitz VNA of Central New Jersey Elise Feldman Jim Hickey and Marcia Sue Clever, MD Tim and Eileen Hogan Barbara and Joseph Hollander Gale and Dr. Robert B. Grossman Brett and Gerri Lawrence The Honorable Edward J. McKenna, Jr. Vernon and Patricia Ralph Susan Robbins Fiorino and Brian Robbins Andrew and Linda Safran Mort and June Seligman Kathryne and Richard Singleton Ken and Mary Carol Stunkel Webster and Kathy Trammell Cynthia and Bill Wilby

OVER 200 individuals came in costume for a festive evening of dancing. Acknowledged by many as the “party of the year”, the event raised over $100,000.

Photos by Teja Anderson


AN EVENING ON MUSICAL FRONTIER EVENING INTHE CAMELOT THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS! WESTWARD PIONEER ($10,000) Monmouth Medical Center Monmouth University Mary Jane and Richard Kroon Ann and Thomas Unterberg AMERICAN FRONTIERSMAN ($5,000) The Hilaria and Alec Baldwin Foundation Marilyn and Robert Broege Caroline P. Huber Anne Luzzatto and Gordon N. Litwin Liz and Adam Rechnitz Linda and Andrew Safran Torcon, INC. Anne and Sheldon Vogel

ON MAY 12/2016 Two River hosted a benefit event, including pre-show cocktails at the “Little Jo Saloon,” followed by a performance of song selections from our new musicals in development, along with some familiar favorites. Special guest performers included Andrew Keenan-Bolger, Tony Award winner LaChanze, Tony Award nominee Emily Skinner and from Two River’s production of The Ballad of Little Jo: Jane Bruce, Daniel K. Isaac, Eric William Morris and Teal Wicks.

MINING PROSPECTOR ($2,500) Visiting Nurse Association Health Group Gale and Robert Grossman Victoria and William Marraccini Lisa and Quinn McKean David Schwartz Foundation Kathy and Webster Trammell

OVER 200 patrons supported the theater by purchasing tickets and sponsorships which raised over $75,000 for Two River.

SHARPSHOOTER ($1,000) Circle BMW Kaplan, Gaunt and DeSantis Architects Howard P. Aronson Robert and Elizabeth Barrett Lauren and Augie Carton Gloria and Lennert Nilson Sean O’Connell Patricia and Vernon Ralph Anne Marie Schultz and Brian Schwarz

OVER 100 sponsors attended a post-performance farm-to-table style dinner.

Photos by Teja Anderson



Ice Cream Social

SPECIAL THANKS TO Crazees Danish Café Edible Arrangements The Shrewsbury Manor

ON JUNE 11/2017 following the performance of The Way Back Home, families joined Two River for a fun afternoon of activities and treats. OVER 50 “space travelers” enjoyed an Ice Cream Sundae Bar provided by Crazees, a few “out of this world” crafts, a photo booth, face painting, and a candy bar. CLOSE TO $8,000 was raised to benefit Two River’s Education Programs.

Photos by Teja Anderson


INDIVIDUAL DONORS THANK YOU to the following generous individuals who made contributions to the theater during the 2016/17 Season. VISIONARY CIRCLE ($25,000+) Anonymous Caroline P. Huber The Estate of Victoria J. Mastrobuono Joan and Robert Rechnitz The Leslie Miller and Richard Worley Foundation

INNOVATOR CIRCLE ($10,000-$24,999) Jane Bregere Marilyn and Bob Broege Phyllis Kinsler Mary Jane and Rick Kroon Helaine and Sid Lerner Gordon Litwin and Anne Luzzatto Victoria and William Marraccini Liz and Adam Rechnitz Anne and Sheldon Vogel

BENEFACTOR ($5,000-$9,999) Sam Chevalier Cindy and Bob Evanson Guttenplan Family Foundation Joan and Paul Hamelberg Todd and Lanae Herman Joan Fishman and Paul Brown Barbara and Jim Hrebek Joanna and Brian Leddin* Linda McKean The Honorable Edward J. McKenna JP Nicolaides and The Honorable Ed Zipprich Sean O’Connell Susan and Ty Olson Ivan Polonsky and Elizabeth Tortorella Mary Beth and Gerald Radke Anne Marie Schultz* Kathy and Webster Trammell

CHAMPION ($2,500-$4,999) Howard P. Aronson Shirley S. Boll Rose Caiola Juliet Cozzi and Ronald Gumbaz Lynne and Jan Dash Melissa and Joseph C. Del Broccolo, III* The Devon Group Gale and Dr. Robert B. Grossman Christina Hewitt Maureen and James Hurst* Nancy Karpf and Scott Brady


Cathy Larson Beth and Vinnie Mazza* Kathleen and Arthur McConnell Nyire and Gregory Melconian Shirley and Bob Neff Gloria and Lennart Nilson Allyn and Patrick Quagliano Patricia and Vernon Ralph Mary Carol and Ken Stunkel Susan Whyman Meta and Ralph Wyndrum

PATRON ($1,000 - $2,499) Anonymous Jutta and George Aguilar Jennifer and Joe Anderson Barbara and Andy Andres Marie and Robert Arbour Pat and Andre Archambault Betsy and Bob Barrett The Honorable William G. Bassler Lois Broder Dennice and Ray Carey Barbara and Tom Carroll Tamara Casriel Jennifer and Tristram Collins Elizabeth Mihalyak Columbo Jennifer Colyer and Shemmy Mishaan Gail and John Duffy Joan Ellis Linda and Bob Ensor Lorraine and Bob Henry Michael Hurst Melissa and Paul Hurst Jean Jaslovsky and Vincent Gifford Grace and Peter Kalac Ginny Kamin Sheila C. Labrecque Edward Madden The Wendy and Jerry Marks Foundation Aida and Brian Murphy* Mr. Herbert Paul Jean Pokress Barry Qualls Barbara Carton-Riker and Rev. William Riker Monica and John Ryan* Candy and Dr. Sigmund Sattenspiel Caryl and Charles Sills June and Mort Seligman Bruce Sherrill and Robert Codrey Cathy and Gene Weber* Catherine Weiss and Samuel Huber Joan Zakanych Chryssa Yaccarino, Esq.

PRODUCER ($500-$999) Anonymous* Kassandrea Banks Roxanne Blount Nancy and Ed Butler Barbara and Harold Chafkin Dr. and Mrs. E. F. Cheslock Stephanie and Kevin Christiano Judy and Richard Fuller Margean Gladysz Barbara and Dr. Alan Haratz Patricia and William Jaeger* Sheela Jain, M.D. and Suresh Jain, M.D. Natalia and Andrei Kachala Gail Klein and Marc L. Harrison Eve R. Hershkowitz Giovanna Kanu Judith Laufer Lois and Robert Mortenson Lauren Nicosia The Craig and Flori Roberts Foundation Daryl Roth Lori and Geoffrey Sadwith Peter A. Schkeeper Maureen Silliman and William Parry Susan Stamler Anita and Robert Stix*

DIRECTOR ($250-$499) Anonymous (1) Meredyth Armitage Barbara Boas and Stephen Hecht Sarah Bonello Dr. Janice Breen Dr. Joseph J. Calabro Marjorie and Peter Cavalier Isabella and John Chiappinelli Susan and Alan Coen Roberta and Harvey Cohen Robert Connolly Karen and Joseph D’Amore Barbara and Jonathan File Barbara G. Fleischman Susan and Roy Gelber Thomas K. Hessman Kathleen Horgan Dr. Barbara Jaye and Dr. William Mitchell May Louie and Walter Graczyk Claudette Lupton Bob MacKasek Allan Mallach

Lorrain and Robert McGirr Diane Mesanko Amanda Butterbaugh and Michael Mulheren Jennifer and Thomas Mullins Karen C. Pajak Marion and Michael Portnoy Karen and David Rajala Penney Riegelman Ginger and Joel Richman Toni Rinella and Brian Compton Ann Roseman and Stan Lumish Barbara Sager Peggy Sansone Linda Schottland William G. Shlala Vickie Snoy* Maria and George Staphos Karin and Joe Stein Judith and Joseph Vassallo Cheryl Wild Marjorie and Zeke Zaccaro Barbara Zagha

Barbara S. Goldstein Sandy and Al Gordon Maxine and Robert Guenther Joyce Haebler Ivey Harris Family Christianna and Keith Harvey Barbara and Stephen Hecht Nancy and Jim Hoffman Coralie and John Hoffman Phyl and Don Howard Anna Grace Howie Kathleen Hutchins Reba and Ron Johnson Barbara Kenas Ralph Knox Jerome Kootman Judy Kramer Joann and Verne Kreger Catherine and Stephen Larsen Ellen and Dan Levine Karen and David Levinsky Theresa and Gabriel Longo Lucy Loux Judith Luger Linda Mallan Rhonda and Robert Margolies Dolores and Stan Marszalek Susan Martin Bette and Joe Matava Renee Maxwell Julie McConnell Nancy Molineux Tanya Moore and Richard Stokes Sheila Morris Patricia Murphy Peter Murphy Ian Nelson Brenda and Frank Occhipinti Nancy and Robert Ostrander Anita and Harry Paborsky Linda Pacotti Marilyn Pearlman Denise and Bill Pearson Robert M. Petracco Marilyn Poley Harriet Primack Shirley F. Rathemacher Susan A. Ridolfi Margaret Riker Peg Roarty Anna and Andres Roda Louis Rodriguez Norma Rosenbloom Nancy and Lee Rossbach Helaine and Don Rothman Mr. and Dr. Ted Sandler Jan and Bill Scheerer Carole Schoening Courtney and Ricky Schroeder Janet and William Schumacher Audrey and John Sheehan Deborah Shields and Robert Feldman George Smuga Maureen and Thomas Sobieszczyk Carolanne and Egon Steinebach Pat and Dick Stenson Judy and Bob Strunk


ASSOCIATE ($100-$249) Anonymous (4) Lucille and Richard Adelmann Minerva Agron Janice Antczak Lois Barr Barrett Maryjane Barretta and Joseph Crecca Nancy and Frank Bellezza Judith Tenzer Benn Janice Bergstresser Jane Bernheim Marilyn and J. Gordon Boak Corrine and Marco Bonomi Sandy Book Margaret Brady Judy and Don Bretzger Amy and John Brogan Mara and Joel Browndorf Christina and Joseph Bulman Jill and John Caddell Dennis Carroll Candice Chirgotis and Jim Keller Linda and Samuel Chororos Kathy and Mark Cohen Barbara and Jim Columbo Joan and Anthony Ellis Cruz Barbara Davis Dorothy and Jim Davis Jane Degnan Bonnie and Walter Dietz Bernadette Doubek Virginia and Ken East Henry Efrom Susan and Don Faistl Anne and Daniel Ford Harriet and Robert Fortescue Holly Fullam Maria and Paul Galeota Cheryl and Jeff Garside Mr. and Mrs. Herbert Geiss Hope and Kenneth Gibb Irene Gibson

Nannette and Richard Tereo Fay Thomas Stephen Thurber Barbara and Ken Tobin Frances V. Towe Ann and Peter Tricules Helen Vetter Patricia Vigilante and Robert Candella J.T. Walker Terese Walker Sophie and Gary Weiner Wendie and Stephen Weinstein J. Shelby Wells and Debbie Herman Carol and Tom White Nina and Kirk Willey Kimberly Wilson, The Wilson Productions Robert Wynne B. E. Yeamans Andrea Yellin Christine Yovnello

MATCHING GIFTS The following have provided matching gifts to Two River on behalf of their employees. AT&T Matching Gifts (3) BlackRock CR Bard (2) Goldman Sachs Horizon IBM Johnson & Johnson Matching Gifts JP Morgan Chase Foundation Morgan Stanley Prudential Financial, Inc. (2) TE Connectivity Verisk Analytics Verizon Wireless *Includes matching gift.

TRIBUTES AND MEMORIALS In Honor of Suzanne Allyn’s Mother: Barbara Kenas In Memory of Eileen Bassler: The Honorable William G. Bassler In Honor of John and Gail Duffy: Pamela and Richard O’Sullivan In Honor of Caroline Huber: Catherine Weiss and Samuel Huber In Honor of Mary Jane and Rick Kroon: Susan Stamler In Honor of Edward J. McKenna, Esq.: Lauren Nicosia In Honor of Mrs. Barbara Metcalfe: Mr. and Mrs. Charles Gebhardt In Memory of Dorothy Nicosia: Phyllis Kinsler In Memory of Michael Shelle: Maureen Silliman and William Parry

Listing reflects gifts made between July 1, 2016 and June 30, 2017.




INNOVATOR CIRCLE $10,000-$24,999

The Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust


THANK YOU! BENEFACTOR $5,000 - $9,999



The Merrill G. & Emita E. Hastings Foundation



FINANCIAL RESULTS As a 501(c)(3) not-for profit organization, Two River Theater is dedicated to creating great American theater while maintaining fiscal responsibility. Earned income from ticket sales represents less than one-third of our operating budget, therefore contributed income from generous individuals, businesses and foundations is critical to ensure Two River Theater remains a vital cultural institution. FISCAL YEAR ENDINGJUNE JUNE 30/2017 FISCAL YEAR ENDING 30, 2017 INCOME EARNED INCOME AMOUNT 604,812 Single Ticket Sales Subscription Sales 486,070 Other Earned Income 283,035 TOTAL EARNED INCOME TOTAL EARNED INCOME 1,373,917


CONTRIBUTED INCOME Corporate 202,331 Foundation 660,704 Fundraising Event (net) 274,561 Government 170,812 Individuals 490,241 ReleasedEndowment from Temporary Restricted Distribution 2,600,000 TOTAL CONTRIBUTEDTOTAL INCOMECONTRIBUTED INCOME 4,398,649 TOTAL INCOME


EXPENSES PRODUCTION EXPENSES Rechnitz Theater Productionss 905,313 Huber Theater Productions 237,925 Production Department 396,298 PRODUCTION EXPENSESPRODUCTION SUBTOTAL EXPENSES SUBTOTAL 1,539,536


DEPARTMENTAL EXPENSES Administrative 886,491 Artistic 538,306 Development 303,391 Education 191,730 Marking and Audience Services 923,350 Marketing and Audience Services Production and Operations 1,264,647 DEPARTMENTAL EXPENSESDEPARTMENTAL SUBTOTAL EXPENSES4,107,916 SUBTOTAL TOTAL EXPENSES OPERATING SURPLUS

5,647,451 125,115

During our 2016/17 Season, we received our fourth consecutive four-star rating-the highest possiblefrom Charity Navigator, the leading charity evaluator, for our sound fiscal management and commitment to accountability and transparency.


LEADERSHIP LEADERSHIP && STAFF STAFF LEADERSHIP Robert R. Rechnitz Executive Producer John Dias Artistic Director Joan H. Rechnitz Associate Producer Michael Hurst Managing Director BOARD OF TRUSTEES Todd Herman President Anne Luzzatto Vice President Robert Butters Treasurer Susan Olson Secretary Stephen Becker Marilyn Broege Amanda Butterbaugh Carolyn Cushman DeSena Kathleen Ellis Gale Grossman Caroline Huber Mary Jane Kroon Hon. Edward J. McKenna, Jr. Nyire Melconian Adam Rechnitz Joan H. Rechnitz Robert M. Rechnitz Geoffrey Sadwith Maureen Silliman Mary Carol Stunkel Webster Trammell Richard B. Worley Howard P. Aronson William Marracini Kathryne Singleton Emeritus Board Members

ARTISTIC Stephanie Coen Associate Artistic Director Madeleine George Playwright in Residence Brian Eckert Artistic Assistant ADMINISTRATION Alma Malabanan-McGrath General Manager Margaret Shafai Director of Finance Karen Pierce Staff Accountant DEVELOPMENT Jennifer Anderson Director of Development Katie Benson Events Associate Ellen Hahn Institutional Development Associate EDUCATION Kate Cordaro Director of Education Amanda Espinoza Education Assistant Claro de los Reyes Livv DiMattio Tara Giordano Melissa Hodges Artem Yatsunov Teaching Artists Sara Holdren Adaptor/Director

MARKETING & AUDIENCE SERVICES Courtney Schroeder Director of Marketing Jenna Rocca Associate Director of Marketing Hannah Walker Institutional Marketing Manager Yurik Lozano Multimedia Manager Michele Klinsky Box Office Supervisor Kristina Marinos Box Office Supervisor Lauren Mancuso Box Office Supervisor Evan Kudish Lynn Kroll Brianna Merriman Vernette Spicer Matt Yee Box Officers Angela White House Manager & Volunteer Coordinator Carmen Balentine Doreen Fromage Melissa Javorek Julie Mullen Donna Stiles Francesca Trerotola Assistant House Managers Briana Butler Colette Dante Thomas Dougherty Matt Markowski Daniel Pino Kayla Santry Gabby Scerbo John Knodel Front of House Staff

OPERATIONS Zeke Zaccaro Director of Operations Lamar Hicks William Hinton Donnie Quarles Wayne Van Saint Vinnie Mazza Building Maintenance PRODUCTION Lauren Kurinskas Director of Production Will Cruttenden Associate Production Manager Margaux Greenhouse Production Management Assistant Mackenzie Cole Company Management Assistant Matt Balfour Colt Luedtke Production Assistants Frank Meyer Technical Director Fiona Malone Assistant Technical Director Duane Noch Master Carpenter Christian Dilks Staff Carpenter David Slice Shop Assistant Colleen Dolan Scenic Charge Jeena Yoon Properties Supervisor Victoria Schilling Assistant Properties Supervisor Katherine Browne Props Assistant Dan Montano Sound Supervisor

Sue Patino Lighting Supervisor Eric Nickl Lighting Assistant Tiffany Reichel Sound Assistant Lesley Sorenson Costume Shop Supervisor Jill DiGiusppe Draper Maggie Barnett Wardrobe Supervisor Jaclyn Vela Costume Assistant SPECIAL SERVICES Gilda Rogers Community Relations Design Army Graphic Design Suzanne Anan Graphic Designer T. Charles Erickson Production Photography Teja Anderson Event Photography Michael Boylan Pennant Collective Video Graphics Gordon N. Litwin, Esq., Litwin and Provence, LLC Legal Counsel FK Partners Auditors Cassie Galasetti Social Sidekick Media


LEADERSHIP BIOS JOHN DIAS (ARTISTIC DIRECTOR) assumed his position as Artistic Director of Two River Theater in August 2010 after working as a producer and dramaturg in New York for 20 years. In partnership with Managing Director Michael Hurst he has brought new vitality to the 24-year-old Red Bank theater, including producing subscription shows on two stages for the first time; launching the theater’s first literary department and commissioning program for new plays; presenting annual events such as a musical theater cabaret in collaboration with New York University’s Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program and the Crossing Borders festival of Latino plays; and developing numerous arts-education initiatives for young people including A Little Shakespeare, an annual production of one of Shakespeare’s plays performed by highschool students. He is the co-author and was the director of Two River’s musical The Ballad of Little Jo, which he wrote with composer Mike Reid and lyricist Sarah Schlesinger. Throughout his career, John has been a leading advocate for bold new American plays and stimulating productions of the classics, including the Broadway productions of Lisa Kron’s Well and Shakespeare’s The Tempest. For 12 seasons, he worked in a variety of capacities at The Public Theater/New York Shakespeare Festival, including Associate Producer and Associate Artistic Director. Previously, John was dramaturg at Hartford Stage Company. He also co-founded and led Affinity Company Theater, a production company dedicated to bringing daring new works from around the world to New York, and The Playwrights Realm, an off-Broadway company that produces new plays by emerging artists. He has been a Tony Award nominator, a consultant for the National Endowment for the Arts and numerous other organizations, and he has taught at New York University and Yale University. John currently teaches in the graduate school at Columbia University. He received his BA from George Washington University and his MFA from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. MICHAEL HURST (MANAGING DIRECTOR) has been the Managing Director of Two River Theater since 2011. During his tenure, Two River has embarked on a new Strategic Plan; began producing subscription shows on two stages for the first time; and launched the theater’s first commissioning program for original plays, as well as numerous new community and education programs. Under his joint leadership with Artistic Director John Dias, Two River has experienced ambitious growth and enjoyed new recognition in the national theater community. Prior experience includes 16 years at The Public Theater, including four years as General Manager and six as Managing Director, overseeing budgets that ranged from $16 to $20 million. Michael was responsible for all financial aspects of the productions at The Public Theater and Central Park’s Delacorte Theater. During his tenure at The Public, he oversaw the Broadway transfers of many productions, including Topdog/Underdog by Suzan-Lori Parks, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Drama; Take Me Out, winner of the Tony Award for Best Play; and Tony Kushner and Jeanine Tesori’s Caroline, or Change. Michael was also part of all strategic planning including the opening of Joe’s Pub, now considered one of the country’s best small venues for music and performance. Prior to coming to Two River, Michael was Chief Operating Officer of the Film Society of Lincoln Center, which presents the New York Film Festival. At the Film Society, he oversaw the building of a new three-theater, $40-million facility that opened in June 2011, and he managed the organizational growth necessary to support the facility. Michael served as Vice President for The Off-Broadway League and was a member of The Broadway League for 14 years.  He is a graduate of Rutgers University and currently serves on the Board of Trustees for the New Jersey Theatre Alliance and on the Advisory Board for the Indie Street Film Festival. ROBERT M. RECHNITZ (EXECUTIVE PRODUCER) founded Two River Theater in 1994 and serves as the theater’s Executive Producer. In 2015/16, Two River premiered his play (written with Kenneth Stunkel), Lives of Reason. An educator, writer, and director, he is one of New Jersey’s most esteemed theater leaders. He earned his PhD from the University of Colorado and was a Professor of American Literature at Monmouth University for 35 years, contributing scholarly articles and short stories to various academic journals. As Two River’s Executive Producer, he oversaw the theater’s move from Monmouth University in West Long Branch to the Algonquin Arts in Manasquan. While the company was in residence in Manasquan, he planned for and oversaw the building of the Two River’s state-of-the-art, two-theater complex in Red Bank as its permanent home. He directed the opening production in the new building, the classic American comedy You Can’t Take It with You, in 2005. Among the other notable productions he has directed at Two River are Curse of the Starving Class (for which he received The Star-Ledger’s nomination for Best Director of a Comedy), True West, A View from the Bridge, The Glass Menagerie, Thieves’ Carnival, Uncle Vanya, American Buffalo, and Barefoot in the Park. Bob is an active member of a number of organizations benefiting Monmouth County, including serving as a Board member for several local non-profits. He has been the recipient of numerous awards, honors, commendations, and accolades.


VOLUNTEER VOLUNTEER GUILD GUILD Two River Theater’s Volunteer Guild is a dynamic group of people who are involved in all aspects of the theater and assist the staff throughout the year: in the production shop painting and building sets, in the administrative offices with marketing and fundraising mailings; in house management as ushers at each performance; and in hospitality to staff at the theater’s many special events. During the 2016/17 Season, over 230 Guild Members completed over 2,460 volunteer hours.

THANKS TO OUR GUILD FOR THEIR SUPPORT! Arthur Arthur Ronnie Aaron Suzanne Allyn Marlene Abelon Debbie Adamchak Juanita Agee Irwin Altschiller Maddy Altschiller Karen Anderson Cecelia Ambrosio Ellen Balthazar Gale Baran Myriam Barthole Paddy Barber Carl Battaglia Ellen Battaglia Joyce Becker Herb Bein Diane Bein Carmen Benimeli Barbara Berg Joan Blake Kathy Boushie Charles Blake Helena Blyskun Marti Bookstein Mercedes Brand Barbara Brodzinski Arlene Brown Robert Buchbinder April Bunn Carmen Cancel-Seaman Judith Carluccio Kathleen Castore Barbara Chasser Dora Chu Bob Connolly Roslyn Cooper Lynda Crawford Nancy Daley Elizabeth De Carvalho Diane DeLoche

Florence Diller Eleanor Falcichio Ellen Falvo June Farkouh Steve Faustina Arleen Faustina Bonnie Foerst George Foerst Robyn Flipse Judy Fuller Prudence Frechette Janet Garcia Nancy Gargan Sidney Gelbein Pat George Bill Gerdes Lara Gomez Jim Graf Margaret Graf Marilyn Griffin Constance Gryczka Helene HelgesenMonserrate Roland Monserrate Nona Hammer Kathleen Hari Cynthia Hellman Greg Held Jeri Held Robert Hespe Karen Hespe Karen Heyer Marion Holinaty Caroline Huber Cecilia Jelic Shirley Johnson Bonnie Johnson Thomas Johnson Virginia Kamin Barry Kaplan Dee Kaplan Karen Kelly

Barbara Kenas Beverly Keyes Karen Kirkwood Valerie Kilpatrick Phyllis Kinsler Dottie Kirschenbaum Eleanor Kitzhoffer Mavis Kolb Diane Kragh Diane Kuriloff Harriet Kuropatwa Betti Lane Mary Anne Lapiana Margaret Lelivelt Donna Lizotte Bob Levine Carol Levine Barbara Lipton Kathy Lloyd Diane Lopresti Frank Lopresti Brittany Lovely Donna Lovely Gay Lowden Sharon Lucas Iris MacNeil Mary Mahoney Joanne Mallon Robert Mallon Janis Marano Pamela Marhan Libby Markowitz Mary Mason Susan Mazur Vinnie Mazza Joan McCue Eileen McDermott Jo McKeon-Hutton Bill McMurray Mary Melosh Evelyn Mendelsohn Anne Messinger

Dorothy Michels Carol Migliore Bernard Miller Carol Miller Susan Minehardt Linda Monti Marilynne Morley Gloria Moro Susan Moss Michele Mullin Judith Mugrace Leslie Nicholson Kathy Nielsen Eileen Nolan Maureen O’Connor Leach Olivia Olson Linda Pacotti Dolores Palonetti Katherine Parisi Terri Pinto Marilyn Pennell Art Perri Pat Perri Tracy Peternich Claire Planchere Terri Pontecorvo Philomena Porcello Lois Priest Marion Quinn Mark Rabinow Judy Rector Fran Reinhold Susan Richman Ruth Rosencrown Carl Rosencrown Lori Sadwith Gil Saltzman Marcia Saltzman Gail Sanderson Evelyn Schneider Connie Schulman Phyllis Searby

Jeffrey Shepard Deb Sieron Robin Siegel Judy Simmons-Bradshaw George Smith Arlene Smelson Arthur Steinman Cathy Stelzner Howie Stelzner Linda Stewart Carol Stewart Mary Carol Stunkel Denise Sobotka Martin Sulkes Rose Sullivan Lorraine Stone Leila Sulkes Michele Susalis Eunice Taylor Steve Tepperman David Tolleth Deborah Tolleth Lauren Tolleth Chris Wallace Patricia Walter Mollie Warar Deborah Wasserman Marvin Wasserman Marty Weinstein Marla Weinstein joy Weinstein Gregory White Nina Willey Kirk Willey Joyce Wingerter Barbara Withers Mary Ellen Wirin Zina Wolin Martin Wolin Joan Zakanych Laura Zakanych











4,154,695+ SHARES









Charity Navigator recognized Two River Theater as a 4-Star Rated Charity, November 1, 2016 New Jersey State Council of the Arts recognizes Two River Theater for achieving the highest standard of excellence as recognized by its peers for Fiscal Year 2017.


230 T WO R I V E R T H EATE R | 21 B R I D G E AV E N U E | RE D BANK , NJ 07 701 | 73 2 . 3 4 5.14 00


2016/17 Annual Report - Two River Theater  

2016/17 Annual Report - Two River Theater

2016/17 Annual Report - Two River Theater  

2016/17 Annual Report - Two River Theater