Press Releases Index


Contact: Paul Whelihan
E-mail: pwheliha@kean.edu

Premiere Stages’ Powerful New Play
Emmy Award Winner Kim Zimmer to Star in Lost Boy Found in Whole Foods

UNION, N.J. - Premiere Stages at Kean University is collaborating with Playwrights Theatre of New Jersey to produce Tammy Ryan’s beautiful play, Lost Boy Found in Whole Foods (September 2 trough 19) in the Zella Fry Theatre on the Kean University campus, located at 1000 Morris Avenue, Union, N.J.

In this timely new work, Gabriel, an optimistic former “lost boy” from Sudan meets Christine, a suburban mother in desperate need of attention and adventure. What begins as an unlikely friendship becomes an unbreakable bond that changes the pair and leads them to a better understanding of their place in the world.

Four-time Emmy Award Winner Kim Zimmer leads the accomplished professional cast that includes David Farrington, Jamil Mangan, Trish McCall Warner Miller, and Alexandra Rivera. Plawrights Theatre artistic director John Pietrowski directs.  Best known as Reva Shayne on Guiding Light, Ms. Zimmer is an accomplished theatre actress, having starred off-Broadway in John Patrick Shanley’s Four Dogs and a Bone and in numerous regional productions including The Rainmaker, Jake’s Women, Blood Brothers, Dirty Blonde and as Mama Rose in Gypsy. Kim has appeared on the television series Seinfeld, Designing Women, McGuyver, Models Inc., and in several films including Body Heat.

Premiere Stages artistic director John Wooten and Pietrowski have partnered to develop the play over the past eighteen months through a series of readings and workshops. “The response has been incredible.  It was clear to all involved that this was not a story that should be told, it was one that had to be told,” stated Wooten.

The campus community agrees. The Human Rights Institute at Kean University, the Darfur Rehabilitation Project, and the Kean Department of Theatre are collaborating with Premiere Stages and Playwrights Theatre to bring this important new work to the stage. “We feel empowered to have such committed partners working with us to bring this play to life. It is an amazing story and another example of how the arts often bring topical issues to the forefront,” added Wooten.

Thanks to a generous grant from the Kean University Quality First Initiative, this production of Lost Boy Found in Whole Foods will include multiple community events featuring scholars and leaders in the field of Human Rights advocacy before and after select performances.  A special opening night pre-show reception for donors will be held on September 3rd in Kean University’s new Human Rights Institute and a champagne toast with the cast follows the performance. To purchase tickets for this exciting evening, please call 908.737.4092.

“This production marks an expansion of our ongoing partnership with Premiere Stages,” said John Pietrowski. “We have collaborated on the development of a number of plays, and also on one of our keystone projects, the New Jersey Young Playwrights Festival and Contest. This is an excellent example of how two theatres with similar missions can join together to make their programs and services stronger and more effective.”

All performances take place in the Zella Fry Theatre on the Kean University campus, located at 1000 Morris Avenue, Union, N.J.  Premiere Stages offers affordable prices, air-conditioned facilities and free parking close to the theatre. Premiere Stages provides free or discounted tickets to patrons with disabilities. All Premiere Stages facilities are fully accessible spaces. Please call for a list of sign-interpreted, audio-described or open-captioned performances. Assistive listening devices and large print programs are available at all times. Publications are available with advanced notice in alternate formats.

Tickets for productions range from $15 to $25, with discounts for groups. For more information, call 908.737.SHOW or visit www.kean.edu/premierestages . For group rates and packages, please call 908.737.4077.

Premiere Stages is made possible in part through funding from The New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts, The Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, Kean’s Quality First Initiative, The Westfield Foundation, The Gleason Family Foundation, The Provident Bank Foundation, and through the generous support of individual patrons.

Founded in 1855, Kean University has become one of the largest metropolitan institutions of higher education in the region, boasting a richly diverse student, faculty and staff population. Kean continues to play a key role in the training of teachers and is a hub of educational, technological and cultural enrichment, offering more than 50 undergraduate degrees and more than 45 options leading to a master’s degree, doctorate, professional diploma and/or state certification(s). Five undergraduate colleges and the Nathan Weiss Graduate College now serve more than 15,000 students.