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NJ Music & Dance Performances for Kids, Teens & Adults in New Jersey

the arts
The Music & Dance and Theatre categories include an incredible array of performances for all ages—from parents and grandparents, young adults and teens to elementary students, preschoolers and toddlers. Shows geared specifically for young children are typically found under "Family" or "Children's" series listings. Keep in mind that many shows are full-length performances best suited for older children and teens. Age recommendations are only guidelines. Parents must use their discretion in determining their individual child's readiness for a theater, music or dance performance.

Morris Arts,
a passionate advocate of the arts, helps sponsor community arts events, publishes Arts Matters, a quarterly newsletter, an arts calendar online, and offers over 200 programs in dance, music, poetry, theatre, storytelling and the visual arts for schools. 973-258-5115 or visit website for information
A program of the New Jersey Theatre Alliance offers an overview of performances across the state and the opportunity to purchase discounted tickets 48 hours in advance of showtime or one week in advance with a $30 annual donation. links
The Music, Dance and Theatre listings below are only an introduction to the volume and variety of performing arts offered throughout New Jersey. Consult websites using the convenient links below for complete event calendars for all ages, to check for newly added performances, and to view the new season announced during the summer or early fall.

the stages festival
march 1-31 annually

Professional theatres across the state offer free and discounted tickets to performances and special events including theatrical workshops, classes and backstage tours. For a complete roster of events, visit The Stages Festival website.

new season calendars
Calendars for many venues are not available until mid-summer for the new season. Call for schedules, check the convenient website links below for complete calendars, subscribe to email lists of theaters near you, and see the "Kids Guide Calendar" for featured family events.
    A comprehensive listing of acoustic performances in the New York metropolitan area.

Alborada Spanish Dance Theatre
    Flamenco and Spanish dance company performs at venues throughout the state.

American Repertory Ballet Princeton Ballet School
7 Livingston Ave., New Brunswick, 732-249-1254
301 N. Harrison St.; 102 Witherspoon St., Princeton, 609-921-7758
29 N. Main St., Cranbury, 609-921-7758
    Oct.-May season includes performances at theaters throughout the state, annual Nutcracker performances in Nov. and Dec., free On Pointe events in Princeton; educational assemblies and residences for schools and school-time matinees.
Selected Performances
          Annual Nutcracker Performances, a holiday tradition for more than 50 years, American Repertory Ballet's Nutcracker is one of the longest, continuously running Nutcracker productions in the nation.

Bergen Performing Arts Center
30 North Van Brunt St., Englewood, 201-227-1030
    Year round season offers music, dance, New Jersey Symphony Orchestra concerts, comedy, Kidz Cabaret series, family and special events. See Theatre for family theatre events. Check website often for new shows.

Bickford Theatre
At the Morris Museum, 6 Normandy Heights Rd., Morristown, 973-971-3706
    Year round performances in the 312-seat theater include special concert events, jazz showcase, film series, Main Stage and children's theater series. Student discounts and subscriptions available. See Theatre for children and family theater events.
Morris Museum Summer JazzFest
Pack lawn chairs and picnic baskets or visit food trucks open from 5:30pm on the grounds of the Morris Museum in July and Aug. Concerts at 7:30pm. Call box office for tickets or purchase online.

Broadway Theatre of Pitman
43 S. Broadway, Pitman, 856-384-8381. Six main stage shows, a Dec. holiday show and children's theater season are presented in a former movie and vaudeville theater from 1926. Concerts, movies, special events and children's summer theater camp are also scheduled. See listings under Theatre for year round children's theater.

Cathedral Arts Live
Grace Church Van Vorst, 39 Erie St., Jersey City
Performances 7-10pm. Tickets $15-20.

Centenary Stage Company

Sitnik Theater at the Lackland Center, Centenary University, 715 Grand Ave., Hackettstown, 908-979-0900.
          Concerts and special events, jazz series, theater season by professional Centenary Stage Company, family fun series, and Festival of Shows is presented by members of Young Performers Workshops at end of fall, spring and summer sessions. Student rates; student matinees.

Chatham Community Band
    Community band presents free concerts to Chatham and surrounding communities. New members welcome.

Count Basie Theatre
99 Monmouth St., Red Bank, 732-842-9000
    Year round season of concerts by major recording artists, comedy, dance, theater, classical music, family events and school shows in a 1,550 seat theater circa 1926. Performing Arts Academy offers programs in acting, dance, music, rockband, jazz and an outreach program. Half-price rush tickets may be available on the day of a show at the discretion of the box office. See listing under Theatre for additional family events and check website link often for new shows.

Crescent Concert Series
Crescent Avenue Presbyterian Church
716 Watchung Ave., Plainfield, 908-756-2468
    Sept.-May series includes concerts by the Crescent Choral Society, the Crescent Singers and outside professional and amateur groups and solo artists. The annual Showcase for Exceptional Young Artists, features local young musicians, ages 16 and under, chosen by audition.

Debonair Music Hall
1409 Queen Anne Rd., Teaneck, 201-833-0011
    A mostly standing room only club with limited reserved seating features live music by local and national artists.

Discovery Orchestra
P.O. Box 4064, Warren, 908-226-7300
    Artistic Director George Marriner Maull teaches listening skills to help people emotionally connect with classical music during intimate in-home recitals, listening classes and discovery concerts. Recommended for adults and ages 10 and up. Student, group and subscription discounts; videos online.

Drew University Arts
The Concert Hall, Lancaster Rd., Madison, 973-408-3176
    Drew hosts Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center performances, music and theater arts department events, annual Drew Forum lecture series and the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey.

Earth Room Concerts
Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Monmouth County, 1475 W. Front St., Lincroft
    Folk, acoustic, singer-songwriter concerts performed in an intimate setting with a capacity around 200.

Ethical Brew
Ethical Culture Society of Bergen County
687 Larch Ave., Teaneck, 201-836-5187
    Proceeds from live music performances in an intimate setting fund social action projects and initiatives of the Ethical Culture Society. Shows at 8pm. $20, $25 day of show.

Friends of the Library Concert Series
Meeting Room, Somerset County Bridgewater Library,
N. Bridge and Vogt Dr., Bridgewater, 908-526-4016 x105
    Sept.-May free concert series includes Friday evening concert series and children's events.

Hanover Wind Symphony
P.O. Box 10, Whippany, NJ 07981, 973-263-2683
    Oct.-Aug. season includes concerts throughout Morris County and annual summer Gazebo Series.

Hunterdon Musical Arts, Inc.
    Hunterdon Symphony and Hunterdon Choral Union present a Nov.-May concert season at different venues in Hunterdon County. A Saturday Strings program, chamber ensemble and orchestra camp for youth are also offered. Consult website link for tickets and info.

Hurdy Gurdy Folk Music Club
Fair Lawn Community Center
10-10 20th St., Fair Lawn, 201-384-1325
    Contemporary folk music performers Oct.-June. All shows at 8pm. Supporters receive ticket discounts.

Kean Stage
Kean University Wilkins Theatre
1000 Morris Ave., Union, 908-737-7469
    Sept.-May season includes world-class music and dance artists, chamber music series, student and faculty productions, professional theater, Holocaust Resource Center events, family shows and on school time performances (908-737-4349). Student rates; subscriptions. See Theatre and Film and Premiere Stages listing for additional events.
Enlow Recital Hall Concert Series
Eugene and Shelley Enlow Recital Hall
215 North Ave., Hillside, 908-737-7469
    300-seat concert hall provides an intimate atmosphere to hear renowned artists, established local musicians and Kean University music faculty members. Subscription season Oct.-May; student tickets. Recording studio.

Light Opera of New Jersey
P.O. Box 344, Millington, 908-903-0702
    Most performances at St. Mark's Episcopal Church, 140 S. Finley Ave., Basking Ridge. Specializes in shows featuring staged and costumed highlights of (light) opera and musical theater as well as full scale productions.

Livingston Symphony Orchestra
Concerts: Livingston High School Auditorium
30 Robert Harp Dr., Livingston, 973-980-1809
    Four concert series takes place Nov.-May at 7:30pm. The student winner of annual concerto competition (auditions are held in Jan., open to ages 14-21) performs as a soloist with the orchestra in the spring. For advance ticket purchase, call 973-980-1809 or email Under 12 free with adult.

Lyrica Chamber Music
Presbyterian Church of Chatham Township
240 Southern Blvd., Chatham Twp., 973-309-1668
    Concerts are held on Sundays at 3pm. Sept.-April subscriptions; single tickets; students are free. Outreach program for school groups.

Maplewood Community Music
         Community ensembles present free performances throughout the community, an annual children's concert and small ensemble performances at local schools. High school and college music students are encouraged to join.

Mason Gross School of the Arts
Mason Gross Performing Arts Center Ticket Office
85 George St., New Brunswick, 848-932-7511
    Student and faculty dance, music, theater and visual art events Sept.-May. Student rates.

Mayo Center for the Performing Arts
100 South St., Morristown, 973-539-8008
    1,200-seat venue offers a wide array of contemporary music, jazz, dance, drama, comedy, speakers, children's programming and classical music. Create-your-own subscriptions; family subscriptions; student and group discounts. School-time shows for school groups, Performing Arts Academy, master classes, school residency programs and high school internship/community service programs are available. See Theatre for additional events and check website for newly added events.

McCarter Theatre Center for the Performing Arts
91 University Place, Princeton, 609-258-2787
    Sept.-May season of internation­ally known artists in music, dance, theater and special events. Education programs include student matinees, touring shows, theater classes, summer camps, group tours, in-school residencies, internships and professional development. See Theatre listings for additional family events.

Metropolitan Orchestra of New Jersey
P.O. Box 6, Short Hills, NJ 07078
    A full symphonic community orchestra composed of local professional and amateur musicians performs three concerts in the fall, winter and spring.

The Minstrel
Morristown Unitarian Fellowship
21 Normandy Heights Rd., Morristown, 973-335-9489
    Friday concerts feature acoustic music from local and internationally known performers, 7:30pm. $10 at the door, 12 and under free, no advance sales. Second Fri. of the month is an open stage/audition night. $5 admission, under 25 free.

Monmouth University Performing Arts
Pollak Theatre, 400 Cedar Ave., West Long Branch, 732-263-6889
    Sept.-May season of contemporary concerts and special events, The Met Live, Bolshoi Ballet Live and live theater in HD, visiting writers, film, theater, dance and children's events in an intimate 700-seat theater. In summer, outdoor theater is presented on the Shadow Lawn Stage. For birthday party packages, 732-571-3473.
          Live in High Definition, visit event calendar online for schedule of performances by the Metropolitan Opera, Bolshoi Ballet and National Theatre.

Montclair State University Peak Performances
Alexander Kasser Theater, One Normal Ave., Montclair Box Office: 973-655-5112; Info: 973-655-3059
    School of the Arts theater, music and dance performances and professional arts events.

Morris Museum
See listing under Bickford Theatre.

Mostly Music
Concerts at Temple Emanu-El
756 E. Broad St., Westfield, 973-762-0108
    Five-concert chamber music series Sundays at 3:30pm. Subscriptions; single tickets; students under 21 no charge.

Music at Morristown
United Methodist Church
50 Park Place (on the Green), Morristown, 973-538-2132
    Thirty-minute Music at Noon concerts are held on Thursdays in Dec. and Jan. December concerts are free; Jan. concerts have suggested donation. Abendmusik evening concert series runs Oct.-Mar. Advance ticket purchase discounts; students are free with ID.
Music at Noon
Thursdays at 12:15pm, lunch available 11:30-12:10pm. Jan. concerts suggested donation $7, students free with ID.
Abendmusik Series
Saturdays at 7:30pm. Adults $20, srs. $15, students free with ID. Advance ticket discounts.

Music in the Somerset Hills
P.O. Box 729, Bernardsville, 973-339-7719
    Seasoned professionals along with amateur musicians present classical concert series Oct.-May at venues throughout Somerset County. Opportunities for community musicians to participate include a Community Concert Band, open to ages 14 and older, Somerset Hills Community Chorus, and summer vocal, instrumental and theater camps for grades 2-12. Musikgarten family music program for babies and toddlers and group piano for ages 5-9 are offered at All Saint's Church in Millington.

Music on Main Street
The Theatre at Woodbridge Middle School or other Township venues, Woodbridge, 732-596-4048
    Presents professional touring artists from emerging artists to renowned musicians in ticketed concerts and also produces the acclaimed Woodbridge Wednesdays and Country Sundays free outdoor summer concert series. See Arts in the Parks in June for this year's schedule. Check website for new shows.

New Jersey Ballet Company
    Oct.-May season features full-length performances throughout the state, beloved ­children's ballets with original "storyteller" narration and annual Nutcracker performances. Adult, sr., student tickets. Call box office of venue for individual tickets.

New Jersey Festival Orchestra
Concerts at The Presbyterian Church, Westfield; The Concert Hall, Drew University, Madison, 908-232-9400
    Professional symphony orchestra presents Oct.-May season. Student discounts; Music Caravan school outreach program.

New Jersey Intergenerational Orchestra
570 Central Ave., New Providence, 908-603-7691
    Recognized nationally for its "intergenerational excellence," NJIO brings together all ages and abilities in its three ensembles. No auditions. Students and seniors play together alongside professional mentors, learning and sharing the experience of musical performances.

New Jersey Jazz Society
    Sponsors classic jazz concerts, film series, jazz socials, college jazz performances, jazz festivals and co-sponsors Jazz at the Bickford Theatre at the Morris Museum and Jazz for Shore in Ocean County. Membership, open to youth and adults, includes subscription to Jersey Jazz Journal, invitation to musical events and CD discounts.

New Jersey Performing Arts Center
One Center St., Newark, 1-888-GO NJPAC
     Classical music, dance, world music, R&B, jazz, comedy, speakers, contemporary concerts, theater and family series presented in 2,750-seat Prudential Hall and 500-seat Victoria Theater. Subscriptions; individual tickets; $10 student rush tickets offered at the box office one hour before curtain time. Subject to availability, valid ID required, limit two per student. Also seeTheatre and Film / Speakers listings.

New Jersey Symphony Orchestra
800-ALLEGRO (255-3476)
    Performances at New Jersey Performing Arts Center, Newark; State Theatre, New Brunswick; Richardson Auditorium, Princeton; War Memorial, Trenton; bergenPAC, Englewood; Count Basie Theatre, Red Bank, and Mayo Performing Arts Center, Morristown. Subscriptions; flex passes; individual tickets; student discounts. $10 student rush tickets available at the door one hour prior to most concerts. $25 Class Pass gives students unlimited tickets all season. Program notes for classical concerts are available online before concerts.

New Jersey Youth Symphony
570 Central Ave., Murray Hill, 908-771-5544
    Three orchestral groups, jazz ensembles, string, percussion, wind and flute ensembles for youth in grades 3-12 present orchestra and chamber music concerts from Sept-May. Auditions are held annually in May/June for the following year. Summer programs.

Ocean City Music Pier
825 Boardwalk, Ocean City, 609-525-9300.
          Concert hall since 1929 hosts music, pageants, including the Miss New Jersey pageant, theater, children's theater, special events, and Ocean City Pops summer concert series. See listings under Theatre for family events.

Opera at Florham
Lenfell Hall, Fairleigh Dickinson University
285 Madison Ave., Madison, 973-443-8620
    A professional company in residence at Fairleigh Dickinson University, Opera at Florham presents cabaret, recitals, operatic performances and an annual vocal competition. Children free.

Opera Theatre of Montclair
    Community opera company presents full-length, fully-staged and costumed opera with multi-generational orchestra in and around Montclair.

Outpost in the Burbs
40 South Fullerton Ave., Montclair, 973-744-6560
    Non-profit organization, dedicated to building community through music, community service and cultural programs, presents affordable, quality acoustic entertainment Sept.-June at the First Congregational Church of Montclair, the Unitarian Church of Montclair, 67 Church St., or the Montclair High School auditorium, 100 Chestnut St. Check website for added shows.

Patriots Theater at the War Memorial
Memorial Dr., Trenton's Capitol Complex, 609-984-8484
    Owned by the state of New Jersey, Patriots Theater hosts limited music, dance and special events.

Plainfield Symphony Orchestra
P.O. Box 5093, Plainfield, NJ 07061, 908-561-5140
    New Jersey's oldest community symphony presents a mix of classical and pops concerts Sept.-March at Crescent Avenue Presbyterian Church, E. 7th St. and Watchung Ave., Plainfield. Subscriptions; student rates; children 12 and under are free.

Princeton Folk Music Society
Concerts at Christ Congregation Church
50 Walnut Lane, Princeton, 609-799-0944
    Monthly concerts on the third Friday feature music by new singer-songwriters and well-known folk musicians in an intimate, friendly setting.

Princeton Pro Musica
P.O. Box 1313, Princeton, NJ 08542, 609-683-5122
    Chorus, chamber chorus and orchestra presents choral masterworks and other works at central New Jersey locations during Oct.-May season.
Mar 3 Vespers, Claudio Monteverdi, 7:30pm, Princeton University Chapel.

Raritan Valley Community College
Edward Nash Theatre, 118 Lamington Rd.
(Rt. 78 exit 26 or Rt. 22W), Branchburg, 908-725-3420
    Oct.-May season includes theater, comedy, music, dance, puppetry and holiday shows, Youth & Family shows, sensory-friendly shows, and school-time performances. Student and series discounts. See Theatre for Youth & Family Series.

The Rosen Performing Arts Center at the Wayne YMCA
1 Pike Dr., Wayne, 973-595-0100
    408-seat theater offers theater productions for youth, teens and adults, dance programs, concerts and special events. Rentals available.

Roxey Ballet
243 North Union St., Lambertville, 609-397-7616
    Contemporary ballet company produces out-of-the box dance performances, offers zumba for teens and pre-teens, and Tutus & Tiaras, a ballet story-craft program for aspiring young ballerinas.

Roy's Hall
30 Main St., Blairstown, 908-362-1399
    1913 theatre offers a regular schedule of live music and theatrical performances, classic film, kids programs and community events.

Shanghai Jazz Restaurant & Bar
24 Main St., Madison, 973-822-2899
    Asian-inspired cuisine and live jazz six nights a week, Tues.-Sun.

Shea Center for Performing Arts–WPLive
William Paterson University, 300 Pompton Rd., Wayne
973-720-2371, arts hotline: 973-720-ARTS
    Jazz series, professional touring artists, family and schooltime shows, university theater and music performances and lecture series presented Sept.-May. Also sponsors annual NJ playwrights contest.

South Orange Performing Arts Center
One SOPAC Way, South Orange, 973-313-2787
    Intimate 415-seat theater presents performances year round by major artists in music, comedy and dance, kids 'n family events, school time performances, performances by the Seton Hall University Arts Council, and theater productions by American Theater Group, SOPAC's professional company in residence.

South Orange Symphony Orchestra
Performances at South Orange Middle School
70 N. Ridge­wood Ave., South Orange, 973-376-6349
    Not-for-profit community orchestra, founded in 1949, presents three to four free classical concerts per year to the local community.

Splatter Concerts
Shows at Ukrainian American Cultural Center
60 North Jefferson Rd., Whippany
    Blues and American roots music, some rock, folk and country. Ages 13-17 $5, 12 and under free.

Stanhope House
45 Main St., Stanhope, 973-347-7777
    A Sussex County landmark since c. 1794, the Stanhope House has hosted a long list of legendary blues-rock performers, and continues to host national artists, local bands and comedians. All ages admitted for most concerts. Food and beverage minimums may apply for guests under 21.

State Theatre
15 Livingston Ave., New Brunswick, 732-246-7469
    Full ­schedule of live music, Broadway, dance, symphony, film, variet and family events. Student matinees, artist-in residence program and professional development workshops for teachers. For education ­programs, call 732-247-7200, ext. 534 or visit More events under Theatre and Speaker & Film Series listings.
Milk & Cookies
          Interactive series, recommended for ages 3-8 and their families, features storytelling and music on select Saturdays in fall and spring. 732-246-7469 ext. 545. Reserve free tickets and join mailing list online.

Summit Symphony
Community orchestra presents three afternoon concerts at Summit High or Middle School in Summit. No admission; sponsored by Summit Board of Recreation, local businesses, and Friends of the Symphony. Annual Young Artist Competition is open to all New Jersey high school students.

Swingin’ Tern Contra & Square Dancing
First Presbyterian Church, Parish House
14 Hanover Rd., East Hanover, 973-295-6864
    Dances, held at 8pm on the first and third Saturdays, feature a caller and live band. Beginners workshop at 7:30pm. Best for teens and up, no partner necessary.

Trumpets Jazz Club & Restaurant
6 Depot Square, Montclair, 973-744-2600
    Live jazz Wed.-Sun. evenings and for Sunday Jazz Brunch.

Underground Concert Series
Hotline: 973-762-0119
    Eclectic world and folk music is brought to different venues in Maplewood.

Union County Performing Arts Center
Main Stage: 1601 Irving St., Rahway, 732-499-8226
Hamilton Stage: 360 Hamilton St., Rahway
    Contemporary and classical music, dance, theater, films, variety, family and sensory-friendly events are presented in two venues—one, an elegant, restored 1334-seat 1928 vaudeville and silent movie theater, and the second, the 199-seat Hamilton Stage. Intimate concerts, jazz and readings are held upstairs in the Loft at UCPAC. See Theatre for additional events.
Sensory-Friendly Family Series
Live performances specially designed and adapted for children with autism and other special needs. Visit website for upcoming events.

Watchung Arts Center
18 Stirling Rd., Watchung Circle, Watchung, 908-753-0190
    Non-profit, volunteer-run center offers new art exhibitions each month, performances in music, comedy, adult and family improv, classes in drawing, photography, yoga and summer art camp.

White Eagle Hall
337 Newark Ave., Jersey City, 201-885-5166
        Newly restored and renovated historic theater presents live music, theatre, comedy, dance, film, family shows and other performances while serving food and drinks.

WBGO Kids Jazz Concert Series
54 Park Place, Newark, 973-624-8880
    Member-supported radio 88.3FM presents a free children's jazz series in the fall and spring at venues throughout Essex County. Check website for dates and locations and to join mailing list.

820AM, 93.9FM New York Public Radio
    Radio Rookies initiative for teens.

    NYC classical station airs McGraw Hill Young Artists Showcase on Wed. at 9pm to showcase the talents of young emerging artists. Classics for Kids airs Saturdays at 8am.