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Arts Center Aligns Nonsubscription Events Print-ready version

Asbury Park Press
May 6, 1977
Original article: PDF


The Captain and Tennille, Jackson Browne and Joni Mitchell are some of the stars who will round out the upcoming season for the Garden State Arts Center.

The N.J. Highway Authority, which runs the arts center, yesterday announced the complete schedule of performances for the arts center's 10th year.

Oscar winning composer Marvin Hamlisch and Anthony Newley will team together for the first time to complete the program for the popular subscription series.

THE POPULAR SERIES will feature Seals & Crofts on June 20 and 21, Hall & Oates on June 23, Captain & Tennille on June 24 and 25, James Taylor on July 4 and 5, Gordon Lightfoot on July 7 and Judy Collins on Aug. 11.

Linda Ronstadt will appear on Aug. 12 and 13, Joni Mitchell on Aug. 22 [ed note: this never happened], Harry Chapin on Aug. 23, Al Stewart on Aug. 25, and Leo Sayer on Aug. 26.

Completing the list of performers in the popular series will be George Benson on Aug. 27, Jackson Browne on Sept. 6 and 7, and Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons on Sept. 8 and 9.

Perry Como will perform for the benefit of the Arts Center Cultural Fund Aug. 8 and 9.

HAMLISCH and NEWLEY, who will appear from July 18 to 27, will replace singer Olivia Newton-John, now scheduled to perform Aug. 1 to Aug. 6.

The subscription series, also featuring Neil Sedaka, Bobby Vinton, Engelbert Humperdinck and Johnny Mathis, was announced by the authority last month.

Robert J. Jablonski, vice chairman of the authority, said the subscription series has already drawn in $535,000 in deposits, which is $120,000 higher than the amount the series was bringing in at the same time last year.

"Overall, it's a very strong subscription series," Jablonski said.

THE ENTIRE SCHEDULE of popular, rock and classical this season has achieved "the best balance" that the arts center has had in many years, Jablonski said.

The main criticism of the arts center is the repetition of acts there each year, he said.

But the arts center is trying to provide the best possible program at the least possible cost to its patrons, Jablonski went on. Financial offers made to many performers are often not lucrative enough, he said.

Among individual artists, Jablonski said the Aug. 15 to 20 performance of Liberace," the superstar of the arts center," is topping the list of ticket requests received so far.

Liberace, a regular at the arts center, is a consistent sellout.

IN THE CLASSICAL SERIES, Jablonski said the Stuttgart Ballet's scheduled performances of "Romeo & Juliet" and "The Taming of the Shrew'' are currently the most popular.

Jablonski said he was encouraged by the sale of 160 combination dinner and theater tickets in 12 days for the gala benefit performance of Verdi's "Aida" on June 11.

Approximately one million people are expected to be entertained in the amphitheater this season, Jablonski said.

The legalization of gambling and subsequent rise of entertainment in Atlantic City may make it more difficult for the arts center to attract performers, Jablonski said. "Our reservoir (of available stars) is just going to get smaller and smaller," he said.

Ticket prices at the arts center may have to rise as a result, Jablonski explained, but added "there's no indication that we're going up."

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