Theater Turns The Tables On Critic

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RAHWAY– On June 23, at 8 p.m. American Theater Group, New Jersey’s newest professional theater company in residence at Hamilton Stage in Rahway, will be presenting a reading of a new play “Adam’s Gifts” by Peter Filichia, the theater critic for the New Jersey Star Ledger.

For nearly twenty years Filichia, the journalistic theatrical emperor of the state’s largest newspaper, has traveled as far north as Teaneck and as far south as Cape May, dispensing thumbs up for some shows, and thumbs down for others. And those who write, direct, act and produce could do nothing but grin if they could bear the wrath of his terrible swift sword.

“Many an artist has wondered if this critic is so smart and has all the answers, why doesn’t write a play?” says ATG co-founder Jim Vagias. “Well Peter has done just that. Now it’s our turn to see how he cuts the dramatic mustard. Now it’s our turn to see how thick his skin can be.”

If you want to see a critic put in his place, come see a reading of Filichia’s “Adam’s Gifts,” (directed by co-founder Joe Mancuso) a modern retelling of Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.” After the reading Vagias will moderate a Q & A period with the audience as Filichia takes the stage and sits in the hot seat.

“If you have ever wanted to see a critic get back some of his own, here’s your chance”, says newly minted playwright Filichia. “If you like what I’ve written, sure, tell me. But if you think it stinks and that it’s such a humiliation that I should never leave the house again — and most of all, never have the nerve to criticize anyone else ever again, let the punishment fit the crime.”

American Theater Group is a newly formed theater company specializing in plays and musicals by American playwrights. Founded by Rick Sordelet, Joe Mancuso and Jim Vagias, ATG is in residence at Hamilton Stage, the brand new state-of-the art theater in Rahway New Jersey. ATG will begin its inaugural season this fall.

Seating for Adam’s Gifts is extremely limited, so call 1-732-499-8226 or email boxoffice@ucpac.org for reservations.


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