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Facilities Update
New Jersey Performing Arts Center

The New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) serves as a model for programming, audience diversity, education initiatives, and as a catalyst in returning nightlife and economic activity to its hometown of Newark, New Jersey. Proposed by former New Jersey Governor Thomas H. Kean in 1986, NJPAC raised its curtain on October 18, 1997, making it one of the top 10 largest performing arts centers in the United States.

NJPAC is a world-class and community-based cultural venue, showcasing the best artists of national and international acclaim as well as top artists from the State of New Jersey. Since its grand opening, NJPAC has attracted over 6 million patrons (including more than 1 million children), and welcomed renowned artists, cultural icons, two presidents, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, and some of the world's most cherished orchestral, dance, theater, and instrumental works.

Artists appearing on NJPAC’s stages include pop stars such as Alicia Keys, Bette Midler, Britney Spears, Bob Dylan, Eddie Vedder, Elvis Costello, Jennifer Hudon, Jill Scott, Lauryn Hill, Melissa Etheridge, Mos Def, ‘N Sync, Paul Simon, Salt-N-Pepa, Sting, Stone Temple Pilots, and ZZ Top; orchestras from the U.S. and abroad such as the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, Czech Philharmonic, Israel Philharmonic, Kirov Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, Vienna Symphony Orchestra, and the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra (for which NJPAC is their proud home); leading classical and opera recitalists including Andre Watts, Itzhak Perlman, Joshua Bell, Lang Lang, Pinchas Zukerman, Philip Glass, Renee Fleming and Yo-Yo Ma; the world’s top dance companies and choreographers, including Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, American Ballet Theatre, Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, Dance Theatre of Harlem, Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo, National Song and Dance Company of Mozambique, Paul Taylor Dance, Pilobolus, Savion Glover, the State Ballet Theatre of Russia, and Twyla Tharp Dance Company; jazz legends and up-and-comers such Alice Coltrane, Chucho Valdes, Dave Brubeck, Diana Krall, Dianne Reeves, Esperanza Spaulding, Herbie Hancock, John Pizzarelli, Keith Jarrett, Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra, McCoy Tyner and Nina Simone; vocal treasures such as Audra McDonald, Barbara Cook, Kristin Chenoweth. Mandy Patinkin, Tierny Sutton and Tony Bennett; artists and bands from around the world, such as the Afro-Cuban All-Stars, Buena Vista Social Club, Celia Cruz, Cesaria Evora, The Chieftains, Dulce Ponte, Juanes, Paco de Lucia, Ravi Shankar, Sweet Honey in the Rock, and Youssou N’Dour; and comedians including Bernie Mac, Bill Cosby, Jackie Mason, Jerry Seinfeld, Kevin Hart, and Lily Tomlin.

NJPAC's Prudential Hall was named one of the "world's greatest concert halls" by former New York Times music critic Hans Fantel, and "the nation's most glamorous theater" by Clive Barnes.

Arts Education

NJPAC's Arts Education program is one of the largest programs for a performing arts institution in the country. Its signature programs include: NJPAC's Wells Fargo Jazz for Teens, The Jeffrey Carollo Scholarship Fund, The Star-Ledger Scholarship for the Performing Arts, The Summer Youth Performance Workshop, The Young Artist Institute, the NJPAC/NJYT Summer Musical Program and Verizon Passport to Culture SchoolTime and FamilyTime Series. NJPAC also offers in-school residencies in dance, theater, music and the literary arts. The Center for Arts Education at NJPAC, directly adjacent to the main Arts Center building, was inaugurated in early 2001.

More information on NJPAC Arts Education
Summer at NJPAC

NJPAC's free outdoor summer music series, Sounds of the City, is an annual highly anticipated event, attracting between 2,000 and 3,000 people to NJPAC's three-acre Theater Square on Thursday nights during the summer months. The New York Times wrote: "Perhaps the most powerful statement of the arts center's – and Newark's – success can be glimpsed on warm summer nights, when thousands of people throng its outdoor plaza for a weekly series that has become Newark's town social." Sonic Superstars, a dejayed summer dance party, has quickly become a community favorite on Wednesdays in the summer.

One Theater Square Development Project

NJPAC and Dranoff Properties, Inc. of Philadelphia signed a Letter of Intent for the development of One Theater Square, a mixed-use residential and retail project on a 1.2 acre site adjacent to the Arts Center. One Theater Square, which will become the tallest building in Newark, is envisioned to include a residential community of at least 300 units, 20,000 sq. ft. of street-level retail and cultural uses, and structured parking for over 750 cars to serve the shared needs of the residential community as well as those of NJPAC’s audiences and daytime commercial demand. In 2011, the Theater Square Development Company was created to focus specifically on the Arts Center’s development projects.


Since its inception, NJPAC has enjoyed the generosity of leadership volunteers who have dedicated time, talent, and treasure to guide, advocate, and fundraise for the Arts Center. In addition to its Board of Directors, NJPAC also has a deeply committed and highly effective Women’s Association and Council of Trustees, comprised of prominent New Jersey executives, as well as community and philanthropic leaders. For more information visit