Mark Packer, Executive Director of South Orange Performing Arts Center and
James Vagias, Co-Founder and Producing Artistic Director at America Theater Group
SOPAC Announces Theatre in-Residence
American Theater Group Makes South Orange its New Home
The South Orange Performing Arts Center is thrilled to announce a new partnership with American Theater Group, a professional member theatre of the New Jersey Theatre Alliance. The company, headed by Producing Artistic Director James Vagias, will begin presenting staged readings in the SOPAC Loft in January, 2017 and the following year will produce at least two fully-staged productions on the mainstage. As SOPAC’s theatre company in-residence, American Theater Group and SOPAC will co-present these theatrical offerings.
“We are excited to welcome American Theater Group to the SOPAC stage, and to South Orange,” noted SOPAC’s executive director Mark Packer. “James Vagias has an outstanding record of achievement in bringing new works to life. His reputation as a long-time producer in New Jersey is sterling and we feel that our audiences will be thrilled to see these quality productions in the intimate SOPAC theater.”
A list of successful productions speaks to the experience and artistry Vagias brings to the table. He produced the world premiere musical Bubble Boy, written by noted screenwriter Cinco Paul (The Lorax, Despicable Me), which appeared at NY’s famed 54 Below November 9. Another Off-Broadway premiere to his credit, Himself and Nora by Jonathan Brielle, was hailed by The New York Times as “handsomely produced.” Vagias also produced the 1995 world premiere of the long-running Off-Broadway hit, I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change, among many others.
He also produced the U.S. Regional theatre premiere of The Way We Get By by award-winning playwright, director and screenwriter Neil LaBute and Character Man, written and directed by Jim Brochu, which The New York Times called “…a solidly satisfying evening…walks down memory lane are rarely so inclusive and entertaining,”
“American Theater Group is honored to be invited to join the illustrious artists that have performed at SOPAC,” stated Vagias. We look forward to working with Mark Packer and his dedicated staff to bring quality live professional theater to SOPAC’s audiences.”