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4TH WALL MUSICAL THEATRE INC

Rating: 5 stars   6 reviews 139

Address:

PO Box 43636 Upper Montclair NJ 07043 USA

Mission:

4th Wall Theatre sets the highest standards of excellence in producing diverse, seldom-performed and original productions, celebrating a wide spectrum of visions and voices in theatre. 4th Wall is committed to breaking through the wall of imagination, to make cutting edge works accessible and to foster a positive theatre experience for our artists and audience.

Target demographics:

the arts

Geographic areas served:

Essex, Passaic, Morris, Bergen and Union Counties in New Jersey

Programs:

musicals, plays, new musicals in development, staged readings, concert versions of musicals

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973-996-8484
www.4thwalltheatre.org

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Reviews for 4TH WALL MUSICAL THEATRE INC

Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

Anyone who attends a performance by 4th Wall Theatre quickly sees that this is a group of extremely talented, dedicated, and inventive actors, musicians, designers, and producers. Each production has a crisp and coherent creative vision, and all of the elements work together gracefully to tell a story that never fails to move audiences. Many of those stories are rarely told, but 4th Wall is true to its mission to produce infrequently performed works. This is another dimension of the group’s inventiveness, and reflects their commitment to show the excitement of live theatre. I’ve often heard members of the audience remark, “I’d never even heard of this play, but it’s so wonderful” and “Why hasn’t this play been produced more? Everyone should see it!”

There is a kind of magic in 4th Wall productions: a palpable warmth among performers, passion and energy that spill out into the audience, interpretations that are both smart and heart-felt. Even when 4th Wall produces a play that is not a personal favorite of mine, I end up getting sucked into theatrical life that they give it – and I always find more depths and subtleties in the play than I had seen before.

What isn’t always so obvious to audiences is 4th Wall’s educational commitment. The group is the resident company at Bloomfield College, and does so much to make theatre available to students (especially Bloomfield students who are, for the most part, first-generation college students who have never seen live theatre). The company offers a deeply reduced student ticket rate, and they often host talk-back sessions for students. For one production, they allowed students to attend the dress rehearsal (for free, of course) because that was the only opportunity those students had to attend the theatre. The 4th Wall team understands the importance of welcoming young people into the arts and inviting them to engage actively with the arts: to watch college students who are not regular theatre-goers talk about a performance with these actors is to see a new and exciting world open up to them. And this motivates a new generation of theatre-lovers. For this and for all of the stories and characters they have brought to life for me, I value and appreciate 4th Wall Theatre.

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

The fourth wall refers to an imaginary "wall" that traditionally exists between actors on stage and the audience. When "breaking the fourth wall" actors acknowledge the presence of their audience and the presence of the wall that isn't there. Playing on either side of this wall is theatrically legitimate. Over the years, the talented leadership of 4th Wall Theatre has clearly understood that being forward looking, while at the same time keeping up traditions, creates theatre experiences that edify both actors and audiences. I admire this company for upholding the theatre traditions that matter the most: a generosity of spirit; an active imagination; a high standard of performance excellence; a supportive environment that builds strong comradery among artists; and most of all, an emphasis on honest story telling as a way to bring people together through a shared experience. I also admire 4th Wall Theatre for for the ways it breaks with tradition by mounting otherwise rarely produced pieces and new works that have never been seen on stage before. The Mid Stage and Off the Wall productions have given new works and new writers the coveted opportunity to be seen and heard. Not many small theatre companies are willing to make that investment and take that risk. In the nine years I have worked with the company I have not had a disappointing experience. The artistic leadership seems to have an uncanny ability to put together groups of performers who show the highest respect for each other on stage and off. I believe this stems from the initial respect and consideration shown to those who attend auditions, and it continues to those who give up their time and talent to mount the actual productions. As a Bloomfield resident I am thrilled to have 4th Wall Theatre as a part of my home community; as an actor and audience member I am just as excited to see what the future holds for them.

 
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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

You will never meet a group of more committed, gracious, and hard-working theatre artists than at 4th Wall Musical Theatre. They are not a theatre company, they are a family. It's why artists and audiences--from New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and sometimes even further--continue to make the commute to rehearsals and performances. That, and 4th Wall does amazing pieces that artists and audiences not only love, but (sometimes) rarely get the opportunity to see. This may be the main reason 4th Wall deserves everyone's patronage--they are keeping alive our canon of American Musical Theatre. And we love them for it and everything else!

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

For 10+ years I have been a regular audience member at 4th Wall productions. Their mission of presenting works rarely seen or produced puts them in a league of their own in New Jersey, but their consistently high quality productions places them far above and beyond any similar companies. For those reasons (among others), I am proud to be an enthusiastic supporter, both as a subscriber and a donor. When attending 4th Wall productions, you can be guaranteed of great performances, thoughtful and engaging direction, and superior production values. I've even been known to see a production or two multiple times! Bravo to all involved with 4th Wall!

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

I can't say enough great things about 4th Wall Musical Theatre. I have been a volunteer and contributor with 4th Wall for about 10 years now and am always blown away by the professionalism of the Board of Directors and staff as well as by the consistently stellar, high-quality theatrical productions that 4th Wall mounts. Bringing the arts to people is such an important thing in today's world, and 4th Wall Theatre always and consistently excels at making superior quality arts entertainment accessible to its audiences. And the 4th Wall Board and production staff are such a delight to work with and for -- a more talented, dedicated and genuine group of people would be harder to find!

 
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Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

4th Wall Theatre is one of those companies where you absolutely feel you are working on something truly special...no matter the project. I started with them as an actor and knew I wanted to be more involved. I was honored to have served as a former artistic director to get to work with this group shaping it from behind the curtains. But no matter if you're working backstage or on, a volunteer or a performer, everyone feels a part of the family. They present amazing works that you may never get to witness elsewhere. They are a hard-working group, producing on a shoestring, yet presenting some of the most inspiring works around. The fact they are celebrating their 20s years producing in New Jersey is a testament to their tenacity, drive, and passion for what they do. Kudos to this group on always thinking outside the box!

 
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