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Roosevelt Park in Edison Hosts Performances of Mary Poppins

County Government Maintains Tradition of "Plays in The Park"
Mary Poppins
Mary Poppins Disney

EDISON, NJ—From August 3 through August 12, the Steven J. Capestro Amphitheater is presenting live performances of the classic Walt Disney musical "Mary Poppins."

The first night had to be cancelled due to thunderstorms, but opening night finally came on Thursday, August 3.

This 1964 Disney musical, based on the writings of PL Travers tells the story of Mary Poppins, the “Practically perfect in every way” nanny, who manages to bring the troubled Banx family together in ways no one could have imagined.

Using her own unique style, she manages to persuade the very serious and very reserved Mr. Banx to look at life from a different perspective, casting his two young children in a whole new light.

This play is directored by Allen Van Antwerp, and choreographed by Megan Ferentinos, with musical direction by John Brzozowski.

Ticket prices are $7.00 for adults, and $5.00 for all seniors over 60.  Children, 12 years of age and under are admitted free of charge.  There will be shows each night except for Sunday, August 6.

Complimentary tickets for active military personnel and their families are available for all performances.

For veterans and their families, complimentary tickets are available for Monday, and Tuesday evening performances.

All shows begin at 8-00 PM, accept Sundays, when there are no performances taking place.

The cash-only "box office" will open at 5-30 PM through 8-30 PM.

If a performance is canceled dew to inclement weather, not to worry.  For those who had tickets to the cancelled performance, it still works for any other live Plays-In-The-Park performance up to one year in the future.

Previous plays featured this summer included live performances of: “Legally Blond,” based on the 2001 film, and the classic musical, “Westside Story.”

Since 1963, the Capestro Amphitheater, located inside Roosevelt Park, has been holding "Plays-In-The-Park."

“It has been a beloved family tradition for all of our Middlesex County residents for the last 50 years,” said Freeholder Director Ronald Rios, encouraging residents to “bring your lawn chairs, bring the whole family, and get ready to enjoy ‘Theater Under the Stars.”

Plays-In-The Park is dedicated to providing live theater for everyone.

“Our talented directors, cast, and production crew are out to make this another summer season to remember,” said Freeholder Charles Kenny. “Plays-In-The Park is something for everyone to enjoy, even those who are experiencing live theater for the first time.”

The Capestro Amphitheater seats approximately 2,500 people in all, 800 of which are accessible to those with disabilities.

“Approximately 23,000 have attended live PIP performances so far this year,” said Michele Doughty, a county Public Information Officer. “As for active military personnel, veterans and their families, we’ve had an average of approximately 500 this year so far,” Doughty said.

“We try not to let it get to the 2,500 capacity to often,” jokes Jackie Neill. “You literally won’t be able to move.”

Plays-In-The-Park provides such accommodations as audio description for the blind, open captioning for those with low vision, and sign language interpretation for the deaf.

For example, all audio description for the blind is done by Michael Mooney.

“Mr. Mooney is a storyteller in his own right,” says Neill, a Recreation Supervisor with the county.  “In fact, if you come to the theater by 7:00 PM, Mr. Mooney will be presenting what we call, 'a sensory seminar.'”

“All of our blind patrons will be able to actually touch certain props from the show, such as costumes and wigs,” Ms. Neill goes onto explain.

Three interpreters also perform sign language for the deaf during the show.

“We encourage all of our disabled patrons to arrive at the theater at least one hour before show time,” Neill recommends.

Those who would like more information on accommodations for the disabled can contact Neill by phone at (732) 745-3936, between the hours of 8:30 AM, and 3:30 PM, Monday through Friday.

Those interested in purchsaing tickets can call the box office at (732) 548-2884 for more information.