Shakespeare Theatre Of NJ Presents Remarkable Drama About Remarkable Man

The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey (STNJ) in Madison presents the New Jersey premiere of British playwright Lolita Chakrabarti’s multi-award-winning play, “Red Velvet.” Performances continue through Sept. 25 at the F.M. Kirby Shakespeare Theatre. Tickets and subscriptions can be purchased by calling the Box Office at 973-408-5600 or going online at

Set in the mid-1800s, “Red Velvet” is the fascinating true-life story of Ira Aldridge, an African-American actor and the first black man to appear as Othello on the London stage. When the famous Edmund Kean collapses on stage while playing Othello, the young black actor is asked to step into the role. “Red Velvet” examines the public’s reactions to this groundbreaking moment in history that took place amidst the start of the abolitionist movement. “Red Velvet” not only celebrates the life of this little known American artist, but it sheds light on his immense influence on the stylistic “revolution” that occurred in the world of theatre in the late 1800s, and it examines the power of art to sustain an artist through daunting circumstances.  

Single tickets for “Red Velvet” start as low as $25 for preview performances and $32 for regular performances. Prices range from $25 – $75. This season, The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey is initiating its 30 UNDER 30 Program, which offers $30 tickets for patrons aged 30 and under, with valid ID, tickets subject to availability. For tickets, call the Box Office at 973-408-5600 or visit

For the same price as a regular ticket, the Symposium Series performances offer a post-show discussion with the cast and artistic staff. For “Red Velvet,” the symposium is set to be Sat., Sept. 24 at 2 p.m. 

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