Get information about class cancellations, schedule changes, announcements and highlights from past and current events.


Don't forget to check out the latest happenings here at bergenPAC's Performing Arts School, below!

Voices In Harmony | 2024

Written by Ashley Tobias

Voices In Harmony | "#Selflove"


This year, bergenPAC's Performing Arts School proudly partnered with 13 neighboring schools to celebrate the talents and achievements of our special needs students. This collaboration culminated in a remarkable performance on the renowned bergenPAC (Taub) MainStage, where our students showcased the incredible progress they made over a transformative 12-week period.

Our residency program, led by four dedicated teaching artists from the Performing Arts School, brought the joy of music, dance, and acting to these schools. Through their guidance and expertise, students were not only taught the fundamentals of performing arts but also empowered to express themselves creatively and confidently.


The journey over these 12 weeks was nothing short of inspiring. Witnessing the students' growth, from their first tentative steps to their final triumphant performance, was profoundly moving. The impact of arts education was evident as students demonstrated significant improvements in their verbal and motor skills. Their enthusiasm and dedication highlighted the profound benefits of integrating performing arts into educational programs.


Seeing the students take the stage and perform with such passion and confidence was a testament to the power of arts education. It was a celebration of their hard work, determination, and the incredible potential within every student. We are immensely proud of our students and grateful for the opportunity to support their artistic and personal development.


Participating schools: Felician School for Exceptional Children, Bergen Boulevard, Ridgefield Memorial High, Shaler Academy, Slocum Skewes Elementary, Ridgefield Park Junior/ Senior High School, Holmstead School, Pompton Lakes High, Garfield Public, Lindbergh School, Lyndhurst Middle, Lyndhurst High, Banyan High

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High School Musical Awards | 2024

Written by Ashley Tobias

High School Musical Awards:

_DSC9919-Enhanced-NR.jpgThis year, for the second consecutive year, bergenPAC's Performing Arts School proudly hosted our High School Music Awards Ceremony. This special event celebrates and highlights schools across the entire state of New Jersey, showcasing the extraordinary talents of students and staff in the realm of musical theater.

With participation from 20 schools, our dedicated adjudicating team traveled far and wide, even reaching the southernmost parts of New Jersey near Philadelphia, to witness the impressive productions.


It's truly inspiring to see the creative visions come to life, from the intricate lobby designs to the standout performances by lead male and female identifying actors in musicals.

Move over, Tony Awards! bergenPAC is on the rise, discovering the stars of tomorrow. We extend our heartfelt thanks to all the schools that participated and to those who graced the bergenPAC stage with their remarkable performances that night. And the best part is watching all those who are nominated cheer on their fellow classmates and neighboring schools, fostering a spirit of camaraderie and mutual support that makes the night truly special.



Participating Schools: OCVTS Grunin Performing Arts Academy, Dumont High School, Pascack Valley HS, West Milford Township High School, Madison High, Morristown High, Mainland Regional, Bergen County Academies, Rutherford, New Milford, Passaic Valley Regional , Pascack Hills High, Bayonne High, José Martí STEM Academy, Gloucester County Institute, Academy of the Holy Angels, Paramus High, Clifton High, Leonia High



... And the Award Goes To: 

  • Lobby Display | Madison High School | Mamma Mia
  • Production Set Design | Bergen County Academies | Something Rotten | Vincent Gunn
  • Lighting Design | José Martí STEM Academy (JMSA) | The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee | Brian Sosa
  • Sound Design | José Martí STEM Academy (JMSA) | The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee | Nicholas Gonzalez, Giancarlos Huapaya & Ashly Morelos
  • Costume, Hair & Makeup | New Milford High School | Beauty and the Beast | Jaime Lyback
  • Orchestra | Morristown High School | Mary Poppins | David Gallagher and the Pit Orchestra
  • Outstanding Ensemble | Bayonne High School | Legally Blonde
  • Outstanding Ensemble Member | Passaic Valley Regional High School | Charlie and the Chocolate Factory | Augustus Gloop played by Joey Dinh
  • Outstanding Featured Performer | Gloucester County Institute of Technology | Big Fish | Karl played by Neil Reitano
  • Choreography | Paramus High School | Newsies | Claudine Ranieri
  • Music Direction | OCVTS Grunin Performing Arts Academy | Prom | Mary Kenny
  • Creative Direction | Gloucester County Institute of Technology | Big Fish | Katie Knoblock
  • Best Female Identified Supporting Role | OCVTS Grunin Performing Arts Academy | Prom | Dee Dee Allen played by Kelly Clark
  • Best Male Identified Supporting Role | Bergen County Academies | Something Rotten | William Shakespeare played by Edo Turner
  • Best Female Identified Lead | Morristown High School | Mary Poppins | Julia Cama
  • Best Male Identified Lead | Bergen County Academies | Something Rotten
  • Executive Director's Award | Gloucester County Institute of Technology | Big Fish | Kenikki Thompson portraying the character, "The Witch"
  • Outstanding Overall Musical | Bergen County Academies | Something Rotten


Congratulations to everyone who participated in our awards show and in your high school productions. You are ALL STARS!!!

January Newsletter | 2024

bergenPAC January Newsletter


Please see below, a note from our Director of Education, Becky Serico:

" Dear PAS Family, Happy New Year! 

I hope everyone had a restful and joyous holiday break!

Please see attached for our second volume of our quarterly newsletter, thank you, Ashley for compiling this!


I want to draw everyone’s attention to our new idea – Open Mic nights!  Everyone gets so busy doing their different programs that we want to create a space where we can all come together to jam and have fun!  Any discipline is welcome!  This will be hosted by Ashley and Alap, aka DJ Meow Meow, and it will be so much fun!  The first one is on February 9 at 7:30pm!  We hope you will come to perform and/or support!  This is a great space to try out anything you have been working on!


We are super excited for a unique film project beginning with a Kick-Off Party on Thursday, January 25 at 6:30pm at the PAS.  Visions Federal Credit Union is supporting a project where students will write short films on what they will be learning on financial literacy.  This will take place during Ms. Diana’s PreTeen Acting Class, but EVERYONE IS INVITED TO PARTICIPATE.  Please come if you are interested.  The short films will be scored by Mario and Luke, part of our music faculty, and will be showcased in our June 9 Raise the Curtain performances!


Our Jazz Residency has taken off in Paterson and is going great!  This is led by our faculty, Monika Ryan, Kyle Crouchelli and Mario Giordano. 


Just some of the highlights – please take a look at the bergenPAC January Newsletter for lots of awesome info!

If you have something you would like highlighted in a future newsletter, please reach out to Ashley at"

Holiday Newsletter | 2023

Please see below, a note from our Director of Education, Becky Serico:

"I can’t believe we are in December!  It feels like this year has flown by so far!  I wanted to take this time to reach out to you and share my gratitude and joy for our amazing community!  Our students, faculty and staff are so busy doing so many amazing things! 

I wanted to bring your attention to this attached bergenPAC Holiday Newsletter


Ashley Tobias, our Education, Outreach and Social Media Manager, took the time to put this together for us!  Please know that this is a tiny HIGHLIGHT of the many, many things happening and have taken place so far this season, so please enjoy!  We will send one out quarterly, so if you have a student you would like to highlight or news you would like to share, please let Ashley know!  Send pictures and information to

Please join us for our holiday showcase on December 16 at 7pm on the bergenPAC main stage.  All ticket sales will support our arts program for students with special needs, Voices in Harmony.  A big shout out to our teachers and students for taking part in this joyous event!  More info and tickets here:  A Very Bergen Holiday | bergenPAC.

Please welcome BACK to the PAS Ms. Wendy of Music Speaks!  Ms. Wendy teaches Mommy, Daddy & Me Music classes for little ones ages 3 months to 4 years old and their caregivers.  Know a little one who loves to sing, dance and play?  Contact Arlene at for more info! 

Friendly reminder that the school will be closed from December 21 to January 2 for our holiday break.  Rest, enjoy, and have a wonderful time with your loved ones!"

High School Musical Awards | 2023

HSM LOGO.pngWritten by Ashley Tobias

Hello my bergenPAC Hive!

... What an exciting time it has been for arts Education here at bergenPAC Performing Arts Center! As if we haven't had enough excitement, I don't know if you've heard, but this year was our first ever High School Musical Awards Ceremony. 

Created and conceptualized by our very own executive director Alexander Diaz, bringing this program to bergen highlights the immense impact theater played not only in his life, but all of us. Now, here we are, imparting the lessons and memories that helped pave who we are as artists and creatives, to the youth of today.

Back at the start of the new year, we announced to several surrounding school communities our new project endeavors and our eagnereness to visit and adjucate their performances at the highest level of professionalism.

With the help of several teaching artists and staff, we created the bergenPAC standard of excellence and adjudicated as such.

After 30 school participants and 17 categories later, we had our first official nominees. They are as follows:


Lobby Display: Les Misérables, Gloucester; Xanadu, Dumont; Addams Family, New Milford, Into The Woods, Westwood Regional

Production Set Design: Cinderella, Morristown; Little Mermaid, River Dell; Addams Family, New Milford

Lighting Design: Addams Family, New Milford; Chicago, Pascack Valley; Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Northern Valley Old Tappan

Sound Design: Les Misérables, Gloucester; Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Northern Valley Old Tappan; Fiddler on the Roof, Bergen County Academies

Costume, Hair And Makeup: Fiddler on the Roof, Bergen County Academies; Chicago, Pascack Valley; Little Mermaid, River Dell

Orchestra: Addams Family, New Milford; Cinderella, Morristown; Crazy for You, Ramsey; Something Rotten, Ridgewood; Mean Girls, Passaic Valley Regional

Outstanding Ensemble: Cinderella, Morristown; 12th Night, Academy of Holy Angels; Crazy for You, Ramsey

Outstanding Ensemble Member(s): Amaya Romero as Fruma Sarah, Fiddler on the Roof, Bergen County Academies; Caitlin Lau,12th Night, Academy of Holy Angels; Snehanshn Chowdhury, Eddie, Mamma Mia, Pascack Hills

Outstanding Featured Performer(s): Leah Winiger as Sebastian, Little Mermaid, River Dell; Ben Harris as Nostradamus, Something Rotten, Ridgewood; Elijah Chen as Pepper, Mamma Mia, Pascack Hills; Alex Vacchiano, Kate, The Wild Party, Academy for Performing Arts

Choreography: Fiddler on the Roof, Bergen County Academies; Crazy for You, Ramsey; Chicago, Pascack Valley; Mean Girls, Passaic Valley Regional

Music Direction: Mamma Mia, Pascack Hills; Chicago, Pascack Valley; Les Misérables, Gloucester

Creative Direction: The Wiz, Arts High School; Fiddler on the Roof, Bergen County Academies; Les Misérables, Gloucester

Outstanding Female Identified Supporting Role: Hadyn Hopper as Tanya, Mamma Mia, Pascack Hills; Valentina Gonzalez,12th Night, Academy of Holy Angels; Izzy Alasio as Wednesday Addams, Addams Family, New Milford; Hailey Shafer as Gretchen, Mean Girls, Passaic Valley Regional

Outstanding Male Identified Supporting Role: Frankie Carbonaro as Uncle Fester, Addams Family, New Milford; Jack Laux, Molvolio, 12th Night, Academy of Holy Angels; Kurt Sparks as Javert, Les Misérables, Gloucester; Rowan Mastrangelo as Nigel Bottom, Something Rotten, Ridgewood

Outstanding Female Identified Lead: Kelly Donlan as Roxie Hart, Chicago, Pascack Valley; Eva Zazzali as Viola, 12th Night, Academy of Holy Angels; Madeline Leibman as Donna, Mamma Mia, Pascack Hills; Avery Benjamin as Jo, Little Women, Madison; Kira Giron as Cady Heron, Mean Girls, Passaic Valley Regional, Olivia Jobst as Sandy Cheeks, SpongeBob the Musical, Park Ridge

Outstanding Male Identified Lead: Amron Salgado as Jean Valjean, Les Misérables, Gloucester;; Alex Café as Tevye, Fiddler on the Roof, Bergen County Academies; Derek Wiener, Spongebob Squarepants, SpongeBob the Musical, Park Ridge

Outstanding Overall Musical: Fiddler on the Roof, Bergen County Academies; Cinderella, Morristown; Les Misérables, Gloucester; Urinetown, José Martí STEM Academy


Willy Wonka | 2023

34343762_10155412912412882_4597445087989858304_n-e1528124669422-320x320.pngWritten by Ashley Tobias

Hello my bergenPAC hive!

Today I wanted to take this time to recap our latest Showtime Jr. Series show, Willy Wonka, directed by our very own Rebecca Sonia with Musical Direction by Samantha Colon.

I don’t know about you, but I’ve personally never seen the musical adaptation of this show before. My only knowledge of Willy Wonka was the classic 1971 Gene Wilder version, and the 2005 Johnny Depp version after that. So to say I was excited to see this musical production, was an understatement.


This show was SUCH a delight to watch!

From the lighting, to the sound effects, and projection screens, this adaption covered all the famous and classic moments.

The world of Wonka is a beautifully strange, and quite complex universe. I mean, the factory includes creative concepts like a room full of bubbles, or chewing gum that makes one's body expand (potentially explode), or the shrinking of characters, or traveling by boat through a sea of chocolate. How does one stay true to the storyline of the musical with these factors included?

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…This is why you gotta love theater!







Thanks to the direction of Rebecca Sonia, she and her team relied heavily on the use of lighting, projections and sound effects to create, design and enhance theatrical moments and transitions from one scene to the next. I can’t wait for our next Showtime Jr. Series. 

Until next time… Our home is your home. So be[e] sure to stop on by and catch a performance or two at the theater!

Congratulations to the entire cast & crew!

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Voices In Harmony | 2023

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Written by Ashley Tobias

Welcome bergenPAC family to our new blog series

Highlighting co-productions, original show events, and just all around exciting news alerts and recaps here within our education department.

To introduce myself, I am the new education outreach and community engagement manager, Ashley Tobias.

After being here for just four short months, I can honestly say, it is never a dull moment here at the PAS. Today I’m here to recap and highlight one of our most recent programs/shows, Voices in harmony.

What is Voices in Harmony? Well it was a live showcase representing and highlighting our neurodivergent communities here in NJ …A program that was created prior to the pandemic, and re-launched for the first time this past May 7th.


What started out as a 12-week residency program, accumulated into one big EPIC event. Schools had the option of participating in different disciples over the course of these 12 weeks taught by a bergenPAC teaching artist.

This year's past disciplines: singing, theater, dance. This years theme, highlighting theater and music through the ages.

…And boy did we ever!

From presenting acting tableaus, hip-hop dancing to trendy pop songs, performing and interacting with the crowd with classics such as YMCA, artist Q & A’s and more, we showcased an array of talents on our stage!


For me personally, as the host and director of this past years event, it was important that I create a fun, safe, engaging environment for the entire family.

Throughout the show, and especially for an audience with special needs and disabilities, I wanted to make it a point to have several interactive moments. Keeping energies high, and minds and energies fulfilled and relaxed.

Some of these moments included: group meditation breathing exercises- meant to refocus our minds and bodies, improvisational acting exercises- getting the entire audience involved and showcasing the type of exercises a student may participate in when signed up for a residency program, and group seated stretches- again with the purpose of re- focusing and checking in with our bodies.

In addition to showcasing our participating students, our own school choir and dance troupe performed a number and collaborated with all students on our finale number, “this is me”, from the greatest showman, followed by an audience full of all ages singing along.


The event was a spectacular for sure and now that the pandemic is behind us, we canNOT wait to continue forward and start planning this program for next year.

Here at bergenPAC’s PAS we are always looking for new ways to improve and have a greater impact within our surrounding communities. With that being said, we already have ideas for next year's programming! So, whether you have participated before, or would like to be involved next year, please contact me at: for all details!




We can’t wait to see you all shine on our big stage!! Until next time… Our home is your home. So be[e] sure to stop on by and catch a performance or two at the theater!




Thank you to our particpating schools!

Bergen Boulevard School (Ridgefield)

Bergenfield High School

Felician School for Exceptional Children

Garfield High School

Lindbergh Elementary School

Lyndhurst High School

Lyndhurst Middle School

Palisades Park JR/ SR High School

Pompton Lakes High School

Ridgefield Memorial High School

Ridgefield Park High School

Shaler Academy (Ridgefield)

Slocum Skewes (Ridgefield)

Teaneck High School