Oh, what a night this is going to be! The boys from Jersey will kick off the 10th Kean Theatre season. “Let’s Hang On” performs a remarkable tribute to Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons with that unmistakable Four Seasons sound, slick choreography, full band and unforgettable hits. In celebration of its anniversary regal doormen will welcome guests to the theatre which will feature Kean memorabilia from the past 10 years. “Let’s Hang On” performers will mingle with guests and guitarist John Puckett will play popular songs from the 1960s during the V.I.P. Reception. All attendees to the concert on Saturday, Oct. 13 will also have the chance to take commemorative photos.
Located inside The Washington Place at St. Barnabas, formerly an elementary school, the Kean Theatre used to be the school’s gymnasium and cafeteria. Today, the theatre is what some call the Baby Heinz Hall. It’s very elegant with brass chandeliers and fixtures, wall-to-wall carpeting and plush velvet seats. Musicians love performing at the Kean because of its excellent sound and with nearly 350 seats there is not a bad spot in the house.
The visionary behind the theatre was William V. Day, President of St. Barnabas Health System, with the help of Mrs. Edward Kean, a long-time donor to the St. Barnabas Charitable Foundation, who wanted to establish a lasting memorial to her late husband. He conceptualized a cultural center where the greater community would join on-campus residents for live performances, music and educational forums. The Kean Theatre opened in the fall of 2002 and is operated by St. Barnabas Charities, the fund-raising arm of St. Barnabas.
The theatre has a two-fold purpose. First, to raise money for patients that the St. Barnabas Free Care Fund supports. That’s accomplished through ticket sales to the shows, which are open to the public. Money is also raised through rentals of the theatre to businesses and civic groups and through corporate sponsorships. The second reason for St. Barnabas opening the theatre was a community-based reason. There was a need in the North Hills for a place for people to go to see top-notch entertainment, close to home, with free parking and without the crowds and traffic. That’s what the Kean Theatre provides to the public – an elegant, convenient place to see great entertainment.
The sponsors of “Let’s Hang On” are UPMC for Life, the Gold Level sponsor of the Kean Theatre’s 10th Anniversary. Diehl Automotive Group, Donner-Farber & Associates Inc., Trib Total Media, WPXI-TV, Infinity Consultants Inc. and Rhoades & Wodarczyk LLC are the Silver Sponsors. Proceeds from the Kean Theatre benefit the St. Barnabas Free Care Fund, which in 2011 alone provided more than $5.2 million to poor and low-income residents at St. Barnabas Nursing Home, Valencia Woods at St. Barnabas and The Arbors at St. Barnabas.