With so much to see and experience in Newport it can be difficult selecting what will give you something you will not encounter anywhere else. Attending a performance, presentation or event at The Jane Pickens Therter and Event Center is a selection that is sure to make your time in Newport memorable. Overlooking historic Washington Square the structure was Newport's first Greek Revival building. Created in 1834 by renowned architect Russell Warren to be the Zion Evangelical Church, the building has been through many changes. In 1919 it became a theater, then called The Strand. It was renamed The Jane Pickens Theater 32 years ago. The current owners have been restoring and expanding the site to utilize it for a broad range of unique presentations with a sense of style based on history. They added Event Center to the name in 2005.
One of the oldest cinemas in the country, it has a reputation as a world class art house cinema, screening a mix of first run movies, documentaries, classic films and art films. Movies are hand selected to appeal to audiences with discrimnating tastes. Live performances from all over the world (live and encore) are regularly featured. Productions originating in the Royal Opera House and the Royal Ballet in London, the Globe Theatre, the Bolshoi Ballet Theatre, La Scala Oera House, the Roundabout theater in New York city are just a few examples. On February 7-12 the theater is showing "Oscar Shorts 2015", the best animated and live action films of the year.
A mixed media venue, the remodeled space has new state of the art screens and speaker system. The back half of the improved stage had not been used since the days of Vaudville. Musical performers rave about the acoustics. It is the home of the sold out Newport Folk Festival After-Show every July. In February it will host jazz musician Doug Wolverton performing " A Tribute to Miles Davis". Wolverton has been performing the tribute show since 2012. It showcases Miles Davis hits from 1950-1990 including everything from his "Kind of Blue" album, the highest selling jazz album of all time. In two shows on February 19 the audience will experience hearing the evolution of jazz over 40 years. On March 14 (the day of Newport's St. Patrick's Day parade) Pendragon will perform two shows of Celtic inspired, New England traditional, roots music mixed with a contempoary edge. This Rhode Island based ensemble has been performing for enthusiastic audiences for more than 30 years. There are plans for 10 more spring concerts.
With renovations the historic building has been the location of a variety of events -- even a wedding! It is the objective of the owners to also utilize it as a tool for fund-raising events for non-profit causes in Newport County. The facility can hold up to 472 people including the balcony and a little more with use of the lobby. With films, live music and events created in a truly unique public meeting space, the Jane Pickens appeals to a broad range of people in the local community and to our important tourist base. Below are some of the coming attractions.
During the February school vacation week: The Lego Movie (February 16) terrific for all ages and an encore showing of the play Treasure Island (February 20) as it was being performed in London by National Theatre Live (suitable for ages 10 and up).
February 25: From the Strarford Festival, King Lear "a powerful and unforgetable production of Shakespeare's greatest tragedy".
March 25: The National Theatre Live presents Behind the Beautiful Forevers, a "tumultuous play on an epic scale... from the uncompromising, prize winning non-fiction book by Katherine Boo who spent three years recording the lives of Annawadi residents. "India...surging with global ambition...full of people with plans of their own."
March 26: A View from the Bridge, "The great Arthur Miller confronts the American dream in this dark and passionate tale. The visionary Ivo van Hove directs this stunning production of Miller's tragic mastrepiece." Broadcast from London's West End by National Theatre Live.
April 9: From the Stratford Festival, a rare opportunity to see Shakespeare's play King John. "When the rule of the hedonistic and mercurial king is questioned rebellion, assasination and excommunication ensue ".
Oscar nominated movies Still Alice, The Imitation Game and The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel are showing in February and March.
This is by no means a complete listing of the many outstanding productions that will be featured. Consult the Jane Pickens Theater and Event Center for complete information on coming attractions, dates, showtimes and tickets. (janepickens.com) 49 Touro Street, Newport (401)846-5252)
All the information contained here comes directly from the website of the Jane Pickens Theater and Event Center (janepickens.com).
Kicking off Irish heritage month in Newport, RI and a preamble to our 56th annual Newport St. Patrick's day parade is an international exchange of culinary expertise. Chef's from Newport RI & Kinsale Ireland show off their cooking talents at local Newport restaurants. You can be sure this same week, the Ivy Lodge bed and breakfast will carry this culinary theme into our gourmet breakfast each morning.
Celebrate the culinary expertise of Newport’s sister city Kinsale, Ireland known as the “Gourmet Capital of Ireland”, and Newport chefs as they create “Irish “ inspired menus at local restaurants. Experience Newport‘s rich Irish heritage, the port town of Kinsale and the great commonalities shared by both destinations.
Starting March 8- 11 Kinsale Festival of Fine Food: The chefs have prepared specialized Irish inspired menus. The following restaurants will be participating, we do advise making reservations.
Fathoms at the Newport Marriott Hotel
401-849-7788 • www.NewportMarriott.com
Chef: Eric Steinhauer
La Forge Casino
401-847-0418 • www.LaForgeNewport.com
Chef: Nick Violette
One Bellevue at the Hotel Viking
401-848-4824 • www.HotelViking.com
Chef: Kevin Thiele
Windward at the Hyatt Regency Newport
401-851-3325 • www.Newport.Hyatt.com
Chef: Kyle Ketchum
Saturday, March 10
2-3:30pm: First International Cook-Off, Newport Marriott, 25 America’s Cup Avenue, Newport. The
Cook-off will test the culinary expertise between Chef David Rutkowski of the Newport Hyatt Regency
Hotel and Christine O’Sullivan, the Iron Chef- Ireland contender from Kinsale. Each team will receive
4 food items that they must use in four separate dishes. Our elite panel of judges will taste the
creations and determine the winner! Sample some of Ireland’s best Kerrygold Dairy cheeses, such as
Cashel Blue Farmhouse Cheese and the Dubliner, and savor a wee bit of Irish Whiskey at our Jameson
Irish Whiskey tasting table. GoNewport.com
Sunday, March 11
9am-Noon:Traditional Irish Country Breakfast, at La Forge Casino Restaurant, 186 Bellevue
Avenue, Newport. Reservations Suggested 401-847-0418