The Brookdale Performing Arts Center in Lincroft will present Billy Van Zandt & Friends in a very special musical evening celebrating songs from the library of Van Zandt/Milmore theatrical productions. All proceeds from the 8:00 p.m., Saturday, September 16, 2023, one-night-only performance will benefit the Brookdale Performing Arts Center.

#1 Billy Van Zandt and the late Jane Milmore (Photo Credit: Danny Sanchez)
Billy Van Zandt and the late Jane Milmore (Photo Credit: Danny Sanchez)

Mr. Van Zandt and his late writing partner, Jane Milmore, were no strangers to Brookdale Community College. Between television seasons the “Monmouth County kids made good” writing and producing team (affectionately known locally as just “Billy & Jane”), would become commuting artists-in-residence at the College. In addition to guest lecturing classes, working with the acting and technical theater students, and establishing a very successful scholarship program, the pair debuted their original plays on the Brookdale Performing Arts Center stages, with some works moving on to enjoy new Off-Broadway and world-wide productions.

Co-starring with Billy are members of the “Unofficial Van Zandt/Milmore Repertory Company,” the mainstay group of multi-talented actors that premiered and created the original roles in all the New Jersey Van Zandt/Milmore shows. In alphabetical order sharing the benefit stage will be Frank Andrews, Jeff Babey, Ed Carlo, Sharon Coyle, Lynn Kroll, Michael Kroll, Glenn Jones, Art Neill, Jackie Neill, Susie Paplow, Geoff Shields, Sherle Tallent, and Sally Winters. Musical direction for the evening is by Beth Moore, with choreography by Michele Mossay completing the creative team.

Van Zandt & Milmore, are two of the most produced playwrights in the world. Together for 46 years they wrote and starred in 24 plays including the international hit comedy “You’ve Got Hate Mail”; Off-Broadway’s tribute to slapstick comedy “Silent Laughter”; the cult favorite “Drop Dead”; the Marx Brothers. inspired musical “A Night at the Nutcracker;”; and the summer stock perennial “Love, Sex, and the IRS.”

For television, they wrote and produced over three hundred hours of television comedy, including “Newhart”; “The Hughleys,” which won them a Prism Award; and the CBS Special, “I Love Lucy: The Very First Show,” for which the duo received an Emmy nomination.

As an actor, Mr. Van Zandt has performed in over 300 plays and made his film debut in “Jaws 2,” and has shared the big and small screen with a stellar list of actors from Lucille Ball to George C. Scott to Sean Penn to Tom Cruise. He most recently appears in a recurring role as Funky Old Joe on the Nickelodeon hit “That Girl LayLay,” and is seen on stage nationally in the current tour of “The Boomer Boys Musical.” His recent best-selling memoir about his time writing for television, “Get in the Car, Jane (Adventures in the TV Wasteland)” hit number one on Amazon where it is still available. His first novel, “The Cracker Jack Man” will be out later this year.

Playwright, Television Writer and Producer, Billy Van Zandt Photo Credit: Danny Sanchez

All seating for “Billy Van Zandt & Friends” is reserved. Tickets for the benefit performance are $30.00, and may be purchased by calling the Brookdale Performing Arts Center Box Office at 732-224-2411.





Featured photo: Playwright, Television Writer and Producer, Billy Van Zandt (Photo Credit: Danny Sanchez)