Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Willy Chirino comes to BergenPAC

Bergen Performing Arts Center Presents

FRIDAY, APRIL 21, 2017 – 8PM
$99 (VIP ticket with Post Show M&G)-69-59-39-29

(Englewood, New Jersey-January 3, 2017) Bergen Performing Arts Center located at 30 North Van Brunt Street in Englewood, New Jersey presents Willy Chirino - Friday, April 21, 2017 at 8PM. Purchase tickets at www.ticketmaster.com or by calling bergenPAC’s Box Office at (201) 227-1030.

Willy Chirino
Willy Chirino combines the musical traditions of Cuba with American rock and jazz, helping to create the “Miami Sound” of Salsa music.  The Cuban-born and South Florida-based vocalist and bandleader boasts a musical repertoire of over 100 songs and 30 albums making Chirino one of the most emblematic Tropical music acts around. More than 60 artists have covered his hit “Soy”, among them the Gipsy Kings, who sold more than seven million copies.

With a career spanning four decades Willy has racked up quite a list of awards for his musical and charity contributions to the Latino community: 2006 Grammy for Best Salsa/Merengue Album, 2007 Latin Grammy Nomination for Best Salsa Album, street named after him in Miami, a star on the famous and very Cuban Calle Ocho, a FACE award, and recognition by UNICEF and a Hispanic Heritage Award for his charity efforts with The Willy Chirino Foundation. 

Tickets available at: www.ticketmaster.com or Box Office (201) 227-1030

30 North Van Brunt Street
Englewood, NJ 07631
(201) 227-1030

About bergenPAC

Founded in 2003, the 1,367-seat Bergen Performing Arts Center, or bergenPAC, is the area’s cultural mecca. Housed in a historic Art Deco-style theater boasting one of the finest acoustic halls in the United States, bergenPAC attracts a stellar roster of world-class entertainment. The jewel in our crown is The Performing Arts School at bergenPAC – the innovative, educational performing arts initiative that, through programs, classes, outreach, school shows, and main theater presented shows, reach more than 30,000 students and community youth annually. The Performing Arts School provides community youth, age 2 months to 21 years, with unique, “hands-on” training in music, dance and theater by industry professionals. It is through the ongoing generosity of sponsors, donors, members, and patrons that the not-for-profit 501 (c)(3) corporation bergenPAC and The Performing Arts School are able to thrive and enrich our community.

For updates, “Like” bergenPAC on Facebook (facebook.com/#!/bergenpacfan), follow @bergenPAC on Twitter, follow us on LinkedIn and visit our website at www.bergenpac.org.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

One Night Only!!!

New York City Premiere of the film "Bahia de Cochinos, Nuestra perspectiva"

NYC Premiere of Provocative New Film 
"Bahia de Cochinos, Nuestra perspectiva"
("Bay of Pigs, Our perspective") 

The documentary film "Bahia de Cochinos, Nuestra perspectiva" will have it’s NYC Premiere Screening on Sunday, March 12, 2017 at 6:30 PM at the Comisionado Dominicano de Cultura, 541 West 145th Street, 2nd Floor, NYC, NY 10031.  Free Admission.  The Comisionado Dominicano de Cultura is undoubtedly the most active and important Hispanic cultural center in NYC. 

"Bahia de Cochinos, Nuestra perspectiva" is a documentary film about the Bay of pigs as told through the eyes of Cuban Exiles who actually participated in the invasion.  Now, many years later, they contemplate the happenings and share their individual satires and feelings with us.  That story comes at a price, a price we ask them if they would be willing to pay again.  When all is said and done, are these past invaders resentful?  Do they cast any blame?  Who lost most in the Bay of Pigs invasion?

Featured in the film is testimony by members of the 2506 Brigade: Ángel Casabona Ruiz, Isidoro López González, Ricardo Montero Duque, Raúl Puig Sánchez, and Alvin Ross Diaz; as well as Sergio Gatria, director of the Cuban Information Center.  Their stories are moving and shed light of the failed Bay of Pigs Invasion.  The film is bound to create some serious dialogue about what truly lies behind the events leading up to the invasion and the fallout thereafter.

"Bahia de Cochinos, Nuestra perspectiva" has been receiving special screenings at the Union City Museum of Art; Union City Performing Arts Center; Miami Hispanic Cultural Arts Center in Miami, Fl; Centro Cultural de las Telecomunicaciones in Santo Domingo, DR; Casa de Cultura in La Vega, DR; Casa de Cultura in Constanza, DR; and on Silver Star Television in Peru.  

The film is directed by renowned Cuban director, Ricardo Bacallao and Lucio Fernandez; and produced by MeLu Films and The Grace Theatre Workshop, Inc.; Megan Fernandez, Executive Producer; Lucio Fernandez, Producer.  The entire film crew was from Hudson County. The producers held a pre-release screening of the film in 2015 to get feedback before completing the project. 

(Please note:  this film is presented in Spanish, but informational materials in English will be handed out prior to the screening; and all discussions will be conducted in both English & Spanish.)

Monday, February 20, 2017

Talented Hispanic Filmmaker to Film in Hudson County


FEBRUARY 16, 2017 – MOJOCREATIVE GROUP, LLC in association with CGO and GORE ENTERTAINMENT, LLC are producing their newest venture into horror with DEATH LIKE ME, a horror film based on Edgar Allan Poe’s classic short story “The Black Cat”. The film will be shooting in Union City, New Jersey for an early 2018 release.

DEATH LIKE ME is about an introverted home health aide, Genesis Narvaez, who is fighting a deep-seated need to kill and is seduced into giving in to her murderous desires.  Much like Edgar Allan Poe’s short story “The Black Cat,” DEATH LIKE ME takes a look into the mind of madness and examines how a seemingly normal person can be transformed into a vicious killer.  

“Our spin on Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Black Cat” also features a black cat, but our cat encourages our main character, Genesis, to go further down the rabbit hole of madness,” said Ruben Rodriguez the film’s director. “Our film is really a study of how desire and insanity can be one and the same. Our main character has a desire to do harm, but she fights the urge to give in to it. She just wants to be a normal girl. Unfortunately, she loses the fight when she encounters a stranger at a bar. Through that encounter, we get a very entertaining twist ending that will definitely delight and scare viewers.”

The three friends and former students of New Jersey City University media arts program — Ruben Rodriguez (director, producer), Cesar G. Orellana (producer) and Brit Barrison (producer) — are the team members behind the feature film Death of April and a series of horror shorts currently being distributed by Ruthless Studios: “Delete,” “Don’t Skimp on the Undead,” and “It Requires Sacrifice.”  Joining the DEATH LIKE ME production team are Lucio Fernandez and Michelle Velez.

DEATH LIKE ME has an incredible creep factor and just turns up the tension throughout,” said Cesar G. Orellana, producer. “I have worked with Ruben on all of his films and they just keep getting creepier with each attempt. Being a Hispanic filmmaker in Hollywood has proven to be tough. There are only a few well-known Hispanic horror filmmakers in the industry: Guillermo Del Toro (Crimson Peak, Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark) and Fede Alvarez (Evil Dead 2013, Don’t Breathe) to name a couple. We want to help add Ruben Rodriguez’s name to that list.”

With much emphasis lately on the lack of minorities in film, in directorial roles in particular, it’s important that people get behind a project like this, devised and driven by a new and ambitious Hispanic filmmaker. Mojocreative Group’s previous film, The Death of April, earned them a number of festival awards and a distribution deal with ITN Distribution. Ruben Rodriguez and his team are seeking a modest contribution to pay for the make-up and production supplies they need to create their gory effects. The team will be putting up the remainder of the film’s budget, so there is no excuse not to back this grisly little gem!

DEATH LIKE ME boasts an outstanding cast of performers (Shevaun Kastl, Mourning Hour, Conversations with Lucifer), Jenna Kildosher (Cabin of Errors, Never to Wake Again), Lucio Fernandez (Vampire in Union City, The Death of April, Sal) and Will Fonseca (Changing Diego, Rewind, El Bandido).

Those who wish to support this exciting creative venture can visit the DEATH LIKE ME Indiegogo site, at this link: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/death-like-me-a-short-film-project-horror, or even just drop in on their Facebook page and give them a “like”:  https://www.facebook.com/deathlikeme/

The film has a distribution deal and will be released on DVD and VOD in early 2018.  

Monday, February 13, 2017

State Senator Brian P. Stack supports Sanctuary Cities


UNION CITY, NJ – State lawmakers representing the most ethnically diverse legislative district in New Jersey announced their sponsorship of a bill that will create a program to provide supplementary grant funding to a municipality or county that has been denied or otherwise lost federal grant funding based upon its status as a sanctuary jurisdiction. The bill is numbered S3007 in the Senate, where it was introduced yesterday, and A4590 in the Assembly.

Sanctuary jurisdictions are those that do not use local resources to enforce federal immigration laws. The Tenth Amendment of the United States Constitution prevents the federal government from requiring state or local agencies to implement federal law or regulations. Nevertheless, President Trump has threatened to withhold federal funding from cities that will not enforce immigration laws. Under the program established by the bill, a sanctuary jurisdiction can apply to the Commissioner of Community Affairs for a dollar-for-dollar match of State appropriated moneys to supplement any deficit created by the loss of federal grant funding.

“Just as Union City is one of the most diverse cities in the country, New Jersey is one of the most diverse states in our nation. Our immigrant communities have enriched our state’s history and contributed to its economic and cultural prosperity,” noted Stack. “Residents need not fear coming forward to assist law enforcement or calling city agencies to access services. We must do our part to protect them, regardless of documentation status or national origin.”
Mukherji added, “Mayors and police chiefs should not be torn between doing the morally right thing and protecting all of their residents or cooperate with unconscionable federal directives that will tear families apart, for fear of losing funding and having to raise taxes. This measure will ensure that if the White House follows through with threats to cut aid, the State will have their backs.”

Chaparro remarked, “Our state and our nation have always valued the principle that it’s not where we came from but where we’re going that matters. When policies start to vilify immigrant communities that made vital contributions to our democracy, we must do our part to protect our neighbors.”

New Jersey’s 33rd Legislative District, represented by Senator Brian Stack, Assemblyman Raj Mukherji, and Assemblywoman Annette Chaparro, is comprised of Union City, which has a long history as a sanctuary city and where nearly 85% of the population was Hispanic or Latino as of the 2010 Census; Jersey City, home to Ellis Island or the “Gateway to America;” Hoboken; and Weehawken. The district is located entirely within Hudson County, which has played a pivotal role in welcoming immigrants to this nation. Regardless of citizenship status, nation of origin, or religion, the nurturing of an environment of inclusiveness, which protects the values of democracy and freedom and respects the human dignity of all residents of the State, is of vital concern to New Jersey.

 Watch the complete statement as reported by "La Revista Semanal"


Senator Brian P. Stack has also served as Mayor of Union City since 2000 and in the Legislature since 2003, when he was first elected to the New Jersey General Assembly. He has a long history of championing local causes.  Prior to serving in elective office, Senator Stack was a community activist and tenant advocate. While serving as a Hudson County Freeholder, he fought numerous battles on behalf of local residents. In the Senate, where he has served since 2008, he presently sits on both the Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee and Senate Judiciary Committee.  He has earned a reputation for accessibility and as a zealous, round-the-clock advocate for his constituents, including immigrant communities. Through the nonprofit Brian P. Stack Civic Association, Mayor and Senator Stack has helped tens of thousands of residents and their families with a myriad of housing, employment, and immigration issues; meeting the needs of victims of disasters; and delivering countless turkeys to indigent families on Thanksgiving and toys to needy children during the holiday season.

Assemblyman Raj Mukherji, who is presently the only South Asian lawmaker in the state, is a son of immigrants. He previously served as Deputy Mayor of Jersey City. Two weeks after September 11, he sold a successful information technology company he had built as a teen to enlist in the U.S. Marines as a reservist, where he served as a Sergeant in military intelligence.  A healthcare lawyer and entrepreneur, Mr. Mukherji has also served as a municipal prosecutor and, for nine years, has volunteered his time to serve as Chairman of the Jersey City Housing Authority.  In the Assembly, he sits on the Budget, Commerce and Economic Development, and Labor Committees, in which roles he has earned a reputation as a champion of the middle class, the disadvantaged, and working families.

Assemblywoman Annette Chaparro, was first elected to the State Legislature on November 3, 2015. She sits on the Homeland Security and State Preparedness, Law and Public Safety, and Transportation and Independent Authorities committees. Assemblywoman Chaparro holds the distinction of being the first woman from Hoboken and only the second woman ever elected to represent the 33rd Legislative District. Ms. Chaparro is a product of the Hoboken public school system, a proud mother of three, and is a Clerk II in the City of Hoboken.  She has previously served as a Board Secretary to the Hoboken Planning and Zoning Boards and as a member of the Hoboken Rent Control Board.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Cuban Flag-raising in Union City

(UNION CITY, NJ) – Following the death of Cuban Dictator, Fidel Castro, the City of Union City’s Mayor, Brian P. Stack and the Board of Commissioners are scheduled to hold a ceremony to raise the Cuban flag in solidarity with the millions of Cubans around the world who have suffered under the Castro regime. 

“We stand together with all Cubans in Union City, Hudson County and around the world who have been enslaved, impoverished, disenfranchised and suffered many atrocities at the hands of Fidel Castro,” said Mayor Brian P. Stack.  “It is my sincere hope that Castro’s death will lead to freedom for the Cuban people and subsequently a relationship with the United States.  When the people of Cuba are finally free, we will celebrate together.” 

Hudson County is home to the largest population of Cuban immigrants in the Northeastern United States.  Cubans in Union City and all over the world are rejoicing in death of the infamous dictator and have expressed hope that real change will come for the people of Cuba.  Repressive laws have allowed for the imprisonment and even deaths of thousands of political protesters and caused many leave their families to seek refuge in the United States.

Union City will hold the Cuban Flag Raising Ceremony at 4 PM on November 28, 2016 at 38th Street and Palisade Avenue across from City Hall.  The Mayor and Board of Commissioners invite the public to join them as they raise the Cuban flag in solidarity with Cubans all around the world.