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From Rock and Roll to Recovery and Everything In Between with Ricky Byrd

Ricky Byrd is first and foremost – a man living in long term recovery. He also happens to be part of rock ‘n roll royalty. He is a well-recognized musician who was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as the lead guitarist and former original member of Joan Jett and The Blackhearts. Ricky played with Joan from 1981-1992, and has also recorded or toured with Roger Daltrey, Ian Hunter, Southside Johnny and many other talented musicians since that time.

Ricky most recently has been combining his love for music with his passion and mission to help carry the torch of change surrounding the stigma of drug and alcohol use. He hopes to break down the barriers and spread the message of hope, education, awareness and addiction resources to his audiences. Using the healing powers of music as a touchstone, Ricky likes to motivate those early in recovery or still struggling, along with their family members. Whether it’s through his various speaking appearances, concert events, music outreach sessions, small recovery music groups, or prevention programs, Ricky is dedicated to inspiring change.

As a songwriter, who now often focuses on recovery lyrics, Ricky moves people to laugh, cry and think. He’s played his songs in the most intimate of rooms as well as to hundreds of thousands all over the world. He recognizes the power of the word and the music and often combines both into a message of hope and encouragement for sobriety.

Ricky can contribute to an event by sharing famous rock ‘n roll stories in a keynote address or by performing recovery music from his latest CD, Clean Getaway. There is also a special place in his heart for smaller group settings where he can play acoustic guitar and clearly see the faces, tears, smiles and struggles up close. Ricky feels that music therapy and the open discussion that follows can lead broken souls to find that little bit of happiness – and encouragement they need to move forward.

He presents on the benefits of a sober lifestyle and likes talking to youth, who are at that age, where pressures and experimenting can often lead them down a crooked and deadly path. Ricky takes pride in also educating those individuals  in our communities that are somehow unaware and uninformed of the deadly drug and alcohol pandemic we are facing in this country.

In 2017, Ricky received the Drug Free Heroes Award, presented by Foundation For a Drug free World. He is proud to help others find a message and purpose to getting clean and sober.

Cosponsored by: Monmouth University’s Office of Substance Awareness, Students in Recovery, Student Activities Board, The Music and Theatre Department
FREE and OPEN to the public, but registration is recommended.

The Laramie Project

Location: Lauren K. Woods Theater

The Laramie Project
by Moises Kaufman and the Tectonic Theatre Project
Nov 7- 9 & 13-16 at 8 p.m.
Nov. 10 at 3 p.m.

In 1998, University of Wyoming student Matthew Shepard was murdered near the outskirts of Laramie. The ensuing investigation led to the conclusion that he had been tortured because he was gay. Reaction to the event led members of the Tectonic Theatre Project to conduct hundreds of interviews with inhabitants of Laramie and turn their comments and thoughts, combined with news reports, into a play which has been performed across the nation and was made into a 2002 HBO film. The play features a small number of actors performing the exact words of more than 60 characters from the town, the media, and the original actors themselves.

Presented by special arrangement with Dramatists Play Service

WinterSong, A Holiday Concert

ALL SEATED TICKETS ARE SOLD OUT! Standing room tickets will be sold the night of the show.

An evening of holiday poetry and music for choir, orchestra, and handbells performed in the majestic festive atmosphere of Wilson Hall. The concert is conducted by Professor Michael Gillette and Dr. David M. Tripold and features the Colts Neck Reformed Church Exultation Ringers conducted by Maggie Tripold.

Little Shop of Horrors

Location: Lauren K. Woods Theatre

Spring Musical
Little Shop of Horrors
March 5-8 & 11-13 at 8 p.m.
March 9 at 3 p.m.
(This performance is SOLD OUT)

Little Shop of Horrors, the story of a hapless florist shop worker who raises a plant from outer space that feeds on human blood, has become a comedy classic since its origins as a sci-fi “B” movie in the 50s, an off-Broadway hit in the 80s and a hit film in 1986. With a book by Howard Ashman, the music by composer Alan Menken (also the composer of the current Broadway hit Newsies and the Disney film The Little Mermaid) includes several well-known tunes, including the title song, “Somewhere That’s Green”, and “Suddenly, Seymour”.

Presented by special arrangement with Music Theatre International


Scapino, by director Frank Dunlop and actor Jim
Dale, is an outrageous comedy adapted “a long way off from Moliere” but
exhibiting the classic elements of the French master and the Italian
“commedia d’ell arte.” Scapino is the wily servant who twists the rules
to trick his master’s father into allowing him to marry the girl of his
dreams while the waiters, waitresses and customers of a seaside
restaurant sing parodies of “O Solo Mio” and the names of menu items
like “veal scallopine.”

Preview: June 23 at 8 p.m.

Opening Night: June 24 at 8 p.m.

Performances: June 25, 29 and 30, July 1, 2, 6, 7, 8 and 9 at 8 p.m.; June 26, July 3 and 10 at 7 p.m.

Cost: Preview night – Adult/Senior $20; Student $10; June 24 through July 10 – Adult $35; Senior $30; Student $15

Molly Sweeny

Molly Sweeny is by the prize-winning Irish playwright, Brian Friel (Dancing at Lughnasa, Translations).
It is the story of Molly Sweeny, a woman who has been blind since
childhood, who undergoes an operation to restore her vision. Based
loosely on an essay by Oliver Saks (Awakenings), the tale is told by Molly, her husband, and the doctor.

Preview: July 14 at 8 p.m.

Opening Night: July 15 at 8 p.m.

Performances: July 16, 20, 21, 22, 23, 27, 28, 29, and 30 at 8 p.m.; July 17, 24 and 31 at 7 p.m.

Cost: Preview night – Adult/Senior $15; Student $10; July 15 through July 31 – Adult $30; Senior $22; Student $15

Spring Musical: Working

The Department of Music and Theatre Arts presents

Spring Musical: Working

Monmouth University’s Department of Music & Theatre
will present the first East Coast production of the newly revised
musical, Working, based on the book by Pulitzer-Prize winning author Studs Terkel. Adapted by Stephen Schwartz (Wicked, Pippin, and Godspell) from his original version with Nino Faso, the new Working recently completed a run in Chicago. Monmouth’s production will be the first by any university in the country.

Directed by Nicole Ricciardi, Working
is the working man’s A Chorus Line. A musical exploration of twenty-six
people from all walks of life, with songs by all-star composers Craig
Carnelia (Sweet Smell of Success), Micki Grant (Don’t Bother Me, I Can’t Cope), Tony Award-winning Lin-Manuel Miranda (In the Heights), Mary Rodgers (Once Upon A Mattress), Susan Birkenhead (Jelly’s Last Jam), Stephen Schwartz, and Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter, James Taylor. The musical director is George Wurzbach.

Working celebrates
everyday people in a genuinely funny and touching way, and has been
called “the perfect musical for everyone who has ever worked a day in
their lives.” Updated to fit 21st century audiences, cast members sing
and dance with cell phones and laptops as they tell the tales of
traditional careers: teacher, waitress, firefighter; and more modern
additions: hedge fund manager, UPS delivery man, and a customer service
representative in India.