“The mission of Center Players, Inc. shall be to bring enrichment through the performing arts to the diverse community it serves. To achieve this goal, the organization will conduct activities and programs to educate and entertain its patrons, and provide actors, directors and other creative people the opportunity to pursue their craft.”

Center Players was founded in 1996 and gained status as a 501c3 non-profit organization. The troupe set its sights on establishing a permanent presence in historic downtown Freehold Center. The local residents and businesses enthusiastically embraced the concept, and enough seed money was raised to launch a development project for converting a warehouse on Main Street into a 300-seat theater. During that time, Center Players performed at various locations around town. However, changes in property ownership and a shortfall in funding forced the group to abandon the Main Street project. Founding member David Sorin encouraged the Board to downsize its vision and lease a storefront property on South Street. The space was custom renovated with interior design by New York City designer Nelson Kuperberg into an intimate, 49-seat theater. Doors to the new Center Playhouse opened in March of 2001 with a gala opening celebration and fully sold-out run of “Crossing Delancey.”


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