PEABODY ― To kick off 2022, the city’s Black Box theater has announced a year’s worth of unique, fun and community-driven events to inspire and entertain.
Founded in 2018, the Black Box is the result of a partnership with the city and Northeast Arc, a not-for-profit organization that helps disabled children and adults become full participants in the community. Located in the heart of the city’s downtown cultural district, the theater’s James Family stage has seen stage productions, comedy shows, drag, dance, film, live music, and even wrestling. 2022’s roster of events will see some familiar favorites return, and will also introduce some new fun into the mix.
The Black Box’s first show of 2022 comes to audiences courtesy of Judy Garland and Barbra Streisand ― or their drag impersonators, that is. The Judy and Barbra show, featuring “New England’s #1 Judy Garland/Barbra Streisand drag duo,” will reprise its popular Drag Bingo night on Saturday, Jan. 8 from 8 p.m. – 10:15 p.m. Tickets are $25 and include snacks, drinks, bingo games and special performances. This show is 21+.
Catch some local wrestling on Saturday, Jan. 15 from 6 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. when Proving Ground returns to the Black Box for its “biggest show to date,” the North Shore Rumble. Of a cast of 30 contenders, one will earn the right to participate in the Proving Ground championship in March. In addition to the Proving Ground Championship Match, this show will feature a DLC Championship Match, a tag-team championship match and more. There will also be a cash bar available for guests age 21 and over. Tickets are $25 and selling fast.
Those in the mood for romance can catch Young Sinatra, a.k.a. New York’s Tony DiMeglio, on Monday, Feb. 14 from 5:00 p.m. – 6 p.m. DiMeglio, who portrays the Chairman of the Board in New York’s longest currently-running Rat Pack revue, will perform favorites such as “A Foggy Day,” “I’ll Be Seeing You,” “Summer Wind,” “Witchcraft” and many more, along with some special tunes for Valentine’s Day. Tickets start at $25.
Just in time for spring, the Black Box’s Easter Bunny Hop ― on Friday, April 15 from 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. ― will be an afternoon of tunes, treats, and pictures with the Easter Bunny. Audiences will enjoy performances of hits such as “The Bunny Hop Hop,” “Easter Parade,” “Rockin’ Robin,” and more while helping the Easter Bunny and friends find missing Easter eggs and save Easter. There will be a second performance of this family-friendly show at 4 p.m. Tickets begin at $20, while VIP ticket holders may receive a complementary photo with the Easter Bunny.
New York City magician Matt Roberts returns to the Black Box on Saturday, April 23 from 1:00 p.m. to 2:20 p.m. for an all-ages show filled with sleight of hand, levitation, mind reading, “a jaw-dropping twist on one of Houdini’s famous feats,” and a few laughs to round it all out. This show will be capped at 50 people in order to comply with COVID-19 guidelines, but never fear ― Roberts will be back at the Black Box on May 21, July 9, and Sept. 17. Tickets start at $20.
After catching some magic, stick around for some tunes on Saturday, April 23 from 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., when the Atlantic City Blues Brothers get soulful at the Black Box. Christian Milazzo and Cooper Jordan, fixture performers at Atlantic City’s Boardwalk Showroom, will reprise their roles as Jake and Elwood, played by John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd in John Landis’ beloved 1980 comedy. There will be another show from 7:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. and tickets start at $25.
In town from Las Vegas for one night only, tribute artist Martin Andrew will perform his one-man show, “Forever Rod,” a tribute to Rod Stewart’s decades-spanning career. There will be two performances on Saturday, May 21 ― one from 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., and another from 7:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. Fans of Faces will be treated to Stewarts early hits, and there’ll be plenty of beloved numbers from his storied solo career, such as “Maggie May” and “Do Ya Think I’m Sexy?” Tickets start at $25.
Cooper Jordan, one half of the Atlantic City Blues Brothers, will be back in town in the fall to host Boston’s Got Talent at the Black Box ― a showcase of rising stars from the Greater Boston area who will vie to compete in New York’s Got Talent All Stars: Stars of Tomorrow, a one-night event to be held in 2023 in Times Square. Catch singers, dancers, ventriloquists, gymnasts and more ― as well as a program of high-profile judges ― on the following dates:
- Wednesday, Sept. 14 from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. (Season 1 kickoff and preliminary round)
- Wednesday, Sept. 21 from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. (Season 2 preliminary round)
- Wednesday, Sept. 28 from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. (Season 1 semifinals and wildcards)
- Wednesday, October 12 from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. (Season 1 finale)
Tickets start at $10.
Check out the Monster Mash Bash on Friday, Oct. 15, from 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m., where Dracula and friends will perform a “not-so-scary spooky sing-along” for parents and kids. Sing along to Halloween favorites and get your picture taken with Drac, the wolfman, and Frankenstein and his Bride. Kids are encouraged to come in costume, but parents be warned: There will be candy.
Tickets are $20.
Later in the day on Friday, Oct. 15, catch the Rat Pack Undead in their return to the Black Box. There will be two shows featuring the undying (some might say undead) talents of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr. in a modern ― and spooky ― revue that hails directly from Broadway’s 42nd Street. The Rat Pack Undead will perform the classic hits with a seasonal spin, including “Come Die With Me,” “Lie Me in the Tomb,” and “What Kind of Ghoul Am I?”. There will be four 90-minute shows in total: Friday, Oct. 15 at 4:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m., and Saturday, Oct. 16 at 4:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. Tickets start at $25.
To purchase tickets and learn more information on the shows, please visit https://ne-arc.org/black-box-events/.