Count Basie Center offers virtual and onsite presentations for school assemblies, class trips


The Count Basie Center for the Arts has a number of prerecorded and live events available for schools
seeking education-based assemblies and school trips.

School Shows at the Count Basie Center

The Basie Center’s Curtains Up For Kids program, presented by Horizon Foundation for New Jersey, typically welcomes more than 10,000 students to the performing events venue every year. For many of these students, it’s their only opportunity to experience live performing arts. From classical music with modern twists, to the diversity of Asian and African artistry or historical plays, the Basie program aspires to inspire students to dream forward through culture and artistic expression.

Most programs include pre- and post-show experiences with Count Basie Center teaching artists, plus associated study guides for teachers and student materials.

For tickets or more information – including pricing, COVID reservation policies and / or information on financial assistance for those who qualify, call 732-224-8778 x 124, email [email protected] or click here.


Available February 7-18, 2022 | Recommended for grades 6-12

Adapting History is an oral telling of American music through history and American history through music. From gospel to blues, jazz to R&B, America has produced some of the most innovative music of the 20th century. Although the songs are easy on the ears, their inception occurred in cultural climates that were often discordant. In Adapting History, musical artist Dahlak uses spoken word poetry to narrate the complex history of our nation. His musical chronicle shows that despite conflict and misunderstanding, we can still be brilliantly creative.

Roots and Heritage

D’DAT – Native American Fusion Music
Available April 1- 15, 2022 | Recommended for grades: 6-12

Combining the inspirational and heartfelt lyrics of James Pakootas with the hard- driving instrumental fire of award-winning trumpet player Delbert Anderson, the deep funk of international touring artist and drummer Nicholas Lucero, and the intellectually explorative and expanding groove of Mike McCluhan on bass, D’DAT has carved its own path with high desert-forged influences and world-class musicianship. D’DAT will express the importance of history and cultural identity. They discuss how differences are important in the creativity processes. D’DAT describes their composition processes encouraging students to research their culture and history. They teach students the roles of each band member and how they integrate their personal influences in music.


• Music
• Roots and Heritage
• Multi-Cultural
• History
• Global Literacy/Awareness


Lost Angels by Ralph Colombino

May 2 • 10:30AM
May 3 • 10:30AM

Recommended for grades 6-12

During a lockdown, 12 high school students are stuck in a classroom without a teacher. With only texts and the PA system to let them know what is happening in the rest of the school, these students will learn a great deal about each other amidst the panic and confusion. Stereotypes will be broken down, secrets will be revealed, and unique friendships will be forged. Lost Angels brings up issues current in society with today’s young people and challenges them to have a better understanding of themselves and each other; compassion and tolerance are taught through truthful acting, realistic writing, and young people relating to their peers.


Social/Emotional Learning

Calpulli Mexican Dance Company: Puebla: The Story of Cinco de Mayo

May 5, 2022 • 10:30AM

Recommended for grades K-12

Explore the native and traditional cultures of the Mexican state of Puebla, where on May 5, 1862 a small Mexican army scored a seemingly impossible victory over the French. Through dance and live music, this new production celebrates the story of the historical significance of May 5th, shares the culture of Mexican immigrants from the state of Puebla—lesser known even among Mexicans in the U.S.—and presents the historical characters that influenced the Battle of Puebla.


Global Literacy/Awareness
Roots and Heritage