Often we hear from arts organizations beyond our normal coverage borders, asking if we will do a feature on their museum exhibit or review their play. We typically say no — because there is so much going in the arts world in greater Princeton. But as with all rules, we make exceptions.

Our theater critic Simon Saltzman submitted a review of “Bakersfield Mist,” running through Sunday, February 3, at New Jersey Repertory Theater in Long Branch, with the note: “This is a very special play that Princeton audiences will enjoy.” We were intrigued — this was a first from Saltzman — and we ran the review in the January 11 issue.

On Thursday, January 12, Richard Swain, an art history professor at Rider University, posted an online comment: “Simon Saltzman, the best theater critic around, says that this is the world premiere production but I saw it last summer at Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theater on Cape Cod, MA.”

Needless to say, we had some homework to do. Since Saltzman was unreachable by phone and we were on deadline, we Googled the National New Plays Network, which Saltzman wrote is the sponsoring organization of the premiere.

It turns outs the NNPN has a Continued Life of New Plays Fund, in which three or more theaters choose to mount the same new play within a 12-month period. The result is a “rolling world premiere” in which the playwright works with at least three different creative teams, and the play is seen by three or more different audience communities.

So both Saltzman and Swain were right.

On Sunday, January 15, SuzAnne Barabas, NJRep’s artistic director, E-mailed Saltzman to say: “Just wanted to let you know that your review in the Princeton paper, U.S. 1, has made an impact. We are getting quite a few calls.”

So exceptions to the rule are worth it. We may send Saltzman back to NJ Rep to review another play — and we’ll be happy to have Swain fact-check the review before it goes to press.

#b#To the Editor: Thanks from Enable#/b#

The 2011 holidays were made brighter for persons with disabilities in our community, thanks to over 100 generous individuals, groups, businesses, congregations and schools who donated gifts, non-perishable food items, and food store gift cards to 247 individuals with disabilities and their families during the season of giving. Many others made monetary donations, delivered gifts, and wrapped presents. This annual outreach conducted by Enable Inc. would not be possible without the help of caring citizens who make this effort a success. On behalf of all who benefited, we extend our heartfelt thanks to them.

Enable is especially grateful for the support of employees at Bloomberg, Hopewell Valley Community Bank in Princeton, Janssen Pharmaceuticals Inc., NRG Energy Inc., and the law firm of Pepper Hamilton LLP; along with dozens of schools, churches, and community organizations.

Sharon J.B. Copeland,

Executive Director

Enable, 13 Roszel Road

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