PEAR DUO Concert benefiting the Gateway Totem Project – Sep 10

Join us for PEAR DUO: A Benefit Concert in the Courtyard to support Morris Arts’ Gateway Totem Project on Sunday, September 10, 2017 at the High Street Courtyard located between #2 and #4 Cattano Avenue, Morristown, NJ. 

Tickets are $40 and available to purchase here or $45 at the door. All proceeds will support the Gateway Totem Project at the Early Street Community Garden. 

PEAR DUO – Curtis Brengle and Julie Ragins – have toured the world and performed with The Moody Blues, Sergio Mendes, Ray Charles, the Pointer Sisters, Englebert Humperdinck, American Idol, The Glen Miller Orchestra and Sheena Easton just to name a few. Their highly acclaimed show BACKSTAGE PASS is a stellar mix of songs that defined a generation (or two), interspersed with great stories of their years spent on the road.

The show is a great mash up, stylistically diverse and multi generational. From Adele to Stevie Wonder to the Great American Songbook, and even a few originals. Bold in it’s simplicity, the beauty of Julie’s voice and the brilliance of Curtis’ piano playing requires nothing more. In a time when a “more is more” mentality reigns, PEAR’s pure, unprocessed approach shows that still, less is more with done with style and substance.

Julie Ragins is a singer, multi-instrumentalist, and songwriter. Currently touring with the Moody Blues and Justin Hayward, (lead singer for the legendary band), Julie has performed with Sergio Mendes, Bruce Johnston of the Beach Boys, the Glen Miller Orchestra, Engelbert Humperdinck, Queen Latifa, Neil Sedaka, and Brian Setzer. She has also performed on American Idol and the Bachelor Pad. Her songwriter credits include Lifetime Original movies, Biography channel (Bob Dylan), My Big Redneck Wedding, True Life – MTV, Next – MTV, Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders – CMT, Kids By The Dozen – DHEA, Channel One Show Radio and coast to coast with George Noory.

Curtis Brengle is a pianist and arranger. Most notably, Curtis has performed with Ray Charles, Sheena Easton, Englebert Humperdink (musical director), the Pointer Sisters, Tom Scott, Deniece Williams, Chaka Khan, Rick Braun, Jeff Golub, and Peaches and Herb, among many others. As a recording artist for the Yamaha Corp., he recorded hundreds of pieces of music. Additional recordings Barry Manilow, Curb Your Enthusiasm (HBO), Freaky Friday (Disney), Espn Football (Jeff Koz), and thousands of arrangements for the Muzak Corporation, plus a host of national and local commercials.


Morris Arts’ Gateway Totem Project is a public sculpture celebrating Morristown’s immigrant community – past, present and future. One of the first of Morristown’s Percent for Art Projects and sponsored in part by the National Endowment for the Arts and private donors, the sculpture was installed in November of 2016.

Located in the Speedwell neighborhood, The Gateway Totem Project connects the entryway to Grow it Green Morristown’s Early Street Community Garden to Morristown High School, as well as existing low income senior housing, new high-end condominiums and local ethnic businesses. Gabrielle Hiltl-Cohen, a master stone carver, was commissioned to create the piece. Two ten-foot-tall, Indiana limestone pillars feature 16 panels of symbols evoking the multiple immigrant communities who have called the Speedwell Avenue area home over generations: Italian, Irish, Jewish, African American, South and Central American and more. This “Gateway” sculpture establishes a permanent gathering place for residents from across our diverse community.

The Gateway Totem Project – Short Documentary by Christian Schuller.
To read more about the Gateway Totem Project, please visit here.

Now that we have completed the installation of the Gateway Totem sculptures, we are excited to be moving into Phase II of our project. This is where we schedule programs and activities to take place at the site of the sculptures. Morris Arts has been working with local resident and community organizer Carols Sotelo to program poetry readings, live music, art exhibits and community story telling sessions. With your help we can raise the funds needed to make our programming efforts sustainable.

Morris Arts is committed to programming the Gateway Totem area with authentic, local artistic programs. In addition to programming, additional funds are needed to light the sculptures, and in keeping with the mission of Grow it Green, the space will continue to be “off grid” and will utilize solar power. We will be purchasing and installing solar panels and installing high-end industrial fixtures that will be flush mount on all corners of the sculpture.

Funds for promotional materials, signage and more in-depth information on the significance of each carved panel are needed.
Our Goal is to raise $14,500. Tickets to experience PEAR DUO and support the Gateway Totem Project can be purchased here