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First Avenue Playhouse to feature work by Holmdel playwright

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First Avenue Playhouse to feature work by Holmdel playwright

“Pets and Their Humans,” an award-winning play that takes a quirky look at the relationship between pets and their families, will be performed at the First Avenue Playhouse on Friday and Saturday nights between Sep. 7 and 28, beginning at 8:30 p.m.

A Sunday matinee will take place at 2:30 p.m. on Sep. 15. The First Avenue Playhouse is located on 123 First Ave. in Atlantic Highlands.

In “Pets and Their Humans,” a widower named Brad finds solace by talking to his pets after his wife dies. But then his pets start taking back.

Jersey Shore playwright Mike Sockol says his own pets inspired for the play.

“We give our pets so many human qualities, and I started to wonder why. What if there is more here than meets the eye? So, I decided to write a play that offers an answer why we have pets in the first place,” Sockol said in a statement.

Sockol chose to dedicate the play to his wife, Lisa, who was instrumental in bringing so many pets into his household, according to a press release.

“I never really wanted a dog or a cat. Now I can’t imagine not having one around,” Sockol said.

“Pets” has previously been performed by theater groups in Rahway and Ocean Grove and has received two Perry Awards from the New Jersey Association of Community Theaters, including best original play, according to the press release.

More than one dozen of Sockol’s plays have been performed in recent years in New York, New Jersey and West Virginia, according to the press release.

The show is directed by Gina Shuster and features a local cast of actors, including David Clarke, Danielle Pecchioli, Kathy Janovic, Dani Vogel, Stephen Russo, Kylie Mulvihill and Allegra Tumbleson.

Most of the actors in this family-friendly production range from ages six to 15.

“I originally wrote the play as a youth show for Gina. She even helped me come up with the show’s title,” Sockol said “I’m so pleased that she is finally getting a chance to display her vision for the story.”

Tickets are $25. Reservations are required and can be made by calling 732-291-7552. Senior discounts are available on Friday and Sunday performances.

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