By Jason Lockhart
RED BANK – Jay Brandwein hosted the first ever Halloween Open Mic at the Red Bank Public Library on Monday. Despite a small crowd, spectators were amused by the four open mic artists that performed on a chilly Halloween evening. According to Brandwein, this was a great opportunity for all artists to use their creativity while focusing on the main topic.
“The free expression that an open mic show allows for the individual is to be multi-dimensional,” Brandwein said. “It allows a person to concur the biggest fear that most have in public speaking.”
Open mic artists told spooky tales related to Halloween. Brandwein, who was one of four artists, did a stand-up comedy skit about Mischief Night and Trick-or-Treating while Tuckerton local Carol Swisher read a Halloween-related poem.
Red Bank local Matt Curran played a Halloween-theme song on his guitar. The open mic performances came to a close when Red Bank local Josh “Dogmatic” Matson read a haiku poem related to Halloween.
Brandwein said that he has been hosting open mics for a year. He hosted open mics at Zebu Café from January until it closed down a few weeks ago to prepare for a move to anew location on Broad Street.
“The library asked me to do an open mic here,” Brandwein said. “I decided to go for it since Halloween would be a great night to host an open mic.”
Brandwein and the open mic artists plan to do performances at Zebu Café after the new building is completed. However, none of them are sure when the café will re-open.
According to open mic performer Carol Swisher, many people missed out on an entertaining event. Swisher was expecting a large crowd to show up, but she hopes more people will get the message for next year.
“I liked the event, but I wish more people showed up,” Swisher said who also said that she sent out many invitations on Facebook. “There were some people that said they would come, but couldn’t make it.”
Halloween Open Mic ended with a costume contest. Swisher, who was dressed as a pirate, took home the prize of a bag of giveaways.