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Nancy ScharffVeteran denizens of the greater Red Bank Green may remember Nancy Scharff for the annual Christmas extravaganzas she presented in seasons past at the Count Basie Theatre — some big joyous benefits that found the Middletown-based devotional singer, songwriter, musician, choirmaster, producer, conductor, and educator taking on yet another role: that of shepherdess tending to a flock of choral performers, orchestra members, rock bandmates, kid choirs, bell ringers, event volunteers and interactively inclined audience members that numbered in the hundreds.

While those logistically complex events have taken a hiatus in recent times, Scharff remains very much on the scene; as a faculty member with Red Bank’s Monmouth Conservatory of Music, as a busy music-maker who’s even been known to hit the sidewalks as a Red Bank Street Life performer — and as the long-standing music director at King of Kings Lutheran Church, the New Monmouth landmark that’s served as the globally touring artist’s home base for decades.

Nancy’s Christmas shows have long had a summer-season cousin in the annual God and Country Patriotic Concert, the 2016 edition of which returns to King of Kings this Friday evening, June 24.

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Teens who are interested in the art of magic now have a local opportunity to learn how to perform illusions and work with professional magicians, thanks to a new Venturing Crew.

The newly-formed Young Magicians Venturing Crew #123 will hold a free Open House on Wednesday, March 26, 2014, starting 7:30 p.m. at King of Kings Lutheran Church, 250 Harmony Road, Middletown, N.J. This event is open to teens ages 14-20. Parents are also invited to attend. The first crew meeting will be held at the same location on April 23, also at 7:30 p.m.

Members of the International Brotherhood of Magicians Ring 123 are sponsoring this new, co-ed youth Venturing Crew to train and mentor teens and young people who are either interested in learning more about magic, including aspiring professional magicians. Seasoned magicians will teach Crew members a variety of illusions and tricks, help them explore the art of showmanship, and how to plan and host magic shows.

Parents and adults who love magic will have the opportunity to become involved as mentors, leaders and volunteers.

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