Monday, January 11, 2016

A Night of New Decors and Jettstorms

On the 10th day of a new year (Sunday January 10th, 2016), The Sherman Theater's Living Room in Stroudsburg, PA opened its doors to those who have called it home while preparations were made to present another installment of their weekly Open Mic Nite Series A room adorned with newly painted walls, hard wood floors, and an actual stage greeted the assembly who shared their wonderment through a multitude of ooos and ahhhs as they explored the spectacle. These pleasured expressions sprinkled the conversations the newness of the environs inspired until the call was given to signify the customary sign in ritual has begun. Those who wished to share their talents throughout the evening took their places in line and placed their signatures or pseudonyms upon the laminated document.

It was shortly after this did co host, Theresa Ratcliff, take the stage to welcome the company to the venue and made some appreciatory comments about the venue's new look. A number of announcements were made which included the reveling of the night's raffle prizes which were CDs and Gift Cards from Main St. Jukebox in Stroudsburg, PA and who the featured performer of the evening was. The excitement of the room swelled to a fevered pitched as Ms. Ratcliff's remarks concluded with the introduction of the evening's first performer of the new year.

Guitarist Drew Breder was the first to take the stage and began to quietly move the room's denizens toward a profound sense of peace through his soul touching instrumentals. He was followed by the popular duo known as “Woodrow” which consists of Theresa Ratcliff on vocals and Brian Bramkamp on vocals and guitar. Together, they brought forth a power from their music that opened the passageways to the energies embodied within each listener. Woodrow was followed by Nick Pecca who shared songs through his voice and guitar that took the audience along with him on journeys that led to the demolition of the emotional barricades that impede their ability to lead their lives with all of the fullness it can embrace.

Nick was followed by a performance given by The Forwardian Players who presented a piece that celebrated the arrival of a new year which was written by Paul Adam Smeltz (yeah, that's me). It was titled, “So, You Wanna Have a Resolution” and starred Paul Adam Smeltz (yeah, that's still me) along with Ann Matthews. Ms. Matthew's performance proved to be a stunning one as the entire piece was well received by the generous audience. The Forwardian Players' were followed by Ann Mathews who returned to the stage in order to present a highly energetic dance performance that revealed the intricacies inherent in the explorations associated to finding one's higher self. The dance was well performed and allowed the audience to gain insight to the process of the spiritual journey. Ms. Matthew was followed by the evening's featured performer.

After some preparations of the stage were completed, a woman known as “Poet,” who would accompany Jett Storm Burgess (aka JettStorm) throughout the set, shared her spoken word poetry which echoed upon the soul of each listener and added an inaudible depth to the songs that would follow. As the strings of JettStorm's guitar were touched and its voice joined his in song, a storm of emotions encompassed the gathering as each composition flowed through their senses creating a new light upon their subconscious horizons composed of the simple complexity of each lyric and note. Poetry and song complimented one another throughout the performance with both elements enhancing the essence of each art form as well as all who had to good fortune to embrace the experience.

Jett Storm Burgess (aka JettStorm) is a member of a band known as “Snot Nosed Kids” which has recently changed its name to “Bi-Curious Slumber Party” The band performs a variety of material which includes Punk, Ska, and Grunge. However, Mr. Burgess also enjoys performing alone as JettStorm alongside Poet. Together, they share music in the Folk Punk and Experimental genres as well as some Spoken Word poetry. The combination of these art forms creates a mystical experience for their audience which not only enhances their understanding the subtle intricacies of each song and poem but of life itself. You can learn more about JettStorm by exploring his Facebook Page at

As JettStorm and Poet concluded their performance, a break ensued which gave the gathering an opportunity to converse with the featured and other performers while sharing their appreciatory sentiments. The break eventually came to an end as JettStorm and the event's co-host, Satilia Rose (aka Tilly), took the stage to select the winning tickets for the night's raffle. Many eagerly peered into the digits of their tickets awaiting for the corresponding sequences to be read aloud. When they were, a joy touched the individuals as they approached the stage to collect their coveted prize. It was after this awarding interlude did the next performer take the stage.

The first post interludial artist to perform was a musician known as “Atilc” who sang a number of meditative songs while being accompanied by his bongos whose rhythms amplified the effect. He was followed by Brad who has been a favorite among the Living Room gathering for a number of years and is well known for his creativity and unique mannerisms. The evening would witness to Brad's renowned flexibility as he danced with a flowing energy that captivated the room. Brad was followed by John who sung number of songs from musicals while announcing his endeavors to be cast in a play he would soon audition for. The audience shared their good wishes in his undertaking and communally expressed a desire to be kept informed regarding his progress.

As John completed his performance, Raven share a number of songs that delighted those who heard them. He was followed by Vid Ryan whose poetry flowed like a river of deeper meanings concentrating their ponderings until they filled the pools of our apprehensions. It was after Mr. Ryan's performance did the evening come to a close with some appreciative words shared by co-hosts Theresa Ratcliff and Satilia Rose (aka Tilly). This was followed by a request that all present be a part of a photograph commemorating the first Open Mic Nite for 2016 as presented in the venue's new d├ęcor. Many of the gathering eagerly took a place upon the stage to have their image recorded for prosperity before bidding adieu to one another in anticipation of another installment of the Open Mic Nite.

The next Open Mic Nite is scheduled to take place on Sunday January 17th beginning at 7pm with sign ins beginning at 6:30pm. Musicians, poets, writers, and anyone who would like to share something with a receptive audience are welcomed to do so. In the meantime, you'll be able to view photographs taken during the Sunday January 10th event in the A Night of New Decors and Jettstorms Gallery at

The Sherman Theater’s Living Room is located on Main Street in Stroudsburg, PA next to The Sherman Theater who owns the building. In addition to their Open Mic Nites series, the venue also holds a number of concerts and special events. Please Explore The Sherman Theater’s Living Room Facebook Page at or call 570-421-2808 for more information on the venue, all they have to offer, and how to be a part of it all.

Photography by Paparazzi Paul.

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