OFF-BROADWAY DEBUT (11/4/19)
Staring as Jimmy Carter's Press Secretary Jody Powell, James will make is Off-Broadway Debut in CONFIDENCE (AND THE SPEECH) at Theatre Row opening November 20th. Join an amazing cast and creative team as they dive into what went on behind closed doors leading up to one of the most famous speeches in United States history. Click HERE for tickets and info!
HELLO, I'M JOHNNY CASH (8/9/18)
James and the rest of the Million Dollar Quartet open one of the most exciting shows ever put together at the Weston Playhouse in Vermont. Join the cast in the cabaret space downstairs after the show for another hour of... fun? We'll see!
J&J TURN TEN (5/22/18)
Tonight Jake and James take the stage in their TENTH cabaret by J&J. Rubber Soul: In Concert is bound to be a blast. Stop by and witness the Beatles ground-breaking album performed in it's entirety.
NINE SHOWS IN SIX MONTHS (12/15/17)
Tonight James finishes off the busiest six months of his career! Between June 2nd and today, James has taken the stage in:
- Swing and a Miss (Director, Performer), Laurie Beechman Theatre
- Joe Iconis & Family (Performer), Weston Playhouse
- Love in Hate Nation (Performer), Music Theatre Factory
- Are You Afraid of the Cabaret (Producer), Laurie Beechman Theatre
- This is the Army (Performer), 54 Below
- Abbey Road in Concert (Director, Performer), Laurie Beechman Theatre
- Misfits (Producer), Laurie Beechman Theatre
- Hella Crayzee Holidayzee (Performer, Producer), 54 Below
- Joe Iconis Christmas Extravaganza (Performer), 54 Below
JAMES PENCA RETURNS TO WESTON, VT (10/1/17)
Six years since performing in Weston's Young Company, James finally returns to the Playhouse to perform with Joe Iconis in a killer concert opening tonight. This performance also marks the opening of Weston's new second stage, the Walker Farm.
CABARETS BY J&J (12/12/16)
After months of planning, James and college bud Jake Turski are ready to launch their cabaret series. James directs, Jake plays piano and the audience enjoys Grab Em By the Jingle Bells at the Laurie Beechman tonight!
FOUR PRODUCTIONS, FOUR MONTHS (7/16/16)
After a great summer of auditions, it's time to perform. Tonight, Forever Plaid opens on Lake Tahoe. After last week's opening of Comedy of Errors and next month's Forever Plaid in Boise, ID, this is going to be a fun few months! If Tahoe and Boise are too far for you, just wait for May 2017, when Plaid will play Cleveland, OH, James' hometown.
DIE FOR THE MAN (9/1/15)
After a couple months at home dealing with family business (Mom is doing very well, thanks for asking) James is heading to Boise Idaho to play Mortimer in Idaho Shakespeare Festival's The Fantaticks. He can't wait to be on stage again, but more importantly, to die every night by bow and arrow.
THREE MORE YEARS (12/10/14)
James is excited to announce new contracts with both his Legit (Nicolosi & Co.) and Commercial (Don Buchwald & Assoc.) agents for three more years. Time to get to work! 2017 is just down the road.
-THE ARTIST AND THE SCIENTIST (12/8/14)
After creating the roles of Dr. Giraffenstein in GIRAFFENSTEIN, Henry Mann in NINE WIVES and Ollie in THE CIRCUS IN WINTER, James will be creating yet again come February. This time he will be playing "Scientist" in the new musical THE ARTIST AND THE SCIENTIST with the CAP21 Theatre Company. Check out the theatre's website for more info.
SUCCESS IN CHESTER (11/16/14)
Tonight James closed up Goodspeeds' THE CIRCUS IN WINTER after weeks of brilliant work in rehearsals and weeks of well received shows. Check out pictures from the production here. CIRCUS is a beautiful show with so much to say and definitely has a future. Whether or not James will be involved in its future is not for sure but... he's feeling pretty good about it. Keep an eye out for details on that. Coming soon.
THE CIRCUS IN WINTER (9/1/14)
This October James will make his GOODSPEED debut as Ollie in a reworked CIRCUS IN WINTER. Broadway's HUNTER FOSTER joined the team as book writer along side Beth Turcotte. Ben Clark wrote the music and Joe Calarco directs. It should be a fantastic production. Come see James at Goodspeed!
NINE WIVES SELLS OUT (8/1/14)
James recently returned from Sharon, CT after a summer of originating the role of Henry Mann in the new musical NINE WIVES. Just after the show opened, the entire run SOLD OUT. An extra show was needed to give the public what they wanted! Needless to say, the show was a success. Keep an eye open for future productions of NINE WIVES!
NINE WIVES (3/1/14)
In July, James will be originating the role of Henry Mann in the World Premiere production of NINE WIVES. James has performed material from the show for a few years now and is thrilled to finally do the whole show. The Sharon Tri-Arts Playhouse in Sharon, CT will be the location for this hysterical new musical.
You can see James perform "She's My Wife" from NINE WIVES in the videos section.
James is excited to announce his involvement in a reading of a new play by Danielle Mohlman. STOPGAP will star James, Annie Golden, Caitlin Diana Doyle and Jonathan W. Colby. The reading will take place on January 28th at 4:30 in the Snapple Theatre. Check out the BroadwayWorld article here.
See you there!
THE JOE ICONIS CHRISTMAS SPECTACULAR (12/20/13)
Tonight marks the second collaboration between James and one of his favorite composers Joe Iconis. Twice this evening and twice tomorrow night, Joe Iconis and friends will perform their christmas spectacular at 54 BELOW. Special guests include: Michael Cerveris, Alice Ripley, Julia Murney, Annie Golden, Susan Blackwell, Santa Clause, Sweet Baby Jesus, The Virgin Mary, Mr. Machabee the Old-timey Bar Keep and MORE! Don't miss it!
BROOKE ASTOR'S LAST AFFAIR (10/14/13)
Come see James in his second reading in as many weeks! He will be performing along side Broadway vet Nancy Anderson (whom he watched as a high schooler in the "Kiss Me Kate" DVD, needless to say, he's excited).
Check out the "What's Next?" section on the right of the page for info.
ROCKET SCIENCE (10/10/13)
This Saturday (10/12/13), head to the American Theater Group at Hamilton Stage to see James perform in a reading of the musical ROCKET SCIENCE. The cast includes Andrew Keenan-Bolger, Jonathan Rayson, Marrick Smith, Alison Cimmet, Andrea Green and F. Michael Haynie. More info at the ATG WEBSITE.
BEST MUSICAL (8/26/13)
James and his cast of SAVE THE DATE are extatic to announce that their show was selected as the Best Overall Musical in the 2013 NYC International Fringe Festival. Congrats to this world premiere!
Check out the BroadwayWorld article on the award.
NYC DEBUT (7/12/13)
After only a month in the city, James is happy to announce his first NYC project. As a part of the NYC International Fringe Festival, James will portray Michael in a hysterical new musical called SAVE THE DATE. This World Premiere will run in late August. For more details, visit the show's website or check out the BroadwayWorld article announcing the full cast.
SIGNED AND GRADUATED (5/12/13)
James is happy to say he is now a proud graduate of Balwin Wallace University. Other exciting news of the past few days includes a few callbacks in the big city and signing with Don Buchwald & Associates for commercial work.
OFFICIALLY SIGNED (4/29/13)
After a VERY successful showcase, James spent a few days in the city meeting with agents from every corner of Manhatten. After a few more interviews on Monday and a lot of traveling, James is extremely excited to announce that he has signed with Nicolosi & Co. His relationship with Jeanne Nicolosi, Jeremey Leiner and David Cash in particular has always been a great one. He was very excited to officially make the step to sign with this fantastic team.
MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR (3/25/13)
After three sold out, standing room-only concerts, it is safe to say that the 2013 Beatles Festival this past weekend was a resounding success.
An orchestra/band of 40 Baldwin Wallace students performed the entirety of MAGICAL MYSTERY TOUR with superb detail. Every note, rhythm and instrument was accounted for and perfected. James was an original member of the group that put on ABBEY ROAD two years ago and helped plan last year's SGT PEPPER'S LONELY HEARTS CLUB BAND. This year James served as vocalist once again but also as the Festival Co-Director.
James was also responsible for conceiving and directing a new addition to this year's festival. "SUPER BEATLES SUNDAY" was an evening of BW students, faculty, staff and alumni playing original arrangements from the Beatles catalog. Another sold out crowd enjoyed songs played in the style of Bluegrass, classical guitar and even one song played entirely with plastic cups.
By the end of the weekend over 100 students, faculty, staff and alumni performed for over 900 Beatle fans. And the BWBeatles organization was able to raise over $1,100 in donations alone.
Although James is graduating in May, there is no doubt in Berea that the Beatles Festival will continue long after it's original members leave town.
Be sure to attend the 4th Annual Beatles Festival featuring THE WHITE ALBUM.
Spring 2014 - "Come on, come on."
THE FINAL MONTHS (2/26/13)
Less than two months remain until James and the rest of the BW Music Theatre class of 2013 make their way to NYC for their end of the year showcase. But James has plenty to worry about until then.
In three weeks, the 3rd ANNUAL BEATLES FESTIVAL gets underway in Berea, OH. The festival of which James was an original member is expected to be attended by over 1,000 Beatle fans.
Also in the works is James' final show at BWU. LOVE STORY: The Musical will be playing in Cleveland, OH at PlayhouseSquare. This musical based on the timeless 70's film opens May 3rd.
The next few months will involve very little time off, but that must mean we are doing something right, don't you think?
FOLLIES SOLD OUT CLOSING NIGHT (11/18/12)
Tonight the BWU production of FOLLIES closed to a sold out house. After plenty of rave reviews it was not surprising. Ted Chapin, the Original Broadway Production's production assistant, flew in to see the show and had nothing but overwellmingly positive things to say. The production entertained over 4,000 audience members. But as always, "All things beautiful must die"
MYTHS & HYMNS RUN IS SHORT AND SWEET (11/12/12)
James and the cast of MYTHS & HYMNS opened their two performance run on Sunday night and closed tonight! Both performances went very well, although the audience was rather confused throughout.
It is MYTHS & HYMNS after all...
OPENING NIGHT OF FOLLIES (11/9/12)
James and the cast of Follies opens tonight at BWU. Get tickets now!
BUDDY'S BLUES (8/29/12)
After a few callbacks this week, James was cast as "Buddy" in BW's fall musical FOLLIES. The show runs November 8th through the 18th. There are two casts so be sure to see the right one if you want to see him perform!
ONE MORE YEAR (8/20/12)
Next week James will be returning to Baldwin Wallace University for his final year. Auditions for FOLLIES will be soon after. Check the news section soon to see how that turns
SONDHEIM ON SONDHEIM CLOSES (7/8/12)
Tonight is the final performance of the limited engagement at the Hannah Theatre in Playhouse Square. After 62 performances, thousands were able to enjoy the revue.
JAMES PENCA ON NPR "Open Air" Concert (6/21/12)
James and the cast of SONDHEIM ON SONDHEIM will be performing on NPR. "Around Noon" will be broadcast live and outside from Star Plaza in downtown Cleveland. Tune in to hear a few songs from the show.
EQUITY CARD IN HAND (6/10/12)
James is officially a member of the Actors' Equity Association.