Just two miles from campus on Valley Road in Upper Montclair, hidden inside The Mews courtyard behind Toros Restaurant, is a basement level store named Silver Stream Studio, a creative ultimate playground and a place Montclair State students should take advantage of.
Montclair has an extensive history of having a lively entertainment and creative scene. The town has always been known to have interesting businesses with an immense amount of character, and Silver Stream Studio is no exception to this. Located in the heart of Montclair, Silver Stream Studio recently opened last April. According to the owner, Timmy Kellenyi, Silver Stream Studio is “a podcast studio/ event space/weird little store.” Essentially, this is a creative safe place for artists of all nature. It is truly a hidden gem both figuratively and literally due to its hidden location.
Kellenyi, originally from Maplewood, New Jersey, has always been a creative person and has always had an appreciation for the arts.
“I appreciate creative people, I appreciate eclectic environments and an environment that caters to the [weird] side of people and their self-expression,” Kellenyi said.
As a teenager, Kellenyi was an enthusiast of attending and hosting punk rock shows around Maplewood and South Orange. From a young age, he has been involved in curating events and connecting with other creatives in his community.
After college, Kellenyi moved to California and started working in art galleries and event spaces. After witnessing these creative spaces become a big part of their communities, Kellenyi moved back to New Jersey and decided to create his own space like that in Montclair.
“A really relevant point to why this place started is so that it could [serve as a] home [and] gathering space for a creative community,” Kellenyi said. “This place is [my way of] showing appreciation to the creatives.”
Just calling Silver Stream Studio a podcast studio is an understatement. For the majority of the time, the space is used for hosting events. Typically, the events they hold include film screenings of local filmmakers. Last spring, the studio hosted a screening of a documentary film “Nice Towns” by local filmmaker Michael Abdul-Qawi.
One of the studio’s most popular events was their Super Smash Bros. game tournament hosted by Mapso Entertainment this past October. The tournament was a single-player competition with a cash prize. Kevin Ortiz, better known through his gamertag QueVeen on all socials, won the Super Smash Bros. tournament.
“The event was super fun and welcoming, it felt so comfortable, and the owner of the studio was really kind and stoked about hosting events such as this,” Ortiz said.
Last June, Silver Stream Studios hosted a series of intimate comedy shows headlining Chris Gethard, an American actor, producer, comedian and writer most known for his roles in the films “The Dictator” (2012), “Don’t Think Twice” (2016) and “The Heat” (2013).
In addition, Silver Stream Studio also hosts standup comedy shows, art gallery events, live music events, karaoke nights and even yoga classes. Kate Nichols was one of the comedians featured in the most recent standup comedy event this past October. She is also an LCSW psychotherapist who has also hosted a yoga and mental health workshop at Silver Stream Studio along with Doula Varrita Saryon.
“What I really like about Silver Stream is its underground location,” Nichols said. “I like the element of having to kind of know where it is to find it. I particularly liked this for hosting a comedy show because it felt a little bit like having a secret location which added a fun element. The space itself is also intimate, which makes for a great community vibe and the decor of the place is really cool.”
Nichols also spoke about Kellenyi’s role in making the studio what it is.
“The owner [is] super friendly and approachable and helped me execute both events really seamlessly,” Nichols said. “He was very helpful with the planning and took over a lot of the marketing and ticket selling which I really appreciated, as that’s not my skill set, and made the events themselves very simple to operate by working the door and getting folks settled so I could really focus on running the events themselves.”
Although relatively new, Silver Stream Studio has been a great place for inclusive, creative communities in Montclair.
“What I see is that this space’s main significance is to be a meeting ground for people involved in the art scene, people involved in the music scene, people who want to harbor a sense of community,” Kellenyi said. “The reality is we are a space that supports creatives, and we want people to use our space however they want.”
It’s also a place where artists, specifically local and Montclair State University artists, can display and sell some of their artwork. They can also go into the store during open hours Thursday to Sunday to lounge in the sitting area and maybe get work done; or try to get inspiration from the captivating artwork hung on the walls and displayed all over the store, made by local New Jersey artists.
Especially with Montclair State having a variety of creative arts programs, Montclair State students should take advantage of this space. Kellenyi even offers a 10% discount to Montclair State students for studio time.
Regardless, the space is intended to be a comfortable place for everyone to be entertained and creative. To find out more about their upcoming events or studio space, you can check out their Instagram: @silverstreamstudionj and contact Kellenyi through their website silverstreamstudionj.com.