Bomb explodes near Imperioli's studio


NEW YORK -- An explosive device detonated outside a studio owned by "The Sopranos" star Michael Imperioli early Tuesday, damaging a van but causing no serious injuries, police said.

Police said they did not know if the explosion was connected to Imperioli's Studio Dante.

Several residents in apartments above the studio were evacuated after the device went off about 1 a.m., police said.

The police department's bomb squad was investigating what kind of explosive was used and why it was detonated in front of the Manhattan building, two blocks south of Madison Square Garden.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg said later that it was caused by "some kind of small explosive device," but not a pipe bomb.

"There was an explosion in the street, it blew out windows of a van parked in front of the building, and thankfully no one was injured," Bloomberg said. "While there certainly is no evidence that this was terrorism, we are taking this and every act of violence extremely seriously."

Imperioli played Christopher Moltisanti, Tony Soprano's nephew, on the HBO television show. Studio Dante is described on its Web site as "an unexpected jewel-box that was built to house progressive new plays." Imperioli created it with his wife, Victoria.