“You Love Me! You Really, Really Love Me…”

Yes, we all know that it’s an honor just to be nominated. Or at least that’s what you’re supposed to say.

It’s also an extra special honor to win, so we’d like to pass along our congratulations to the following award winners:

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Stefon Harris

Stefon Harris (photo by Nitin Vadukal)

Vibraphone virtuoso, composer and Albany native Stefon Harris was honored by the Jazz Journalists Association last week as Best Mallet Instrumentalist of of the Year. Of course, it wasn’t a real big surprise – in the 12 years that the association has handed out a trophy in that category, Harris has won seven times. You can see and hear Harris and his band Blackout in concert at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center on Sunday as part of the main stage line-up for the Freihofer’s Saratoga Jazz Festival.

Meanwhile, sax master and Hudson Valley resident Joe Lovano walked off with an arm-load of trophies from the same Jazz Journalists Association. The multiple award winner took home top honors as Tenor Saxophonist of the Year, Small Group of the Year (for his band Us Five) and Record of the Year (for “Folk Art”).

At last week’s Tony Award ceremonies honoring the best of Broadway, Bill T. Jones was awarded the trophy for Best Choreography for his work on the bio-musical “Fela!” which he also directed. You can catch Jones when he offers a pre-performance talk at the National Museum of Dance in Saratoga Springs at 6:30pm on Friday, July 23. The Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company will present their epic dance work “Fondly Do We Hope… Fervently Do We Pray” at SPAC at 8pm on Wednesday, July 28.

Director Ronn Kilby’s 16-minute documentary film about the Arts Center of the Capital Region in Troy was honored with a Telly Award last week. “Beacon on Monument Square” was honored with a Bronze Telly Award in the non-broadcast category for non-profit organizations. Founded in 1979, the Telly Awards honor local, regional and cable TV commercials and programs, film and video productions and web commercials, drawing more than 13,000 entries annually. Kilby’s film had its premiere at the Arts Center in April. You can watch it online here.

Kudos also go out to Poestenkill rockers Blue Factory, who won the City of Troy’s Rockin’ On the River competition. Blue Factory has snagged the opening slot on the concert series’ kick-off show at 5pm on Wednesday, opening for U2 tribute band Unforgettable Fire. The concerts take place just off River Street in Troy behind Ryan’s Wake, Jose Malone’s and Brown’s Brewing Co. Admission is free.

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