“The Foreigner” Opens at Home Made Theater This Weekend [Berkshire on Stage]

April 18th, 2017, 1:30 pm by Sara

Home Made Theater closes out their 32nd season with Larry Shue’s comedy The Foreigner. The show runs weekends from Saturday (April 22) through Sunday, May 7 at SPAC’s Spa Little Theater in the Saratoga Spa State Park.

Charlie Baker (Nick Casey) is a painfully shy Englishman who’s terrified of conversation – with anyone. So when he’s dropped off at Betty Meeks’ (Debra Bercier) rural Georgia hunting lodge for a few days of peace and quiet, the local inhabitants are told that Charlie can’t speak or understand a word of English. This puts Charlie in the interesting position of overhearing more than he should. The Foreigner humorously barrels along and explodes in a wildly funny climax.

The director of The Foreigner is Patrick White, who is making his HMT directing debut. Past local directing credits include The Pope & The Witch, Suddenly, Last Summer and Grand Concourse at Albany Civic Theater; Clever Little Lies and Living on Love at Latham’s Curtain Call Theatre; The Glass Menagerie at Our Own Productions; and Rapture, Blister, Burn at Schenectady Civic Players.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage>


Home Made Theater Announces 33rd Season [Berkshire on Stage]

February 28th, 2017, 3:00 pm by Sara

Home Made Theater, Saratoga Springs’ resident theater company, is happy to announce their upcoming 2017-2018 season. HMT is located in SPAC’s Spa Little Theater in Saratoga Spa State Park.

In October, Home Made Theater will open their 33rd season with the musical Peter and the Starcatcher, written by Rick Elice, music by Wayne Barker, based on the novel by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson, directed by Bob Berenis. December’s “Theater for Families” production will be Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, directed by Dianne O’Neill Filer. In February, HMT will present Daniel Sullivan’s Inspecting Carol, directed by Jonathan Hefter. And closing the season in April/May will be the favorite Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, with lyrics by Tim Rice, and music by Andrew Lloyd Webber, directed by Dawn Oesch.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

LIVE: Dead & Company @ Saratoga Performing Arts Center, 6/21/16

June 22nd, 2016, 9:30 am by Greg

Back in October, the latest spin-off incarnation of the Grateful Dead launched their inaugural tour with a concert at Albany’s Times Union Center. The pieces didn’t quite all fit together perfectly, but there was no doubt that the new line-up of Dead & Company – featuring Grateful Dead alum Bob Weir, Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmann augmented with John Mayer, Oteil Burbridge and Jeff Chimenti – definitely showed promise.

On Tuesday evening (June 21), the band returned to Greater Nippertown for their debut at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center, where the Grateful Dead still hold the record for the biggest concert crowd. And this time around, they lived up to the promise…

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ArtBeat: “Borrowed Light” @ the Tang Museum [Get Visual]

June 6th, 2016, 2:00 pm by Sara
Installation view of Borrowed Light: Selections from the Jack Shear Collection (photo: Arthur Evans)

Installation view of Borrowed Light: Selections from the Jack Shear Collection (photo: Arthur Evans)

Review by David Brickman

The future looks pretty frightening at the moment, and personal legacies may seem like a shallow concern – but Jack Shear’s personal collection of photographs, a huge selection of which is on view at the Tang Teaching Museum at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs through Sunday, August 14, is an absolutely dazzling legacy.

Shear, who is the executive director of the Ellsworth Kelly Foundation, is also a photographer in his own right and has experience as a curator (this selection was co-curated by Shear and Tang Director Ian Berry). But this more-than-500-piece collection, donated in its entirety to the Tang last year, is what he will be remembered for, and with good reason.

Beginning in the 1840s with a vitrine full of Daguerreotypes, and continuing through the early 2000s, this compendium of the history of Western photography is a treasure trove that belongs at a teaching museum, where Berry and Shear contrived to place it at the fingertips of students, curators and scholars for the years to come. For now, we get to be those scholars, exploring about half the collection where it is gorgeously arrayed through the Tang’s entire second floor galleries, in pristine rows and heady constellations of cleanly framed prints.

Click to read the rest at Get Visual

ArtBeat: Alma Thomas @ Skidmore’s Tang Museum [Get Visual]

April 5th, 2016, 1:00 pm by Sara
Installation view of Alma Thomas at the Tang Teaching Museum. Photo by Arthur Evans.

Installation view of “Alma Thomas” at Skidmore’s Tang Teaching Museum. Photo by Arthur Evans.

Review by David Brickman

I wonder what Alma Thomas’ public school art students thought when, in 1972, their teacher – retired and elderly – became the first African-American woman to have a solo exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City.

The idea of an artist being that important and, yet, having had to teach school all her life is far from unique, but this extreme case is certainly food for thought. Skidmore College’s Tang Teaching Museum in Saratoga Springs has, in a sense, rescued this delightful painter from obscurity a second time with a sharp, spacious presentation of about two decades’ worth of her work (on view through Sunday, June 5) in a show simply titled Alma Thomas.

Click to read the rest at Get Visual.

LIVE: Sean Rowe @ Newberry Music Hall, 10/17/15

November 19th, 2015, 3:09 pm by Greg


Photographs by Tim Reidy

Sean Rowe – the Troy troubadour with the booming baritone voice – took the stage at Saratoga Springs’ Newberry Music Hall last month in support of his latest EP, Her Songs. The Albany-based duo the Sea the Sea opened the show.

Rowe is slated to return to the Spa City for a rare two-night stand at Caffe Lena at 8pm on Saturday, January 30 and 7pm on Sunday, January 31. Tickets are $25 in advance; $27 at the door.

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SPAC: A Preview of Summer 2016 Offerings [Berkshire on Stage]

November 19th, 2015, 10:00 am by Sara
Renee Fleming (credit: Timothy White)

Renee Fleming (credit: Timothy White)

For the first time in five decades, the Saratoga Performing Arts Center announces upcoming summer programming prior to the holiday season with a special Holiday Collection promotion for early birds who like to buy their tickets at a savings. The Holiday Collection is a selection of nine incredible programs handpicked to help audiences celebrate the holiday season. Tickets will become available at spac.org at 10am on Monday, November 30, “Cyber Monday.” Scroll to the bottom for promotion details

“SPAC’s 2016 Anniversary Season is a celebration of the visionaries who brought SPAC to life and the community that sustained, enriched and expanded SPAC for five decades,” reads the SPAC press release announcing the season highlights. “As we celebrate 50 years, we must remember that the dreams of the future are as important as the history of the past. We pay tribute to our founders’ legacy by launching SPAC’s artistic future through innovative programming, once-in-a-lifetime special events, and world premieres by choreographer Justin Peck and composer Michael Torke. Together, we applaud our cherished resident founders George Balanchine, Lincoln Kirstein, Eugene Ormandy, and their world-renowned artistry.”

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

New Release Rack: Annie & the Hedonists’ “Tonal Indulgence”

November 17th, 2015, 12:00 pm by Greg


Review by Glenn Weiser

Tonal Indulgence
Annie & the Hedonists
annieandthehedonists.com, 2015

With their fourth CD, Tonal Indulgence, local favorites Annie & the Hedonists have shown us again that they are the ultimate acoustic music cover band. The quartet, consisting of Annie Rosen on lead vocals, husband John Rosen on guitar, Peter Davis on piano, clarinet, banjo, and tenor guitar, and Don Young on upright bass and guitar, eschews writing originals in favor of well-chosen songs in a mix of genres. And with all their combined talents, you can see why they don’t stick to any one style.

The Hedonists’ new release contains 17 songs encompassing swing, string band music, hokum blues, contemporary folk and gospel. The kick-off track, blues chanteuse Trixie Smith’s 1922 “My Daddy Rocks Me,” was the first song to use the phrase “rock and roll.” It opens with Davis’ clarinet playing slinky melodic lines over a slow, sensual shuffle groove before Annie enters with her sultry alto to tout her man’s staying power. Hazel Dickens’ “My Heart’s Own Love,” evokes the Appalachians with Davis’ five-string banjo and guest artist Jay Ungar’s fiddling. The traditional ballad “The Water Is Wide” receives a languid swing treatment as Annie and daughter Hannah Rosen harmonize over a jazzy chord line, vaulting the old folk classic forward into the 1940s.

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