LIVE: H’SAO @ Saratoga Performing Arts Center, 8/27/18


Review and photographs by Andrzej Pilarczyk

Closing out the second year of SPAC on Stage – a month-long series of Monday night concerts on the stage of the Saratoga Performing Arts Center’s amphitheater (both the performers and the audience) – was H’SAO, a Montréal-based group originally from Chad, Africa.

Not only was it a revelation to be seated on one of the largest stages in upstate New York, but there was a magical feeling to look out into the house knowing that you either sat in one of the now empty seats or on the lawn to cheer and dance to one of your musical heroes whoever they were from the Allman Brothers to Yo-Yo Ma over the past 50-plus summers.

On that humid evening the four members of H’SAO ascended the bandstand and ignited an Afro-pop festival complete with four-part a cappella harmonies, electrified Afro beats, infectious, danceable rhythms and oh so much more. The many smiles from the band to the audience and from the audience right back to the band confirmed the
crazy wonderful fun that everyone was having.

However, the columnist, Arthur Gonick, said it best that night, “From now on in August, Monday is the new Saturday night!” I second that.

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