Posts Tagged ‘Performing Arts’

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Crowdfunding For The Adirondack Lakes Center for Arts

adk-gives-21The Adirondack Lakes Center for the Arts in Blue Mountain Lake has announced a new campaign on Adirondack Gives, the crowdfunding site for Adirondack region nonprofits, to help fund the purchase of new tires for the organization’s van.

Traveling the 2,000 square miles of the Adirondacks takes a toll on the Center’s equipment. For the 2014 ADK Summer Playhouse season, the organization plans to travel five productions to 17 towns for a total of 31 performances. “The van is crucial piece of equipment, it helps fulfill our mission of bringing our programs to underserved communities in the Adirondacks,” Executive Director Alex Harris said in a statement announcing the fundraising drive.

The goal is to raise $800.00. You can give as much or as little as you like to toward that goal by heading over to the Adirondack Gives website. » Continue Reading.



Monday, March 31, 2014

Livin’ the Dream: Ticonderoga Native Whitney Armstrong

01WhArmstrongmoviedebutIf you’re just a regular Joe or Jane, you’ve probably at some point—say, while lying back in an office chair, or doing the dishes, perhaps mowing the grass—entertained a number of Walter Mitty-like fantasies. You know … stuff like, “What’s it like to be that guy or girl?” For men, that guy could be anything. What’s it like to be the smartest kid in school? The star center on a school basketball team? The ace pitcher on the baseball team? A great running back in football? Better yet, how about doing all that in college? Wow … BMOC, plenty of attention from the girls, the coolest among the guys. Might as well toss in a professional baseball contract … what sports-loving boy doesn’t dream of that?

If you’ve never been considered “chick bait,” daydreams might find you 6 foot 4 with a muscular build, and a face that others besides a mother could love. In place of your everyday job, reverie might find you a TV actor, or in movies. That would be cool—fraternizing and working with show-biz superstars. And hey, why not marry the world’s most famous model? She’ll need a great place to live … maybe the Hollywood Hills? And we’ll chum around with a top music superstar of the past century.

I’m going out on a limb, but here’s my guess: for the rest of our lives, most of us would relish having any one thing from that list. But all of them? » Continue Reading.



Friday, March 28, 2014

Minerva, My Hometown:
Dan Berggren and A Fourth Grade Class

Minerva NYOn a tour of the Transylvania region of Romania in 2005, Dan Berggren and his friends sang in small towns and big cities, orphanages, schools, hospitals and churches. One night in the little village of Almas, after their last song they asked the audience to sing something for them. They sang, in Hungarian, a song hundreds of years old about their town. That experience inspired Berggren to want to write a song about his hometown, Minerva.

Three years later the inspiration became reality, thanks to a project with Kathy Halloran’s fourth graders at Minerva Central School, and their music teacher Sabrina LaPointe. The children interviewed their grandparents and older neighbors about what had changed in their hometown, and what had remained the same and the verses grew from what they brought back. The song’s chorus came from a list they generated, letter by letter, of all the things in their town that were meaningful to them. » Continue Reading.



Thursday, March 27, 2014

Depot Theatre Announces 2014 Main Stage Season

depot_theaterOld Blue Eyes takes the stage, a singing duo from the 50’s reunites, and humor ensues in a small Texas town for the Depot Theatre’s lively 2014 Season lineup. “It’s a terrific season of fun and laughter at the great quality our audiences have come to expect,” says Depot 2012 Volunteer of the Year Karen Lewis, who has guided the season planning process.

The season opens with “My Way: A Musical Tribute to Frank Sinatra”, a musical that distills the nearly 1,400 songs that Sinatra recorded down to 56 selections. The show promises to be a fresh, entertaining evening of great music, beautifully and brightly delivered by a cast of four.  Old Blue Eyes is followed by the fast-paced, costume-changing hilarity of “Greater Tuna”, a send-up of small town morals and mores in which two actors portray an entire group of upstanding citizens in the small town of Tuna, Texas.

The musical comedy “Pete ‘N’ Keely” caps the season. Pete and Keely are a now-bitterly-divorced chart-topping singing duo from the 50’s and 60’s who reunite for a 1968 television special celebrating their careers. This bright and happy show features a nostalgic and clever mix of golden oldies sure to have audiences laughing and tapping their toes. » Continue Reading.



Wednesday, March 12, 2014

ADK Shakespeare Presenting ‘Sunday Shakespeare Series’

ADK flagThe Adirondack Shakespeare Company troupe is teaming-up with the Lake Placid Center for the Arts to present a new “Sunday Shakespeare Series” this month with three original mash-ups of the Bard’s greatest hits.

ADK Shakespeare’s company of professional actors presents selections from the best of the Bard on different themes each week: true love, villainy, and “kings and things”. Each show will run about an hour and touch on such beloved classics as: A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Romeo and Juliet, Othello, King Lear, Henry V, and many more. These shows are fast-paced, light-hearted tours across Shakespeare’s canon.  » Continue Reading.



Wednesday, March 12, 2014

The Puppet People to Perform The Firebird in Long Lake

 woods2There is something so hypnotic about watching a puppet show. The simplicity and artistry combined, as an avenue for storytelling, is timeless. The variety of puppets seem to be endless from shadow or hand to a more complex marionette. I enjoy how the stage designs spark the imagination where a scrap of fabric becomes a dress, body of water or backdrop. It is all about where your mind can take you. Around our house a simple sock with some buttons sewn on provided hours of entertainment when my children were young. Now, of course, more complex puppets are in the works.

For the second time Long Lake Public Library is bringing the talents of Schenectady’s The Puppet People to the area. This year’s March 15th performance of The Firebird is free and open to the public, though registration is requested. » Continue Reading.



Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Reason2Smile World Music Fest in Lake Placid

R2S-28For the second year the not-for-profit organization Reason2Smileis hosting an all day music festival with workshops and children’s camp on March 8 at the Lake Placid Center for the Arts.  The festival focus is to introduce the Lake Placid and surrounding areas to an eclectic group of artisans sharing their love of music, art and movement.

According to Reason2Smile Founder and Executive Director Keela Grimmette the event has grown since its first year, with groups coming to hold classes and perform from as far afield as Plattsburgh and Watertown. She would like workshop participants to walk away from the Reason2Smile World Festival with an understanding of all the diverse groups that are located near by and what each one has to share. » Continue Reading.



Monday, March 3, 2014

Adirondack Women’s History Events Planned

image001(8)Celebrate Women’s History Month on March 21 and 22 with a program of stories and music by acclaimed Adirondack singer-songwriter Peggy Lynn and author/performer Sandra Weber.

On Friday, March 21 at 7:00 pm Peggy and Sandra perform at the Whallonsburg Grange Hall. On Saturday, March 22 at 6:30 pm at the Lake Placid Center for the Arts there is a reception to benefit the Adirondack History Center Museum followed by a performance at 7:30 pm. The Wild Spirits: Songs and Stories of Remarkable Adirondack Women program highlights the contributions and journeys of famous (and not so famous) women of the Adirondacks. » Continue Reading.



Monday, February 24, 2014

Watertown’s Show-Biz Pioneer: Charles Giblyn (Part 3)

3A CGiblynAdIn 1920, Charles Giblyn produced his first film for William Fox. (If the name sounds familiar, William founded Fox Film Corporation in 1915, the forerunner of today’s Fox TV and movie units.) The film, Tiger’s Cub, allowed Giblyn a homecoming of sorts. With his lead actress, Pearl White, who reportedly had the widest following of any star worldwide at the time, he came north for filming in Port Henry, about an hour south of Plattsburgh, where he once lived.

After producing a few more movies, Charles was sent to the West Coast on behalf of Fox, where he continued working. For a brief period, he assumed leadership of the Motion Picture Directors’ Association, but when Fox re-assigned him to more movie projects back East, he surrendered the top spot with the MPDA and headed for New York. » Continue Reading.



Monday, February 10, 2014

Watertown’s Charles Giblyn, Show-Biz Pioneer

1A CGiblynDuring research, trivial bits of information often lead to the discovery (or uncovering) of stories that were either lost to time or were never told. For instance, did you know that a North Country man once directed Harrison Ford in a movie role as a young adventurer? Or that a coast-to-coast theater star hails from Watertown? Or that a man with regional roots patented a paper toilet-seat protector two decades before it was offered to the public? Or that a northern New York man was once a sensation after posing for a famous calendar? Or that an area resident was the go-to guy for the legendary titans of a very popular American industry?

If you’re at all puzzled, take comfort in knowing that the answers are simple, because one name―Charles W. Giblyn―is correct on all counts. A snippet of news, citing him as a former movie director, piqued my interest. The follow-up revealed a man possessing star quality and many talents, and an amazing career that today, for the most part, is long forgotten. » Continue Reading.



Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Young Playwrights Festival at Pendragon Theatre

Pendragon Theatre CampPendragon Theatre has always been one of my family’s favorite places to see a theatre performance in the Adirondack Park. In addition to an intimate theatre experience, there are always opportunities for children to gain professional theatre skills.

Pendragon hosts kids’ camps, live productions and internships throughout the year. Their latest event is bringing not just the stage alive for young adults, but hopefully their words as well. » Continue Reading.



Wednesday, September 18, 2013

ADK Shakes Expands Into The ‘Off-Season’

ADK flagThe Adirondack Shakespeare Company (ADK Shakes), a professional theatre troupe that has been entertaining summer audiences for the past four years, is now expanding their programming into the fall and spring season.  The first foray will be Shakespeare’s early comedy, Love’s Labour’s Lost, which  will be presented at four venues, all brand new to ADK Shakes.

ADK Shakes is known for its “Shakespeare IN THE RAW” method of performing with no sets, few props, minimalist costuming and incredibly shortened rehearsal period.  Artistic Director Tara Bradway will be directing the first fall show and is excited about the company she’s assembled. “This is the largest ensemble we’ve ever worked with,” she says. “Usually our productions employ a cast of twelve, but this show features fifteen incredibly talented professionals. We are really looking forward to see what they do with this too-often overlooked play!” Although you may recognize several veteran performers who are returning to the ranks, the show also includes many newcomers. » Continue Reading.



Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Video: The Recovery Lounge in Upper Jay

recovery_loungeMeet brothers Scott and Byron Renderer, owners and operators of Upper Jay Upholstery and The Recovery Lounge in Upper Jay. Together they created a unique space with which to share their passion for music, theater, and visual art.

My friend and colleague Sophie Blackburn and I recently visited The Recovery Lounge. Not only did we get a sense of the unique atmosphere the historic building provides, we also got to see a spectacular evening concert. Renowned roots, blues, and soul singer Alexis P. Suter and her band electrified the packed house of attendees, many of whom traveled some distance to descend on this hidden gem of a venue in the Adirondacks. » Continue Reading.



Wednesday, September 11, 2013

A Ballerina in the Adirondacks: Ainana’s Great Adventure

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOne of the lesser-known cultural jewels of our region is the Lake Placid School of Ballet. They offer their participants the kind of attention not often found elsewhere, but, if one thinks about it, is a hallmark of Lake Placid’s ability to churn out so many Olympic and World Cup champions across so many disciplines.

Lake Placid’s arts community provides an extra level of personal attention to budding artistic talents in equal measure to those in sports, and few better provide that level of coaching in any endeavor than Terpsie Toon and her talented roster of faculty assisted by the Arts Center staff. » Continue Reading.



Thursday, September 5, 2013

Adirondack Legends Headed to Bolton Landing

LGM-ADK-LegendsThey’ll be spinning Adirondack legends in songs and stories, but they’re practically legends themselves. Chris Shaw, Dan Berggren, Bill Smith, and newcomer Alex Smith, will be in Bolton Landing for a free concert in Rogers Park on September 15. Adirondack Legends: a festival of new and traditional Adirondack music and stories, will be presented by the Lake George Mirror.

Adirondack Legends was organized by Chris Shaw, the Lake George native who has made a career of singing Adirondack folk songs and telling Adirondack tales. His repertoire includes some of the region’s earliest songs, and the revived interest in the Adirondack Songbook of Marjorie Lansing Porter is one inspiration for the show, he said. » Continue Reading.



Monday, August 26, 2013

Local Circus Performers: Fred Kerslake’s Pigs (Part Three)

PC1 FK harnessed pigsThere were tough times when a lead pig died suddenly, forcing Fred Kerslake to regroup, find a new leader, and complete the training. But saddest of all was when he spoke of Jennie. In 1909, Rollo was the clown pig and a great performer. Kerslake called him “a wonder that does everything but talk, and after a fashion it actually does that,” referring to Rollo’s human-like responses to his comments.

Rollo rose to fame after the death of his mother, Jennie, a very special performer and friend. Said Fred, “She was certainly gifted with the divine light of human intelligence. Not only could she reason, but she could make her wants known with the aid of spelling blocks.” » Continue Reading.



Monday, August 26, 2013

Hobofest: Saranac Lake’s Celebration of American Roots

untitled-186The fifth annual Hobofest takes place Sunday, September 1, 2013 at the Union Depot in Saranac Lake.  Hobofest celebrates American roots culture and the independent spirit with free musical performances from noon til late.

Chef John Varga of Eat and Meet will be at the grill. Blue Line Brewery will serve a signature “Hobo Brew” in the Depot building in the afternoon. Children’s activities range from Sunita Halasz’s workshop table to the Adirondack Carousel right next door. A large tent will protect the crowd from the weather, and Russ Feher’s Fine Line Audio will run the sound.

In addition to the main-stage offerings, Vermont Joy Parade will board the 1pm Adirondack Scenic Railroad and play a round-trip gig to Lake Placid and back. Upon their return they’ll join the Shamrock “regulars” for an inclusive “open jam” in the Depot Building. Attendees are invited to join the circle. » Continue Reading.



Friday, August 23, 2013

The Lake Placid Community Helps Build A Band Shell

Designs for the new  band shell at Lake Placid's Mid's Park, courtesy of the Paul White Memorial Bandshell Fundraising Campaign.Construction is set to begin this fall on a new band shell in Lake Placid’s Mid’s Park.

This community project, led by a small group of dedicated volunteers and supported by the generosity of countless full-time and seasonal residents, has been in the works for years, and the rubber is finally ready to hit the road, according to Bill Billerman of the Paul White Memorial Bandshell Fundraising Campaign.

The Lake Placid village Board of Trustees recently accepted a bid from Murnane Associates of Plattsburgh to construct the band shell. Billerman said the two sides are negotiating a contract, and work will likely start in September. » Continue Reading.



Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Adirondack Folk “Songs To Keep” Concert Tour Underway

Porter1The “Songs To Keep” documentary, album, book and concert tour are underway, raising awareness of rare Adirondack North Country folk songs. Collaborating with TAUNY (Traditional Arts in Upstate New York), the Adirondack History Center Museum and SUNY Plattsburgh Feinberg Library’s Special Collection, Mountain Lake PBS is helping to bring the Majorie Lansing Porter Song Collection to light.

Along with an album recorded from the collection, a songbook, manuscript and traveling exhibit, the PBS documentary will bring all aspects of this previously unavailable historic assembly of regional folk songs to the public. » Continue Reading.



Monday, August 19, 2013

Fred’s Kerslake’s Remarkable Pigs (Part Two)

PB1 FK PosterThe three mains stars hogging the limelight from Fred were pigs Jerry, Peggy, and Pete, whose antics were irresistible. Recognizing the possibilities, booking agents sought them for summer tours and winter vaudeville circuits. Rave reviews followed in Buffalo, Chicago, Philadelphia, and a host of other stops in between. Audiences couldn’t get enough of watching pigs play leapfrog, read, and count―it was both bewildering and hilarious at the same time.

Professionals were taking notice as well. Among them was Germany’s Carl Hagenbeck, who pioneered the displaying of animals in their natural habitats rather than in caged enclosures. Hagenbeck emphasized properly selecting animals with the right temperament for training or display (choosing only a few prospects from a large group), and then using what was described as “constant patience, firmness, and kindness” to train them. Still, there’s no denying that whips were used to tap or give a quick sting to an animal during training. » Continue Reading.



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