Thursday, July 13, 2023

The Sembrich releases event roundup


Evelyn Nesbit

Bolton Landing, NY – The Sembrich staff has recently announced a roundup of events to suit a variety of interests including the following programs, The Girl in the Red Velvet Swing – Evelyn Nesbit and the Scandal, Murder and Trial of America’s Gilded Age, Alma Mahler and Her Charmed Circle, and “A Tribute to David Smith” with Hub New Music. See below for additional details about these events.

A Shocking Gilded Age Murder Comes to Life at The Sembrich

On Saturday, July 15 at 7 p.m., The Sembrich presents “The Girl in the Red Velvet Swing – Evelyn Nesbit and the Scandal, Murder and Trial of America’s Gilded Age.” This historically revealing
presentation by literary dramatist Betty Spinelli, including vintage photographs, explores American society at the turn of the twentieth century through this true crime story of a beautiful girl and two prominent, very extravagant men. It’s a tale of forbidden love, jealousy and mental instability that resulted in a shocking, cold-blooded murder, at a rooftop theater in New York City in front of nearly a thousand witnesses.


“The trial that followed was quickly dubbed ‘the trial of the century,’” said Betty Spinelli. “It mesmerized the public and helped bring down the curtain on America’s ‘Gilded Age.’ As this bizarre story unfolds, audience members will even discover several connections to Saratoga and Lake George.”


Betty Spinelli’s passion for storytelling and in-depth narrative of historical figures makes her a sought-after speaker for local not-for-profit groups and civic organizations. Currently, Betty serves as a member of the Board of Directors of The Sembrich. Following the presentation, The Sembrich will host an elegant lakeside reception featuring a signature cocktail inspired by the era.


Tickets for this event can be purchased via phone at (518) 644-2431 or online at



Gilded Age Femme Fatale Alma Mahler Comes to Life at The Sembrich


The Sembrich will present “Alma Mahler and Her Charmed Circle” on Wednesday, July 19 at 2 p.m. Audience members will discover the life and inspirations of turn-of-the-century muse and femme
fatale, Alma Mahler in this entertaining cabaret revue featuring Robert Osborne, bass-baritone and Tammy Hensrud, mezzo-soprano. “Alma Mahler and Her Charmed Circle” will illuminate this remarkable yet overlooked musical trailblazer through a broad array of art songs, cabaret tunes, satirical songs, and vocal duets interspersed with brief selections from Mahler’s own diaries and correspondence.

Almah Mahler

Almah Mahler (1909), Photo in the public domain, provided by Caleb Eick of The Sembrich.

Bass-baritone Robert Osborne and mezzo-soprano Tammy Hensrud,

Bass-baritone Robert Osborne and mezzo-soprano Tammy Hensrud, Photo Courtesy of
Robert Osborne

“Alma Mahler is often remembered for her role as a socialite and her marriage to composer Gustav Mahler,” said Artistic Director Richard Wargo. “However, Mahler was also a composer, author, editor, and indeed a colleague and friend of Marcella Sembrich. This presentation serves to illuminate and uncover the many remarkable achievements of this trailblazing musical and literary personality.”


From the explosively creative milieu of early 20th-century Vienna to her final days in her New York City apartment, a rich portrait emerges, placing Alma Mahler at the center of a dazzling array of friends, lovers, and spouses — Kokoschka, Klimt, Korngold, Berg, Zemlinsky, Bernstein, Schoenberg, and so many others. Following the performance, The Sembrich will host a Viennese tea sponsored by Harney & Sons Fine Teas and Sunrise Café (Bolton Landing).


Tickets for this event can be purchased via phone at (518) 644-2431 or online at


“A Tribute to David Smith” with Hub New Music at The Sembrich


The Sembrich, in partnership with The Hyde Collection, presents “A Tribute to David Smith” with Hub New Music on Saturday, July 22 at 7 p.m. This tribute concert honors modernist sculptor David Smith, who lived and worked in Bolton Landing. The program includes two new works written especially for this occasion by composers Evan Premo and Jesse Gelaznik. Also featured on the concert, an aria of Bach (David Smith’s favorite composer) and the New York premiere of “Fire-Songs” by Evan Premo, featuring soprano Mary Bonhag.

HUB Color Banner Photo.

HUB Color Banner Photo. Photograph by Clay Larsen

HUB New Music.

HUB New Music. Photograph by Clay Larsen

“It is a distinct honor to present this musical tribute to Bolton Landing’s own David Smith,” said Artistic Director Richard Wargo. “This is the third event presented in partnership with The Hyde Collection complimenting their current exhibition Songs of the Horizon: David Smith, Music, and Dance. We are excited to welcome Boston’s premiere new music ensemble Hub New Music as a part of this vibrant partnership.”


The Hub New Music players include Michael Avitabile (flutes), Gleb Kanasevich (clarinets), Meg Rohrer (violin/viola), and Jesse Christeson (cello). Called “contemporary chamber trailblazers” by the Boston Globe, Hub New Music is a “nimble quartet of winds and strings” (NPR) forging new paths in 21st-century repertoire. The ensemble’s ambitious commissioning projects and “appealing programs” (New Yorker) celebrate the rich diversity of today’s classical music landscape. The ensemble’s name is inspired by the city of Boston, where Hub New Music was founded, and the town’s reputation as a hub of innovation.


Founded in 2013, Hub New Music has grown into a formidable touring ensemble driven by an unwavering dedication to building community through new art. Across its career, Hub has commissioned dozens of new works and continues to usher in a fresh and culturally relevant body of work for its distinct combination of flute, clarinet, violin, and cello. Hub is proud to collaborate with today’s most celebrated emerging and established composers and is equally proud to count many of them as friends. This is the second event in The Sembrich’s Alfred Z. Solomon Masterwork series. The subscription series concludes on Sunday, August 6 with a performance by members of The Philadelphia Orchestra.


Tickets can be purchased via phone at (518) 644-2431 or online at




About The Sembrich:

Experience music, history, and nature at The Sembrich in Bolton Landing. The Sembrich features museum exhibitions and an annual summer festival with an exciting mix of world-class musicians, noted musical scholars, a free film series, and the opportunity to enjoy it all on the beautiful shores of Lake George. Listed on the National Historic Register, The Sembrich was once the teaching studio of Polish soprano Marcella Sembrich, one of the most famous musicians at the turn of the 20th century.


Visitors can discover her storied legacy, which includes over 400 performances at the Metropolitan Opera and faculty positions at both the Juilliard Graduate School and the Curtis Institute of Music. With a treasured museum, performance series, and over four wooded acres of nature trails to explore, The Sembrich is truly a unique cultural experience. The Sembrich’s programs are made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature. The Sembrich is located at 4800 Lake Shore Drive in Bolton Landing, NY 12814.


For more information, visit or contact us at (518) 644-2431 or


Photo at top: Evelyn Nesbit. Photo in the public domain, photo provided by Caleb Eick of The Sembrich.

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