Arts & Culture

The Sembrich Museum, the former teaching studio of Metropolitan Opera prima donna Marcella Sembrich. Situated on a wooded peninsula in Lake George, the studio contains memorabilia of a distinguished international operatic career spanning more than 50 years.

Throughout the summer, The Sembrich presents a series of concerts, lectures, films and recitals featuring some of today's finest performing artists. The Sembrich’s Artistic Director Richard Wargo, joins us.

Quality is timeless. Just ask The Hot Sardines. In the talented hands of the New York-based ensemble, music first made famous decades ago comes alive through their brassy horn arrangements, rollicking piano melodies, and vocals from a chanteuse who transports listeners to a different era with the mere lilt of her voice.

The Hot Sardines are performing in Ozawa Hall at Tanglewood on Friday, June 16. Evan Palazzo joins us -- he's a stride pianist and bandleader for The Hot Sardines, and was a busboy at Tanglewood when he was a kid!

This summer, The Adirondack Theatre Festival’s presents an entire season of major new works. 

After a record-breaking season of sold-out performances last year, nearly doubling attendance and subscribership in just the past two years, the 2017 season promises to be even larger.  Performances will run June 21 – August 12 at the Charles R. Wood Theater in Downtown Glens Falls, NY.

The Adirondack Theatre Festival 23rd season – the third for Producing Artistic Director, Chad Rabinovitz – includes Nikola Tesla Drops the Beat, Knights of the Sales Office, The Boy in the Bathroom, and Glitches in Reality – along with special events and readings.  

Rob Edelman: Hitchcock On A Lifeboat

Jun 12, 2017

For years, I’ve been keeping up with the newest films for reasons that are as much work-related as for the thrill of discovery. However, if I choose a film to see and savor just for pleasure, my choice likely would be one that is older than I am. Often, it will be much older... and this brings me to Alfred Hitchcock.

The Williamstown Theatre Festival’s 2017 Season, the 63rd Season for the Tony Award-winning theatre company gets underway June 27th - including four world premieres, a new musical, the first production of a WTF commissioned artist, and much more.

The season, running through August 20, 2017, begins on the Main Stage with a production of a new play by Jen Silverman, The Roommate, featuring Golden Globe and Emmy Award nominee Jane Kaczmarek; continues with Sarah Ruhl’s 2005 Pulitzer Prize finalist comedy The Clean House starring Tony Award nominee Jessica Hecht; and closes with a new musical - A Legendary Romance.

The Nikos Stage season kicks off June 28 with the world premiere of Jason Kim’s play The Model American and also includes the world premiere of Where Storms Are by Harrison David Rivers; the world premiere play Moscow Moscow Moscow Moscow Moscow Moscow directed by Obie Award winner and Drama Desk nominee Trip Cullman; and closes out the summer with Actually, a co-world premiere with Geffen Playhouse.

Before coming to Williamstown, Mandy Greenfield was the artistic producer of Manhattan Theatre Club and now this is her third season at WTF.

Steel Magnolias at Curtain Call Theatre b- L to R Allison Tebbano, Laura Graer, Cristin Loffredo, Pat Hoffman
Amanda Brinke

LATHAM - It’s hard to knock a play about friendship.   It’s especially difficult when the friends are a group of diverse and decent women living in a small Louisiana town.  They are sweet yet tough, and so local you can almost smell the magnolias outside.

Following the June Fund Drive, WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel switch seats for a show all about gratitude.

Rogovoy Report 6/9/17

Jun 9, 2017

The cultural highlights in our region this weekend include Picasso; Andy Warhol; Norman Rockwell; William Kunstler; 17th-century Dutch painting; a classical music trio playing David Bowie and Prince; and a whole lot more.

http://ajwnews.com


  Ne’imah Jewish Community Chorus will perform their 25th Anniversary Concert this Sunday June 11 at 7 p.m. at The Massry Center for the Arts at the College of Saint Rose.

 

This year’s concert is entitled Sterling Sounds and the special guest will be Cantor Meir Finkelstein. Born in Israel, the son of the late Cantor Zvi Finkelstein, Meir showed outstanding musical abilities, and at an early age began accompanying his father and older brother at services. In 1982 Meir became Cantor of Sinai Temple in Los Angeles, California, which he served for 18 years.

 

He has composed over 150 settings for the liturgy and has written music for film, television, and concerts. He also produces and arranges music for recordings and live performance. He is currently the cantor at Congregation Beth Yeshurun in Houston, TX.

TROY  - Sometimes a question is not a question.  Take this conversation for an instance:  “I’m going to take the two granddaughters to “Freckleface Strawberry” at Russell Sage College.  Do you want to come with us?   You might enjoy it.”

These days, the majority of theatrical films that come out of Hollywood are fashioned for children, teens, or twenty and perhaps thirty-somethings. The reason for this is obvious. They are the core consumers who abandon their TV sets and computers and willingly pay to watch a new movie at the local mall. But how do film producers lure the older viewer, the aging Baby Boomer, to the movie theater? Should this segment of the population simply be ignored? Will it be assumed that they are content merely to couch-potato it at home, gaze at the endless drug ads that overpopulate their TV screens, and spend all their savings on the latest medical miracles? Or are filmmakers willing to produce product that just may be of special interest to older viewers?

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel get cracking on their next 300 shows.

Rogovoy Report 6/2/17

Jun 2, 2017

The cultural highlights in our region this weekend include a Picasso exhibit; a film festival; choral music; two virtuosos playing music by Russian composers; and a whole lot more.

Bobby Sweet at The Linda
Sarah LaDuke

Bobby Sweet is a sixth-generation musician. He began performing at age 7 in his father’s band and has shared the bill with many top country and folk artists, including Martin Sexton, Arlo Guthrie, and Pete Seeger.

Bobby’s new album, All These Changes, will be released on June 11th.  The Colonial Theater in Pittsfield, MA will host the CD Release concert that night at 7 p.m.  And Bobby will be appearing with the BSweet Band.

Bobby Sweet joins us at The Linda to share some new songs and talk a little. 

The new film Lucky is the closing night film at this year's Berkshire International Film Festival. Lucky - a hit at SXSW, stars Harry Dean Stanton as a 90-year-old atheist on a spiritual quest, with David Lynch and Tom Skerritt.

It's directed by actor-turned-director John Carroll Lynch.

Lynch first gained notice for his role as Norm Gunderson in Fargo. He is also known for his television work on the ABC sitcom The Drew Carey Show and American Horror Story: Freak Show. His films include Face/Off, Gran Torino, Shutter Island, and Zodiac.

Bob Goepfert Reviews "Kunstler"

Jun 1, 2017

PITTSFIELD, Mass.   During the 1960s and 70s, whenever there was a trial involving political controversy you could be sure the defense attorney for the headline-making cases was William Kunstler. Today, unless you are of a certain age, Kunstler’s contributions to the cause of social justice are almost forgotten.


  The new documentary STEP shares the story of three young women in the first graduating class at Baltimore Leadership School for Young Women and their experiences with school, their families, boyfriends, friends, and their Step team.

 

Pushed to succeed by devoted teachers, teammates, counselors, coaches and themselves, they chase their dreams: to win a step championship and to be accepted into college.

 

STEP which won the U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award for Inspirational Filmmaking at Sundance this year, will have its Massachusetts premiere as the opening night film at the Berkshire International Film Festival -- screening tonight at 6pm at The Mahaiwe in Great Barrington.

 

The film is directed by Amanda Lipitz who joins us.

Shawn Stone joins us to talk about what he's seen lately and what cultural events are coming up this week in our region.

Seen: The Lovers

Upcoming:
Caitlin Canty, Lyle Brewer - Caffe Lena, Saratoga Springs, Thursday 6/1, 7 PM
Kill Bill Vol. 1 - Madison Theater, Albany, Thursday 6/1 through Sunday 6/4, various times
The Avett Brothers - Brewery Ommegang, Cooperstown, Friday 6/2, 7 PM
Albany Symphony Orchestra’s American Music Festival - EMPAC, Troy, Thursday 6/1-Saturday 6/3
1st Friday Albany: New exhibits/receptions at Albany Public Library, Esther Massry Gallery, Albany Barn, Albany Institute of History & Art, many more - Downtown Albany, various locations, Friday 6/2, 5-8 PM
FLY 92.3 Summer Jam featuring Flo Rida, Sabrina Carpenter, Bebe Rexha - SPAC, Saratoga Springs, Saturday 6/3, 3 PM
Duke Robillard Band - Van Dyck Lounge, Schenectady, Saturday 6/3, 6:30 & 8:30 PM
Sinbad - Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, Troy, Sunday 6/4, 8 PM
John Mayall - Cohoes Music Hall, Cohoes, Tuesday 6/6, 8 PM
Made in the Shade of the Egg: New Breed Brass Band - The Egg (outdoors), Albany, Wednesday 6/7, noon


  The new film, The Lovers, stars Debra Winger as Mary and Tracy Letts as Michael -- a married couple with a son in college who are just about to leave each other after engaging in long-term affairs; she with a writer played by Aidan Gillen (of Game of Thrones) and he with a ballet dancer and instructor played by Melora Walters (memorably from Paul Thomas Anderson’s Magnolia). As their extracurricular partners pressure Mary and Michael to leave the marriage and commit to them, a spark is rekindled and they are reverse cheating with each other. So how does that work out? Well, that’s the movie.

 

The Lovers is screening in theaters all around our region and was written and directed by Azazel Jacobs who joins us now. Jacobs co-wrote and directed the 2011 film, Terri starring John C. Reilly and the HBO series, Doll & Em with Emily Mortimer and Dolly Wells.

The Albany Symphony Orchestra’s American Music Festival will take place at EMPAC in Troy, NY today through Sunday.

The festival concludes David Alan Miller’s 25th anniversary season with the ASO. It will include more than 40 new works presented in more than 15 concerts and events – including “This Land Sings,” a song-cycle by Michael Daugherty inspired by the life and times of Woody Guthrie.

Grammy Award-winning conductor David Alan Miller joins us. 

This year's Berkshire International Film Festival will feature a tribute to Academy Award winning actor, Christopher Plummer on June 3 at 6:30 p.m. The acclaimed stage and screen performer will be in conversation with David Edelstein, film critic for NPR’s Fresh Air and CBS Sunday Morning at The Mahaiwe Theater.

A screening of Plummer's new film, The Exception immediately follows the talk. The film is distributed by A24 Films. 

The Exception marks the screen debut of theater director David Leveaux and features Plummer as exiled German Monarch Kaiser Wilhelm II who lives in a secluded mansion in The Netherlands as Germany is taking over Holland.

The Cantilena Chamber Choir will present a performance of King David In Words And Music on Saturday, June 3 at 7:30 p.m. at Trinity Church in Lenox, MA

The concert will feature live readings by Pulitzer Prize winning author Geraldine Brooks. She will be reading from her latest international best-selling novel The Secret Chord about the life of King David as the choir sings music for chorus and full orchestra based on corresponding texts by and about King David.

Geraldine Brooks is the author of five novels, her latest, The Secret Chord, the Pulitzer Prize–winning March and the international bestsellers Caleb’s CrossingPeople of the Book, and Year of Wonders

The Cantilena Chamber Choir is comprised of 24 dedicated singers of the highest caliber, who possess vocal training, excellent sight-reading skills and considerable choral experience. Andrea Goodman is the founder and director of the choir.

We welcome Andrea Goodman and Geraldine Brooks to The Roundtable.

Rob Edelman: The Misuse Of Power

May 29, 2017

ABACUS: SMALL ENOUGH TO JAIL is yet one more telling documentary that reflects on the misuse of power in contemporary America, and who specifically gets singled out for the alleged misuse of power. It has just been released theatrically, and it is well-worth seeing and contemplating.

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel are back for their 300th show.

Rogovoy Report 5/26/17

May 26, 2017

The cultural highlights in our region this weekend include an all-day museum celebration, a folk-rock jam band; a quirky alternative rock band; a vintage rockabilly band; and a whole lot more.

JOE WARDWELL - HELLO AMERICA: 40 HITS FROM THE 50 STATES at MASS MoCA
Sarah LaDuke

  This Sunday, May 28th, MASS MoCA in North Adams, MA will open Building 6 - the Robert W. Wilson Building, to the public. This beyond-grand-opening doubles the vast museum’s exhibition space and features long-term exhibitions and collaborations with global leaders in contemporary art.

In this audio tour, MASS MoCA Curator Denise Markonish tells us about work by Barbara Ernst Prey, Louise Bourgeois, Metabolic Studio/Optics Division, Robert Rauschenberg, Dawn DeDeaux, Lonnie Holley, Laurie Anderson, Gunnar Schonbeck, Mary Lum, Janice Kerbel, and James Turrell; Allie Foradas describes work by Jenny Holzer, and James Wardwell tells us about "Hello America: 40 Hits from the 50 States." 

MASS MoCA's daylong celebration to mark the opening of Building 6 - the Robert W. Wilson Building - including welcoming remarks from museum director Joseph Thompson; a Nick Cave Soundsuit performance, Brooklyn United Marching Band and CAKE in concert on Joe’s Field.

www.dorsettheatrefestival.org

Dorset Theatre Festival opens its 40th Anniversary Season with the World Premiere of Theresa Rebeck's Downstairs, starring brother and sister Tim Daly and Tyne Daly, who will be appearing together for the first time on the stage. Downstairs runs for 16 performances between June 22 - July 8, 2017.

Next up will be Ken Ludwig’s adaptation of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Baskerville: A Sherlock Holmes Mystery (July 13-29).

Matthew Lopez’s The Legend of Georgia McBride (August 3-19) will be next. The comedy follows a broke Elvis impersonator who becomes a drag queen.

And then - Pulitzer-winning playwright Stephen Adly Guirgis will star alongside Treat Williams in David Mamet’s American Buffalo (Aug. 24-Sept. 2).

We welcome Dina Janis, the artistic director at Dorset Theatre Festival.

Performing Arts of Woodstock will present the award-winning play Still by Jen Silverman beginning June 1st through the 18th. In the play, a child is stillborn. The play explores those affected, including the stillborn son, who wanders through the play seeking his mother and joyfully and painfully learning about life as he fades back into the ether.

Sande Shurin is director of Still and joins us via phone. Here in the studio - we welcome actor Ron Morehead and PAW Board Member and Business Manager Farrell Reynolds. 

Shawn Stone joins us to talk about what he's seen lately and what cultural events are coming up this week in our region.

Seen: Alien: Covenant

Upcoming:
Mothra - Madison Theater, Albany, Thursday-Sunday, 5/25-28, various times
Fence Salon (The Fence Show): Opening Reception - Arts Center of the Capital Region, Troy, Friday 5/26, 5-9 PM
Mid-Year Medley Art Show - Clement Art Gallery, Troy, Friday 5/26, 5-9 PMM
Graham Tichy Band: The Beatles Lennon vs. McCartney - Sand Lake Center for the Arts, Averill Park, Friday 5/26, 8 PM
Lara Hope & the Ark Tones - Helsinki Hudson, Hudson, Friday 5/26, 9 PM
Elysia Crampton + Russell E.L. Butler - EMPAC, Troy, Friday, 5/26, 9 PM
The Figgs - The Low Beat, Albany, Friday-Saturday, 8 PM
Sawyer Fredericks - Caffe Lena, Saratoga Springs, Friday-Sunday, 5/26-28, SOLD OUT
Cake - Ommegang, Cooperstown, NY, Friday 5/26, 8 PM; MASS MoCA, North Adams, Mass., Sunday 5/28, 8 PM

New movies: Baywatch, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales The Lovers

Barrett Doss in Groundhog Day at The August Wilson Theatre
http://www.groundhogdaymusical.com/

Groundhog Day is something of an American fable - I mean that equally of the February 2nd holiday and the 1993 movie directed by Harold Ramis, written by Ramis and Danny Rubin, and starring Bill Murray and Andie MacDowell.

What do you get when you combine the film with the British sensibilities of Tim Minchin and Matthew Warchus? You get an Olivier Award Winning and 7-time Tony Award nominated stage musical.

After an incredibly well-received run in London, Groundhog Day - directed by Matthew Warchus, with music and lyrics by Tim Minchin and a book by Danny Rubin, is currently running at The August Wilson Theatre on Broadway -- starring Andy Karl as cynical egotistic weatherman, Phil Connors, and Barrett Doss as Rita Hanson.

Doss recently appeared in the Broadway revival of You Can’t Take It With You, she’s a recurring character on the Netflix and Marvel series Iron First, and for you comedy TV minutia lovers out there - she played Liz Lemon’s great-granddaughter in the last 20 seconds of the last episode of the NBC series 30 Rock.

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