saratoga

Renée Fleming
Decca/Andrew Eccles

  This Thursday at 8pm the Philadelphia Orchestra, under the baton of its music director, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, will take the stage at SPAC and be joined - for her first time at that venue - by opera star, Renée Fleming.

Ms. Fleming joins us to discuss that concert, travel, language, and her role as Kennedy Center Artistic Partner.

  Led by co-Artistic Directors David Finckel and Wu Han, The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center returns to the Spa Little Theater at SPAC for six innovative and diverse programs that get underway on Sunday.

The first concert – Sunday at 3PM – is entitled: Symphonic Spirit and will feature the music of Ravel, Haydn, Copeland and Schubert. This morning for a preview we welcome two of the musicians taking part in the program. We welcome Bassoonist Marc Goldberg and Clarinetist Alexander Fiterstein. 

  The 16th annual Saratoga Choral Festival takes place at the Spa Little Theater in Spa State Park - this Sunday, July 31st, at 3:00 PM. The festival will present a concert of music for children featuring a semi-staged production of the popular Magic Tree House: The Musical. 

The Magic Tree House: The Musical is based on the popular series of children’s books by Mary Pope Osborne. This show has seen sold out performances for its national tour. Several musical selections have been adapted for chorus, and special guest performers from the Saratoga Children’s Theater will provide extra speaking roles and also sing with the choir.

Also included on the program - Never-Ending Song, a Young Person’s Guide to the Choir. Originally premiered by the Vancouver Chamber Choir in 2001, the Never-Ending Song takes children through a brief history of choral singing through music.

The Saratoga Choral Festival began in the summer of 2001 and we are joined by Festival Director, Andrea Goodman, and by chorus members Mira DeGregory and Jackson Cherry. 

  In his remarkable novel, Tod Wodicka, author of All Shall Be Well; and All Shall Be Well; and All Manner of Things Shall Be Well, has crafted a story of a most curious friendship.

The Household Spirit is poignant, big-hearted, and often very humorous novel about two unique individuals unceremoniously thrown together. It is a story about how little we know the people we see every day - and of the unexpected capabilities of the human heart.

Tod Wodicka was born in Glens Falls, New York and now lives in Berlin.

U.S. Mint

Last week officials from the U.S. Mint and National Park Service met at Schuylerville Junior-Senior High School to unveil the new Saratoga National Historical Quarter. The coin, depicting the moment British General John Burgoyne surrendered to American General Horatio Gates at Saratoga in 1777, considered the turning point in the Revolution, is the last of the five new American The Beautiful Quarters put into circulation this year.

WAMC's Lucas Willard spoke with Eric Schnitzer,  a park ranger at Saratoga National Historical Park, about the coin and the image chosen for it.

Police say a 23-year-old man has been charged with causing about $6,000 in damage to a thoroughbred statue unveiled in a Saratoga Springs park last summer.

Joanne Yepsen declares victory in Saratoga
Lucas Willard / WAMC

  Patrick Madden has won a four-way race for mayor of Troy, New York. In Saratoga, Joanne Yepsen won another term.  Schenectady Mayor Gary McCarthy defeated Roger Hull to win another term in office. We hear reports from WAMC's Lucas Willard, Jessica Bloustein-Marshall and Dave Lucas.  

  Each region of the country has its own distinctive history and culture that set it apart from others. The Capital Region of New York—consisting of Albany, Rensselaer, Schenectady, and Saratoga Counties— is no different.

Last month, The Albany Institute of History and Art opened an exhibition celebrating the heritage of this area. The Capital Region in 50 Objects will be on view through April 3rd.

The exhibition was planned in partnership with the Times Union and was made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts. Additional funding was provided by the New York Council for the Humanities and the Hudson River Valley National Heritage Area.

The Albany Institute of History and Art is just down the road from our studio in Albany. I went there to talk about the exhibition with Chief Curator Doug McCombs and Curator Diane Shewchuk.

  Longtime local journalist Thomas Dimopoulos has a new book out this summer, Saratoga Stories: Magic and Loss.

It is a collection of short stories and photographs that weaves in an exclusive timeline of Saratoga Springs and the Saratoga Performing Arts Center to tell the story of Saratoga.

Dimopoulos has worked as a journalist in Saratoga since 1998, including more than a decade as an award-winning staff writer at The Post-Star, The Saratogian and Saratoga Wire.

Courtesy of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library & Museum

  An effort is underway in Saratoga Springs to obtain funding to rebuild a Depression-era bathhouse and re-open it as a wellness center. 


  The new opera The Long Walk is based on Brian Castner’s critically acclaimed book of the same name. The opera is a deeply personal exploration of a soldier’s return from Iraq where he served as an officer in an Explosive Ordnance Disposal unit and his battle with what he calls “the Crazy” as he tries to reintegrate into his family life upon returning from the war.

Opera Saratoga at the Spa Little Theatre is presenting the world premiere of The Long Walk in partnership with American Lyric Theater. Internationally renowned theater and opera director David Schweizer makes his Opera Saratoga debut.

Grammy Award winning baritone Daniel Belcher returns to Opera Saratoga to create the role of Brian, alongside mezzo-soprano Heather Johnson, who makes her company debut as his wife Jessie. The two performers join us for this interview.

A Saratoga Springs Police officer has been suspended after tangling with a First Amendment rights crusader from Troy.

Hot Yoga

Apr 23, 2015
groupon.com

  This semester, Natalie Zeunges - a senior at Siena College – has been an intern here at WAMC, helping out behind the scenes with production work on The Roundtable – and she’s been simply great. A huge help and a quick learner. Unfortunately for us, today is here last day here. This interview is her final project.

***

As a society, we are eager to use exercise as a means to reduce stress, build strength, lose weight, and feel better. Emerging in our wellness-focused world is the practice of hot yoga—a $27 billion dollar industry, growing in popularity. This relatively new variation of a 5,000 year old discipline provides its practitioners with the myriad benefits of yoga while adding the detoxifying advantages of being in a heated room.  

Cindy Lunsford, Owner of Hot Yoga Saratoga and co-owner of Lake Placid Hot Yoga joins us to tell us more about hot yoga.

American Diabetes Association

The cycling event has grown over the years and is now the largest fundraising event in New York’s Capital Region.

Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com; source: Library of Congress

From Saturday, January 17th, through Monday, the 19th, Saratoga Springs is honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. This year's celebration in the Spa City will feature a keynote speaker, a film screening, performers, and community service projects. 

New England’s only thoroughbred racetrack is scheduled to close in less than two weeks, the latest sign of a sport in a national decline. Experts on New York’s still-buoyant racing industry are weighing in on what the closure could mean for the Empire State.

The last day of racing at Boston-area racetrack Suffolk Downs is set for October 4th. The track was slated for closure this week, but officials postponed the shuttering. Upon its closure, it could mark the end of thoroughbred racing in Massachusetts and the rest of New England.

    

  Sunday marks the UN International Day of Peace and the fifth annual Saratoga Peace Fair will be staged from noon to 4PM Sunday at the Presbyterian - New England Congregational Church in Saratoga.

Part of the activities will be a special event featuring singer Tom Chapin. Chapin will create a video for peace with local vocalists and sing his song, “Sing for Peace.”

More than fifty exhibitors will also be on hand, promoting peace through environmental stewardship, fair trade, civil action and non-violent conflict resolution.

  The Saratoga Balloon and Craft Festival is taking place next Friday through Sunday – June 20th-22nd at The Saratoga Fairgrounds.

125 artists and artisans will display and sell their original works, there will be live entertainment and music and ongoing craft demonstrations, there will be activities for kids – oh, and 20 hot air balloons will launch.

Christian Dutcher is the balloon component organizer or The Saratoga Ballon and Craft festival and he joins us now.

    Act one of award-winning opera composer Evan Mack's new work Roscoe will be part of Opera Saratoga's 2014 summer festival. The opera is based on the novel of the same name by Pulitzer Prize winning author, William Kennedy.

The 80 minute concert performance will give Saratoga audiences a first look at this brand new piece at The Arthur Zankel Music Center at Skidmore College on June 8th at 2pm.

Composer Evan Mack joins us along with Opera Saratoga's General Director, Curtis Tucker.

A lawyer says a New York drunken-driving charge against 1970s teen heartthrob David Cassidy has been reduced from a felony to a misdemeanor and returned to a town court for resolution.

Cassidy was pulled over in August in the town of Schodack and charged with driving while intoxicated. He was in upstate New York for a horse racing meet in Saratoga Springs.

The charge was a felony because Cassidy has a 2011 driving-under-the-influence conviction in his home state of Florida.

WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

A veritable"who's who" of leaders of Capital Region arts non-profits gathered in a show of solidarity under the moniker "Upstate Theaters for a Fair Game." The group hopes to educate the public on what it sees as potential negative effects of casino expansion on what it refers to as "local entertainment ecosystems," noting that mid-sized arts and entertainment venues in neighboring states have been impacted by casino-based entertainment offerings.

Recent reports show that the 2013 racing season at the Saratoga Race Course was facing lower levels of attendance over last year in the several days after its July 19th opening.

The Albany Times Union reported that on an opening day with temperatures above 90 degrees, track attendance was down 15 percent from the previous year’s opening day. The slump continued with the next day down 13 percent. On the first giveaway day, attendance was 7 percent below last year’s.

City of Saratoga Spings & WikiPedia

Saratoga City and County leaders showed up in Albany Wednesday to make a case for building a casino in the Spa city.

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. (AP) — A Saratoga Springs, N.Y.-based raceway and slots company has purchased a casino in Colorado for $28 million.

Saratoga Harness Racing, Inc., which owns the Saratoga Casino and Raceway in upstate New York, announced Tuesday that it completed the deal to buy Fitzgeralds Casino Black Hawk in Black Hawk, Colo.

The new casino will be called "Saratoga Casino-Blackhawk."

The casino, open since 1995, was renovated in 2008 and has about 600 slot machines and 11 table games plus restaurants, bars and a banquet facility.

NEACA, Inc., NEACA Show Promotions

With gun control in the National spotlight, scores of protesters are expected to greet gun enthusiasts when they arrive at an upstate New York venue that's hosting a firearms show this weekend. Capital Region Bureau Chief Dave Lucas reports.

"City Center officials announced Wednesday that this weekend's Saratoga Arms Fair will go on as scheduled, despite pleas from opponents who want the event canceled," the local Saratogian reports.

With less than 48 hours until the first race of the 2012 season at Saratoga Race Course – today we’re talking gambling.

While the Saratoga season is just beginning, already reports indicate Governor Andrew Cuomo is set to unveil the members of the New York Racing Association’s new board, whose installation was precipitated earlier this year after the naming of new president Ellen McClain without input from state officials, following the firing of former president and CEO Charles Hayward, an alleged party to a scandal that cost the betting public over $8 million.

Saratoga JAZZ!

Jun 21, 2012
WAMC Photo by Dave Lucas

Saratoga Springs Mayor Scott Johnson Wednesday proclaimed June is “Jazz Month” in Saratoga Springs --- WAMC's Dave Lucas was on hand when the Mayor issued the proclamation, and files this report.

Saratoga Performing Arts Center President Marcia White greeted the crowd gathered in Wednesday afternoon's scorching heat on the lawn of the Saratoga Springs Visitors Center...

Mayor Scott Johnson proclaimed June “Jazz Month” in recognition of the 35th anniversary of the Freihofer’s Saratoga Jazz Festival.

WAMC

President Barack Obama is slated to visit Saratoga County next week to speak on jobs and emerging technology.

The president will visit the Global Foundries chip plant in Malta, his third visit to the Capital Region since taking office. He is expected to draw attention to ways in which the government and private companies can work together to spur new high-tech industries.

President Obama has previously visited General Electric in Schenectady and Hudson Valley Community College in Troy.