Summer in the Arts

When you visit us this summer, make sure to see what’s on the schedule in performing arts programming. There is a delightful abundance of both local and international talent gracing the stage at numerous venues around the area: from foot-stomping folk music to Chinese acrobatics and suspenseful classical drama to dancing under the stars. Uplifting, inspiring and thought-provoking… Spend the summer enjoying the arts in the mountains.

Summer Nights LIVE! on The Square in Hancock, NY is a free community event taking place on select Friday evenings throughout the summer. In open-air concerts on the town square, audiences are invited to bring their lawn chairs or blankets and even snacks and drinks to enjoy the artistic talents of performers from around the world. Here’s what’s on the schedule this summer.

  • June 15: Leo Sandoval (photo above) performs contemporary tap dance with his Brazilian jazz trio.
  • July 6: Grammy award-winner Joanne Shenandoah performs stirring contemporary Native American songs. Joanne will also be presenting a children’s workshop before the performance.
  • July 20: Dance China presents an amazing array of traditional Chinese dance, acrobatics, Shaolin kung fu, and the wildly popular Lion Dance.
  • August 3: Dende Macedo and Ologunde performs Afro-Brazilian dance and drums.
  • August 17: The Suitcase Junket performs raw, edgy Americana and Roots rock with hand-made instruments.
  • August 31: Cleghorn closes out the season with high-energy Celtic Rock.

Franklin Stage Company in Franklin, NY produces professional, admission-free theater that brings together audiences and artists to celebrate the enduring power of stories. The historic 1850’s Chapel Hall provides an elegant venue for classic and original works as well as visiting artists. The 2018 season brings another exciting and diverse line-up of performances.

  • July 6-8: Bitter Banquet: A Euripidean Song Cycle (photo above), an original staged song cycle composed and performed by Annie Lewandowski, weaves iconic moments from the ancient tragedies of Euripides.
  • July 13-29: A Walk in the Woods, a powerful and startling play by Lee Blessing, is set in the midst of Cold War, dramatizing a stand-off between a U.S. and Soviet arms negotiator as they battle for supremacy.
  • August 3-4: Julian Fleisher renders a set of tunes featuring his trademark masterful reinterpretations of classics from Cole Porter to Prince and from the Beatles to Joni Mitchell.
  • August 4-5: Circus Minimus is a delightful opportunity for everyone to participate in an enthralling, whimsical celebration of the imagination with Kevin O’Keefe whose suitcase hides an entire circus.
  • August 10-26: Doubt, A Parable, a Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award winning drama about a suspected improper relationship between Father Flynn and one of his male students in a Bronx school.
  • September 1-2: Cry Havoc! recounts Stephan Wolfert’s own experience pre- and post-military service in the lines of some of Shakespeare’s famous speeches.

West Kortright Centre in East Meredith, NY brings in gifted artists and performers from many cultural and ethnic backgrounds, from around the world, across the country, and our region to its 1850’s former church building in the heart of a rural valley.  Now celebrating 43 years of arts and community, West Kortright Centre welcomes another thrilling array of performers.

  • May 27: Ladama is a group of virtuosic female musicians, blending Pan-American traditional music with soul, R&B, and pop.
  • July 7: Meredith Monk & Vocal Ensemble perform a series of music theater pieces combining movement, theatrical characters and images, light, and video installation.
  • July 21: Gala Dance Under the Stars is a picnic dinner, concert and dance showcasing the Pop ElectroSwing duo Ginkgoa with irresistibly danceable songs.
  • July 28: Jane Bunnett & Maqueque promise a broadly appealing and exhilarating blend of Afro-Cuban rhythms, folkloric influences, and contemporary jazz.
  • August 3-4: Shakespeare in the Valley is a 31st annual celebration of the talents of youth, with a fully staged open-air performance of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing, by the Shakespeare, Technical Theater, and Costume Design sections of the Young People’s Theater Arts Workshops.
  • August 19: Vieux Farka Touré (photo above) blends West African music with Malian blues, praise song, funk, reggae, and rock, letting loose with exceptional guitar solos.
  • October 14: Eva Salina & Peter Stan collaborate to amplify voices of past generations of Balkan Romani (gypsy) music.
  • October 20: Alexander String Quartet interprets Beethoven, Mozart, Bartók, and Shostakovich, overflowing with emotion and sheer joy for playing.

Roxbury Arts Group in Roxbury is a multi-arts center, dedicated to entertaining and enriching the lives of Catskill Mountain residents and visitors through the arts. They offer live entertainment, concerts, dance, and theater at several venues around the county. Here’s what’s coming up this season in the performing arts. Find the rest of their schedule online.