Saratoga continues to be Upstate’s capital for the fine arts during the summer months, thanks in large part to the Saratoga Performing Arts Center (SPAC).
From the middle of June to the end of August, SPAC has a full slate of visiting performers revered throughout the world. This year, the line-up includes a two-day visit from The National Ballet of China in July. The dance company’s jaunt to the Spa City marks only one of three stops throughout the United States.
“The company is distinguished by its spectacular performances of imaginative new ballets and phenomenal interpretations of traditional masterworks from the classical repertoire,” stated Marcia J. White, SPAC’s president and executive director, through a recent press release. “It’s unique style, imbuing characteristics of its Russian training and techniques picked up from Western counterparts with a distinctly Chinese flair, presents an unforgettable spectacle to its audiences. The National Ballet of China’s engagement at SPAC this year is a landmark occasion for SPAC and the Capital Region community to enjoy.”
The company was founded in 1959, and is widely known in the United States as the dance company that performed for President Richard Nixon while on his visit to China in 1972.
This performance from the Far East immediately follows the summer residency of the New York City Ballet.
The renowned troupe continues its decades-long relationship with SPAC. Its visits have been cut short in recent years, due to budgetary issues for both the ballet and SPAC, said SPAC Communications Associate Justin Smith. This year, however, the New York City Ballet will perform for two weeks, starting July 7.
And, from Saratoga’s longest lasting residencies to its newest, The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center (CMS) returns after last year’s successful debut.
CMS Artistic Directors David Finckel and Wu Han will orchestrate six different programs from August 9 to August 25, highlighting the works of Mozart, Hummel, Dvorak, Beethoven, Strauss, Mendelssohn and more.
The chamber music shares the August calendar with The Philadelphia Orchestra.
Yo-Yo Ma, Emanuel Ax, Johannes Moser, Jean-Yves Thibaudet and Joshua Bell round out a dynamic line up that also includes Broadway and Hollywood star Bernadette Peters.
For tickets and information, visit SPAC online at spac.org or call 584-9330.
Michael Hallisey is managing editor of Spotlight Newspapers.