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Family Album, Pentimento

The Center for Photography at Woodstock opens its two summer exhibits this weekend, Family Album and Pentimento. Family Album, curated by Kate Menconeri and Ariel Shanberg, is a group show featuring “nine national and international artists who seek meaning and connection through family imagery.” The photographers are Ben Gest, Brooke Berger, Sebastian Friedman, Carla Williams, Geraldo Repetto, Spencer Murphy, Susan Evans, Yolanda del Amo and Rafael Goldchain (Self-portrait as Naftuli Goldszajn, 2000, pictured).

Pentimento is a solo exhibition of work by Preston Wadley—his first in New York state. It’s an “installation of book-based sculptures that combine found objects and images to create complex yet open-ended narratives that deal with memory, history and personal connection.”

Family Album and Pentimento will open Saturday (June 24) and continue through Aug. 20 at the Center for Photography at Woodstock (59 Tinker St., Woodstock). There will be an opening reception Saturday at 5:30 PM, featuring an artist talk with Wadley. For more info, call the gallery at (845) 679-9957.

Old Songs Festival

It’s time again for the region’s folk-music spectacular, Old Songs. There really aren’t adjectives equal to the task of describing this finger-picking, sing-along jamboree at the Altamont Fairgrounds. It’s, um, really big.

Really big.

This is the 26th anniversary edition of the three-day extravaganza, with its three big concerts and 120 daytime workshops (led by the performers). A detailed schedule can be obtained at www.oldsongs.org, but performers will include Annie and the Hedonists, Beppe Gambetta, Kim & Reggie Harris, William Jackson & Gráinne Hambly, Debbie McClatchy, Roger the Jester, Peggy Seeger, Téada, the Wild Band of Snee and Cris Williamson (pictured). There’s a juried craft show, food and instrument vendors and plenty of things for children to do.

Really, it’s big. Take our word for it. Pitch a tent and bust out your banjo—camping areas are available.

The Old Songs Festival will be held tomorrow (Friday) through Sunday (June 23-25) at the Altamont Fairgrounds (Altamont). There are a variety of ticket packages, ranging from an all-festival adult pass ($90 at the gate) to individual tickets to the Friday and Saturday evening concerts (7 PM, $30) and two Sunday afternoon concerts (gates opens 9:30 AM, $25). There are separate passes for the 3 PM Friday “in-depth” classes ($15), too. For more information, visit the aforementioned Web site, or call 765-2815.

Robots Rock!

Here’s a fantastical concept: musical instruments that play themselves. Imagine being able to do away with those pesky musicians once and for all: No more waiting around outside closed doors because the band showed up two hours late to sound check; no more unpaid bar tabs at the end of gigs; no more going home alone after some drummer picks up your girlfriend (them drummers are nothing but trouble). Granted, these are only sidebars to a greater design; the Brooklyn-based League of Musical Urban Robots (LEMUR) claims to have designed the Robots Rock! exhibit—which features a series of robotic instruments that actually “play themselves”—to explore the “science and technology of music.” That sounds nice and all, but it gives us more than a little pleasure to imagine a world without self-indulgent heavy-metal guitar solos—although a world without the heavy-metal guitar-solo face would be a sad, sad place.

Robots Rock! opens this Saturday (June 24) at the Schenectady Museum and Suits-Bueche Planetarium (Nott Terrace Heights, Schenectady). The exhibit will remain on view through Sept. 27. For more information, call 382-7090 or visit schenectadymuseum.org.


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