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Gov’t Mule

Southern rock band Gov’t Mule will take the stage at the Palace tonight as part of their current tour of the Northeast. What started as an Allman Brothers Band side project a dozen years ago by Warren Haynes and Allen Woody has mushroomed into one of the most highly regarded touring acts today. Though you might not hear them on the radio, if you go to one of their shows, you’ll see just how popular these guys are, and how loyal their fans are.

Right now, the band are touring in support of their August release, High & Mighty (ATO). Modern-day surf rocker Donavon Frankenreiter will open the show.

Gov’t Mule will perform at the Palace Theatre (19 Clinton Ave., Albany) tonight (Thursday, Nov. 30) at 8 PM. Tickets for this show are $22, $27, $32 and $34. For more information or to buy tickets, call the Palace box office at 465-3334 or visit www.palacealbany.com.

Snappy Dance Theater

To be formal about it, Boston’s Snappy Dance Theater presents an “edgy, yet accessible style” that includes elements of “gymnastics, circus skills, martial arts, vocal work, theater and dance,” with the ultimate goal being the creation of “sculptural acrobatics in fluid motion, celebrating the beauty of form and the dangerous edges of balance.”

In less formal terms, Snappy Dance Theater is about the pleasures of collaboration and, well, having fun. As troupe cofounder Martha Mason once described it, Snappy grew, in part, from her reaction to the “do as you’re told” format of most of the dance companies she had been a part of. The New York Times has praised the company for putting thought behind an eclectic approach, showing “none of the blandness of some fusion dance.” Snappy’s dancers, the Times observed, “had the look of individuals who know their input is valued.”

Snappy Dance Theater will perform tomorrow (Friday, Dec. 1) at 8 PM at the Egg (Empire State Plaza, Albany). Admission is $18, $14 seniors and $9 children. For reservations and information, call 473-1845.

1st Friday Art Openings

If you’ve lived in the Capital Region for any length of time, you know how things often work around here. A new event, or series of events, will explode on the scene in clouds of hype and then, after a minor frenzy of press coverage and tepid public interest, said event or series of events will fizzle out, unlamented.

This does not describe Albany’s 1st Friday Art Openings, however; these Center Square-based series of first-of-the-month art events have been generating momentum based on smart programming and steadily building public enthusiasm. How big is 1st Friday becoming? Tomorrow night (Friday), the following galleries/organizations will be a part of the fun: Albany Center Galleries, Ambrose + Sable, Romaine Brooks Gallery, Upstate Artists Guild, Froebel Gallery, Capital District Federation of Ideas, Elissa Halloran Designs, 215 Lark Street, Silver Fox Enterprises, National Upholstering, Central Art Supply and Albany Underground Artists.

How did this happen? Here’s our best guess: Part of it is planning; part of it is the already-proven local interest in art (think of the successful Albany Underground Artists events); and part of it is building on the resources of the vibrant Center Square neighborhood—something the city of Albany has been, for whatever reason, not particularly interested in. (Think of how the city-sponsored First Night celebration abandoned Center Square in the 1990s, and proceeded to die an agonizing death.)

A notable addition to this Friday’s events is that local DJ Michael Campion is coming out of early retirement to perform at Upstate Artists Guild. Campion says, “First Fridays and the work that UAG has done is inspiring and has helped bring the area’s artists even closer together, and great things have happened as a result. Things just keep getting better, and I hope the momentum continues.”

On the 1st Friday of December, beginning at 6 PM, Center Square is the place to be.

The 1st Friday celebration will take place tomorrow (Friday, Dec. 1) from 6 to 9 PM at locations all around Albany’s Center Square neighborhood. After 1st Friday, Rock2Rebuild/Raise the Barn will present the Crayons and Big Nixon at Tess’ Lark Tavern (453 Madison Ave., Albany). For a complete schedule of events and addresses, visit www.larkstreet.org/the_arts.php.


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