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30ndpicGREATRIDESEvery summer, PS 21 in Chatham hosts a wide-ranging film series, screening everything from gritty indie documentaries to glossy Hollywood musicals. That’s true this summer, too, but this week they’re having a festival within a festival with Great Rides, a six-film series of movies set on and about trains.

The fun begins Tuesday (July 28) at 8:30 PM with Alfred Hitchcock’s thriller Strangers on a Train, in which a suave psychotic (Robert Walker, right) tries to persuade a tennis player with marital problems (Farley Granger, left) to swap murders in the “perfect” scheme. It’s a delicious mix of terror and deadpan comedy.

Then on Wednesday (July 29) at 8:30 PM, Billy Crystal and Danny DeVito star in Throw Momma From the Train, a popular riff on Hitchcock’s classic that’s stolen by Academy Award-nominated Anne Ramsey as the titular “momma.”

The series continues July 30 (8:30 PM) with the stylish mystery Murder on the Orient Express; July 31 (8:30 PM) with Buster Keaton’s The General; Aug. 1 (8:30 PM) with Jean Renoir’s La Bete Humaine; and wraps up Aug. 2 (8:30 PM) with the 2008 thriller Transsiberian.

Great Rides Film Festival will be screened under the tent at PS 21 (2980 Route 66, Chatham). Admission is free. For info, call 392-6121.



30ndpicBRADBrad Paisley is still touring no the strength of his most recent album, 2014’s Moonshine in the Trunk, which became the singer’s eighth Billboard No. 1 country album last September. But you probably knew that already.

Paisley wants everyone to have a good time at his concerts—a full bar has been part of his onstage set—but there’s more to him than partying. The Arizona Republic, reviewing a June concert in Phoenix, wrote that Paisley showed “off deft chops on his sparkly Telecasters and [led] a tight band which blended classic arena-rock showmanship, twangy Bakersfield country and traces of progressive western swing.”

Opener Justin Moore hasn’t released a new album since 2013, but he did duet with Vince Neil on a cover of Motley Crue’s “Home Sweet Home” last year. And second opener Mickey Guyton is a country music rarity, an African-American woman in a field not exactly known for them; her single “Better Than You Left Me” cracked the Top 20 earlier this year.

Brad Paisley and guests will perform Sunday (July 26) at 8 PM at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center (Saratoga Spa State Park, Saratoga Springs). This is a GE Kids in Free Show, which means one kid age 12 or under will be admitted on the lawn free with each paid adult lawn ticket. Visit www.livenation.com for ticket info.



30notepic_interpolInterpol got their start in the NYC indie scene in the late ’90s at Luna Lounge, playing with bands like the Strokes and the National, and have been called “a paragon of Americana post-punk alt-rock.” Their most recent album represents a return to the era of their critically acclaimed and commercially popular 2002 debut album, Turn on the Bright Lights—“worlds apart from the difficult, dirge-y ‘Interpol.’ Instead, it circles back around to the sonorous, tremulous sounds of the glory days . . . while adding new ideas along the way.” After an extended hiatus, the band went back on tour last year and longtime fans rejoiced.

These guys are heading abroad in a couple of weeks to spend a few months touring Europe, so this will be your only chance to catch them this summer.

(July 29, 8 PM, $28, 1208 Route 146, 371-0012)


30ndpicAJKUNIf you live in Albany’s Center Square neighborhood, there’s one thing you can count on: If it’s July and you bump into a group of tall, athletic, foreign-language speakers in practice clothes, the Ajkun Ballet Theatre are back in town. For decades, Ajkun Ballet Theatre have brought their grace and skill to the Egg each July and August. Their first performance of this season is on Sunday evening, titled America.

America is an original ballet choreographed by Leonard Ajkun. To Ajkun, “America is always on the move.” According to the show notes, it’s about “finding the perfect and delicate balance between freedom “to” and freedom “from” . . . [and] involves pacing the roads of life that, in return, uncage forceful emotions.”

Ajkun Ballet Theatre will perform Sunday (July 26) at 6 PM outdoors by the Egg (Empire State Plaza, Albany). Admission is free. For more info, call the Egg box office at 473-1845.


30notepicOTISL.A.’s Shuggie Otis released three critically acclaimed albums of blues, funk, and psychedelic soul in the early ’70s –all before he was 22. For the next 40 years, he didn’t release a single piece of new music. Son of rhythm & blues pioneer Johnny Otis, Shuggie began playing guitar at the age of 2 and performing professionally at 12. His 1974 album, Inspiration/Information, gained a large cult following in the ’90s with the emergence of acid jazz and was re-released in 2013 along with a new album of unreleased material written over the last four decades. “I feel a spiritual connection for doing this music,” he told the Austin Chronicle. “When I was younger, I would deny sharing any sort of personal experience that would be emotional at all. I was too insecure. I had a lot of hang-ups. I think I’m on a better path now, and every day you learn something new.”

(July 26, 7:30 PM, $29.50, Empire State Plaza, 473-1845)



30concertboxpicIf you’ve seen Heart in concert over the last decade, you’re left wondering one thing after the show: How could they possibly have been doing this for 40-plus years? They sound that fresh and that good.

The Wilson sisters, singer Ann and guitarist Nancy, both rock as ferociously as ever. Doubt us? Wander the Internet and check out their performance of “Kick It Out” with the Foo Fighters on The Late Show with David Letterman last year. Go ahead, we’ll wait. . . . See?

From the folkie ballads and metal thunder of the 1970s and ’80s through the power ballads of the ’90s and beyond, Heart have a rich musical legacy—and they’ll share some of all of it with you at the Palace this week.

Heart will perform Monday (July 27) at 7:30 PM at the Palace Theatre (19 Clinton Ave., Albany). Tickets are $52.50 to $92.50. For tickets, call (800) 745-3000. For venue info, call the Palace at 465-3334.



30classicalboxpicBard SummerScape is in full swing: They’ve already presented dance and theater, with ongoing events in the Spiegeltent (see the Noteworthy page for the next show), a film series and the Bard Music Festival coming in August.

This weekend, however, the focus turns to opera. And in the SummerScape tradition of bringing something new to the fore, this will be America’s first fully staged production of English composer Dame Ethel Smyth’s 1904 opera The Wreckers. The story is based on the legend of the nefarious Cornwall coastal practice of luring ships onto the rocks for plunder and murder. (The legend is also the source of the book and film Jamaica Inn.) It’s the first full-length English opera to have been based on local setting and folklore. As for the music, Bard’s Leon Botstein says, “There’s a Wagnerian lushness and fullness, the majesty of high drama and the intimacy of a love story.”

The Wreckers opens tomorrow (Friday, July 24) at 7:30 PM and continues through Aug. 2 at the Richard B. Fisher Center’s Sosnoff Theater (Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson). Additional performances are Sunday (July 26) and Wednesday (July 29) at 2 PM; July 31 at 7:30 PM; and Aug. 2 at 2 PM. Tickets start at $25. For tickets and info, call the box office at (845) 758-7900.



30artboxpicIt’s the teachers’ turn as the 2015 Skidmore Summer Art Faculty Exhibition opens today (Thursday) in the Schick Art Gallery.

The group show will include paintings, prints, sculpture, video and photographs. Ten artists are featured in the show: RJ Calabrese, Terry Conrad, Katie DeGroot, Jane Fine, John Galt, David Gyscek, Kathy Hemingway-Jones, Elizabeth Terhune, Ilana Zwiebel, and Paula Wilson.

Pictured is Terhune’s Don’t Upset the Applecart (2015).

The 2015 Skidmore Summer Art Faculty Exhibition opens today (Thursday, July 23) with a reception from 5 to 6:30 PM and will remain on view through Aug. 7 at the Schick Art Gallery (Saisselin Art Building, Skidmore College, 815 N. Broadway, Saratoga Springs).

For more info, call the gallery at 580-5049.



30notepicEDGARSeventies nostalgia is definitely not the only reason to see Edgar Winter onstage at Alive at Five, though “Frankenstein” and “Free Ride” are true classics, as is everything from his monster double-platinum They Only Come Out at Night release. Some other reasons are that the white-haired multi-instrumentalist and keyboardist extraordinaire is a genuine living legend, with decades of pop, rock and jazz innovation to his credit; that he’s touring with a Stax-style boogie band; and he still has a sizzling reputation for high-energy live performances, or as Rolling Stone put it, “hair-on-fire intensity.” Oh, and the show is free. Local hard-rock trio Charmboy will open.

(July 23, 5 PM, free, Corning Preserve, Albany, 434-2032)


30theaterboxpicRomeo and Juliet set in New York City? How is that for a can’t-miss idea? It actually took a decade for Jerome Robbins’ idea to change into the Leonard Bernstein, Stephen Sondheim and Arthur Laurents musical that opened on Broadway in 1957. But it did become a great, decades-spanning crowd pleaser; and, in response to the “overwhelming requests of several seasons’ audiences,” the Mac-Haydn Theatre is offering a production of this great musical drama beginning today (Thursday).

The songs are, well, fantastic: “Tonight,” “America,” “Maria,” “Something’s Coming,” “Cool,” “I Feel Pretty” and the hilarious “Gee, Officer Krupke.”

The Mac-Haydn Theatre (1925 Route 203, Chatham) will present West Side Story beginning today (Thursday, July 23) at 2 and 8 PM. Other performances this week are tomorrow (Friday, July 24) at 8 PM; Saturday (July 25) at 4 and 8 PM; Sunday (July 26) at 2 and 7 PM; and Wednesday (July 29) at 2 PM. The show runs through Aug. 9.

Tickets are $31 to $34, with $14 tickets for kids under 12 with an adult. For info, call 392-9292.