A new SPAC experience: Seats on the stage

On Monday nights in August, up to 300 people at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center will have the chance not only to hear a performance but sit onstage with the performers.

“Positioning audiences onstage for this series will offer them a unique, visceral experience — a connection with the performance unlike anything they have experienced previously,” SPAC Executive Director Elizabeth Sobol said in a press release.

The lineup for “SPAC on Stage” includes The Hot Sardines, Time for Three, Black Violin and Tiempo Libre, all groups that are artistically vibrant and push the boundaries of classical music in new directions, Sobol said.

The Hot Sardines (Aug. 7): With a reputation as one of the best jazz bands in New York City, pianist Evan Palazzo leads an ensemble that includes singer Elizabeth Bougerol and a tap dancer. Their sound is a blend of New York speakeasy, Parisian cabaret and New Orleans jazz hall.

Time for Three (Aug. 14): Violinists Nick Kendall, Charles Yang and bassist Ranaan Meyer are SPAC favorites who can play everything from bluegrass and folk to pop hits and jazz with foot-stomping appeal.

Black Violin (Aug. 21): Having performed in 49 states and 36 countries, often in collaborations with superstars, this violin duo mixes hip-hop, classical and R&B.

Tiempo Libre (Aug. 28): Afro-Cuban rhythms meet Johann Sebastian Bach. Their album “Bach in Havana” was nominated for a Grammy.

Tickets are $50, $40. For more info, go to or call (518) 584-9330. S



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