Out & About in October 2010
Music and mime in Kingston, and cool theater from Down East hits Poughkeepsie
Some rock, some blues — and some silence
Even though our sizzling summer is (thankfully) over, the Valley’s cultural season is just heating up. Case in point: this month’s lineup at the Ulster Performing Arts Center. The Goo Goo Dolls — the Buffalo-based rock band whose latest CD, Something for the Rest of Us, was just released last month — roars into town on Oct. 20 (7 p.m. $43-$60). Three nights later, the Swiss pantomime troupe Mummenschanz brings its unique blend of nonverbal theatrics to the stage (Oct. 23 at 7 p.m. $30, $10 children). And guitarist and singer Buddy Guy, whose Chicago-based electric blues style was a major influence on Eric Clapton and other top rock guitarists, jams on Oct. 29 (8 p.m. $46-$56). 601 Broadway, Kingston. 845-339-6088 or www.upac.org
Crafts fairs seem to be a dime a dozen at this time of year, but the Heritage Craft Fair — which takes place at the Bronck Museum in Coxsackie — stands out from the rest. For one thing, it’s held on a Dutch farmstead that was settled close to 350 years ago. The handmade goods offered for sale — floor cloths, Teddy bears, spiced candles, maple syrup, quilts — are all traditional crafts that have been produced in this country for centuries. Along with your browsing, you can take a horse-drawn wagon ride, visit the site’s unique 13-sided barn, sip an authentic Bronck flip (a potent Colonial-era drink), and listen to bluegrass music performed by the String Dusters. Oct. 3 from 12-5 p.m. 90 Rte. 42, Coxsackie. 518-731-6490.
Tosca, Giacomo Puccini’s melodramatic opera set in Rome during the Napoleonic Wars, opens the Taconic Opera’s 13th season. With a plot that revolves around an obsessive relationship (not to mention deception and murder), the work is a favorite in Europe; the title role is often associated with the legendary (and controversial) soprano Maria Callas, who made it her own during performances at the Met in the 1950s. Taconic Opera’s fully staged production, directed by founder Dan Montez, features professional singers and a full union orchestra. Sung in the original Italian, with English translation projected above the stage. Oct. 15-17. Fri.-Sat. 8 p.m., Sun. 2 p.m. $32-$47. Yorktown Stage. 1974 Commerce St., Yorktown Heights. 914-245-3415 or www.taconicopera.org
An Off-Broadway hit in 2006, playwright John Cariani’s Almost Maine presents a series of two-character vignettes that explore romantic love in all its heart-wrenching (and occasionally wacky) forms. Set in rural Maine during a typically frigid winter, the piece profiles 20 characters (played by four actors) whose quirky eccentricities are humorous and sad by turns; the show has been favorably compared to the Emmy-winning 1990s TV hit Northern Exposure. Half Moon Theatre, the five-year-old ensemble company based in the mid-Hudson area, offers this offbeat comedy at the Cunneen-Hackett Arts Center in Poughkeepsie. Oct. 28-Nov. 3; call for times. $20-$25 in advance, $22-$27 at the door. 9 Vassar St., Poughkeepsie. 888-TICKETS or www.halfmoontheatre.org
Landscapes, currently on view at the Carrie Haddad Gallery in Hudson, features new work by six regional (and, for the most part, rather well-known) painters. Kingston’s Jane Bloodgood-Abrams offers idealized scenes of mountains, rivers, and sky that evoke nature’s mystical qualities. Thomas Locker’s romantic depictions of familiar Valley locales (such as Kaaterskill Falls) are in step with the 19th-century Hudson River School. Harry Orlyk chronicles farm life using contrasting colors and a textured brushstroke. Leigh Palmer’s cloud-dominated views; Laura Von Rosk’s subtly surreal images; and Arthur Hammer’s gritty, Ashcan-inspired scenes round out the show. Thurs.-Mon. 11 a.m.-5 p.m through Oct. 31. • 622 Warren St., Hudson. 518-828-1915 or www.carriehaddadgallery.com