Arts & Culture

Bard Summerscape 

This seven-week cultural extravaganza includes opera, music, theater, dance, film, and cabaret all on one gorgeous campus. In 2017, the events spin off of the life and times of Polish composer Fryderyk Chopin.  Antonín Dvorák’s opera Dimitrij is also part of the mix. Be sure to visit the magical Spiegeltent, for performances by musicians, DJs, and other avant-garde artists. (June 30–Aug 20, 2017; Bard College, 30 Campus Rd, Annandale-On-Hudson; 845.758.7900;


Beacon Independent Film Festival  

This small but growing fest showcases creative films in a unique venue, nestled among the trees at the foot of Mount Beacon. Screenings of features, shorts,  and documentaries mix with panel discussions, food trucks, and interactive activities for children and adults. (Sept 15–17, 2017; University Settlement, 724 Wolcott Ave., Beacon; 845.418.3992;


Caramoor Summer Music Festival 


Bring your own picnic (or preorder one) and lay a blanket on the grounds of this bucolic estate to experience opera, orchestra, chamber, jazz, family programs, young artist showcases, and more. In 2017, headliners include Grammy nominees Rhiannon Giddens and Sarah Jarosz and country legend Emmylou Harris. (June 17 through July 30, 2017; 149 Girdle Ridge Rd, Katonah; 914.232.5035;


Clearwater’s Great Hudson River Revival 

Founded by Pete Seeger, this popular weekend music festival is back (after taking 2016 off). Seven stages of live music are set up at Croton Point Park, along with environmental education exhibits, artisanal food and farmers’ market, a craft village, children’s area, dance tent, and camping.  This year’s headliners include Arlo Guthrie, Los Lobos, and Joan Osborne. Visitors can also sail aboard both the Clearwater and schooner Mystic Whaler. All proceeds go directly to support Hudson River Sloop Clearwater’s environmental research, education, and advocacy efforts to help preserve and protect the Hudson River and its Valley tributaries. (June 17–18, 2017; Croton Point Park, Croton-on-Hudson,


FilmColumbia Film Festival  


Audiences from as far away as New York City and the Capital Region converge at this week-long celebration of independent and foreign films presented by The Chatham Film Club.  It’s an opportunity to see the future Oscar winners well before they are widely released.  (Oct 22–29, 2017: Chatham Village and Hudson;


Hudson Valley Hoot  


Square dancing, fiddlers, storytelling, and late-night jam sessions are just some of the old-fashioned fun to be had at this three-day, multi-stage fest in the woods. Bands and musicians with local ties and big names from the world of folk music perform. (Aug 25–27, 2017; The Ashokan Center, 477 Beaverkill Rd, Olivebridge; 914.466.8334;


Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival 

Come picnic on the lawn at Boscobel, a picturesque estate on the Hudson River, then head into the large circus-style tent for witty and surprising performances of the Bard’s best and other plays. The 2017 lineup features Twelfth Night, The Book Of Will, Pride and Prejudice, The General from America, and Love’s Labour’s Lost. (June 8–Sept 4,  2017; Boscobel, 1601 Route 9D, Garrison; 845.265.9575;


Mountain Jam 


Hipsters and hippies alike flock to this three-day camping music fest featuring some 40 bands on multiple stages. With the likes of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, the Steve Miller Band, and Peter Frampton headlining in 2017, on the heels of Beck, Gov’t Mule, and Chris Robinson Brotherhood in 2016, this fest is hot. (June 16–18, 2017; 64 Klein Ave, Hunter Mountain, Hunter; 855.821.9209,


Powerhouse Theater 


For six weeks every summer the Powerhouse Season brings fully produced plays, musical workshops, and readings of works-in-progress to Vassar College’s campus. Some 250 professional artists and 50 apprentices will nurture more than 25 new theater pieces. You might just see what could be the next big theatrical hit: The Humans, the musical Bright Star, and even Hamilton got their start here. (June through July; Vassar College, 124 Raymond Ave, Poughkeepsie; 845.437.5907;


Taste of Country 

Grab your cowboy boots and head to Hunter for this three-day party that has quickly become a must-attend event, with a past roster that includes legends like Willie Nelson, multi-Grammy winner Lady Antebellum, and Billboard chart topper Trace Adkins, not to mention superstar crossover artist Kenny Chesney. The 2017 event showcases Jason Aldean, Miranda Lambert, and Sam Hunt, plus plenty of up-and-coming draws.  Hop on the Sky Ride for a bird’s-eye view of the crowd. (June 9–11, 2017; 64 Klein Ave, Hunter Mountain, Hunter;


Woodstock Film Festival 

Rub elbows with film industry players and view future box-office favorites and works by emerging artists at this star-filled event that has hosted the likes of Alec Baldwin and Andy Garcia. With a focus on independent filmmakers’ work, the event includes screenings and world premieres, panel discussions, parties, and more. (Oct 11–15, 2017; Woodstock, Rhinebeck, Rosendale, Kingston, and Saugerties; 845.679.4265;

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