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Thursday, 29 October 2015 13:29

20th Anniversary of First Night Saratoga: Lineup Announced

SARATOGA SPRINGS – Saratoga Arts has just announced the lineup of events for the twentieth annual First Night Saratoga on New Year’s Eve. As one of the oldest and largest First Night celebrations in the country, First Night Saratoga is one of the most affordable, accessible, family-friendly and safe ways to ring in the new year. On Thursday, December 31, join over 15,000 revelers as Saratoga Arts hosts over seventy performance groups in thirty venues throughout historic Downtown Saratoga Springs.

First Night Saratoga starts with the 5K road race at Skidmore College at 5 p.m., and culminates with SPAC sponsored fireworks in Congress Park at midnight. In between, the night is jam-packed with live music, dancing, comedy and magic. Here is just a small sample of the highlights:

The Music –

Headlining the event is the iconic New Rhythm and Blues Quartet (NRBQ), who will share the mainstage with Harold Ford, a Johnny Cash tribute artist, and Jim Gaudet’s bluegrass ensemble. The internationally touring rock duo Sirsy, who played for standing room only crowds last year, will return. Afull range of genres is represented, from country-rock and ska/reggae to 60s retro and jazz.

Saratoga Arts provides a showcase opportunity for young performers, including the fourteen year old pop savant Talia Denis, as well as sixteen year old Elvis impersonator Matthew Boyce and his band Suspicious Minds.

The Comedy –

The local improve troupe Mop and Bucket Company are always good for a laugh and are a staple of First Night Saratoga. Also, check out Chris Ruggerio’s one man variety show, an act with a thrilling mixture of stand-up comedy and daredevil juggling.

Mind Arts –

There will be a venue at First Night entirely dedicated to the mind arts such as tarot card and rune readers, as well as a certified psychic. Corbie Mitleid will provide gallery-style past life readings. Comic hypnotist Michael Ray will bring the most suggestible on stage for some ridiculous New Year’s hijinks. Nationally recognized actor and magician, Josh Lozoff, will rivet the audience with his mind-bending act, “Life is Magic.”

Dance –

The Arthur Murray Dance Studio will open its doors all evening, providing a different type of group instruction every hour, from Salsa to Swing, no partner necessary. The Turtle Clan Dancers will be leading ceremonial winter dances from the Ojibwe and Abenaki tribes. Homespun Dancers will brighten the night with live folk music and guided square and line dancing from the American tradition.

All performers will be inside their respective locations; all venues are heated. Community partner, CDTA, is providing free shuttle and bus trips to all of the venues, as well as special shuttle service to and from Wilton Mall.


Buttons, which allow admission into First Night events, can be purchased online or in person. For more information about where to buy a First Night button, visit saratoga-arts.org/firstnight/buttons. First Night Saratoga is a GE Kids in Free event. One child age 12 and under will be admitted for free with each paid adult.

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