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Displaying items by tag: Kelly Phillips

Friday, 03 April 2015 10:21

Grab Your Hat, Cat!

And Head To Saratoga Children’s Theatre’s Seussical Family Fun Festival 

SARATOGA SPRINGS – An evening of activities that the whole family can enjoy will await you at Saratoga Children’s Theatre’s (SCT) Seussical Family Fun Festival. The event will take place on Friday, Apr. 10 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Saratoga Music Hall, above City Hall at 474 Broadway, Saratoga Springs.


This event is to help fund a great cause and serves as the kickoff to a campaign to send SCT’s teen troupe to perform at The National Performing Arts Festival at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida next February 18 to 22. Admission to the festival is $15 for adults, $5 for kids and one child admission is free with each paid adult admission.  


A special appearance by the local family friendly music group Seth and the Moody Melix is part of the activities at the Music Hall. Their music was recently featured on the Food Network and they helped Chef Paula Deen during the first two dates of her live cooking tour in Tennessee. 


Now back home in Saratoga Springs, front man Seth Warden, a father of three, is busy with activities for his kids, which led to a desire to help SCT. 


“Our daughters have been involved in the Saratoga Children's Theater now for two years, and each year I’ve watched them become more and more confident and proud of the work they've put in with SCT,” Seth said. “It was really just a matter of time before SCT and Seth and the

Moody Melix became acquainted and we are thrilled to join them in their fundraising efforts.” 


Seth and the Moody Melix will be performing music from their debut CD; “Hi, Hello, How do you do?” along with a handful of new songs which will be featured on their second release which is anticipated to be released this summer. 


SCT’s teen troupe members, no doubt in full Dr. Seuss regalia, will administer the other activities including face painting, a cake walk contest and a dance party. Also, the entire teen troupe will perform the opening number from Seussical. 


In addition to the admission proceeds, the family fun festival will also have an additional opportunity to donate with a Disney theme. This will mark the debut of a Mickey Mouse pledge card – which will be placed on a traveling “wall of fame” that will tour with SCT throughout its performances and campaign events as they seek to fund their trip to Florida. 


This trip is certainly an ambitious undertaking. According to Meg Kelly, SCT’s executive director, the cost for travel, lodging and workshop fees to attend the National Performance Arts Festival is about $1,500 per child, with many members of the teen troupe in need of either full or partial funding to attend. 


But once there, members of the SCT teen troupe will enjoy a once-in-a-lifetime experience to perform before Disney casting personnel against other drama student groups and receive feedback from some of the best in the business. They will also have the opportunity to participate in workshops and clinics in areas such as audition and vocal techniques, stage movement and scene development.


During the Performance Arts Festival, the SCT teen troupe’s group performance competition will take place at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort Performance Hall, which hopefully will give them a “home-field advantage” of sorts. There will be opportunities for troupe members to participate in solo and duo competitions as well. 


At the end of the National Performing Arts Festival, an awards ceremony will take place at Disney’s Superstar Television Theater, with a showcase performance for the winning performers on The Waterside Stage at Downtown Disney. 

So the Apr. 10 Seussical Family Fun Festival is not only an opportunity for you and your family to have a great time, but a chance to help young performers who do so much to enrich the cultural fabric in our community “wish upon a star” and maybe grab a few for themselves. 

 For more information, visit saratogachildrenstheatre.org

Published in News
Thursday, 07 November 2013 11:54

Saratoga Springs City Council: Future Revenue

SARATOGA SPRINGS — The Tuesday, November 4 meeting of the Saratoga Springs City Council was notable both for its content and its length. Despite the fact that this meeting was less than half as long as the preceding one on October 15, the council was able to accomplish significant business while allowing for adequate discussion where it was relevant. 

Chief among these items was the passage, by a 5-0 roll call vote, of the amended 2014 city budget. In a concise presentation of general fund requests and changes, Finance Commissioner Michele Madigan detailed each department’s requests and why or why not they were selected to be added to the amended budget.

The bottom line was that the general expense fund was increased by $113,000, with only $13,000 of that balanced with revenue from increased property tax. The remaining $100,000 came from increased revenue projections that Madigan felt confident could be reached. This means that the original 0.68 percent property tax increase projection was increased slightly to 0.76 percent. On a home with a $350,000 assessed value, this works out to an annual increase of $16.05 in 2014. Comments were generally supportive around the council table, and given the fact that the next day was Election Day for many of them, notably concise before unanimous passage. 

Earlier in the meeting, a presentation by Saratoga Children’s Theatre’s (SCT) executive director Meg Kelly detailed a potential source of additional revenue for the city. 

The Saratoga Music Hall, on the third floor of City Hall, is unused during 72 percent of its potential hours. Two systemic factors were identified that have led to this. The floor of the hall is not soundproofed to any extent, and thus the Music Hall cannot be used at all without disturbing the city court below when it is in session. Further, the hall currently cannot be used during the entire summer season because of the fact that it lacks air conditioning. 

While Kelly certainly felt that SCT could increase its use of the Music Hall if these two conditions were resolved, she felt a more important role was to have her organization partner with the city to assure that the Music Hall had everything in place to make it available to many organizations as frequently as possible. 

The presentation was very well received, notably by Commissioner of Public Works Anthony Scirocco, who sponsored the SCT presentation and noted that the Music Hall was a wonderful, underutilized space and that the city’s investment in these types of improvements would pay for themselves rather quickly. Scirocco also recommended exploring acoustic augmentations as well. 

This would have to go through the RFP and capital budget process to actually proceed, but the council is rarely presented with an opportunity of this nature for an existing facility.

In other council news:

- Commissioner Madigan also delivered her third quarter financial report for the city, noting that they were generally on track against projections. She also detailed five excess fund balance recommendations from the 2012 budget, which the council passed unanimously.

- Commissioner Scirocco announced a Veterans Day ceremony at the Tempered by Memory memorial in High Rock Park

- Supervisors Matthew Veitch and Joanne Yepsen both gave their perspectives on the proposed 2014 Saratoga County Budget (see Week in Review, page 4).     

- Public Safety Commissioner Mathiesen received unanimous approval to amend the city code to allow for a stop sign on the intersection of Ludlow Street and Jumel Place; and to have alternate side-of-the-street parking in effect each day during the Saratoga Thoroughbred racing meet. 

Mathiesen called upon Police Chief Greg Veitch to read a statement regarding the SSPD’s conduct during and after the late night incident involving Darryl Mount, Jr. (See the featured story).  

Published in News


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