Saratoga Arts - Arts Center | Arts Council

First Night, Saratoga takes 1st place in the BEST ANNUAL EVENT category!







First Night Posters with art by Sharon Bolton:

$20/ $15 - First Night 2017

$10/ $5 - Previous First Nights

Need to Complete Your Button Collection?

$5 for buttons from 2008 to now and select previous years

First Night 5k Shirts: 

$10- First Night 2017, M and S only

$5- Previous First Nights

Proceeds support the community arts programs at Saratoga Arts to help make the arts affordable and accessible to all.


Thank you to all the performers who applied to FIRST NIGHT 2018: Light Up the Night!

Materials are currently in review and decisions will be made by October 1.  All artists will be notified.     

In the meantime, check out some of our fabulous performers from last year below!

Introducing the First Night 2017 Performers

Headlining the night~

Wild Adriatic is an American rock band formed in Saratoga Springs, NY in 2011. Calling to mind soulful and dynamic sounds, Wild Adriatic has won early acclaim from places such as Rolling Stone, USA Today, Relix and Guitar World. The band, touring out of Saratoga Springs, NY, routinely plays over 140 shows annually across The United States and Europe. They are currently in the studio right now recording their second full length albumThe album was written in between their heavy touring schedule that has had the band play everywhere from headlining blues festivals in Connecticut for 10,000 people to a five week headlining European tour to serving as direct support for an impressive list of rock and roll royalty including Grand Funk Railroad, Galactic, Robert Randolph, Blues Traveler, Deer Tick, MuteMath, and many more.  Wild Adriatic is a high energy, riffy power trio to rival any you've seen before. Their live show, called "an electrified ride and a rugged rock-and-roll statement" by Relix Magazine, is not to be missed. The band has built a strong following off of a relentless tour schedule and their powerhouse live show, performing at festivals such as Bonnaroo, Gathering of the Vibes, Summer Camp, Mountain Jam, SXSW & CMJ.  (City Center Mainstage, 8 & 11pm)
SIRSY is a rock and soul duo with lots of pop sensibility and just the right amount of sass. The Boston Globe sums it up, “Little band. Big Sound.” Although the only thing “little” about Sirsy is that there's just two of them.  SIRSY is fronted by powerhouse vocalist Melanie (Mel) Krahmer, who is described as “one of the most powerful & flexible voices you’ll ever hear.” (-Times Union). Still, there is more to Mel than her soul-inspired vocals: she also plays a full drum kit while standing up (she’s been featured in Modern Drummer Magazine and is officially endorsed by Paiste Cymbals and Vater Percussion). Mel also plays bass parts with a drum stick (on a keyboard mounted on her drums). She even throws in an occasional flute solo, too.  Guitarist Rich Libutti plays a well-loved and road-worn Rickenbacker through a pedal board of vintage effects. “The guitar player is flawless and raw. Clean enough to be enjoyed, and just edgy enough to make you grin.” (-SXSW Music Blog, Austin TX). Rich also plays bass on a keyboard with his feet. Sirsy has played over 250 shows a year nationally for the last 10 years. They average about 60,000 miles per year in their little white van aptly named "Miles" -- as they tour for a living. You will normally find them in the headline slot but they have also been special guests of such musical stalwarts as Maroon 5, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, Train, RaRaRiot, Third Eye Blind, Lifehouse, Blues Traveler, Cheap Trick, and many more. SIRSY has played official showcases at CMJ and SXSW as well as marquee venues like The Viper Room and Gramercy Theater. Their energetic live show often includes stories and laughter from the stage. SIRSY is currently hard at work writing new songs for a follow-up to their latest EP Sketches and Ghosts and their most recent full-length offering, Coming into Frame. SIRSY’s song Cannonball was featured on the Showtime original series Shameless. Their music video for Lionheart was in the rotation on MTVu and their song Revolution was the theme song for a PBS documentary So Right So Smart.  (City Center Mainstage, 7 & 10pm)
The Figgs, (Mike Gent, Pete Donnelly and Pete Hayes) have a lot to be proud of in their 29th year. The trio has a worldwide fan base, a hearty discography, and have toured and recorded several times with the legendary Graham Parker. And the band continues to attract new fans after a buzz of media activity helped raise awareness of the Figgs. The band had their song Je t’adore used in a Lexus ad and then were featured on a WTF with Marc Maron as they are one of his favorite bands.  Although the three band members now live in Boston (Gent), New York (Hayes) and Philadelphia (Donnelly) respectively, they frequently get together to tour or record whenever possible. 2016 will see the band touring even more than they have recently with shows booked in the Northwest, Southwest, Midwest and a trip overseas to Japan in late Fall. There’s no question the Figgs are one of America’s most enduring rock ‘n’ roll bands. Their latest album, On The Slide, showcases that even after all these years that the connection the three musicians have has not slid into a stagnant state but remains a vibrant and creative musical experience. This album is a testament to their sheer love of music, as well as their drive, energy and power as one of America’s greatest, yet grossly unknown, rock bands of more than two and a half decades. (City Center Mainstage, 6 & 9pm)
From the top~
Aaron Civic began guitar lessons with George Fletcher in Saratoga Springs, NY in October 2004. A few months later, he had established a small repertoire of cover songs, which he would continue to expand upon, and in April of 2005, he started busking in Saratoga Springs. Soon after, he was performing at open mikes, and putting on his own shows at certain venues throughout the larger capital region.  Between 2007 and 2009, Aaron incorporated the use of a Digitech Jamman looping pedal, and eventually, a Korg M50 keyboard workstation. As a result, these new additions facilitated a change in his original material stylistically. The new music was almost solely instrumental material which focused on the one-man band aspect of his performance, as well as the much lighter rock style. As time progressed, he wrote more songs with lyrics, and incorporated the new style of playing into his Rock and Roll background. Aaron has performed at venues in the New York capital region, and has been playing a mix of rock, fusion jazz, and funk. He uses the Korg M50 keyboard workstation to produce drums and bass, and the Digitech Jamman looping pedal to loop the drums, bass, and guitar. All together, it sounds like a full band is performing.  In addition, he has completed an Associate in Science (A.S.) degree in classical guitar performance from SUNY Schenectady, and a Bachelor of Music (B.M.) degree in classical guitar performance from Ithaca College. He is currently pursuing a Master of Music (M.M.) degree from the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD. His repertoire includes Agustin Barrios Mangore, Heitor Villa-Lobos, Fernando Sor, J.S. Bach, Jorge Morel, Joaquin Rodrigo, Eduardo Sainz de la Maza, and others. (Saratoga Arts Gallery, 6, 8 & 10pm) 
Alex Torres & His Latin Orchestra is 12 piece orchestra is led by the Bronx-born bassist Alex Torres.  Formed October 1980 in Amsterdam, NY, they have been presented by hundreds of festivals, performing arts centers and events annually to perform their original blend of Afro-Caribbean rhythms such as Salsa, Merengue, Cha-cha, Bomba, Plena and Latin Jazz. The band’s “SOY SALSA” Concert Performance in March 2015 took them on a 9 day tour of Shanghai, China. Alex Torres & His Latin Orchestra also have been featured on television commercials for The Albany Times Union Newspaper, they wrote and performed the music for the PBS weekly program Made in New York, and twice performed for Time Warner’s music series, Sounding Board. Their music has also been featured in the motion pictures Slammin' Salmon, Old Dogs, Broken City, The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby, Guten Tag Ramon, Drunken Wedding and the made for TV movie Unanswered Prayers. Also on the TV series, Ugly Betty, The Glades, Human Target, The Finder, Miami's The Color Splash, Road To The Kentucky Derby, Quiero Mis Quinces, Mistresses, Breaking Amish, Netflix Series Bloodline and also the featured sound tracks on the video games Tropico 3, 4 & 5.  (City Center, Upstairs Meeting Room, 7, 9 & 11pm)

Alpacas of Breezy Hill Ranch are very gentle creatures and they hope you’ll stop by to wish them a happy New Year! Owners Lisa and David Proulx will have alpaca products to buy such as hats, gloves, mittens, scarves and socks. NBT Bank Parking Lot, all night.

Arianna Stewart, 19 year old singer songwriter, calls herself a “small town girl with big city dreams”. She was featured on Taste of Country as an artist to watch. Arianna has over 20,000 youtube followers from around the world.  (Adirondack Trust Bank, 10pm)
Balloon Gal Jenny twists balloons for kids and adults at local farmers markets, private parties and community events and also teaches beginning and intermediate twisting. She decorates for weddings, bar & bat mitzvahs and special celebrations. With a masters in sculpture and a background in teaching, she brings enthusiasm and a creative eye to every event.  (Free at Lake Ave School Gym 2, 6-10pm) 
Ballston Spa Film Fest’s Selected Shorts is a showcase by an independent not-for-profit whose mission is to promote an appreciation of films and filmmaking in the Ballston Spa and Greater Capital District communities.  They do this by presenting film festivals in which established, emerging and unknown filmmakers can display their films and by organizing public forums, discussions and workshops regarding films and filmmaking.  (Saratoga Arts Dee Sarno Theater, 6-8pm)
Benjamin John is fresh off his first coast-to-coast tour, and returns to First Night Saratoga with his ethereal voice singing familiar stories with a personal touch and twist. His lyrics are clever, and his melodies unforgettable. Come meet the person, and hear the voice.  (Adirondack Trust, 9 & 11pm) 
Better by Morning is a Radio-Ready Alternative band that turns heads with true passion and catch-hook guitar rifs. From the Saratoga Springs, NY area, Better By Morning is Jake Brooks on Lead Vocals & Rhythm Guitar; Johnny Gravitt on Lead Guitar; Ali Genevich on Backing Vocal, Keys & Violin; Danny Caro/Ali Grose on Bass and Kyle Squires on Drums. Better By Morning has played more than 100 shows to date, including the following festivals and clubs all over the Northeast. (Saratoga Visitor’s Center, 6, 8 & 10pm) 
Big Fez and the Surfmatics plays surf and beach music from the early ‘60's. Dressed in matching suits, dark sunglasses, and fez, Big Fez plays all the great instrumental tunes of the surf era by groups like The Ventures and The Surfaris, as well as the great vocal and dance tunes of that era (like The Beach Boys). Their music is performed as a classic rock combo, with two guitars, bass and drums. All four members sing as well. The band is currently celebrating the release of their new CD, entitled Surfin' Around The World.  (St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, 6 & 9pm)
The Blackouts are a Classic Rock Duo comprised of Tom Lindsay and Jeff Ravreby who have been playing together for 15 years in and around Saratoga. Both Skidmore graduates have enjoyed playing at various well-known hot spots such as Gaffney's, Saratoga Tap and Barrel, Bailey's Cafe, City Tavern, Horseshoe Inn, The Local, Lake Local, Skidmore Reunions and private parties. We play a variety of rock, blues and dance music that gets the crowd dancing, singing and feeling good. Our music spans 7 decades since the 50's up to the present and we occasionally like to throw in an original tune written by Tom that are crowd pleasers. Tom plays electric guitar, sings and plays harmonica. Jeff plays bass, guitar and sings.  (Saratoga Springs Post Office, 7, 9 & 11pm)
Blues Journeys music pulls from the Delta to Chicago and beyond.  Vocalist Donna Marie Tritico and blues guitarist Andrew Wheeler present this interpretive blues performance to take you down dirt roads of Mississippi, through the piney woods of the deep south, moonlit nights in the delta, highways 49&61, an empty freight train car, and the hustle and bustle of downtown Chicago at the height of pre-World War II blues music. Hailed as "genuine, authentic and engaging", you'll explore music steeped in Americana - the music of such legends as Memphis Minnie, Blind Willie Johnson, Robert Johnson, Bessie Smith, Elizabeth Cotton, Tommy Johnson, Charley Patton, Leroy Carr & Scrapper Blackwell, Tampa Red, Big Bill Broonzy, Muddy Waters and many more. Hear and feel these legends come alive in story and song.  (Empire State College, Meeting Room 105, 7, 9 & 11pm)
Brass & Blues is where Dixieland Jazz meets Delta Blues in this trio of Mark Tolstrup on vocals, slide guitar and tenor banjo, Ernie Belanger on tuba and Woody Strobeck on trombone. Mark has been performing his passionate interpretation of Delta Blues in the Saratoga Springs area for many years solo and with acoustic and electric bands. Both Ernie and Woody have many decades of experience playing Dixieland Jazz throughout the region.  Together they produce a sound from the roots of American music moaning low with the blues and rollicking with the joy of traditional jazz of New Orleans. (Caffe Lena, 7, 9 & 11pm)  
Keith and Stephanie with curtain flat
The Bindlestiff Family Cirkus has travelled the world since 1995, bringing its unique hybrid of Vaudeville, Circus, Burlesque, and Sideshow to theaters, clubs, colleges, and festivals. We have produced over a dozen Off and Off Off Broadway shows; custom performances for special audiences; all-ages and family productions; and sophisticated adult shows. Bindlestiff adds a contemporary twist to the grand traditions of American Circus.  Bindlestiff Family Cirkus co-founders are Stephanie Monseu and Keith Nelson, who over the last two decades have hosted a variety of outrageous talent under the Bindlestiff banner. Their personal dedication to the variety arts, circus, vaudeville, sideshow, and burlesque has made the Bindlestiff Family Cirkus famous among audiences and within the variety performance community.  Since 2006, Bindlestiff has been developing variety arts and circus programs in New York’s Hudson Valley. Partnerships with arts organizations, social service providers, and schools has created free access to Circus Skills workshops and classes for dozens of Columbia County youth.  Bindlestiff is now producing four festivals each year: two unicycle festivals, one juggling festival and a youth circus festival. Bindlestiff has brought the circus arts to every type of stage and audience imaginable, and some unmentionable. Its shows have ranged from family shows to musical parodies to burlesque Cirkus spectacles. For twenty years Bindlestiff has been keeping the variety arts alive by performing and teaching in New York City, the United States, and beyond.  Performances on stages and festivals around the world include:  Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall (NYC), Glastonbury Festival (UK), Ruigoord Fiery Tongues Festival (NL), Bonnaroo Festival (TN), Virgin Mobile Free Festival (MD) AEMI International Clown Festival (China), SuperGiant Carnival (Thailand)  You can find Bindlestiff Family Cirkus alums working in theaters, film, television, festivals, arts centers, circuses, cruise ships, and special events around the world.  (Lake Avenue School, Auditiorium, 6, 7 & 8pm) 

Buffalo Brass Machine is an eight-piece New Orleans-style brass band with Pop and R&B influences. Based out of the wintery wonderland of Buffalo, NY, the Buffalo Brass Machine is sure to get you out of your seat and movin'!  (Outside Saratoga Arts, all night long)
Caricatures are drawn by Rich Conley, a professional caricature artist since 1988, although he has been drawing since he was old enough to hold a pencil.  Currently he does caricatures in both traditional and digital formats and is a proud member of the International Society of Caricature Artists. He has worked with such great groups as Albany Tulip Festival, MAAC and ECAC tournaments, Saratoga Racetrack, Gilda's House, Ronald McDonald House, Albany Conquest,Tri-City ValleyCats, State University at Albany, and Oneonta, RPI, Union, Sage, Albany College of Pharmacy, General Electric, Macy's, JC Penney, Boskovs, Albany Institute of Art and many, many more. He has also provided character design for various companies including all the design work for Saratoga Sweets.  He tries to bring a fun creative approach to any event by capturing the personality as well as well as the person. “It's important to me to make sure the people who sit for me have a fun and memorable time. My hope is that you leave with a great drawing and an even better memory.” (Free at the Saratoga Springs Post Office, all night)
Cheryl the Medium attempts to make contact with either those who have passed on that are close to the subject or to their spirit guides. Contact can be made either by using psycometry or cards reading a persons’ vibration. Messages received in these reading vary depending on the spirit who is coming through. People can ask questions, though answers are not guaranteed.  Readings are open to individuals, couples, or groups of friends and family, as long as you are comfortable with the other people hearing what ever may be revealed. A medium is not a psychic, and cannot predict the future though often spirits will talk about past present and future events. Make your appointment at the beginning of the evening.  (Empire State College, Meeting Room 104, 6-10pm) 
The Comedy Works showcases comedian, Matt Bergman who has been performing at clubs and colleges since he was in college pursuing a degree in criminal justice. After graduating, he realized he was afraid of criminals and decided stand up comedy was the way to go. 
As it turns out Bergman made the right decision quickly becoming one of the most sought out comedians working today. His ability to relate to any audience has allowed him to work with comics from Mike Birbiglia to Bruce Bruce and any audience in between. He’s a favorite at clubs and colleges across the country and was selected to be a part of the Inaugural Laughing Skull Festival in Atlanta.  Bergman's debut CD “A Little Bit Balder Now” landed him at #15 on the iTunes comedy charts and he's been seen on AXS TV Live at Gotham. (Empire State College, Rotunda, 6, 8 & 10pm)

Comics are drawn by Nick Biales, who started creating his own comic books the moment he could hold a pencil.  After years of practice began selling his work at comic conventions. He’s had the opportunity to learn and work with many professionals in the comics field, like Sid Couchey, best known for his work as an artist for Harvey Comics (Little Lotta, Little Dot and Richie Rich), Stan Burdick (a political cartoonist and curator of the former Ticonderoga Cartoon Museum), Joe St. Pierre (a local commercial illustrator) and many others who were eager to share their experiences.  He will be giving basic instruction on the art of the comic this First Night. (Lake Avenue School, Gym 2, 6 – 10pm)

Corbie Mitleid is a Certified Professional Tarot Reader, Certified Psychic, trained medium and ordained minister. Her work is showcased in Robert Schwartz’s breakthrough series, Your Soul's Plan and Your Soul's Gift, highlighting her ability to retrieve clients’ past lives in detail. With 40 years’ experience, Corbie’s abilities include spiritual/intuitive counseling, past life retrieval and analysis, mediumship, and spirit guide conferences (including speaking with one’s Soul or Higher Self). Corbie speaks and counsels at holistic expos, seminars and workshops throughout the US and Canada, as well as in one-on-one sessions with clients worldwide.  She will be doing past life readings "gallery style" for First Night Saratoga.  (Empire State College, Rotunda, 7, 9 & 11pm)
Crow Ridge is a four piece Upstate New York female-fronted band, specializing in a unique repertoire of Modern Nashville Country, Alternative Country and Americana. The members comprising Crow Ridge are highly experienced, talented and well-known area musicians. The band provides high-energy, danceable cover songs, along with tunes where one can simply kick back and enjoy the music. Crow Ridge’s mission is to always be in service to its audience, whether it be in a small pub or on a large concert stage. Our carefully selected extensive repertoire, in which we’ve pulled songs from the three related genres of Nashville Country, Alt Country and Americana, is sure to offer something for everyone.  (Temple Sinai, 7, 9 & 11pm) 
Dan Meyer- Cutting Edge Innertainment Sword Swallower has always been fascinated by fire-eaters and sword swallowers -- first as a child watching circus sideshows in Indiana, and later as a missionary witnessing Indian fakirs in India.  Meyer became passionate about learning the incredible feats himself and after four years of in-depth research and careful daily practice totaling almost 13,000 unsuccessful attempts, Meyer finally taught himself to swallow solid steel swords up to 30 inches long.  As President of the Sword Swallowers Association International, award-winning author of a 2-year medical research study published in the British Medical Journal that won him the 2007 Ig Nobel Prize in Medicine at Harvard, TEDx speaker, and avid historical researcher and passionate advocate for preserving the ancient art of sword swallowing, Meyer quickly became recognized as the world’s leading expert in the 4000 year old art of sword swallowing.  A 7-time Guinness World Record holder, Ripley’s Believe It or Not, and Top 50 Finalist on NBC’s hit reality show America’s Got Talent, Meyer is in demand for his live comedy performances, high profile stunts, motivational talks, science and medical lectures and media appearances - seen by over 750 million viewers in over 30 countries around the world.  (St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, 7 & 10pm) 
Darling Valley’s latest folk rock album, Crooked Orchards, fits together neatly. This isn’t by accident: it’s the work of a quartet that has hit a comfortable stride. The album, which came out June 24th on Sounds and Tones Records of North Adams, Mass., is full of folk ballads, quick rhythms and imaginative lyrics, all rooted in real experience. It’s the first record Darling Valley, two husband and wife duos from the capital region, released with Sounds and Tones. Previously, the band released two full-length albums and an EP under the name Accents. Since those releases, multiple songs have been featured in hit MTV dramas and other productions. The band’s unique blend of folk and indie-rock has a clear direction, despite—or maybe due in part to—the wide variety of instruments used. Lauren Foster, one of the band’s three vocalists, breaks out a pocket-trumpet during You’ll Go Far, Kid. Ashleigh Whitfield, another of the band’s vocalists, weaves theatrical-esque piano throughout band-favorite Five Years at Sea. All four members of Darling Valley play percussion live, on different drums, at different times. It all combines to create pretty, rich folk-pop with lyrical authenticity, even when a song takes place at sea or during a revolution. “With their complimentary male and female duets and penchant for storytelling, [this is] basically what The Decemberists would sound like on anti-depressants…” — Decoy Music (City Center, Downstairs Meeting Room, WEXT STAGE: 8 & 11pm) 
Dinoman and his pet raccoon Reflex have entertained over a million theater goers across the United States for the past 20 years. What's a fossil? How are they made? Does the raccoon attack? These questions and more are answered during a 40 minute romp through the Mesozoic era. What better way to ring in the New Year with merry mayhem, magic, and three life-size dinosaurs.  Dinosaurs in the building? Have no fear Dinoman is here! (Lake Avenue School, Gym 1, 6 & 8pm)
Dwayne Murphy Jr. is a fresh young face from the bustling metropolis of Omaha, Nebraska. Getting his start in North Carolina and making his way all over the east coast, this small town kid has a big city personality. In 2010 he was a participant in the Cape Fear Comedy Festival and has worked at the Funny Bone in Virginia Beach, Richmond, and Syracuse. In recent years he has established himself as a favorite of The Comedy Works in Albany. This past year he was a semi- finalist in the Boston Comedy Festival and was even on The Nobodies of Comedy Tour.  (Saratoga Arts Dee Sarno Theater, 9 & 11pm)
Erin Harkes is a singer/songwriter. She’s a full time musician. She’s also a part time standup comedian. She began writing her own songs at age 19 and has released four albums of original material since then.  The power of her voice and the emotion that comes through her lyrics makes you want to sit and listen to every word.  Erin’s lyrics tell stories of her life, sang through a big voice that’s often compared to Janis Joplin. 
Erin’s spontaneity and willingness to perform won her a spot on “Battle of the Instant Bands” on the Jimmy Fallon show in April of 2010.  Having only 20 minutes to prepare with an impromptu band made up of complete strangers, Erin won over both Jimmy Fallon and the studio audience by naming the band (“Fallon Angels”) and the song (“Free Jimmy”) – the band performed the song with Erin on vocals to an explosive audience response and easily won the contest.

 Erin is regularly voted Best Singer/Songwriter in the Capital Region by the Times Union Reader’s Poll and the Metroland Weekly.  After years of being told she was funny, on and off stage, in 2012 Erin decided to try her hand at standup comedy.  In a very short amount of time she achieved much local success and has since performed nearly every major club in NYC and even Toronto.  Whether singing songs or telling jokes, Erin commands attention every time she steps foot on stage.  And we all know Erin loves attention! (The Hampton Inn, 6, 8 & 10pm)
Grafton Street Trio is named for the famous pedestrian walkway in Dublin, Ireland where street musicians entertain passers-by. The trio performs traditional Irish and other Celtic style music on uilleann bagpipes, fiddles, mandolin and guitar. The group especially enjoys high energy dance tunes from the Irish and Quebecois traditions and performs in the region for dances and festivals. (NYS Military Museum, 6 & 8pm) 
Grit N Whiskey is a Saratoga Springs-based modern country band. The members of this six-piece are known for their strong vocals, high energy and danceable country music. Performing live music for five years together, Grit N Whiskey has played shows throughout the New York area. See Grit N Whiskey in person and you'll understand just how much the band members love music and enjoy entertaining a crowd. (First Baptist Church, 6 & 9pm)
Harold Ford – the Spirit of Johnny Cash demonstrates an uncanny vocal and physical resemblance to the great American musician. Raised on the old American pioneer songs, at the age of four Harold began singing duets and harmonies with his sister, Dorothy. His father accompanied them on the banjo, and mother followed along with the piano. Music and a pioneering love of America became an integral part of his existence. Over the years, Ford weaved his way north, south, east and west, exploring the back roads, country woods and people of this great land. As a true American figure and artist himself, Harold Ford’s many experiences make him a storyteller in his own right and lend a deep identification to Johnny Cash’s music. (First Baptist Church, 8 & 11pm)
Heavenly Echoes, a Gospel Group, based in Albany, NY for about 50 years, is comprised of singers and musicians who play traditional gospel songs with the sound of '60s Southern soul music. The Heavenly Echoes share several members with the roots group J.V. & The Cutters and frequently team up in a program called "Moving Heaven and Earth" that presents two distinct styles of Americana as you will see this First Night. (St. Peter’s Parish Center, 6, 8 & 10pm) 
Hetko, SiegelSyracuse were brought together 7 years ago by the late great pianist Lee Shaw.  Syracuse and Siegel (bass & drums) were Shaw’s rhythm section and recorded several demos for then high school student pianist Nick Hetko – who has gone on to a career of incredible acclaim while still only 24 years old.  Rich Syracuse and Jeff Siegel were quite taken with the young prodigy and have kept up a relationship over the seven years performing both in upstate New York and New York City.  As a trio they also recorded on the cd Luna on the Argentinian record label Tamaba with Buenos Aires guitarist Ale Demogli.  Hetko has just been named the winner on piano of Lee Ritenour’s worldwide Six String Theory Competition and will be performing in Japan and L.A.  He has also performed with James Moody, Chris Potter, Matt Wilson, Kenny Burrell and more. Syracuse was the long time bassist for saxophonist Nick Brignola, while also performing along the way with Lee Shaw, Joey Calerazzo, Jeff “Tain” Watts,  Mose Allison, the Brubeck Brothers and more.  Siegel has worked with many jazz luminaries including Sir Roland Hanna, Dave Douglas, Ron Carter, Kurt Elling, Wadada Leo Smith, Jack DeJohnette and countless others.  The trio performs a wide range of material ranging from original compositions (drawing on the tradition of jazz and modern influences including odd meter and world music) to classic jazz, not to mention the original music of upstate New York favorite Lee Shaw.   This promises to be a most exciting and special event!  Don’t miss! (Saratoga Arts Dee Sarno Theater, 8 & 10pm)
Holly & Evan Band members come from rich musical backgrounds, Holly Taormina and Evan Conway have joined together with drummer Bob Morris, and saxophonist Josh Greenberg, to update the traditions of the Barrelhouse, with their unique and electric style. Holly & Evan have actively pushed the boundaries of traditional blues music, mixing in hefty loads of jazz, funk and soul; culminating in two appearances at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis TN in 2013 and 2014.  (The Hampton Inn, 7 & 9pm) 
Hot Club of Saratoga, the premier gypsy swing ensemble of the Saratoga/Capital Region, reflects the spirit and style originated by Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli in the 1930’s. Following in the footsteps of a long line of gypsy jazz artists since that time, HCS brings together driving rhythms under dynamic soloing that gives the music a life and vibrancy sure to bring a smile and often an irresistible desire to move. From high energy dancing rhythms to soulful ballads and everything in-between, Hot Club of Saratoga has brought the hot swing sound to coffee houses, restaurants, clubs, swing dances, festivals, fundraising soirees, corporate functions, private parties, weddings, and celebrations of every kind. (NBT Bank, 7, 9 & 11pm) 
J.V. & The Cutters plays original music that fuses elements of rock, funk, soul, gospel and jazz with the power and directness of electric blues. They call this music “the new urban blues.”™ J.V. started playing bass guitar after hearing the bluesy swing and shuffle of Bill Wyman from the early days of the Rolling Stones. A few years later, the music of Albert King inspired him to pick up the guitar. J.V. writes music rooted in the styles of masters such as T. Bone Walker, John Lee Hooker and Muddy Waters. The lyrics, however, reflect contemporary issues and modern life.  J.V. & The Cutters share several members with the Gospel group Heavenly Echoes and frequently team up in a program called "Moving Heaven and Earth" that presents two distinct styles of Americana as you will see this First Night. (St. Peter’s Parish Center, 7, 9 & 11pm) 
Joan Scannell - It's in the Cards Tarot and Numerology is a local Tarot reader, numerologist, and author who brings 25 years of experience to her readings and gatherings. Joan combines Numerology and Tarot to give a thorough reading and help individuals answer challenging questions. She also adds Astrology in her readings where appropriate. Public appearances include Saratoga’s First Night Celebrations, NYRA’s Fabulous Fillies event, Project Lift University Fundraiser, World Awareness Children’s Museum Mardi Gras Event, National Dowser’s Convention and Bolton Landings Girlfriend’s Getaway Weekend. Joan is also a regular reader at The Magic Moon, Saratoga’s much-loved metaphysical shop, and is the founder of the Saratoga Springs Tarot Enthusiasts Meet-up group. Come early to make an appointment.  (Empire State College, Meeting Room 108, 6-10pm) 
Jon Stetson is America’s Master Mentalist and was the inspiration for the CBS Television series “The Mentalist".  The Stetson Experience is intelligent, interactive, sophisticated fun.  Along with hundreds of corporate and celebrity appearances, Jon has performed for three U.S. Presidents, The King of Sweden, The Royal Family of Monaco, and has appeared on several major Television Networks.  Interjecting uproarious comedy into each program, Jon creates a hilarious and unique presentation that never fails to blow the audience away. Stetson blends the art of Mystery with the study of Psychology, the predictability of human nature and the power of intuition, with a disarming sense of humor. The result is slack jawed amazement, where the most skeptical of audience members begin to feel a renewed sense of wonder as impossibilities become realities. Jon Stetson’s engaging programs are packed with audience participation. Imaginations are wowed, stretched and captured, as thoughts are revealed and minds are being read with Jon’s intriguing  games of mind to mind contact.  Thought Reading has never been this much fun! (Saratoga Hilton, Broadway Ballroom, 6, 8:30 & 11pm)
L.B. Walker has been described in simple terms: a “stellar performer with a rich voice.” With the help of a 1930 National Steel Guitar, blues harmonica and a foot-stompin' tambourine, L.B. attracts audiences of all ages with his enthusiasm for the blues, his renditions of classic American standards, and his own original tunes. From the street sounds of Memphis and the rhythm of North Mississippi to the soulful sounds of the Delta, L.B. Walker is ready to display musical artistry that lives up to the immortal tradition of American blues music. (Lifestyles of Saratoga, 6, 8 & 10pm)
The Living Roots Trio “pre-dominantly ply a quiet, subtle British-style folk, delicate, ringing guitar picking a la Bert Jansch, John Renbourn, Nick Drake, which quickly breaks into an American jazz-inflected swing blues, that is pure '20s class. Meaghan Witri's vocal harmony brings a lovely light to the proceedings, ringing out clear as a bronze bell over the smooth burr of Séamus Maynard's cello tenor… They bring an airy, graceful gentility to the folk gathering that is particularly, stunningly beautiful.” - No Division. Founded by singer song writer Séamus Maynard and Meaghan Witri the band is recently joined by versatile, jazz bassist John Merritt. After releasing To All Things in January of 2016 The Living Roots Trio has shared its music with festivals and venues across the country and over seas. (City Center, Downstairs Meeting Room, WEXT STAGE, 6 & 9pm)
Maddy Hicks is a singer songwriter from Saratoga County who has been sharing her catchy, heartfelt music at local coffee houses and open mics for the last four years. Her influences include Sara Bareilles, Ed Sheeran, Kacey Musgraves, and Taylor Swift. A junior at Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake High School, Maddy plans to attend college after graduation to study songwriting. She has already taken classes and workshops through Berklee College of Music to better herself as a musician. Her set includes new original music that showcases her distinct voice and sound.  (Adirondack Trust Bank, 7pm)
MaryLeigh Roohan has “the wisdom of an old soul in the body of a young, yearning individual.” Whether it’s her dynamic and passionate performances, or her poignant and honest songwriting, this sentiment has been expressed throughout Roohan’s career. With a style that shifts seamlessly from sunny indie pop to heartfelt Americana and a stage presence that’s full of dynamic soul, she’s an entrancing presence who is making waves.  (Saratoga Visitor’s Center, 7, 9 & 11pm) 
Matthew Boyce & the Suspicious Minds is fronted by a 17-year-old Elvis Tribute Artist who most recently, placed second in the adult, 70s division at the Lake George Elvis Festival in 2015 and 2016. He also placed 3rd in a fan’s choice Elvis Contest in Montreal. A tribute artist since 2007, Matthew has taken his love for Elvis all over, performing in New York, Vermont, Massachusetts, Canada and more. Locally, you may have seen Matthew at Fall Festival, First Night 2015, Polish Fest and more. This band strives to be the most accurate representation to seeing Elvis live on tour. With their vintage microphones, instruments, and the replica jumpsuits, this show is one not to miss! Whether you’re a die hard Elvis fan or you just enjoy the music, you’ll be glad you came to this show! (Presbyterian New-England Congregational Church, 8pm & 10pm)
Kevin McKrell was awarded the 2014 Times Union Singer Songwriter of the year. His songs have been recorded and or performed by artists from around the world including ,The Kingston Trio, The Furey Brothers and Davy Arthur, Seamus Kennedy, North Sea Gas, Hair of the Dog ,Wood’s Tea Company, Bob Shane, The Dublin City Ramblers,Get Up Jack and many more. Kevin was a founding member of Celtic Folk band Donnybrook Fair, Bluegrass band and The McKrells. Kevin has performed in theaters, nightclubs and on festival stages across the United States, Canada, Ireland and the U.K. Kevin and his bands have performed for audiences at the top Celtic, Folk and Bluegrass festivals as well as Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, Troy Music Hall, Caffé Lena, Berklee Performance Hall , Proctors Theater, Saratoga Performing Arts Center. The Egg, North Texas Irish Festival, The Landmark Theater Syracuse, Milwaukee Irish Festival, Celtic Classic, The Great American Irish Festival, MusikFest, Falcon Ridge Folk Festival, Winterhawk Bluegrass festival. This First Night Kevin will be joined by talented friends who have complimented his music making over the years. (The First Baptist Church, 7 & 10pm)
Michael Ray has been a staple in the North Country, bringing his unusual talent to schools and other charitable organizations. Michael Started entertaining audiences as a magician at the young age of 9. While attending college, Michael studied the art and techniques of hypnosis. Combining his skills with over 30 years of experience and his unique sense of humor, Comic Hypnotist - Michael Ray has a way of involving the entire audience in this over the top show. Michael Ray's high energy comedy hypnosis show is guaranteed to have you laughing and talking about it for days to come. (Saratoga Hilton, Broadway Ballroom, 7 & 9:30pm)
Mike Campese is an American guitarist and composer best known for being a member of the multi-platinum group Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Mike was picked over several guitarists in 2004 during the band's fourth CD, The Lost Christmas Eve and received a gold record for his work. Mike has been featured in many national guitar magazines such as Guitar Club in Italy, Guitar One and writes lessons for Guitar Player magazine, Guitar World magazine and Guitar Club Magazine. Mike is a versatile musician who describes his style as Rock Fusion and writes vocal and instrumental arrangements, electric and acoustic.  (Lifestyles of Saratoga, 7, 9 & 11pm)
MJ Henion has been studying and practicing rune divination for many years and uses the Elder Futhark for her readings. The Elder Futhark, consisting of 24 runes is the oldest form of the runic alphabets and was used by Germanic tribes as a communication system starting in the 2nd century. Many believe runes have mystical powers and are more direct at targeting what is going on in our lives. MJ is Senior Druid of Tear of the Cloud Grove, ADF and teaches runes, tarot and other metaphysical classes for those looking to expand their knowledge and empower themselves. Her interests besides divination include Civil War history, paranormal research, nature photography, hiking and sports medicine. Show up early to make a reservation!  (Empire State College, Room 125, 6-10pm)
The Mop and Bucket Company is the Capital District’s premiere improvisational theatre company. The company has been in existence in its present form since 2005.  MopCo is a resident company at Proctors Theatre in Schenectady, NY. The company performs, teaches, and trains at venues around the region, as well as nationally and internationally. Live performance fills a central, universal need of humankind. This need cannot be met by passive reception of electronic or virtual paths, but must be experienced with all five senses. MopCo believes that the best theatre comes out of an active collaboration between performer and audience. We constantly expand, refine, and redefine our own concept of what improvisation in performance is.  (St. Paul's Lutheran Church: 8 & 11pm)
The Nisky Dixie Cats are a seven-piece ensemble who have performed to audiences across New York's Capital Region. Since 1995, they have been dedicated to playing traditional New Orleans, Riverboat, and Dixieland-style music for all occasions. Tapping your feet, singing along, and getting up to dance are all welcomed and encouraged as these Cats hop through the songs of Jelly Roll Morton, Kid Ory, Duke Ellington, Scott Joplin, and other greats of America’s original jazz artists!  (NBT Bank, 6, 8 & 10pm) 
Nitro Jive is a unique band to the upstate New York region. Since their debut in 2006, they have brought their high-energy style of Jump, Blues and Swing to audiences of all ages.  Nitro Jive's sound is heavily influenced by the horn driven Jump and Swing bands of the late 1940's and modern bands like Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, Brian Setzer and Royal Crown Revue.  Fronted by Billy Deuel, a swingin' male vocalist and excellent showman, Nitro Jive delivers a vibe and show that swings the audience with toe- tapping grooves. The smokin' hot rhythm section of Jeff Dowd on drums, Sam Farkas on guitar and Kevin Norris on bass deliver the pulse of the music. Eric Walentowicz / saxes, Peter Bellino / trumpet and Ken Olsen / trombone combine their considerable talents to provide one of the very hottest horn sections heard anywhere.  Nitro Jive remains a favorite among the swing dancers, drawing record- setting crowds to the Saratoga Savoy Diamond Dances and Spa City Swingers dance events. Their appearances at events like Downtown Albany's Lunchtime Concert Series, Summertime Park Concerts and The Saratoga Polo Club prove they can “wow” an audience of listeners as well.  So, get ready to JUMP! Whether it's to the full seven-piece band or our Jazz flavored quartet/quintet version, Nitro Jive will present our unique show in a hip format certain to please dancers and listeners alike! (City Center, Upstairs Meeting Room, 6, 8 & 10pm)
Opera Saratoga presents Saratoga Sings a New Years' Celebration - a festive concert to celebrate looking forward and new beginnings! Featuring guest artists from the country’s leading opera houses, the concert will be hosted by Opera Saratoga’s Artistic Director Lawrence Edelson. The opera company that once was a dream founded on the majestic shores of Lake George is now a world-class performing arts organization, serving over 40,000 people annually.  Opera Saratoga has a long, proud legacy of producing innovative, outstanding works that critics and audiences rave about each and every year. Celebrate the New Year in song with Opera Saratoga! (The Church of St. Peter, 8 & 9pm)
Origami is folded by Dan Busha as been folding and teaching origami for over 20 years. He has taught classes in Japanese paperfolding in Saratoga Springs, Glens Falls, Troy and Albany. He has also been one of the participants in Larkfest’s Family Fun Zone for three years and has provided decorations for several weddings and birthday parties, including a Saratoga event that celebrated Philly Dake’s 80th birthday in 2006. He has held workshops at the Saratoga Springs Library, Crandall Library and Saratoga First Night in years past. Through his workshops and classes, he has given children, teens and adults the opportunity to discover the world of origami and all its beauty for themselves.  (Lake Avenue School, Gym 2, 6–10pm)
Patrice Gandalfa has been reading and teaching tarot for over thirty years and will offer a workshop on tarot reading this First Night.  She will guide small groups through the meaning of the symbols and positions in the cardspread, and she’ll work with you to synthesize the story that the cards are telling.  Together you can learn to interpret hints the universe is offering and gain a better foundation for your won tarot work in the future.  (Empire State College Cafeteria, 6, 7, 8 & 9pm)
The Magic of Patrick Davis showcases the work of a magician from Louisville, Kentucky.  In addition to being the host and producer of the weekly variety show The Amazing Miracle Hour and appearing regularly at Monday Night Magic, New York's longest running Off-Broadway magic show, Patrick has performed at some of the best private parties and events that NYC has to offer. From the world famous Rainbow Room atop the iconic Rockefeller Center to Central Park's historic Tavern on the Green, his quick wit and quicker hands make his magical performances a chance to witness the impossible. Let him show you magic like you've never seen it before.  (PNECC, 9 & 11pm) 
Pete & Chris Amusements out of Waterbury, Connecticut, are New England's ONLY Two-Man Kid's Magic Show! We give an ULTRA high-energy performance that captures kid's attention, and doesn't let go! The wacky Presto Pete and overconfident Incredulous Chris use comedy, magic, and kid-friendly slapstick to reduce their audiences to laughs, giggles and guffaws! They will be hosting their own unique version of karaoke... Magic Karaoke!  Fun karaoke with energetic and interactive hosts interspersed with their special brand of MAGIC! (Lake Avenue School, Gym 2, 6 & 8pm)
Phil Henry with Gary Moon craft old-school story songs so rich and sweeping you’ll wish you wrote them yourself. A formally trained musician, Phil Henry builds strange, beautiful chords and a big acoustic sound. His new CD, Aberdeen, features the Phil Henry Acoustic Trio and a dozen characters and stories. “Vivid lyrical imagery that captures the imagination,” says Vermont’s Seven Days publication.  (Caffe Lena, 6, 8 & 10pm)
Racing City Chorus, Saratoga Springs' Ambassadors of Harmony since 1956, are the reigning Mountain Division Champions of the 22,000 member Barbershop Harmony Society.  A long-time First Night participant popular with all age groups, the chorus performs a cappella standards, show tunes, pop songs and patriotic favorites in the unique American art form of barbershop four-part harmony. Their recent engagements include such diverse performances as the National Anthem for the Houston Astros affiliate Tri-City Valley Cats professional baseball team and the Saratoga Springs City Council's inauguration; traditional holiday carols for the Saratoga Springs' Downtown Business Association's Victorian Streetwalk; SPAC's Community Picnic; the Saratoga National Cemetery's Korean War Veterans memorial service; the City Center's Chip Festival; the Saratoga Springs Chamber of Commerce's Hat's Off festival; the New York Racing Association's Veteran's Appreciation Day; and the "Barbershop on Broadway" series of sidewalk mini-concerts.  (Church of St. Peter, 10 & 11pm)
Ramblin Jug Stompers are seasoned performers who spent years touring and recording in notable combos such as Blotto, Star Spangled Washboard Band, Commander Cody and the Lost Planet Airmen, The Neanderthals and The Stomplistics. Now Bowtie, Cousin Clyde, Wild Bill and Mister Eck return to their acoustic beginnings in jug band music, old time country and blues. Their signature ramblin style of music and witty stage antics create an American roots ruckus tangled up in ragtime melodies, country harmonies and their patented "dual banjo attack". (City Center, Downstairs Meeting Room, WEXT STAGE, 7 & 10pm)
The Saratoga Savoy specializes in Ballroom, Argentine Tango, Club Latin, Swing and more and will get you on your feet and moving in style for the dance bands playing this First Night.  (The City Center, Upstairs Meeting Room, all night)  
Saratoga Soundtrack Chorus is an award winning women's a cappella group, singing four-part harmony. Singing everything from standards and jazz to ballads and contemporary songs the chorus has been performing under the direction of the talented composer/arranger/director Nancy Faddegon since 2008. Their musical performance is visually enhanced through characterization and choreography. Through the years this musical group has delighted local audiences at many popular events and venues: Congress Park, Saratoga Race Course, Dance Flurry, Saratoga Memorial Day Parade, and First Night. Saratoga Soundtrack Chorus is chartered with Sweet Adelines International, a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting the art form of barbershop harmony through education and performance. The members of SSC recently were awarded Master Singers status by scoring 601 points at the Sweet Adelines Region 15 Greater NewYork/New Jersey competition in Albany. Currently, Saratoga Soundtrack Chorus maintains fourth place worldwide in the Harmony Classic Sweet Adelines International Competition which was held in Las Vegas. Ring in the New Year with the melodious sounds of the holidays as performed by these gifted musicians! (NYS Military Museum, 7 & 9pm) 
Saratoga Youth Symphony was founded in 2012 by three dedicated musicians in New York’s Capital Region:  Sue Nazzaro, Ubaldo Valli, and Ellen Madison. The symphony orchestra was founded on the belief that great music should be available to all students and that the musicians of the orchestra should be able to share their love for music with each other, and within the community.  Under the leadership of Music Director Katie Gardner, the SYS provides an orchestral experience for talented student musicians ages 18 and under. Members of the Youth Symphony represent more than two dozen schools throughout the Capital District. The SYS continues to build upon its reputation for musical excellence while maintaining its commitment to music education and community activities.  (Church of St. Peter, 6 & 7pm)
Scott Jameson taught himself how to juggle and perform countless magic tricks at age eight, with the help of a stack of library books. In high school he participated in the theater program and competed in the dramatic speaking league. While attending workshops in comedy, mime, movement, improvisation, dance, etc. at Maine’s Celebration Barn Theatre Scott discovered that the usual notion of what a “magic show” was could be replaced with something far more creative and compelling. In 1998 Scott began his full-time career in solo variety theatre and currently travels throughout the Northeast presenting programs for audiences large and small. (Lake Avenue School, Gym 1, 7 & 9pm)
Seina Shirakura is a violinist, violist, fiddler and teacher, who aims to spread her love of music with others. Shirakura got her start in fiddling in middle school and played in the Saratoga Springs High School Fiddle Club. She teaches both fiddle and classical music and has had performances at Carnegie Hall, Tanglewood, Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, SPAC, and more. She attended the Manhattan School of Music for Precollege and will graduate this year from the Hartt School in CT with a BM in Violin Performance and Suzuki Pedagogy. (Saratoga Arts Gallery, 7, 9 & 11pm)
Seth & The Moody Melix is an award winning, toe-tapping trio that plays lyrically rich music for kids that parents will love too. With guitar (Seth Warden), fiddle (Doug Moody), and percussion (Brian Melick), along with sweet harmony vocals, their songs impart good values and educational tidbits in an upbeat, organic style. The group recently completed their second filming for the Food Network show Farmhouse Rules, and Seth is currently featured on the Travel Channel Show Mysteries at the Museum. (Lake Avenue School, Gym 2, 7 & 9pm)
Shakespeare Approves invites you to join Will Shakespeare as he takes you on adventures full of merriment, sword fights, mistaken identities, star-cross’d lovers, romance, shipwrecks, musical numbers, and … being pursued by a bear! The Shakespearean adventures are a family-friendly, madcap, zany time where everyone gets involved, whether you want to jump onstage as a performer or sit back in the audience & enjoy the fun! Where there’s a Will, there’s a Play! (Saratoga Springs Post Office, 6, 8 & 10pm)
Shane Guerrette is a fresh 18-year-old singer-songwriter with big dreams and an ever-expanding fan base, whose future as a performer looks quite promising. Drawing on modern influences from artists such as Ed Sheeran and John Mayer, Guerrette also pays tribute to familiar greats—from Jimi Hendrix to Dave Matthews. Still, hearing Guerrette’s music is all you need to see that the up-and-coming singer-songwriter has blended his influences of electric and acoustic rock to form a style that is uniquely his own. (Adirondack Trust Bank, 6 & 8pm) 
Silent Wings Raptors bring birds of prey up close courtesy of the Wildlife Institute of Eastern New York.  Owls, hawks, eagles and falcons; all have remarkable adaptations and skills for survival in the wild and all are breathtakingly beautiful and fascinating to watch!  Admired for their strength, speed and astounding grace raptors are some of the most successful hunters in the animal kingdom. Their fierce independence and tenacity has been the source of admiration for countless generations.  Learn about them, their unique behaviors and the conservation issues that impact them including natural selection and the “human” impact on species survival. (Lake Avenue School Cafeteria: 6-8pm & 8-10pm)
The Storycrafters, Barry Marshall, and Jeri Burns, PhD, have been working together since 1991, and have been storytellers for even longer than that. They perform and teach their art form in schools, libraries, and other venues all over the US and the British Isles.   Jeri and Barry believe in the time-tested wisdom of traditional stories, and share that wisdom with today’s audiences. They strive to honor world cultures by telling the old stories in respectful ways, often integrating the musical instruments, songs or dances indigenous to that region. The Storycrafters have been recognized nationally and locally, from the prestigious Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award and Parents Choice Awards, for their storytelling recordings, to Artists of the Year in their county. Their family radio show, “Just Imagine” has been showered with awards from the NYS Broadcasters’ Association. Publishers’ Weekly describes them as "top-notch family entertainment". (Presbyterian New-England Congregation Church, 6 & 7pm)
Street Greek is the moniker of singer-songwriter Shawn Cephas. Chosen as an expression of his music’s lucidity, Shawn explains “Street Greek Music” as music everyone can relate to - a common language. Born and raised in the music industry, Shawn absorbed a broad range of styles in his youth. As a result, Street Greek is a delightful mix of soul, blues, pop, and folk. His voice - sometimes intimate, sometimes soaring – takes the listener on a journey of love, awakening, and understanding. Joining Shawn for First Night Saratoga is Anna Spackman, a soulful and uplifting singer-songwriter whose music echoes the work of Joni Mitchell and Sarah McLachlan, with her intricate guitar work and soaring vocals. Anna gives generously of herself in every performance and the result is utterly riveting. (Temple Sinai, 6, 8 & 10pm) 
Two Guys are a unique indie-folk duo from upstate New York who have been in the capital region music scene for over 20 years. Eric Braymer who was previously the bandleader and songwriter of the modern rock trio SpineCar performs lead vocals and acoustic guitars while Ron Burris, the former drummer and leader of Sub Atomic Genius, and the roots- rock band Sumac, provides the pulsing rhythm, drums and harmony vocals. After years of the heavy rock music scene, both Ron and Eric are excited to have created a new sound that is stripped down to the basics and challenges what they have learned from their wide ranging and eclectic musical pasts. Two Guys' original sound has been described as modern indie-folk rock, attributable to the distinct vocals and harmonies supported by intricate and dreamy finger-style guitars and brash scrappy drum beats to fill out the sound in a unique way. While playing a daytime gig at a local record store, Two Guys met Wreckless Eric - a renowned British Rock Icon - who wrote the 1977 hit "Whole Wide World" and immediately took an interest in the unique sound of Two Guys. With many new original songs and an interesting blend of reinvented cover songs from the past and present, Two Guys are ready to entertain and share their music with the world. (Empire State College, Meeting Room 105, 6, 8 & 10pm)

What is First Night Saratoga?

One of the oldest and largest celebrations of its kind in the country:

  • 15,000+ revelers;
  • The 5k roadrace at Skidmore College;
  • 30 venues throughout Historic Downtown Saratoga Springs;
  • 70+ regional and touring acts performing live music, dance, comedy and magic from 6pm to midnight!


The most affordable, accessible, safe and exciting all-ages New Year's Eve event in the region:

  • 9,000 admission buttons priced at $20 and under;
  • Kids 12 and under are admitted for free; 
  • All venues are alcohol-free;
  • Free CDTA bus service;
  • Fireworks in Congress Park at midnight!


First Night Saratoga will be the highlight of your outgoing year!



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