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June 7, 2022

Saratoga: 2022 Cidiot Guide

Saratoga: 2022 Cidiot Guide

It’s time to start planning all those adventures we’ve put off for the past two years and the perfect place to start an exploration is Saratoga Performing Arts Center (SPAC). Cidiot featured Saratoga and SPAC in Episode 69. 

SPAC is a world-class outdoor amphitheater in New York’s exquisite Saratoga Spa State Park, located a stone’s throw from six million acres of Adirondack parkland yet just a train ride from New York City. Every summer, tens of thousands will flock to this under-the-radar cultural oasis for a variety of art exhibitions and live performances while basking in the tranquil setting of a 2,400-acre park preserve surrounded by hiking trails, geysers, and natural mineral springs. And it’s all just a short walk from the picturesque downtown.

“As the perfect confluence of natural and man-made beauty, Saratoga has long been a place of inspiration and refuge where people can connect with each other and become immersed in incomparable arts and cultural experiences,” said Elizabeth Sobol, president and CEO of Saratoga Performing Arts Center. 

New York City Ballet performance
Photo courtesy of SPAC

Highlights of Saratoga Springs:

  • The two-day, two-stage 45th annual Freihofer’s Saratoga Jazz Festival, the fifth longest consecutive running jazz festival in North America, takes place Saturday and Sunday, June 25-26. From jazz to roots, funk to blues and beyond, the festival will bring its signature blend of prominent and emerging artists and ensembles, solidifying its place as a must-stop on the 2022 festival trail.

  • New York City Ballet (July 12-16)
    • SPAC will feature new pieces by Jamar Roberts and Pam Tanowitz. The Company will also present the full-length story ballet A Midsummer Night’s Dream; an evening dedicated to 20th Century Masters highlighted by Merce Cunningham’s Summerspace, returning to SPAC for the first time since 1967; and the return of Justin Peck’s In Creases a decade after its world premiere at SPAC in 2012.

  • The Philadelphia Orchestra (July 27-August 13)
    • Led by Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin, the Philadelphia Orchestra’s residency includes 14-time GRAMMY nominee Ledisi singing the music of Nina Simone, pianist and NPR host Lara Downes, world-renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma and violinist Joshua Bell alongside star soprano Larisa Martinez.
    • The orchestra will also perform the East Coast Premiere of Contact by Pulitzer-Prize-winning composer Kevin Puts featuring the genre-crossing ensemble Time for Three.
    • Philadelphia’s premier contemporary ballet company, BalletX, performing a new work choreographed by Tiler Peck of the New York City Ballet.
  • Dance Around Town: A Photographic Celebration
    • A collection of dance photographs celebrating the endless energy and triumphant spirit of dance, on display at venues throughout the city of Saratoga Springs this summer.
    • SPAC will feature the collection Merce My Way, featuring photographs by Mikhail Baryshnikov of the Cunningham Dance Company. Baryshnikov pays vibrant homage to the work of master choreographer Merce Cunningham, whose ballet Summerspace will be featured as part of NYCB’s upcoming 2022 season. In his own words, Baryshnikov describes his project as his “humble attempt to see, measure, and understand the work of one of the greatest choreographers of our time.”
    • Ageless Dancers, Betti Franceschi’s collection of iconic senior dancers will be on exhibit at Saratoga Arts. Through her work, Franceschi challenges the culture of ageism in America. While their technique is no longer flawless, the dancers’ expressive energy, physicality, and spirit remain triumphant. The final exhibit, Robert Tracy on Dance, features the dancer, critic, and educator’s archive of dance photographs at The Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery


Explore some more

Where to stay


Where to eat

  • Savor your experience with world-class dining options including Hamlet & Ghost, which serves craft cocktails and New American bites in a speakeasy vibe, southern comfort fare from Hattie’s, an elegant feast at 15 Church or modern American steakhouse Salt & Char.


Tune into Episode 69 for more, including Elizabeth Sobol’s suggested itinerary of an ideal weekend for Mat and Brian.

Look for more area itineraries and guides to come as well. If you’d like to submit or share one, please let us know via the contact page.