Performing Arts in Albany
Albany comes alive with the multiple venues providing Albany with entertainment, music, shows & performances of all kinds!
The Palace Theatre
Built during the depression, the Palace Theatre first opened its doors in October 1931 and kept them open wide for over thirty years without pause. Reopened and renovated for today, the theatre is still known as one of the premier venues to see concerts, ballets, Broadway musicals, classic Hollywood films, and more diverse shows and events. With its decorative and visually stunning architecture and design, much of it original or faithfully restored, the Palace Theatre is as incredible to see as to be there.
In the nearby city of Schenectady, the Proctors Theatre began as a vaudeville house in 1926. On opening day, over 7,000 were admitted, and even more come to the theatre today. Often they come to see the "direct from Broadway" musicals - products that use the same costumes, sets and sometimes performances as their NYC runs. But the theatre doesn't stop there -singers, comedians, dances, and classical productions have all had their time in the spotlight. In addition, Proctors Theatre hosts local performers and provides space for local events, showing that its fame and stardom has not caused it to forget its community.
With its proximity to the Albany International Airport, the Amtrak Station, and the New York State Thruway, The Egg's accessibility makes it an attractive destination. Maybe that is why the venue keeps attracting big names and dazzling shows. Or maybe it's the unique architecture (it's not called "The Egg" for nothing), or the flexibility provided by its two theatres. The Lewis A. Swyer theatre, with its 450 seats, is an intimate setting for chamber music, cabarets, lectures, and multimedia productions, while it's big sister the Kitty Carlisle Hart theatre seats over double that amount, and has seen musical theatre productions, dance shows, and concerts.
Since 1989 productions by the Park Playhouse have been attracting audiences numbering in the thousands. The company attracts both the usual crowd and the unlikely theatergoers by offering quality musicals and plays at no cost. An after school program for kids has enabled many young children to have an art education, and provides an often unique opportunity to involved them in theatre With an outdoor stage, and a hillside converted into 2,000 comfortable seats, Park Playhouse's productions are special and memorable.
Sand Lake Center for the Arts
One of the most aesthetic venues in the area around Albany, Sand Lake Center for the Arts is headquartered in a renovated church. Its original stained glass windows overlook a myriad of performances, including theatre productions, art exhibits, children's activities, and more. There is also a gift shop within, featuring jewelry made from other old stained glass windows, and space in the church is available for rent. A short trip away to Averill Park is well worth any performance hosted by Sand Lake Center for the Arts.
Times Union Center
Formerly the Pepsi Arena, Times Union Center is an enormous venue of up to 17,000 seats that attracts nearly a million patrons per year. In 2000 the Times Union Center ranked 14th on a national list for total concert attendance. The arena was Ã¯Â¿Â½christenedÃ¯Â¿Â½ in 1990 by Frank SinatraÃ¯Â¿Â½s performance, and since then the center has seen big names performing in concerts, sports, family events, and more. With the Times Union Center, New Yorkers never have to travel far to experience high-quality performances.