spac-2013.jpgSaratoga Springs, N.Y. - Saratoga Performing Arts Center will pay tribute to the 150th Anniversary of Saratoga Race Course by presenting the World Premiere of an original orchestral composition by Grammy Award winning composer Richard Danielpour on August 8, 2013. The commission, sponsored by Saratoga 150 Committee Chair Charles V. Wait and his wife Candace, will be premiered by The Philadelphia Orchestra as part of a special concert celebrating the milestone of the iconic race course. The news was announced as part of SPAC's "Building of a Season" initiative. "Saratoga Springs' owes so much of its remarkable history, development and success to the presence of Saratoga Race Course. The crown jewel of the racing world for 150 years, the track has helped grow Saratoga into a vibrant, unique and culturally rich community; the type of place where Saratoga Performing Arts Center could be envisioned, founded and sustained," said Marcia J. White, SPAC's President & Executive Director. "SPAC will mark this historic occasion with a celebratory program by The Philadelphia Orchestra, led by the world premiere of a commissioned work by award winning composer Richard Danielpour." "My warmest thanks go out to Charles and Candace Wait for their generous sponsorship of this commission. The Wait family's historic connection to SPAC and longtime leadership in the Saratoga community makes their role in this project particularly meaningful," said White. "Candace and I are delighted to bring together three of Saratoga's great institutions in one World Premiere performance.  The composer, Richard Danielpour has worked on many of his great works at Yaddo. The Saratoga Race Course has been the leading economic driver of Saratoga's economy for many generations. The Saratoga Performing Arts Center has redefined the cultural heritage of our great little city in the country. This Saratoga Trifecta is one race easy to handicap, as all of the entrants are proven winners," said Charles V. Wait, Chairman of the Saratoga 150 Committee.   The Saratoga 150 celebration marks the sesquicentennial of the inaugural thoroughbred meeting in Saratoga Springs in 1863. The first four-day program was such a success that founder John Morrissey and his partners built Saratoga Race Course in 1864. Today, Saratoga Race Course is the oldest sporting venue in the country still in operation and was named one of the top 10 sporting venues in the world by Sports Illustrated. The Saratoga 150 Committee is planning and organizing a five-month-long celebration from May to September that will feature more than 150 community events for residents and visitors to the region. Richard Danielpour, the composer who has been commissioned to create the orchestral work, noted that, "it is a privilege to have the opportunity to create a work that honors the 150th Anniversary of Saratoga Race Course and the history, traditions and culture that are part of that milestone. I look forward to the challenge of capturing in music, the essence and vitality of that colorful heritage."  One of the world's most honored and acclaimed composers, Richard Danielpour's work has been performed throughout the world. Celebrated for influential commissions in the areas of orchestral, chamber, and choral music, Danielpour's work has been performed by many of the world's leading institutions including the New York Philharmonic, The Philadelphia Orchestra, the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and the Baltimore Symphony among many others. Danielpour's work has attracted an illustrious array of champions, including Yo-Yo Ma, Jessye Norman, Sarah Chang, Dawn Upshaw, and conductors Kurt Masur, Charles Dutoit and David Zinman.   Also announced as part of SPAC's ‘Building of a Season' was the news that Aspen Santa Fe Ballet will include choreographer Norbert de la Cruz's work Square None in its Saratoga program and that celebrated world music singer Carmen Souza will be part of the jazz festival lineup. Full profiles including videos, photos and reviews are available at spac.org.
  • § Aspen Santa Fe Ballet: Square None
Set to an eclectic score and lit to evoke eerie joyousness, Square None is Norbert de la Cruz's ambitious and expansive work. An Aspen Santa Fe Ballet commission, the work is athletic with a fascinating movement vocabulary which incorporates vernacular styles and everyday gesture, baroque courtesies and ballet, angularities and suspensions.
  • § Freihofer's Saratoga Jazz Festival: Carmen Souza
Gifted jazz vocalist Carmen Souza draws on elements of her Cape Verdean heritage as well as American jazz, Afro-Latin rhythms and European and Arabic influences in her music. Three critically acclaimed albums, award nominations and a nonstop touring schedule continue to define the singer as a major force in the world music scene. Tickets for these programs and all SPAC events will go on sale online to SPAC members at spac.org in late February  and to the general public in mid-March.

SPAC 2013 Season Dates

Freihofer's Saratoga Jazz Festival: June 29 - 30 New York City Ballet: July 9 - 13 National Ballet of Canada: July 16 - 18 Aspen Santa Fe Ballet: July 24 - 25 The Philadelphia Orchestra:  August 7 - 24 Saratoga Chamber Music Festival: August 4 - 20 Cabaret Series: July 19 - August 3 Opera Saratoga: June 23 - July 7