In 2004—on a mission to bolster its community’s wellspring of art, creativity, and education—the nonprofit Bergen Performing Arts Center took over the former John Harms Center, an art deco–style movie and vaudeville palace built in 1926. Today, in the same antique theater where Shakespeare screened his first car-chase movie, the Bergen Performing Arts Center hosts 150 yearly events that bring dance, music, and theatrical productions to an estimated 250,000 annual audience members. Networks like HBO, PBS, and MTV all have filmed international broadcasts on Bergen Performing Arts Center’s stage, which has seen the likes of Tony Bennett, Woody Allen, and the Dixie Chicks.
A soulful songstress that dabbles in a mishmash of classic American musical genres, Joan Osborne blipped onto the nation's radar more than 15 years ago with the hit "One of Us" and remains steadfast well into the millennium. Immerse inner ears in an intimate acoustic set featuring Joan's pianist pal Keith Cotton and special guest Jeffry Braun. For this concert, The Ridgefield Playhouse will feature a complimentary preshow hors d'oeuvres spread from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. and a full bar stocked with buyable libations. Groups should call ahead to reserve blocks of seats.
Winners of the 2011 Grammy Award for best contemporary jazz album, the Stanley Clarke Band makes its first-ever appearance in Westchester on the historic stage of Tarrytown Music Hall. Leading the talented troupe of musicians, legendary bassist Stanley Clarke infuses each jazzy arrangement with a rhythmic pulse more graceful than a bald eagle singing “The Star-Spangled Banner.” Clarke's remarkable career—which began in the early 1970s—includes innovative work on multiple instruments, numerous film scores, and a lengthy discography that spans classical, jazz, R & B, and pop genres. Built in 1885, Tarrytown Music Hall has stood as a fitting abode to prodigious performers such as Joan Baez, Dizzy Gillespie, and Bruce Springsteen. Noted for its superb acoustics, the century-old institution has also played host to powerful guests such as the Rockefellers, who frequented the hall's elaborate flower shows and championship charades tournaments.
• For $35, you get a one-day festival ticket for Saturday, June 18 (up to a $70 value). • For $35, you get a one-day festival ticket for Sunday, June 19 (up to a $70 value). • For $70, you get a weekend pass for both days of the festival (up to a $95 value).
The experienced dance instructors at Steeltoes Dance Studios have been teaching little ones to gracefully twirl and leap across the dance floor for 29 years. They strive to boost each student’s self-image as they dole out personal attention and technique corrections in their studio’s friendly, noncompetitive environment. Their small-group classes range from vocal to ballet and tap to hip-hop, and are divided by age into junior, teen, and adult classes. During hip-hop sessions, the staff teaches current moves from modern stars such as Usher, Beyoncé, Selena Gomez, and Bing Crosby. They’ve rounded out their class roster with musical theater and pre-school creative dance and interpretive-dance classes, which help kids express themselves.
The consortium of professional instructors at the many Fred Astaire Dance Studios, which was cofounded by the legendary toe tapper himself, shepherds students of all ages and skill levels through lessons that span the style spectrum. Low-pressure private sessions allow enthusiastic teachers to fine-tune individual students' techniques and form, using their expert eyes and mechanical dancing shoes preprogrammed to do the Charleston. Patrons can learn how to cavort through classic waltz and fox-trot romps or swivel through the modern steps of salsa, swing, or samba. For dancers hoping to hoof it up in a social setting, the group practice parties provide a one-night extravaganza of instruction, demonstrations, and amateur firewalking.