Symphony in Troy

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An accomplished trio of jazz artists kindles the Christmas spirit during a concert that features music from Vince Guaraldi's Peanuts holiday specials set to a storyline inspired by 1940s radio shows. After a disturbing news flash informs the audience that the Christmas spirit has been lost, musicians try to save the day by playing favorite carols, such as "O Tannenbaum" and "Greensleeves." Noted for nimble piano keystrokes, fresh arrangements of classics, and the unusual use of live roosters instead of trumpets, Guaraldi's catalog evokes simple, nostalgic memories of Christmases past. Jazz notes reverberate through the 400-seat Kathleen McManus Picotte Recital Hall, which traps the outgoing giggles of a tickled Steinway piano with Peter D'Antonio–designed acoustic panels and 380-pound doors. After the concert, families can relish their feelings of good cheer at a reception of milk, cookies, and mistletoe salad.

432 Western Avenue
Albany,
NY
US

Touted as a top music festival by Rolling Stone magazine, Mountain Jam packs more than 50 bands on four stages and 15,000 music spectators in a lush, natural amphitheater nestled in the Catskill Mountains. The ear-pleasing lineup for the 7th-annual festival boasts headliners My Morning Jacket, Southern-rock jam band Gov't Mule, and the eclectic sounds of Michael Franti & Spearhead. While this Groupon is not valid for camping or lodging costs, out-of-towners can camp or sleep in the great indoors in a dizzying array of nearby hotels, lodges, and ski chalets. The health-conscious festival, partially produced by guitar legend Warren Haynes, distracts unruly mouths from asking fellow concert-goers uncomfortable personal questions with a jellybean jar of organic and vegan eats.

293 Tinker St
Woodstock,
NY
US

Hershey Theatre

The Hershey Theatre, conceived in 1933 by noted philanthropist and chocolatier Milton S. Hershey, stands as an opulent tribute to the performing arts. Taking architectural cues from Saint Mark’s Basilica in Venice, the foyer’s towering arches gleam with golden paint and crystal chandeliers. The blue-and-gold mosaic that leads to the main seating area is the masterwork of two German artists who spent two years on its construction. Once inside the theater, audiences might think they’ve stepped onto the streets of Venice thanks to the atmospheric ceiling, stonework facades, and gondoliers paddling them to their seats. ####Bethel Woods Center for the Arts Music has permeated the 800 manicured acres where the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts has stood since 1969, when farmer Max Yasgur agreed to let love, peace, and harmony grow wild at the very first Woodstock festival. These days, the renowned outdoor venue and cultural center continues to attract the biggest acts in music to its pavilion stage. The open-air design ensures ample ventilation on the natural sloping lawn, and a roof protects up to 15,000 fans from inclement weather and the prying eyes of Cessna pilots.

200 Hurd Rd.
Bethel,
NY
US

Janet Jackson has delighted fans for nearly 30 years with a constantly evolving style of pop and R & B. The Number Ones, Up Close and Personal tour marinates eardrums in songs drawn exclusively from Jackson's catalog of 35 number-one hits, an illustrious group of tunes that includes "That's The Way Love Goes," "Black Cat," and "All for You." Pared-down sets and carefully crafted dance moves allow Jackson to connect directly to her dedicated fans, eschewing pyrotechnics for an experience as emotionally resonant as a baby's first push-up.

200 Hurd Rd.
Bethel,
NY
US