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9 of the Coolest Things to Do Around the Hudson Valley This May


Photo by Zaria Forman

Do the Right Thing

The special Do One Thing event focuses around the ravages of climate change and possible artistic responses. Poetry readings, an art auction, and a reception with hors d’oeuvres are all part of a fundraiser for RoCA and the Blue Rock School.

May 4, Rockland Center for the Arts, West Nyack, 845.358.0877, www.rocklandartcenter.org


Photo courtesy of Bardavon

Whispering with Laughter

The great Mel Brooks made hit after hit in the 1970s, parodying westerns, biblical epics, and universal monster movies in an unparalleled creative streak. Silent Movie is one of his most interesting experiments, its one-and-only line delivered by a famous mime. This showing will be accompanied on Wurlitzer by resident organist Juan Cardona Jr., an experience you’re unlikely to replicate on your couch.

May 17, Bardavon, Poughkeepsie, 845.473.2072, www.bardavon.org


Photo by Lauren Desberg

50 Years After

Coinciding with the legendary festival’s 50th anniversary, Woodstock Reimagined jazzes up the iconic rock hits with performances by some of the world’s best contemporary players. Led by pianist Mathis Picard (above), this all-star band, including drummer Savannah Harris and sitarist Neel Murgai, reimagines hits by Joni Mitchell, Sly & the Family Stone, and Janis Joplin.

May 25, Woodstock Playhouse, Woodstock, 845.679.6900, www.woodstockplayhouse.org


Photo by Deep Field Film

Lunar Weekend

Focusing on the intersection of the 1969 revolutions in culture, society, and science, the Lunar Weekend tells the story of Woodstock, the Moon Landing, and more with films, speakers, hands-on activities, and more.

May 17–19, Bethel Woods Center for the Arts, Bethel, 866.781.2922, www.bethelwoodscenter.org/events


Photo by Andrey Paounov

True Artistry

Frameworks: Art on Film explores the relationship between movies and other visual media through films by, about, and in tandem with artists like Picasso, Christo, and more. The opening night selection is 2018’s Walking Water, which follows the creation of a massive art installation as a way to deal with grief. Check the website for an updated schedule.

May 3–10, Jacob Burns Film Center, Pleasantville, 914.747.5555, www.burnsfilmcenter.org


Humor on Helium

Kids know Gilbert Gottfried from his fruitful voice-acting career, while adults recognize the comedian’s singular mix of high-brow and raunchy comedy (his is the classic take on “The Aristocrats”) from his almost five decades in the business. The one-time SNL cast member comes to Poughkeepsie for an exclusive two-night engagement.

May 10–11, Laugh It Up! Comedy Club inside Mahoney’s Irish Pub, Poughkeepsie, 845.418.3989, www.laughitup.net


Photo by Paul B. Goode

Up Close and Lyrical

The Paul Taylor Dance Company is a titan of contemporary dance, performing annually at Lincoln Center and commissioning works from cutting-edge modern composers. Experience a rare intimate performance when they come to Kaatsbaan’s scenic environs.

May 18, Kaatsbaan International Dance Center, Tivoli, 845.757.5106, ext. 112, www.kaatsbaan.org


Photo by Gary Leonard

The Unheard Music

One of the original LA hardcore bands, X are still going strong after all these years, playing the hybrid of country-punk that once landed them on stages with a young Dwight Yoakum and Lone Justice. Bone up on Los Angeles and Wild Gift, and then get in the pit.

May 28, Daryl’s House Club, Pawling, 845.289.0185, www.darylshouseclub.com


Photo by Kara Keeler

All Ages Affair

The Hudson Children’s Book Festival returns. Award-winning children’s authors and illustrators like Seymour Simon and Florence Minor meet for panel discussions, workshops, and musical performances aimed at the younger set. Recommended for all ages, from the kids wanting to meet their favorite authors to those parents who want to stay on the cutting edge of what their children are reading.

May 4, Hudson Junior/Senior High School, Hudson, www.hudsonchildrensbookfestival.com

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