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The Stars are Out This Weekend: Music and Poetry Abound

The Stars are Out This Weekend: Music and Poetry Abound
Robert Pinsky speaking at Skidmore College Friday night
Thomas Dimopoulos

July 6 2013

A busy night of words and music kicked off the first weekend of July in the Spa City.  As Phish began their three-night run at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center, Sarah Pedinotti returned to her native Saratoga for an appearance with her band Railbird at The Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery, and Robert Pinsky staged an evening of poetry at the New York State Summer Writers Institute reading series at Skidmore College.

Pinsky, who served as the United States Poet Laureate from 1997 to 2000, read from his works that spanned a writing career dating to the 1960s. His newest book, “Singing School: Learning to Write (and Read) Poetry by Studying with the Masters,” will be released this summer.

A roomful of writers, members of the Skidmore College staff and students hear poet Campbell McGrath introduce Robert Pinsky at Skidmore on Friday night. Pinsky, wearing a dark blue t-shirt is seated in the front row center. Pulitzer Prize winning author William Kennedy is seated at the far right in the second row

Pinsky played with words like a child sifting through a sandbox, open-mindedly twisting definitions with shovelsful of scorn and nostalgia, and bending them into a language of malleable shapes. He constructed impermanent sandcastles, knowingly to be washed away with the first high tide, but whose eternal shadow would redefine the shore forever.

Pinsky returned time and again to his own childhood years during the reading – and with head tilted toward the audience and eyebrows raised, paved the post-war American streets of his Long Branch, N.J. upbringing with the elements of all of humanity on a night, he acknowledged, which seemed to take on an autobiographical tone.

The New York State Summer Writers Institute summer reading series at Skidmore College runs through July 26.

Across the college campus and inside the Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery, Sarah Pedinotti celebrated her Saratoga homecoming in a performance with her band Railbird. The band, which formed in 2009, makes their home in Brooklyn. Pedinotti embarked on her singing career at a young age by entertaining customers inside the stone-wall bistro at One Caroline Street, under the watchful eye of her parents, David and Diane Pedinotti, who opened the jazz club restaurant in 1996.

The appearance by Railbird is part of a Friday night summer series at the museum.



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