Fela! Brings Afrobeat to SPAC Stage on July 29th

Saratoga Performing Arts Center: Following a visa denial, YAMATO: Drummers of Japan will be replaced by Fela!The Concert from the Tony-Award winning Broadway musical. YAMATO has been forced to cancel its entire US tour, despite a twenty-year touring history. The performance was scheduled form July 29th as part of SPAC’s global-music line up.

“It is a great shame that a group like YAMATO, with a 20-year touring history – including many previous visits to the US – has been denied a visa, depriving our region of a unique and powerful performance,” said Elizabeth Sobol, President & CEO of Saratoga Performing Arts Center. “Nonetheless, we are incredibly fortunate to have been able to secure on the same night a performance of Fela! The Concert — based on the life and music of Fela Kuti, the powerful and charismatic pioneer of Afrobeat.”

Afrobeat is a musical genre combining West African traditional music such as fuji and highlife with funk and jazz influences. Kuti’s music is sensual, eclectic, and driven by his powerful lyrics. Fela! Is described as a “spectacularly inspiring and triumphant.” The experience is energizing, whith powerful dance numbers and intense chanted choruses.

This performance follows in the sizzling footsteps of SPAC’s past global-music performances. Part of Sobel’s initive to revitalize SPAC, there’s been a sharp increase in genre crossing music with a newfound community of jazz lovers.

Prior to Fela! The Concert, at 7:00 p.m. SPAC will present a high-energy, professionally choreographed final performance by 80 local children who have been participating in The Performance Project: Youth in Motion. Led by the award winning National Dance Institute and presented in partnership with the Capital District and Saratoga Regional YMCA’s, SPAC’s Performance Project is a two-week dance intensive designed to teach children dance skills while instilling in them a belief in their own abilities and capacity to achieve success.

Tickets to YAMATO: The Drummers of Japan will automatically be transferred to Fela! The Concert on July 29. For existing ticketholders who prefer a full refund or a gift certificate to redeem at a later date, please contact [email protected] or call 518-584-9330.

Tickets for the amphitheater-only performance of Fela! The Concert are $30, $40 and $60 and are available online at spac.org, at the box office or by calling 518-584-9330.

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