Dear Friends of Old Songs,
Since 1977, Old Songs has been dedicated to keeping traditional music and dance alive through the presentation of festivals, concerts, dances, and educational programs. This is only possible through the support of our community and within the extended Old Songs family — staff, volunteers, friends, the audience — all of us, and all of you. Before, during, and coming out of the pandemic, music and dance has been and continues to be an important part of our lives. It sustains, uplifts, surrounds, and reaches us in ways nothing else can, bringing us closer together even when we are apart.
Emerging from the pandemic and hopeful for the future, we continue to livestream our in-person concerts at our Community Arts Center in Voorheesville. Our instrumental classes, jams, open mics, and other Make Your Own Music sessions are in full swing.
In 2023 we:
- Presented our second in-person Old Songs Festival since the lockdown.
- Insulated the attic and walls of the Community Arts Center and installed a new HVAC system through a Capitol Grant from the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA).
- Won two NYSCA grants for General Operating Support: one for 2023 and another for 2024.
- Won three additional grants, two for presenting artists at the 2024 festival and one for recovery funds for 2024:
- Mid Atlantic Arts Grant to present From Appalachia to China with Cathy Fink, Marcy Marcer & Chao Tien.
- The Audience Building Project of the Lake Placid Center for the Arts and NYSCA to present the Yacouba Sissoko Trio.
- Albany County ARPA Grant — Arts, Culture & Tourism – Recovery Grant.
- Had successful spring and fall concert seasons.
- We have a great winter/spring concert line-up including a livestream from the UK with Steve Tilston, in-person concerts with live-streaming including John Kirk & Trish Miller, Grosse Isle and É.T.É, celebrating Francophonie Month, The Jeremiahs, Louise Bichon, Nick Gareiss & Simon Chrisman, Genticorum, and John Roberts.
- Spring into Uke, a one-day ukulele intensive will be held in May.
- Our instrument classes and jams will continue, and community dances are returning.
- The 2024 Old Songs Festival will be held June 28–30. Mark your calendars now and tell your friends!
We are now facing new challenges. With a few exceptions, in-person attendance at our festival and concerts have not yet returned to pre-pandemic levels. Inflation is impacting our operational costs, and we cannot rely on inconsistent government funding. We continue to streamline operations wherever possible and make prudent and fiscally responsible internal adjustments. Competition for funding is at an all-time high. Now more than ever, your support will help us to sustain our programs and keep traditional music and dance alive in the Capital Region and beyond.
Our programs are only possible through the tireless work of the artists, our staff, our many volunteers, and your support. Your gift to the Old Songs Annual Fund benefits all aspects of our programs. With your help we can move past our organization’s challenges and keep our focus and energy where it matters most: on our larger traditional music and dance community.
The many ways you can financially support Old Songs include direct donations one time or monthly, matching gifts (corporate or individual), legacy donations, bequests, securities donations, artist and/or festival sponsorships, and instrument donations. All donations, large or small, are important and we are grateful for each one. We thank all of you who have provided financial support in the past or given your time and moral support as a volunteer, and hope you are able once again to donate to Old Songs in these or other ways.
All of us at Old Songs wish you a happy, healthy, and peaceful holiday season.
or Print out, fill out and mail in our Annual Appeal Form