All Program News

Only the ten most recent Program posts are shown here. Go to All Programs Archive for complete listings.

Posted: November 17, 2017
Adults, Programs

Image available via Gossips of Rivertown

Join us Sunday, December 3 at 3pm for a Local History Speaker Series talk, “The History of the Robert Jenkins House, a home in Hudson” by Jeane La Porta and Pat Fenoff. The Robert Jenkins House has been owned by the Hendrick Hudson Chapter National Society Daughters of the American Revolution since 1900. The house was built in 1811 by  Robert Jenkins, son of one of the original Proprietors of the City of Hudson, who went on to serve as third and fifth mayor of Hudson.

Jeane La Porta, who is Regent of the Hudson Chapter, will give background information on the history of the DAR, including the Hendrick Hudson Chapter, as well as, Claverack Landing and the founding of the city of Hudson as a prelude to discussion of the construction and history of the beautiful 206 year old house that the chapter calls home. The program will include visuals and many photographs will give the audience a rare peek into areas that are not open to the public.

Pat Fenoff, Collections Manager for the Chapter, is assisting with selection and care of a special piece from the historic collection which will be displayed for the event.

A question and answer period and refreshments will follow the talk. For more information email, call 518.828.1792 x101, or visit the main desk in the library.

The Hendrick Hudson Chapter, NSDAR, maintains the Robert Jenkins House Genealogical, Research, and History Reading Room, which contains a growing collection of Columbia County and regional genealogy, and the Robert Jenkins House Historical Collection as a repository for memorabilia relating to the history of the area, the city of  Hudson and the whaling industry.


Posted: November 3, 2017
Adults, Programs, Young Adults

By now, many of you know that we are hosting a workshop performance of a brand new opera based on Khaled Hosseini’s book A Thousand Splendid Suns. Showcasing this “work in progress” is a great opportunity for our library. Not only is the book a bestseller, but the composer and librettist have each received awards for their earlier works. And, the opera has just been picked up for the 2020 season by Seattle Opera!

Stephen Kitsakos and Sheila Silver appeared on WAMC Public Radio’s The Roundtable to talk about this new work. Click Here to listen to the archive of the interview.

Film Screening of Act I: Thursday, November 9, 6pm

Workshop Performances of Act II: Saturday, November 18, 1pm & 4pm

There is no charge, but reservations are requested. 

To reserve seats for the November 9 film screening of Act I (performed at Manhattan’s Trinity Church last year, pictured above), email, call 518-828-1792 x101, or stop by the front desk of the library. 

To reserve seats for the 1pm or 4pm workshop performances of Act II on November 18 CLICK HERE.


Posted: October 27, 2017
Adults, Programs

By popular demand: Peter Cipkowski will offer a repeat of this talk on Thursday, November 2 at 6pm in the Library’s Community Room.

Chipp’s Market, 39 South Front Street, opposite Franklin Square.

Join us for the latest in our Local History Speaker series: A Brief History of Hudson’s Experience with Urban Renewal” by Peter Cipkowski on Thursday, October 26 at 6pm. Cipkowski will give an illustrated talk about Hudson’s urban renewal in the 1970s, a massive undertaking that impacted hundreds of families and changed the city forever.

The presentation, based on historical documents and conversations with project leaders and local residents, will provide both context and an overview of how, and why, urban renewal unfolded in Hudson. It will address many of the questions we all wonder about: How was the urban renewal project funded? What were its original objectives? Did it succeed in meeting its goals? What was lost? Was it worth it? What has the experience taught us about planning, preservation, and economic growth? How did it compare with similar projects in the Hudson Valley and beyond? What lessons, if any, are there for us as Hudson continues to evolve?

As a boy, Peter Cipkowski was a frequent visitor to his grandparents’ grocery store and family home at 39 South Front Street, torn down in 1970. His uncle, Edward Cipkowski, served on the staff of the Hudson Urban Renewal Agency. Peter has degrees in history and education from Bard College and Carnegie Mellon and is the author of two books published by John Wiley & Sons. Peter is Hillsdale Town Supervisor and President of the Roeliff Jansen Historical Society.

This event is free and open to the public. A question and answer period and reception will follow the talk. For more information email, call 518.828.1792 x101, or visit the main desk in the library.


Posted: October 24, 2017
Adults, Programs, Young Adults

We are proud to present our second series of All Things Apple, a class about using Mac computers, iPhones, iPads, and Apple Watches. This class is a four-week series meeting on Mondays, October 30, November 6, 13, 20, from 6-7pm.

In the class, instructor James Pendergrast will cover the use of iPhone, iPad, Mac computer, Apple Watch, and other Apple hardware and software products. Students will learn the basics of iPhone, iPad and Mac computer use as well as how to customize the device to work best for them; taking, editing and sharing photos on your device; utilizing iCloud services including backup and restoring data; using the Apple office products Pages, Numbers and Keynote; using the Photos program on the Mac to store, organize, and edit your photos.

It is recommended that attendees bring their devices and there will be Macbooks and iMacs available for use in the class. All levels, including beginners, are welcome.

All Things Apple will be taught by James Pendergrast, a former Apple employee who was a certified trainer in the Soho Apple store for 11 years. In his former job, Mr. Pendergrast helped users successfully navigate and get the best out of their Apple computers and devices. He was also the editorial cartoonist for Rolling Stone magazine for over twenty years, had drawings in Tennis Magazine, the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal and has published two books of his drawings.

This class is free and open to the public and will be held in the Community Room after library hours. Space is limited and it is highly recommended that interested people sign up for the class by emailing, calling 518-828-1792 x101, or stopping by the library’s main desk.


Posted: October 13, 2017
Adults, Programs, Young Adults

Join the Hudson Area Library Book Group on Wednesday, November 8 at 3:30pm for a discussion of A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini. Books may be borrowed through the Mid-Hudson Library System.

About the book:

Born a generation apart and with very different ideas about love and family, Mariam and Laila are two women brought jarringly together by war, by loss and by fate. As they endure the ever escalating dangers around them-in their home as well as in the streets of Kabul-they come to form a bond that makes them both sisters and mother-daughter to each other, and that will ultimately alter the course not just of their own lives but of the next generation. With heart-wrenching power and suspense, Hosseini shows how a woman’s love for her family can move her to shocking and heroic acts of self-sacrifice, and that in the end it is love, or even the memory of love, that is often the key to survival. A stunning accomplishment, A Thousand Splendid Suns is a haunting, heartbreaking, compelling story of an unforgiving time, an unlikely friendship, and an indestructible love.

On Saturday, November 18, the library will be hosting a workshop performance of ACT II of A Thousand Splendid Suns-The Opera. For more information on the event and how to register for tickets click here


Posted: October 13, 2017

It’s not often that residents of the Hudson area get the insider’s view on a new creation – particularly one based on a novel that has sold over 30 million copies world-wide. But with the workshop performance of Act II, Hudson will be among the first to hear the creation of composer Sheila Silver and librettist Stephen Kitsakos – A Thousand Splendid Suns – a brand new opera.

Based on the international best-selling novel by Khaled Hosseini, author of The Kite Runner, and set in Afghanistan from the mid-1970s to the present era, the opera tells the story of two women from different walks of life, one older, one younger, forced into marriage with the same brutal man. Initially cold to one another, they form a bond that enables them to survive and ultimately risk their lives for a chance at freedom.

“When I first heard the story I was listening to a book-on-tape,” said Silver. “The tears were streaming down my face. But, as much as I loved it, I thought the story was too complicated for an opera.” A few years later, she changed her mind. And so, in collaboration Stephen Kitsakos, a long-standing colleague, the story is now being adapted for the stage. The final production will debut in Seattle in 2020.

Not only was it a challenge to keep the feel of the story while setting it to music, the composer felt it necessary to include some Middle Eastern instruments – to give it the feel of place. “We weren’t writing a Middle Eastern opera,” she says, “but we wanted to convey the sounds of the Middle East.” Hence the composer’s 6-month stay in India – an expedition made specifically to work with and learn from native musicians.

Please enjoy a sampling of their amazing work so far with these audio clips below:

Orchestral Opening- 1:02

You can hear the result in the Orchestral Prelude– an introduction to the world and sound of Afghanistan: an evocative dialogue between the Indian flute called bansuri and the cellos and bassoon.

Tarik and Laila, I Pass- 1:27

More exemplary of the traditional great love stories often depicted in operas is the duet between Tariq & Laila.  The 14-year-old, Laila, and her slightly older boyfriend recall a poem about Laili & Manjoon, the “Romeo & Juliet of the East” that they learned in school.

Market Scene- 1:22

Finally, the more extensive opera company can be heard in this market scene. Taking place in Deh-Mazang where local women, secular and religious, modern and traditional, meet to talk about a popular women’s topic – their husbands’ lovemaking abilities.



Posted: October 4, 2017
Children, Programs

Musician Abby Lappen will present songs and movement for children during our regular Story & Craft Hour on Saturday, October 14 from 11am-Noon in the library’s community room. This program is being offered in part through the library’s High Five! Early Literacy Family Program and is open to the public. Learn how to use song and movement to help develop your child’s reading skills.

Abby Lappen is a singer/songwriter who lives in New York State’s Hudson Valley. She displays her passion for live musical performance with a collection of original songs and meaningful covers in a cross genre mix, from haunting folk and satirical blues to jazzy ballads and syncopated melodies. Abby is an accomplished artist whose unique voice and “crisp guitar” mesmerize audiences with warmth and agility. She has worked with young children through music and movement for many years.


Posted: October 3, 2017
Adults, Programs

We are pleased to present, in colloboration with La Presa journal, an evening of poetry, prose, culture and celebration in English and Spanish on Sunday, October 15 at 4pm. Work from La Presa, a tri-annual journal featuring contemporary poetry and prose from Mexico, the United States and Canada includes authors local to our area; some of whom will be reading their own works. Works in Spanish from the journal will also be read by local persons who are fluent in the language. 

Come and meet some of the wonderful Hudson Valley writers who are at the center of this publication, listen to their beautiful stories and poems, share a glass of wine and some authentic regional food, and come away with renewed delight in community.

Lee Gould, the founder and editor of La Presa, says, “Those from many countries, representing various religions, races, and ethnicities are finding meaning here in our community. With La Presa we hope to build community by sharing the geography of the page as we share the geography of the hemisphere.”

Local authors reading include Debby Mayer, Hudson resident and author of the memoir Riptides & Solaces Unforeseen and a novel, Sisters. Debby’s short stories are widely published and she is a contributing editor for The Columbia Paper. Also among those reading are Djelloul Marbrook and Carole Maso. Djelloul is author of Far from Algiers and winner of the 2007 Wick Poetry Prize and the 2010 International Book Award in poetry. His fiction and poetry are currently published by UK’s Leaky Boot Press. Carole Maso is the author of ten books including the novels The Art Lover, AVA, Defiance and Mother & Child; poems in prose, Aureole and Beauty Is Convulsive; essays, Break Every Rule, and a memoir: The Room Lit by Roses. She is Professor of Literary Arts at Brown University.


Posted: September 27, 2017
Adults, Programs, Young Adults

Join us for a special hands-on three hour workshop on Monday, October 16 from 3:30-6pm with Wild Gather: Hudson Valley School of Herbal Studies, in collaboration with the City of Hudson Senior Center. 

“Intergenerational Cooking with Medicinal Food” is an afternoon of kitchen magic and herb infused cookery in a three hour interactive intergenerational workshop. Participants will prepare nourishing and delicious medicinal foods focusing on the fall season. Together we will chop, decoct, eat and sip while we discuss and explore food as medicine.

This program is open to all ages. Space is limited and Registration is on a first come/first serve basis To register for workshop please email, call 518-828-1792 x101 or stop by the circulation desk at Hudson Area Library.

Wild Gather’s mission is to support folks in building connections with plants and their many habitats. Their work is rooted in the time-honored practice of gathering and growing herbs. They honor the medicine, food, fiber, and teachings from the plants that grow around and beside us. They aim to create a safe, dynamic, and accessible foundational space for all to gather in their learning of Herbalism and self care.

This program is made possible in part through funding from the Mid-Hudson Library System.


Posted: September 20, 2017
Adults, News, Programs

Composer Sheila Silver is a recipient of a 2013-2014 Guggenheim Fellowship.

On Thursday, September 28 at 6pm learn how an opera is created. Join us for “A Thousand Splendid Suns: Turning a Novel into an Opera Libretto,” presented by composer Sheila Silver and librettist Stephen Kitsakos. It is a backstage, nuts and bolts look at how all the pieces come together. And it’s free.


To listen to the interview from a recent WGXC Morning Show of Kitsakos and Silver discussing the making of this opera with radio host Mat Tombers CLICK HERE.

Librettist Stephen Kitsakos is a theatre writer and director whose work often revolves around sacred texts.

Khaled Hosseini’s novel, A Thousand Splendid Suns has had great success with more than 30 million copies sold world-wide. Sheila Silver decided to pursue the storyline as the basis for an opera and traveled to India to study Hindustani music in order to add authenticity to the score.

Stephen Kitsakos had the challenge, as librettist, of a story that included religion, hatred, brutality, war and hope. These challenges and the journey from novel to completed opera that will be performed by Seattle Opera in 2020 will be discussed by Silver and Kitsakos at the Thursday program.

The event is one of several being held in advance of the workshop presentation of A Thousand Splendid Suns: The Opera – Act II on Saturday, November 18 at 1pm and 4pm – complete with 6 singers and 7 musicians. Also scheduled are a Humanities NY Reading & Discussion Series: Muslim Journeys with Karuna Foudriat (already filled), a Book Group discussion of the A Thousand Splendid Suns (November 8, 4pm) and the screening of Act I – performed as a workshop last year at Trinity Church in Manhattan (November 9, 6pm).

All events are free to the public but, due to the level of interest in this series, reservations are requested. Contact or call (518) 828-1792 x101. For reservations to the Act II workshop performances on November 18 CLICK HERE


Only the ten most recent Program posts are shown here. Go to All Programs Archive for complete listings.