Tuesday, 22 January 2013 00:00

Dancing Down Broadway: 'Saratoga En Pointe' To Honor the Arts

By Stefany McBrady | News

SARATOGA SPRINGS - Take a stroll down the streets of Downtown Saratoga Springs and you may get the sense that this is a town known for health, history, and horses.

Unique to Saratoga are the decorated horse sculptures you see throughout downtown that were a part of the “Horses, Saratoga Style” project of 2002. In an effort to bring awareness to the rich arts scene in Saratoga, the National Museum of Dance will launch “Saratoga En Pointe;” a project which will result in 24 different sculptures of ballet pointe shoes that will be decorated by artists from around region.


Five years ago when the President of the Museum of Dance, Michelle Riggi, saw the decorated horses along Broadway, she dreamed of one day seeing pointe shoe sculptures all around town. Sarah Hall Weaver, assistant director for the museum, added her take on about Michelle’s idea saying: “She always has ideas tucked away and it’s great.”

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the National Museum of Dance, making this the perfect time to make Ms. Riggi’s dream a reality.

“We work well together toward our dreams,” Riggi said about the Board of Directors at the National Dance Museum.

Designed by Cow Painters, the same company who created the horses around Saratoga, these fiberglass statues will stand five feet tall and are modeled after the foot of Ana Pavlova, this year’s Hall of Fame inductee.

On February 1, from 6-8 p.m. at the National Museum of Dance, there will be a reception to kick off Saratoga En Pointe.

It’s there you’ll find artists located throughout the foyer, each of whom was carefully selected based on the vision and talent they display in their original work. Interested sponsors will peruse the room where the artists will present them with drawings of their designs for the sculpture, along with other examples of their work.

Sponsors will then choose the artist and design they would like to see for their pointe shoe sculpture and attempt to quickly claim it before someone else can. These original works of art will be available for purchase at a cost of $5,000. The owner of the sculpture can be an individual, group, organization or business who can choose where they would like to have it displayed.

On May 31, the sculptures will be unveiled at the National Museum of Dance during a special ceremony. This will be a rare opportunity to see all of these spectacular pointe shoes in one location before they are moved to their new locations. That same day, there will be the official opening of the newly renovated C.V. Whitney Hall of Fame, which is funded in part by the Saratoga En Pointe project.

Location maps detailing the exact whereabouts of each statue will be made at the Visitor’s Center in Saratoga so that residents and Tourists alike can be a part of the excitement by finding and photographing the sculptures. A goal of the project is that business and tourism will benefit from the beauty the sculptures will bring to the community. If you might not be able to afford one of these sculptures, you’ll have every opportunity to see them out in public following the sale.

For more information about the project or the National Museum of Dance contact (518) 584-2225.


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