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Orchard Project Arts Festival

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Cost: Varied | See Festival Event Details

June 9, 2022: The Orchard Project has announced the lineup for its 2022 Arts Festival, taking place Friday, July 8 through Sunday, July 10, 2022, in Saratoga Springs, NY!  Festival packages and single tickets are now on sale.

The festival expands upon a tradition of local events that began with the likes of Ben Folds, Esperanza Spalding, Savion Glover, and Alan Cumming – inviting artists at the forefront of storytelling TO share their process and sources of inspiration. The lineup includes marquee cabarets, concerts, work-in-progress readings from projects in the Orchard Project’s In-Person Residencies, conversations on creativity, writing workshops, and more, from artists and thought leaders working at the height of their powers in their respective fields.

A weekend to celebrate new work and the creative spirit: Over the course of the last 15 years, the Orchard Project has supported over 300 new productions in various forms of development, including the creation pieces that have moved to Broadway such as ALL THE WAY, AMELIE: THE MUSICAL, and 33 VARIATIONS, award winning work such as AN OCTOROON and THE ALIENS, and works by the likes of Taylor Mac, Young Jean Lee, Rachel Chavkin, Annie Baker, Jeremy O Harris, Savion Glover, Esperanza Spalding, and many more.

2022 Orchard Project Arts Festival Schedule 


  • 7pm @ Caffe Lena: Penelope, a new rock musical by Alex Bechtel, starring Broadway’s Grace McLean
  • 9pm @ Universal Preservation Hall: Martha Graham Cracker Solves All Your Problems


  • 11am @ Saratoga Arts: FREE Workshop: ‘518 Monologues’ Writing Workshop
  • 1pm @ Saratoga Arts: FREE Reading: THE DOUBLE[S] by Winne Kemp
  • 2pm @ Saratoga Arts: FREE Reading: Once Upon a Tra by Nelson Diaz-Marcano
  • 8pm @ Universal Preservation Hall: Famous in New York, a musical cabaret directed by Emmy award-winner Lance Horne


  • 11am @ Saratoga Arts: FREE Reading: THE DOUBLE[S] by Winne Kemp
  • 12pm @ Saratoga Arts: FREE Reading: Once Upon a Tra in Puerto Rico, by Nelson Diaz-Marcano
  • 3pm @ Caffe Lena: Penelope, a new rock musical by Alex Bechtel, starring Broadway’s Grace McLean


Details on Festival Events

Penelope - A World Premiere Musical by Alex Bechtel, Starring Grace McLean @ Caffe Lena

  • Friday 7/8 at 7:00pm
  • Sunday 7/10 at 3:00pm

Single Ticket $25//Free for OP Members

PENELOPE is a groundbreaking new work of concert theatre for one actor and a five-piece band. At the beginning of the pandemic, forced to quarantine in separate cities from his romantic partner, Alex Bechtel began to write music from the point of view of Penelope, Odysseus’ wife in Homer’s “Odyssey”. Conceived as an album, and now expanded into a soaring work of concert theatre, this unique and captivating musical is led by Grace McLean (Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet, In the Green) who plays the title role of Penelope with stunning vocals and stirring pathos.


Martha Graham Cracker Solves All Your Problems - A World Premiere Concert @ Universal Preservation Hall25 Washington St, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

  • Friday 7/8 at 9:00pm

Table Seating $45 | General Admission $35//Free for Op Members | VIP Seating and Champagne Toast $75

Martha Graham Cracker, “The Drag Queen King” and her cabaret have been giving legendary performances since 2005. In the decade-plus that she’s been performing mash-ups and new arrangements of everything from Mötley Crüe to Nina Simone, Martha (the alter ego of Dito van Reigersberg, a founding co-artistic director of Pig Iron Theatre Company) has become a fabulous, and hairy staple of the the NYC and Philadelphia theater scenes. In a new evening premiering at the Orchard Project “Martha Graham Cracker Solves All of Your Problems,” our eponymous queen assumes a “Dear Abby” persona, accepting audience questions and delivering on-the-spot musical advice.

*Golden Tickets include VIP admission for two and the opportunity for a problem of your choosing to be solved on the spot by Martha as part of the evening.


Famous in New York - A World Premiere Concert Led by Emmy Award Winner Lance Horne @ Universal Preservation Hall

  • Saturday 7/9 at 8:00pm

Table Seating $45 | General Admission $35//Free for Op Members | VIP Seating and Champagne Toast $75

A concert celebrating New York “originals,” proving that, if you can make it here, you really can make it anywhere.

In this cabaret performance, Emmy award-winning composer, pianist, singer, and music director Lance Horne joins together some of New York finest performers, hailing from both upstate and downstate, in celebration of the state that we call home. Lance Horne has arranged for/performed with Alan Cumming, Jake Shears/Scissor Sisters, Ricki Lake, Rufus Wainwright, Pink Martini, Liza Minnelli, Kylie Minogue, the von Trapps, Ben Folds, Neil Gaiman, Kristin Chenoweth, Justin Bond, Sandra Bernhard, Amanda Palmer/Dresden Dolls, Cheyenne Jackson, Kelli O’Hara, Meow Meow, Taylor Mac, the Gatlin Brothers, Boston Pops, Seoul Philharmonic, Atlanta Symphony, London/SF/LA/NY Gay Men’s Chorus, Sydney Dance Company, Michael Feinstein, Carol Channing, and Sesame Street; performed for President Obama, the First Lady, and Queen Elizabeth; multiple appearances at Carnegie Hall, Sydney Opera House, Lincoln Center, and London’s West End.


Once Upon a Tra’ in Puerto Rico - New Play Reading by Nelson Diaz-Marcano, directed by Rebecca Aparicio @ Saratoga Arts

  • Saturday 7/9 at 2:00pm
  • Sunday 7/10 at 12:00pm

Free/Reserved Seating for OP Members

A coming of age tale that relates the birth of Reggaeton with the decolonization of a whole generation of Puerto Ricans, celebrating Puerto Rico’s rich musical traditions while telling a story that explores how a whole generation decided to stop the assimilation and start the decolonization of their culture


The Double[S] - New Audio Podcast Reading by Winnie Kemp @ Saratoga Arts

  • Saturday 7/9 at 1:00pm
  • Sunday 7/10 at 11:00am

Free/Reserved Seating for OP Members

What if Imposter Syndrome wasn’t just a fear, but was truly real? One day, Alice shows up at work and is stunned to meet Celia, a transfer from the UK who is her more confident, carefree double. After Celia leapfrogs over Alice for a promotion, Alice joins a mysterious support group of other people whose doppelgangers are ruining their lives. The Doubles[s] is a surrealist paranoid thriller with a darkly comic edge that subverts the doppelgänger trope by exploring the theory that launched a thousand self help workshops. In this loosely modern retelling of Dostoevsky’s classic, The Double, the story and characters shift beneath the audience’s feet.


The 518 Monologues - Monologue Writing Workshop led by D. Colin @ Saratoga Arts

  • Saturday 7/9 at 11:00am

Troy-based poet and teaching artist, D. Colin, leads a FREE monologue writing workshop. This writing session is designed for folks of all theatrical backgrounds, from those who have never seen a play before to those who regularly attend or create theater, to express themselves through the medium of the dramatic monologue.


How to attend the Orchard Project's 2022 Summer Festival:

Become a supporting “Member” of the Orchard Project a tax deductible donation of anything above $100 and for full access to the entire lineup. Donors at the Member level receive the ability to reserve general seating for all events, and donors at higher levels receive the ability to bring guests to events and best available seating. Supporters can visit to make a tax-deductible donation at any time.

Buy individual tickets for any of the events, which will be on sale both through our partners at Universal Preservation Hall and Caffe Lena. Links for single ticket purchase are available on



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