August 18, 2016
Albany, NY

Governor Cuomo Announces Two Free Symphoria Concerts at Lakeview Amphitheater During the 2016 Great New York State Fair

TOP Governor Cuomo Announces Two Free Symphoria...

Symphony Performances Highlight Transformative Year for the Fairgrounds, Strong Cooperation with County's Amphitheater

Announcement Complements "Central NY Rising" – Region's Successful Upstate Revitalization Initiative Blueprint to Grow the Economy and Create New Opportunities


Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that two free symphony orchestra concerts will be held at Onondaga County's Lakeview Amphitheater during the 2016 Great New York State Fair to celebrate the renovations that have revitalized the western shore of Onondaga Lake. The Syracuse-based orchestra, Symphoria, will perform at 7:30 p.m. on August 29 and September 1 in shows that are free with regular Fair admission. A fireworks display will take place after the September 1 concert.

"These performances come just days before the amphitheater's first anniversary and are the perfect way to highlight the transformative changes taking place throughout Central New York," Governor Cuomo said. "Through targeted investments in regional assets like the State Fair and strong coordination with our partners at the local and county levels, Central New York's economy is now beginning to reach heights not seen in decades and that is certainly worth celebrating."

The concerts underscore Governor Cuomo's commitment to strengthening the economy of Central New York. The county's new amphitheater has enjoyed strong public support during its first full season of concerts and soon, fairgoers will be able to experience the results of the Governor's $50 million plan to revitalize the fairgrounds, with a new entrance, a larger midway, a first-ever RV park, and extensive infrastructure work that lays the foundation for future growth.

Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney said, "There is excitement in the air for this year's Fair and for the return of major musical events to Central New York. With the Governor's steadfast commitment to our region, we’ve made a difference together. These concerts not only mark the occasion, but give us a moment to pause and see how far we’ve come."

Symphoria will perform a program of popular music from movies at the Monday, August 29 show, with a focus on science fiction, including music from "Star Wars" and some of the music of the Academy, Emmy and Grammy Award-winning composer John Williams. The Thursday, September 1 performance coincides with Armed Forces Day at the Fair and will focus on patriotic music, including "God Bless America," "1812 Overture," "The Stars and Stripes Forever" and a salute to the armed forces, followed by a fireworks display. Symphoria Musical Director Lawrence Loh will conduct both programs.

Symphoria Managing Director Catherine Underhill said, "We are delighted to participate in the Great New York State Fair and to perform on the wonderful stage of the amphitheater. The excitement is building for two nights of excellent music, and I know we’re going to give great performances."

The Fair will operate shuttle buses to take people from the Fairgrounds to the entrance to the Amphitheater before the concert, and back to the Fairgrounds afterwards. The shuttles leave from Gate 2 on the Fairgrounds beginning at approximately 4:30 p.m. These are the same shuttles that will operate during the four Amphitheater rock and country music concerts during the Fair. They are free of charge. Patrons may also use the regular parking lot shuttle buses to get to their cars after the concerts.

State Fair advance sale admission tickets are $6 and can be purchased online at, the Fair’s official online ticket seller, and at all Wegmans, Tops and Price Chopper stores across the state. August 29 is the first of two Senior Days at the Fair, in which senior citizens are admitted for free. September 1 is Three Dollar Thursday, which lowers the admission price to $3 online and at the gate. Tickets for that day will go on sale August 31 online only.

Monday, August 29 is Senior Day at the Fair and is highlighted by a 2 p.m. performance by Peter Noone of Herman’s Hermits and Brian Wilson's evening concert at Chevy Court. Admission is free for anyone age 60 or older. That day is also Dairy Day, featuring a celebrity milkshake-making contest, the annual auction of big blocks of cheese for charity, and a cow milking competition. The Wade Shows Midway also has a special promotion that day, offering wristbands good for 10 rides for just $10.

The highlight of Armed Forces Day Wednesday, September 1 is a special ceremony honoring all past and current members of the armed forces at 11 a.m. at the Veterans Memorial outside the Horticulture Building. Members of the military also take part in the Fair’s 6 p.m. parade, and the 10th Mountain Division Band performs at 1 p.m. on the Regional Artists Variety stage. Admission is free that day to all active duty service members or veterans with military identification.

Central NY Rising
Today's announcement complements "Central NY Rising," the region’s comprehensive blueprint to generate robust economic growth and community development. The State has already invested nearly $3 billion in the region since 2012 to lay the groundwork for the plan – capitalizing on global market opportunities, strengthening entrepreneurship and creating an inclusive economy. Today, unemployment is down to the lowest levels since before the Great Recession; personal and corporate income taxes are down; and businesses are choosing places like Syracuse, Oswego and Auburn as a destination to grow and invest in.

Now, the region is accelerating Central NY Rising with a $500 million State investment through the Upstate Revitalization Initiative, announced by Governor Cuomo in December 2015. The State's $500 million investment will incentivize private business to invest well over $2.5 billion – and the region’s plan, as submitted, projects up to 5,900 new jobs. More information is available here.

About Symphoria
Symphoria is a fully professional orchestra serving Syracuse and Central New York. It is one of only two co-op orchestras in the U.S., founded by nearly 50 members of the former Syracuse Symphony Orchestra, which was considered one of America’s top 50 orchestras. Symphoria is passionately committed to serving its community with inspiring orchestra and ensemble performances, and innovative education programs for kids of all ages. SymphoriaCNY is on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Visit for videos. For more information about Symphoria or to purchase tickets, visit or call the Symphoria Box Office at 315-299-5598 ext. 201.

About the Great New York State Fair
The New York State Fair, operated by the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets, runs from August 25 to September 5, 2016. The Fair's mission, reflected in its theme, "Find Your GREAT!" is to showcase the best of New York agriculture while providing top-quality entertainment.

The 375-acre New York State Fairgrounds is undergoing the most significant transformation since it first opened its gates in 1890. The $50 million plan, announced by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, revitalizes the grounds in many ways, improving the quality of the fairgoer's experience and providing greater economic benefits for the region. Improvements include the dramatic new Main Gate— the arches of which recall the carriage gate that greeted fairgoers in 1900, a larger, 15-acre Wade Shows Midway that will hold more rides than ever, and the brand new 315-site Empire RV Park with underground water, sewer and electrical service. The plan will better position the New York State Fairgrounds as a premier year-round, multi-use facility that can attract more events and visitors from across the nation. Renderings can be viewed here.

In addition to the annual New York State Fair, the Fairgrounds host dozens of agricultural events throughout the year, including some of the Northeast’s most prestigious horse and livestock shows. A year-round schedule of events is available on the Fair's website. Find The Great New York State Fair on Facebook, follow @NYSFair on Twitter, and enjoy photos from the Fair at Also, New Yorkers are invited to send their ideas for the Great New York State Fair at [email protected].

Contact the Governor's Press Office
Contact the Governor's Press Office