Taiko drumming in Rosendale’s Widow Jane Mine

(Photo by Shashank Gupta)

(Photo by Shashank Gupta)

What taken-for-granted local treasures are on your Hudson Valley Bucket List? Have you been to the Widow Jane Mine yet?

If not, you should seriously check out this mysterious Rosendale hideaway. It’s an easy stroll into the bowels of the Earth, with a flat floor, an underground lake that would serve as a nice retirement home for Gollum and acoustics that lure people to whom acoustics matter a lot, such as Pauline Oliveros, to make recordings. A remnant of Rosendale’s once-world-renowned cement-mining industry, Widow Jane is a crux point between the natural world and human endeavor where magical things can and do happen.

One of those magical interludes is scheduled for Sunday afternoon, July 17: the return of Taiko Masala for a concert of Taiko drumming. Imagine the cavern walls reverberating with the sound of traditional Japanese percussion, ranging from the giant 250-pound O-daiko right on down to the rattle of eight-inch handheld drums, all superbly choreographed under the direction of master drummer Hiro Kurashima.


The show begins at 3 p.m. on Sunday, July 17 as a benefit for the Century House Historical Society at the Snyder Estate, located at 668 Route 213, a little west of downtown Rosendale. Look for the iron gates adorned with a silhouette of the Brooklyn Bridge (whose underwater footings were famously made with sturdy Rosendale cement). Tickets cost $20 at the door.

Bring a folding chair and a light jacket, sweater or sweatshirt, even if it’s a 95-degree day up top, it will be refreshingly cool in the cave. Events happen rain or shine at the Widow Jane Mine. For more info, visit www.centuryhouse.org and www.taiko-masala.com/home.html.

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