SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Universal Preservation Hall (UPH) is a performing arts and events venue at 25 Washington Street in Saratoga Springs. Although the venue didn’t open until 2020, UPH has featured a number of acts and events, including comedians, jazz performers and interactive exhibits.
According to the UPH website, the building that eventually became Universal Preservation Hall was built in 1871 and originally used as a Methodist church. In 1976, the building was sold to Universal Baptist Church.
Over time, the website said the building fell into disrepair and was condemned in 2000. A group of Saratoga Springs residents then worked to save the building.
In 2015, UPH became a part of Proctors Collaborative, which includes Proctors Theatre and Capital Repertory Theatre. Renovations began in 2018 and were completed in early 2020. A new ADA accessible entrance and elevator were added to the building.
UPH officially opened on February 29, 2020. Rosanne Cash, the oldest daughter of country legend Johnny Cash, was the inaugural act. UPH had to close soon after due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
UPH reopened on July 26, 2022 with the interactive exhibit “Part of the Machine: Rock & Pinball.” The exhibit featured rock-themed, playable pinball machines, merchandise and band artifacts, courtesy of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
The exhibit included Alice Cooper’s newest pinball machine “Alice Cooper’s Nightmare Castle” and machines for the Rolling Stones, Dolly Parton, Guns N’ Roses, Elvis, Metallica, and KISS. The exhibit closed August 30, 2020.
During its opening season, UPH hosted trumpeter Chris Botti, comedian Louie Anderson, Sounds of the Hall featuring local jazz performers, The Marvelous Marquise Family Circus, and more.
“Dinosaurs in Motion: Where Art and Science Meet,” an interactive Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics exhibition debuted at UPH on July 25, 2021. The exhibit used 14 fully interactive, recycled life-size metal dinosaur sculptures and took visitors on an apprentice’s path that followed the story of the master artist.