Weekend Preview Oct 14-19



Close Encounters With Music kicks off its 19th season in the Berkshires in a program of Russian works performed by the Chamber Orchestra Kremlin on Saturday, October 16 at 6 at the Mahaiwe in Great Barrington, Mass. The program includes Tchaikovsky’s Serenade for Strings and Prokofiev’s collection of miniature gems of mood, Visions Fugitives. CEWM artistic director Yehuda Hanani joins as soloist for Tchaikovsky’s Andante cantabile and Max Bruch’s cantorial, uplifting Kol Nidrei.
Since its formation in1991 in Moscow, Chamber Orchestra Kremlin has performed over 1,400 concerts—nearly 600 in Moscow, the rest on tours in 24 countries of Europe, North and South America and the Far East—earning recognition as one of Russia’s leading ensembles. The orchestra has recorded over 30 CDs, receiving widespread international acclaim and awards such as the Diapason d'Or in France, “Critics Choice” in London's Gramophone and in the New York Times, “Record of the Year” in Hong Kong, and others. “The ensemble’s music director elicited warm, full-blooded and virtuosic playing with colorfully shaped, gleaming phrases,” the New York Times has written.
Founded and led by conductor Misha Rachlevsky, the orchestra comprises some of Russia's finest young string players. “In the age of globalization and musical nomadism, it is rare to have a homogeneously-trained group of players, all of whom have been brought up in the inimitable Russian school of string playing. This ultimately affects the unanimity of sound quality and blend of instruments. We welcome this marvelous opportunity for chamber music audiences in the Berkshires to experience real musical solidarity, says Mr. Hanani.”
Close Encounters With Music concerts are broadcast on WMHT-FM, and audiences are encouraged to tune into the new weekly broadcasts of Classical Music According to Yehuda on WAMC Northeast Radio or visit www.wamc.org.
The Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center box office:
Close Encounters With Music:


Composed from court records, interviews, and the infamous Allen Ginsberg poem HOWL, the film by the same name – which will be screened by the Berkshire International Film Festival on Friday, October 15, at the Triplex in Great Barrington, Mass., with award-winning directors Jeffrey Friedman and Rob Epstein in attendance. On Sunday, October 17, at 11 a.m., the BIFF’s REEL FRIENDS Film Society will screen Talal Jabari’s Full Signal at the Triplex.
HOWL simultaneously weaves a portrait of a renegade artist breaking down barriers to find love and redemption and an imaginative ride through a prophetic masterpiece that rocked a generation and was heard around the world. A Q&A with the directors will follow the 7 pm screening and the directors will also introduce the 9 pm screening.
James Franco stars as the young Allen Ginsberg—poet, counter-culture adventurer, and chronicler of the Beat Generation. In his famously confessional, leave-nothing-out style, Ginsberg recounts the road trips, love affairs, and search for personal liberation that led to the most timeless and electrifying work of his career: the poem HOWL.
Meanwhile, in a San Francisco courtroom, HOWL is on trial. Prosecutor Ralph McIntosh (David Strathairn) sets out to prove that the book should be banned, while suave defense attorney Jake Ehrlich (Jon Hamm) argues fervently for freedom of speech and creative expression. The proceedings veer from the comically absurd to the passionate as a host of unusual witnesses (Jeff Daniels, Mary-Louise Parker, Treat Williams, Alessandro Nivola) pit generation against generation and art against fear in front of conservative Judge Clayton Horn (Bob Balaban).
This screening of HOWL is sponsored by Oscilliscope Films, the Triplex Cinema and the BIFF’s REEL FRIENDS Film Society. HOWL is open to the public. REEL Friend directors, writers and producers will be invited to a private reception with the directors at the Vault Gallery, catered by Michael Ballon of Church Street Cafe.
On Sunday, 17 October, at 11 a.m., the BIFF’s REEL FRIENDS Film Society will present Talal Jabari’s FULL SIGNAL at the Triplex Cinema. The documentary chronicles the proliferation of wireless communications technologies, including cell phones, smartphones and WiFi, in countries around the world.
It also explores the effects of microwave radiation emitted by these devices and the systems that power them on human health and the environment. Swedish neurologist Leif Salford has called the indiscriminate buildout of wireless communications “the world’s largest biological experiment ever.” He is one of a number of scientists, journalists, activists and lawmakers interviewed in the film, which was shot in ten countries and six US states.

The film will be introduced by Dr. Mark Hyman, the founder and medical director of the UltraWellness Center in Lenox, Mass. He is a four-time New York Times bestselling author and an internationally recognized leader in the field of functional medicine, a whole-systems approach. Several experts who are featured in the documentary will be available for a question-and-answer session after the film.
Full Signal is open to the public at matinee price and is free for REEL FRIENDS. Seating is limited, so an RSVP is appreciated to ensure a seat. Contact Lauren at (413) 528 8030 or
Hot off its third Grammy nomination for Best Tropical Latin Album for Bach in Havana, the sizzling, dance-inducing Cuban music group Tiempo Libre will perform at Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center in Great Barrington, Mass., on Thursday, October 14 at 7.
Tiempo Libre’s show is a dynamic, passionate performance of timba music, an exciting and engaging combination of Latin jazz and traditional Cuban songs. Their goal is to serve as ambassadors of Cuba’s musical heritage, while celebrating the American experience. The members of the Miami-based Cuban music group Tiempo Libre were all classically trained at La ENA, Havana’s premiere Russian-style conservatory during the Special Period in Cuba. 

Tiempo Libre’s latest Cuban music album, Bach in Havana (its first recording under its new deal on Sony Masterworks), was released in May, 2009. The album takes Bach as a starting point from which to explore a wide range of Cuban music forms and rhythms and features guest tracks with Yosvany Terry and Paquito D’Rivera.
The album is a true reflection of the two worlds of Tiempo Libre's Cuban musical upbringing. Tiempo Libre’s seven members led “double” lives studying classical music at Cuba’s premiere Russian-style conservatory La ENA by day and by night meeting up to play timba, Latin jazz as well as the rumba and in tambores. In Bach, Tiempo Libre found a kindred spirit: a composer who wrote music in both the secular and the spiritual traditions. It was only natural that they would be interested in weaving their classical roots into a new musical tapestry.
Tiempo Libre’s Mahaiwe concert will include music from Bach in Havana as well as their two other Grammy nominated timba albums, Lo Que Esperabas and Arroz Con Mango.


It was Jean Genet’s wish that his play, The Maids, would be cast with men, but in its first production in 1947, Louis Jouvet, the director, refused to do so and cast three women instead. With NEW STAGE Theatre Company’s latest production, Genet’s original intent is carried out. Opening Friday October 15 and running three weekends at the Pittsfield theater, local audiences will have the opportunity to see it the way Genet wanted it to be.
Written in 1945, The Maids drew its plot from a notorious 1933 murder in France where the Papin sisters, who worked as maids in the household of a well-off family, brutally murdered their mistress and her daughter. The play delves into the complex psychological relationship between the sisters.  Thomas Gruenewald, the director, says that Genet wasn't interested in the story of the Papin sisters so much, but rather in the exploration of the sexual, political and economic conditions that could have caused so brutal an incident.
Daniel Osman, the owner of the Dream Away Lodge and formerly a full-time actor, plays the role of Solange, the difficult and controlling sister, while David Anderson, the founding director of Walking the Dog Theatre Company and an actor from Hudson, N.Y., plays Claire the younger sister. Ken De Loreto plays the maids’ mistress, Madame.
Genet, who had a criminal background and spent many years in prison, eventually became championed by the French intelligentsia, but never lost his fascination with and participation in the sexual and criminal world. The Maids reflects many issues that he grappled with during his life.
The Maids runs October 15-31, every Friday and Saturday night at 7:30 and Sundays at 3. After each Sunday matinee there will be a talkback with the director and the actors. NEW STAGE Performing Arts Center is located at 55 North Street in Pittsfield, Mass., just above the Beacon Cinema. All tickets are $20. For more information or to make a reservation call or go to http://www.newstageperformingarts.org
Baritone saxophone virtuoso Claire Daly, vibraphone up-and-comer Joe Baione, the American Jazz Repertory Orchestra, and the Brazilian Jazz Trio headline the final weekend of the Pittsfield CityJazz Festival at various locations around the city. The Brazilian Jazz Trio, comprising Warren Byrd (piano), Jason Schwarts (bass), and leader Tom Parker (drums) will perform at the Berkshire Athenaeum on Wednesday, Oct. 13.
Most of the events are free. The two ticketed events, both on the headline weekend, include:
•           Oct. 15: the Berkshires debut of Joe Baione, a Delaware-based vibraphone player and his quintet. The concert (7:30pm, Crowne Plaza Hotel, $20 general admission) will be preceded by an optional New Orleans-style sit-down dinner ($27, reservations required) with such delicacies such as shrimp etouffe', jambalaya, and cajun catfish.
•           Oct. 16: a guest appearance of baritone saxophone virtuoso Claire Daly, who will be featured as a soloist with two big bands on the program: The Berkshires Jazz Youth Ensemble and the American Jazz Repertory Orchestra (AJRO); Colonial Theatre, 8pm ($15, $25). AJRO will be introducing a new program, called "The Great American Jazz Book." A takeoff on the familiar vocalizations that comprise an oeuvre called "the great American songbook," AJRO's material is primarily instrumental, and focuses on the great big-band hits of the mid-20th century.
AJRO is directed by Clem DeRosa, a member of the Jazz Hall of Fame, a big-band drummer and pioneer in jazz education. During his military career, DeRosa served with one of Glenn Miller's Air Corps Bands, and later fronted one of Miller’s “ghost bands,” and the Benny Goodman band, on tours.
AJRO returns to Pittsfield by popular demand, after a 2009 appearance on Independence Day weekend. Besides a set of familiar big-band selections spotlighting Daly and other soloists, AJRO will perform jointly with the Berkshires Jazz Youth Ensemble, directed by Ron Lively, in a finale that will bring all the musicians on stage at once.
The festivities conclude with various jazz-oriented performers on Oct. 21, part of Pittsfield's "Third Thursday" block party.
Roots-blues singer-guitarist David Jacobs-Strain will perform at Club Helsinki Hudson in Hudson, N.Y., on Sunday, October 17 at 8. Fresh from dates opening for artists like Boz Scaggs and Robert Earl Keen, Jacobs-Strain will perform songs from his new release, Terraplane Angel.
David Jacobs-Strain began his career at age 13 slugging a bamboo gear cart with a tattered "Delta Blues" sign through the mud at the Oregon Country Fair. By the time he dropped out of Stanford, Jacobs-Strain was already performing at festivals like Strawberry, Merlefest, and Telluride Blues. David’s new recording, Terraplane Angel, is a collaboration with maverick Nashville producer Ray Kennedy (Steve Earle, Lucinda Williams, Ray Davies).
Years of solo touring formed Jacobs-Strain into a performer of rare strength and virtuosity. His emotional vocals, and thundering, shimmering guitar style, have landed him onstage alongside performers like Taj Mahal and T Bone Burnett. David Grisman included Jacobs-Strain on the Tone Poets compilation alongside some of the nation's greatest string players. This past summer, Jacobs-Strain joined Boz Scaggs on a North American tour for the third time.
Terraplane Angel presents Jacobs-Strain's most rocking moments alongside intimate and playful tracks. “On stage I get in to a flow, and just let all kinds of weird guitar and vocal expressions come out, but this record is really about the songs for me. I wanted to paint the Northwest—and my own struggles with heartbreak—in the way that Lucinda Williams shades the South or Tom Petty casts Southern California.”
“Hurricane Railroad,” rooted in the swampy rock of Little Feat and Ben Harper, highlights David’s national guitar slide playing and the live-in-the-studio chemistry with drummer Greg Morrow and bassist Craig Young. “Halfway to the Coast” evokes a young Jackson Browne, but the open-tuned harmonics and Lost Coast imagery are all David: “It's a redwood horizon out beyond the city lights/ a daydream asylum where the day fades to night/ so when you come to see me leave your visions by the door/ this lonesome miner's cabin has seen them all before.”
Club Helsinki Hudson
405 Columbia St.
Hudson, N.Y.
Hancock Shaker Village has enlisted internationally and regionally recognized contemporary artists—painters, sculptors, textile artists, and ceramicists—to help celebrate the museum’s golden anniversary. Forty artists, among them Jenny Holzer, Jon Isherwood, and Ellsworth Kelly, contributed work to Simple Gifts: Contemporary Artists Celebrate Hancock Shaker Village’s 50th Anniversary, which is now on view in the Poultry House, an adaptively reused authentic Shaker building.
The exhibition is open to the general public free with admission through October 15. It culminates with a live auction of the works, conducted by Courtney Booth of Sotheby’s, on Saturday, October 16 at 5, with proceeds to benefit the artists and programs at the Village.
Many of the works are shown online at http://www.hancockshakervillage.org. Patrons may purchase pieces prior to the auction for the full advance sale price by contacting Suzanne Maslanka at extension 214. To attend the auction (for which there is no admission fee) or place a bid if you’re unable to attend, please contact Maribeth Cellana at extension 115.
Simple Gifts: Contemporary Artists Celebrate Hancock Shaker Village’s 50th Anniversary exhibit and auction features work by Michael and Maureen Banner, Michael Boroniec, Ben Butler, Gordon Chandler, Peter Dellert, Sue Flores, Gene Flores, Warner Friedman, Anthony Garner, Mike Glier, Paul Graubard, Tracy Helgeson, Jenny Holzer, Lili Holzer-Glier, David Hornung, Jason Houston, Peter Hussey, Jon Isherwood, Ann Jon, Ruberto Juarez, Ellsworth Kelly, Maggie Mailer, Peter McCaffrey, Geoffrey Moss, Gary Orlinsky, Victoria Palermo, Janet Rickus, Jennifer Riley, Denyse Schmidt, Carol Stegeman, Roy Superior, Mara Superior, Jain Tarnower, Suzanne Ulrich, Nicholas Whitman, T. Kelly Wilson, La Wilson, Joyce Audy Zarins, and Michael Zelehoski. The artists’ work represents a range of media and styles.
This exhibit and sale is part of a group of contemporary art activities taking place in honor of the museum’s 50th anniversary, including a conceptual ‘living’ sculpture by artist Ann Belden that is growing in the Village Textile Garden, a recent residency by sculptor David Poppie, and the show Sculpture Now in Lee, Mass., which features outdoor sculpture throughout the town that is inspired by the Shakers.
The anniversary contemporary art programs were created through a collaboration between Hancock Shaker Village and John Davis Gallery, Ferrin Gallery, Harrison Gallery, Ann Jon, Sculpture Now, Carol Stegeman, and Allegra LaViola Gallery.
The Bard Conservatory Orchestra under the direction of music director Leon Botstein will perform Richard Strauss’s Don Juan, Schoenberg’s Five Pieces for Orchestra, and Hector Berlioz’s Symphonie Fantastique on Monday, October 18 at 8 in the McConnell Theater, Daniel Arts Center, at Simon’s Rock College in Great Barrington, Mass.
These are all difficult orchestral showpieces that allow soloists to shine. The orchestra rehearses and regularly performs at the Fisher Center for the Performing Arts, a Frank Gehry-designed, world class theater on the Bard College at Annandale campus. Recent professional engagements have taken the musicians to Beijing and the Library of Congress.



The Williamstown Film Festival kicks off its 12th season on Friday, Oct 15, with Meet Monica Velour at Images Cinema. Legendary film director Billy Wilder will be paid tribute on Saturday, Oct 16, at MASS MoCA in North Adams, Mass., in a conversation between Emmy-winning stage and screen actor Alec Baldwin and Turner Classic Movies anchor Robert Osborne.
In the course of two weekends, (October 15-17 and 21-24), the Williamstown Film Festival’s 12th season will screen 33 titles including the East Coast premiere of a new documentary by the team that made Spellbound, the latest work of director Edward Burns, and films featuring Brian Dennehy, Helen Hunt, Eddie Izzard, Melissa Leo, Liev Schreiber, Kim Cattrall, and David Hyde Pierce.
WFF kicks off at Images Cinema in Williamstown at 8 on Friday, October 15, with Meet Monica Velour, the delightfully offbeat story of a teenage nerd’s crush on a onetime soft core actress (Cattrall, in a terrific performance). Director Keith Bearden will attend the screening and take questions afterward.
Saturday, October 16, begins at the Williams Inn with a 10am breakfast seminar, “The Kids on the Screen,” in which artists from the weekend’s shorts and features talk about eliciting performances from young actors and the history of children in the movies. This will be followed by a noon screening at Images of The Space Between, in which a flight attendant (Leo) takes charge of a Pakistani boy in the wake of a national crisis and forms an unexpected bond with him. The first of the always-popular All-Shorts slots takes place at Images at 3:00pm.
The annual Benefit dinner (which includes reserved seating at the event following) will be held in the B10 Cabaret space at MASS MoCA in North Adams, after which WFF and MASS MoCA will present Emmy-winning screen and stage star Alec Baldwin and Turner Classics Movie host Robert Osborne in “Revisiting Billy Wilder,” a lively conversation about the iconic director of Some Like It Hot, Sunset Boulevard, Double Indemnity, The Apartment, and many more. WFF executive director Steve Lawson will moderate the discussion, which will include clips reels of scenes from Wilder’s movies to spark the dialogue as well as questions from the audience.
The first weekend concludes at Images on Sunday, October 17th with an 11am screening of Every Day, in which a superb cast of Helen Hunt, Liev Schreiber, Eddie Izzard, and Brian Dennehy (who is expected to attend) illuminates a touching look at a family struggling to get past life’s curveballs. Bagels, fruit, coffee and juices will be available at 10:30am





Seth Rogovoy and the Grove Street Band will make its debut performance at the Lion’s Den at The Red Lion Inn, in Stockbridge, Mass., performing a program of rock standards, on Wednesday, October 20, at 8 pm.
Singer-guitarist Seth Rogovoy, best known as the editor-in-chief of Berkshire Living magazine and the author of two books about music, is a longtime music critic, having contributed columns and reviews to the Berkshire Eagle for 16 years and as a four-time honoree for music criticism for his Berkshire Living column, “The Beat Goes On,” by the National City and Regional Magazine Association.
But outside of a few rare appearances in Bob Dylan tribute concerts, Rogovoy isn’t known as a performer. In fact, before he was a music critic, Rogovoy spent a number of years as a coffeehouse singer in places much like the Lion’s Den, throughout high school, college, in New York City, and in Jerusalem.
“Once I began reviewing music professionally as my main work activity, I thought it best to put aside my career – such as it was – as a performer,” says Rogovoy, who lives in Great Barrington, Mass. “It’s been great fun getting back in touch with that side of me. I hope it’s almost as much fun for the audience.”
To keep it in the spirit of fun, Rogovoy plans a program of well-known favorites he terms “The Great Anglo-American Songbook 2.0” by classic rock songwriters including George Harrison, Warren Zevon, Bruce Springsteen, Cat Stevens, Robbie Robertson, David Byrne, and, of course, Bob Dylan.
Accompanying Rogovoy will be singer/multi-instrumentalist Rob Sanzone, a frequent Lion’s Den performer, and Willie Watkins, a senior at Monument Mountain Regional High School, on drums. In real life, Watkins is Rogovoy’s son.
Lion’s Den Manager Debby Totillo is delighted to put Rogovoy in the spotlight for a change. “Many of us look to Seth for his thoughtful commentary on music. It will be a treat for us to see and hear, firsthand, what inspires him.”
The Lion’s Den pub, located downstairs at The Red Lion Inn in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, offers entertainment seven nights a week; there is never a cover charge.
Offering everything from acoustic folk to R&B, and reggae to the blues, the Lion’s Den features regular appearances by local longtimes performers, including David Grover, the Sun Mountain Fiddler, and the Housatonic Philharmonic, along with up-and-coming talent.
Some nationally recognized performers have been known to grace the humble pub’s stage from time to time - James Taylor, Lauren Ambrose and Roger Salloom among them.
The Lion's Den pub is open nightly with entertainment from 9 p.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday and entertainment from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday.





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