Posts Tagged ‘Becket’

THEATER: Spend “An Intimate Evening with Death, Herself” [Berkshire on Stage]

Thursday, September 22nd, 2016
Douglass Truth

Douglass Truth

Douglass Truth, a well-known painter, performer and former Berkshires resident who was the first artist to join Pittsfield’s Storefront Artist Project, returns to the Berkshires this month for an art show and series of performances at the Dreamaway Lodge in Becket.

“An Intimate Evening with Death, Herself” is a 90-minute one-woman show about a middle-aged waitress who meets Death in a bar, and 49 days later, replaces him. Douglass Truth is Dorothy, a meatloaf-phobic waitress. She goes to a bar after a bad day on the cafeteria line and meets Tod, who turns out to be the Grim Reaper. In the course of an understated, unpretentious, poignant and tender, droll and massively ambitious performance, Dorothy helps her audience relate to death without flinching and with abundant amusement.

“An Intimate Evening with Death, Herself” will be performed Sunday (September 25) at 8pm, at the Dreamaway Lodge, in Becket. There will be a tip jar available for donations to support Dorothy’s work.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.


DANCE: “Mariko’s Magical Mix” Heads Into Jacob’s Pillow [Berkshire on Stage]

Wednesday, July 13th, 2016

Hubbard Street 2, the young second company of the world-renowned Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, will present Mariko’s Magical Mix: A Dance Adventure for their Jacob’s Pillow debut, in the Doris Duke Theatre, opening tonight (Wednesday, July 13) and running through Sunday. In collaboration with design studio Manuel Cinema, Princess Grace Award recipient and recent member of Hubbard Street Dance Chicago Robyn Mineko Williams creates a whimsical and family-friendly performance. Intertwining shadow puppetry and contemporary dance with an imaginative narrative, the piece is recommended for ages five and up, as well as the young at heart.

Led by Artistic Director Terence Marling, Hubbard Street 2 is known for its highly-selective six-person ensemble of young, artistically and technically mature dancers. The mission of the company is to foster artistic growth and hone the technical skills of the talented 18-25 year old company members, many of whom have gone onto become members of Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, as well as other top dance companies worldwide. The Chicago Sun Times praises the consistent level of work produced by the company: “It’s called the ‘second’ company, but there is nothing second-class about Hubbard Street 2.”

Mariko’s Magical Mix: A Dance Adventure tells the story of Mariko, a young girl whose day-to-day monotony is transformed into a joyful adventure when she finds a collection of her mother’s vinyl records in their attic. The music takes Mariko on a surprising voyage where she discovers new friends, interesting machinery, and strange creatures. This journey ultimately allows her to discover a unique inner-strength and rhythm that she can use to guide her everyday experiences. In one 60-minute work, the six dancers of HS2 tell Mariko’s colorful story through beautifully mesmerizing movement, small gestures, and emotive music cues that are seamlessly integrated with cinematic shadow puppetry. Mariko’s Magical Mix: A Dance Adventure is praised for being a “gorgeous contemporary dance adventure [that] needs to be experienced by the whole family” (Kendall Mostafavi, DC Metro Theater Arts).

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

Aspen Santa Fe Ballet Kicks Off 2016 @ Jacob’s Pillow [Berkshire on Stage]

Wednesday, June 22nd, 2016
Craig Black and Emily Proctor of Aspen Santa Fe Ballet (photo: Rosalie O’Connor)

Craig Black and Emily Proctor of Aspen Santa Fe Ballet (photo: Rosalie O’Connor)

Jacob’s Pillow in Becket launches its 84th annual season today (June 22) with the exciting contemporary dance company Aspen Santa Fe Ballet presenting a diverse program in the Ted Shawn Theatre through Sunday (June 26).

Aspen Santa Fe Ballet is dually-based in New Mexico and Colorado and led by Artistic Director Tom Mossbrucker and Executive Director Jean-Philippe Malaty. Exhibiting masterful technique and powerful performances, the company brings stirring works by a roster of esteemed choreographers including Alejandro Cerrudo’s Silent Ghost, Fernando Melo’s Re:play and Cayetano Soto’s Huma Rojo.

“I am thrilled to welcome Aspen Santa Fe Ballet back to the Pillow, where they are so beloved by our audiences,” says Jacob’s Pillow Director Pamela Tatge. “The breadth and diversity of the program promises something for everyone and a fabulous opening week for Festival 2016.”

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage

FREE: Pre-Season Community Day @ Jacob’s Pillow on Saturday [Berkshire on Stage]

Thursday, June 9th, 2016


Following the success of last year’s Community Day, Jacob’s Pillow – the home to America’s longest-running dance festival and recipient of the National Medal of Arts – will again host their pre-season Community Day with free, family-friendly dance classes, performances and activities from 12noon-3pm on Saturday (June 11).

A campus-wide event in Becket, the festivities will include free dance classes for participants of all ages in varying dance styles, as well as a special children’s beginning ballet class taught by Berkshire Pulse instructor Sarah Daunt. Chuck Paquette, faculty member of Williams College and Berkshire Dance Theatre, will teach an all-levels Modern Class in the historic Sommers Studio at 12noon, followed by an all-levels Zumba class taught by certified Zumba instructor Rachael Plaine. All Community Day participants will have the opportunity to learn a hip-hop combination at the outdoor Marcia & Seymour Simon Performance Space from Berkshire-based company dysFUNKcrew and Berkshire Dance Theatre.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage

Pamela Tatge Takes Over as Leader of Jacob’s Pillow [Berkshire on Stage]

Wednesday, January 13th, 2016
Pamela Tatge will lead Jacob’s Pillow into the future.

Pamela Tatge will lead Jacob’s Pillow into the future.

Pamela Tatge will lead Jacob’s Pillow into the future…

Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in Becket has announced that esteemed arts leader Pamela Tatge will join the organization as Executive Director in April, succeeding Ella Baff, who served as the leader of Jacob’s Pillow from 1998 to 2015.

Following a record-breaking 2015 season, Jacob’s Pillow, a National Historic Landmark, National Medal of Arts recipient and home to America’s longest running dance festival, launched a national search for its next leader. For the past 16 years, Tatge has served as the Director of the Center for the Arts at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, overseeing robust programming and acclaimed artistic initiatives for dance, music, theater and the visual arts.

At Jacob’s Pillow, Tatge will set the artistic vision and strategic goals for all aspects of the organization, including festival programming, education, preservation, audience engagement, residency programming and artist support, long-term planning, collaborative programming, fundraising, marketing and more.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival Announces 2016 Season [Berkshire on Stage]

Wednesday, December 16th, 2015


Following the critical acclaim and record-breaking ticket sales and attendance of Festival 2015, Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in Becket announced a new season of exciting programming featuring international artists, world premieres and an impressive number of live music engagements. This season signals an exciting new era in Pillow history, as the Board of Directors plans to name a new Jacob’s Pillow Director in early 2016. Former Executive and Artistic Director Ella Baff stepped down from her role in September of 2015, following a successful 17-year tenure.

Highlights of Festival 2016 include a world premiere engagement created by tap dance powerhouses Dormeshia Sumbry-Edwards, Derick K. Grant and Jason Samuels Smith; former New York City Ballet principal dancer Wendy Whelan and choreographer Brian Brooks in an evening of new duets and solos, accompanied by eminent string quartet Brooklyn Rider; rare U.S. appearances by France-based Compagnie Hervé KOUBI and Korea-based contemporary ensemble Bereishit Dance Company; the explosive Che Malambo of Argentina; and the return of the beloved Seattle-based company Pacific Northwest Ballet. Tickets go on sale to the public on Friday, April 1, online at 12:01am and via phone at 10am (413.243.0745); Jacob’s Pillow members can order as early as Monday, January 11.

“It may be winter but the Pillow is buzzing with excitement,” states Managing Director Andrea Sholler. “We are looking forward to the selection of our new Director, a thrilling 2016 season, and enhancements to our Festival offerings including changes to the Jacob’s Pillow Store and new partnerships with Berkshire County restaurateurs. Festival 2016 features artists from all over the globe, live music for 10 of the 20 Ted Shawn and Doris Duke Theatre artists and world premieres by renowned choreographers in a multitude of genres – we can’t wait to welcome audiences back to the Pillow.”

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival Sneak-Previews 2016 Season [Berkshire on Stage]

Wednesday, November 18th, 2015
Virtuosic tap dance meets interactive electronic music technology in ETM: Double Down, a world premiere from Dorrance Dance. Photo by Christopher Duggan.

Virtuosic tap dance meets interactive electronic music technology in “ETM: Double Down,” a world premiere from Dorrance Dance. Photo by Christopher Duggan.

By Larry Murray

While not giving the whole schedule away – they’re still hard at work on that – the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival is giving us a sneak peek at the first four companies that it plans to showcase in 2016. The festival, located in Beckett, runs from June to August, though it also has a surprising number of year-round activities of interest to dance enthusiasts. We take a look at both, along with a look back on Summer 2015.

The quartet of companies announced early for the 2016 Festival are: the dynamic audience favorite Aspen Santa Fe Ballet; tap dance sensation and 2015 MacArthur Fellow Michelle Dorrance and her company Dorrance Dance in ETM: Double Down; the Festival 2015’s breakout star Gauthier Dance//Dance Company Theaterhaus Stuttgart, and a rare U.S. appearance of the all-male, France-based ensemble Compagnie Hervé KOUBI.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage

DANCE: Daniil Simkin Reveals Four New High Tech Ballets at Jacob’s Pillow [Berkshire on Stage]

Wednesday, July 22nd, 2015

By Larry Murray

I caught up with Daniil Simkin a couple of months ago as he was finishing up his promotional duties for the Rick Burns American Masters documentary about American Ballet Theatre, which recently aired on PBS-TV. He was also carefully monitoring the progress of the four choreographers who were creating new works for his program, Intensio, which has its premiere tonight (Wednesday, July 22) at the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in Becket. Simkin is more than just one of the best dancers of his generation, he is also an impresario, an entrepreneur of dance, and – what many people don’t know – an almost geekish lover of multimedia technology. In short, a Renaissance man bridging the classical and modern ages of old school ballet and the latest theatrical technology.

When we spoke, Intensio was already well on its way with the choreographers hard at work on their new pieces. “We’re all getting together for two weeks before arriving at the Pillow and doing the final work before the performances. We plan to allow a full week each for rehearsals and for the multi-media elements before arriving in Becket to put Intensio on stage again,” said Simkin. Intensio is a major life-long Simkin family project and was done – in an entirely different form – in December 2009 at the Palace Theater in Athens, Greece.

“We need to tech this properly because it is not just sets on a bare stage with music. It’s much more than that. We are trying to create media effects that include real-time figure projection. We’ve been pre-teching it, which has been a way of trying stuff out, making decisions as to what enhances each piece, and what doesn’t. We have not done projections before on the scale we are doing them now,” he explained. The dancers are ready. The performances begin tonight (Wednesday, July 22). The pressure is on.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

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