Posts Tagged ‘North Adams’

Sexmob Adds Unusual Jazz Twist to 1925 Silent Film “Maciste in Hell” [Berkshire on Stage]

Tuesday, March 31st, 2015
Sex Mob brings jazz and special effects to a classic silent film at Mass MoCA’s Club B-10  on April 4

Sexmob brings jazz and special effects to a classic silent film at MASS MoCA’s Club B-10

At MASS MoCA in North Adams on Saturday night (April 4), the propulsive quartet Sexmob, which combines mind-blowing jazz chops with a highly developed sense of wit and mischief, performs its brand-new original score to Maciste in Hell, the seminal work of the Italian silent era. The great Bartolomeo Pagano stars as Maciste, a Herculean strongman whose physical prowess and matching virtue are tested when the Devil and his minions capture him and drag him to hell. Fellini cites the film as one that inspired him to lead a life in cinema.

Originally formed as a vehicle for Steven Bernstein (most notable for his work as the trumpeter for Levon Helm from 2004 to 2012) and his slide trumpet, Sexmob quickly evolved to serve a much nobler purpose. Immediately after Bernstein assembled his band (Steven Bernstein, slide trumpet; Briggan Krauss, alto sax; Tony Scherr, bass; Kenny Wollesen, drums), they began a residency at the Knitting Factory in Manhattan, largely playing Bernstein’s original songs. During a special evening of film music, however, the audience went crazy for the James Bond theme. Bernstein and his band realized that audiences engage more with music they recognize, and Sexmob’s legacy would be forever changed.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

ALSO READ:
LIVE: Jazz at the Lake @ Lake George High School Auditorium, 9/13/14 (Day One)
A Few (More) Minutes With… Steven Bernstein
A Few Minutes With… Steven Bernstein of the Millennial Territory Orchestra

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A True Original, Carl Hancock Rux Returns to MASS MoCA on Saturday [Berkshire on Stage]

Friday, March 27th, 2015

One of the most magnetic and engaging performers ever to grace a stage at MASS MoCA, Carl Hancock Rux returns on Saturday night (March 28) for an intimate set of songs and poetry set to live piano music that ranges from the blues to German lieder to Lili Boulanger. The New York Times says, “Carl Hancock Rux is full of promise and virtuosity… a gifted poet who offers up vibrant imagery like a street corner preacher in the midst of a nervous breakdown.”

An American poet, novelist, singer-songwriter, essayist and Bessie Award and OBIE Award-winning artist, Rux’s poetry deals with issues of race, religion, politics, sexuality, isolation and personal relationships, while making use of satire, naturalism and rhetoric to convey the observations embedded within his poetry. Rux delivers his poetry with an unparalleled lyrical intimacy: his voice, both literally and in terms of his writing, is undeniably his own.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

LIVE: Kat Edmonson @ MASS MoCA, 3/14/15

Thursday, March 19th, 2015

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Review by J Hunter

It was one of those cases where “You had to be there” – and I wasn’t: No less than three people I eminently respect still speak in glowing terms about vocalist Kat Edmonson’s last-minute appearance on the small stage at the 2009 Tanglewood Jazz Festival. It was around that time that I received the Texas native’s debut disc Take to the Sky and fell flat in love with her knock-out reboots the Great American Songbook. So when MASS MoCA announced Edmonson would be part of their spring season, there was no way I was going to miss out this time! Six years is a long time, though, and things are definitely different with Edmonson, on more than a few levels.

Gone are the long red hair and the jazzbo wardrobe she wore at Tanglewood, replaced by brown hair in a pixie cut and simple short red dress, accessorized by chunky heels that (maybe) get her up to about 5’6”. Gone, too, is the reliance on old standards, either from bygone days or more recent times. Edmonson’s been letting her Inner Songwriter run the show for two discs, 2012’s Way Down Low and 2014’s The Big Picture, and her influences are many and varied: She described her composition “The Best” as “a cross between the Beatles – “Maxwell’s Silver Hammer” thing – and the theme from ‘Mr. Belvedere’!” One thing that hasn’t changed is Edmonson’s undeniable ability to draw you into the worlds she creates and keep you utterly bewitched, hardly bothered and happily bewildered. And the concert version is just as powerful as the studio model.

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Zammuto & Gotye @ MASS MoCA on Saturday [Berkshire on Stage]

Thursday, March 19th, 2015

From his days as a founding member of luminary art rockers the Books to his equally arresting and madcap work as a solo artist, the imagination of Nick Zammuto is boundless. He recently built a giant catapult in his Vermont backyard for the purpose of flinging computers and guitars. When he visits MASS MoCA’s Hunter Center in North Adams at 8pm Saturday (March 21) with his eponymous ensemble, Zammuto, it’s hard to know for sure what will happen – but it’s safe to say you should show up…

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“Available Light” Brings Lucinda Childs, John Adams and Frank Gehry Together Again at MASS MoCA, March 6-8 [Berkshire on Stage]

Thursday, March 5th, 2015
Available Light

“Available Light” is reimagined at Mass MoCA as choreographer Lucinda Childs, set designer Frank Gehry and composer John Adams are artists in residence at MASS MoCA.

By Larry Murray

Lucinda Childs, one of the most celebrated choreographers of the modern era, revives her seminal 1983 collaboration with composer John Adams and architect Frank Gehry. During an extended artistic residency at North Adams’ confluence of visual and performing arts, MASS MoCA, Childs remounts “Available Light,” which features an updated version of Childs’ choreography and Gehry’s striking set. The work-in-progress preview performances will take place in the museum’s Hunter Center at 8pm on Friday and Saturday (March 6 & 7) and at 3pm on Sunday (March 8).

“Available Light” was commissioned by and had its world premiere at the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art in 1983. The piece was originally conceived as a site-specific work, in which the museum’s large, warehouse-style performance venue, called the Temporary Contemporary, played an integral role. Lucinda Childs’ signature style of choreography, much of which she established in this work, merged with Frank Gehry’s stunning two-story Constructivist set and John Adams’s original, textured score, “Light Over Water.”

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

From Brooklyn to MASS MoCA: Legs – Indie Pop with Stax-Worthy Hooks [Berkshire on Stage]

Friday, February 13th, 2015
The band Legs, at Mass MoCA February 14, 2015

The band Legs @ MASS MoCA on Saturday, February 14

If extroversion had a musical embodiment, it would be in the sounds and rhythms of Brooklyn’s Legs. Blending modern indie pop with Stax-worthy hooks, they are a mobile cauldron of everything retro and cosmopolitan. Bring a date, or find one here. Legs plays MASS MoCA’s Club B-10 on Saturday (February 14) at 8pm.

Two sets of brothers and one good friend make up the fresh-faced band, a five-man surge of energy that defines its sound as indie dance, soul, and “new disco.” Legs’ highest priority on stage is to ensure that every person in the audience is having a great time, and with a funky sound, kinetic style and unbeatable onstage chemistry, success is always guaranteed. This Valentine’s Day, the band leaves its beloved Brooklyn behind to treat MASS MoCA audiences to an evening of mind-clearing, soul-freeing, heart-warming and dance-inspiring music.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

Steve Earle, the Father of Alt-Country Sets His GPS for MASS MoCA [Berkshire on Stage]

Thursday, February 5th, 2015
Steve Earle

Steve Earle

By Larry Murray

The original trailblazer of alt-country, a protest singer of fiery commitment, a songwriter of towering ability – Steve Earle is an artist of expansive talents. He’s on his way to MASS MoCA, a sack full of Grammy Awards and his gravelly, impassioned voice in tow, for a solo show just before the release of Terraplane, his new album of swampy, southern-stomp blues. Steve Earle plays MASS MoCA’s Hunter Center in North Adams on Saturday, February 7, at 8pm.

The now-legendary Earle has always done what he wanted: he taught himself guitar at the age of 11, and at age 14 attempted to run away from home to follow his musical idol, Townes Van Zandt. Two years later, he dropped out of high school and moved to Houston with his 19-year old uncle, where he finally met Van Zandt, eventually becoming his protégé.

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On Saturday, MASS MoCA Offers a Free Day of Wonderment for All [Berkshire on Stage]

Tuesday, January 27th, 2015

bosmassmocafree

On a day when their galleries teem with visitors and activities, you can take a peek behind the scenes in every aspect of the North Adams museum. MASS MoCA Director Joseph Thompson elaborates on the history of our campus. Art fabricators break down the process of taking a project from concept to completion, and you can watch their tech crew build a concert light show. Enjoy elevator music (played live), art-making, dance performances, story time, treasure hunts, and all the usual Free Day fun. MASS MoCA’s Free Day goes down on Saturday (January 31) from 11 am to 7 pm. A dance party follows later on with Nomandic Massive, a ticketed (not free) event.

Ever wonder how a 12-ton phoenix got into the museum or what it takes to put on a dance performance? Free Day visitors are encouraged to engage with museum staff who lead specialized talks and tours to answer all your MASS MoCA questions. Hear Richard Criddle, Director of Fabrication and Art Installation; Sue Killam, Managing Director of Performing Arts; and Joseph Thompson, Director, talk about: The History of MASS MoCA; The Technology Behind Dying of the Light: Film as Medium and Metaphor; How It’s Made: an inside look at the exhibition installation process; The Show Must Go On: a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the performing arts at MASS MoCA; and a detailed overview of the long-term Sol LeWitt Retrospective. Additionally, gallery tours that discuss museum history and art run every half hour from 11:30am to 6pm. Family-focused tours are available at 12pm and 2pm, and family activities are ongoing throughout the day.

Click to read the rest at Berkshire on Stage.

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