The Berkshire Late Summer Guide to Performances and Events

Our Picks and Previews for now through Labor Day 2009

By: - Aug 17, 2009

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Our Top Tickets for
August 18 - September 8



Barrington Stage Company
Main Stage 30 Union Street, Pittsfield
Stage II 36 Linden Street, Pittsfield
Box Office 413.236.8888

A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE: Now to August 29 on the Main Stage. Julianne Boyd directs Tennessee Williams' greatest drama with Marin Mazzie as the sexually charged Blanche DuBois and Christopher Innvar as the explosive Stanley Kowalski. Read Our Review

The plot is a classic: the emotionally fragile Blanche DuBois arrives in steamy New Orleans to stay with her sister Stella where she is confronted by Stella's brutish working class husband Stanley Kowalski. Sparks fly and passions boil over, interrupting the delicate balance in Stella and Stanley's marriage and sending Blanche's life out of control. This darkly beautiful and hauntingly poetic Pulitzer Prize winning play is not to be missed. But be forewarned: once you experience this riveting drama, just about everything on commercial television will see even more vacuous.

Special Event: The BSC will hold a Stella Shouting Contest at Third Thursday on August 20, 2009 at 6pm in downtown Pittsfield.

FREUD'S LAST SESSION: Now to August 30 at BSC Stage 2. A return of the popular play which received its world premiere earlier this summer at Barrington Stage. Earlier Review Here  Written by Mark St. Germain, the play stars Mark H. Dold and Martin Rayner as C.S. Lewis and Sigmund Freud in a meeting between the two on the day Britain enters WWII. Freud, a staunch atheist, quizzes Lewis, a former atheist who converted to Christianity, about his views on God and more personal matters.

SONGS BY RIDICULOUSLY TALENTED COMPOSERS AND LYRICISTS YOU PROBABLY DON'T KNOW BUT SHOULD...: September 4-5 on the Main Stage. Narrated by William Finn and sung by a cast of four, this is a Labor Day weekend celebration of extraordinary new songs and favorite Musical Theatre Lab numbers. (More details and photos here) Finn shares with the audience what makes a good lyric, why some work and others don't you'll feel as if you're in a master class in songwriting taught by the master himself.

MEMORY IS THE MOTHER OF ALL WISDOM: September 5-6. A staged reading with music by Zachary Redler, Book and Lyrics by Sara Cooper and Directed by Joe Calarco. Memory Is The Mother Of All Wisdom is two-person comic tragedy about the troubled relationship of a woman who has just been diagnosed with Alzheimer's and her estranged daughter who moves back home to Brighton Beach to take care of her. MITMOAW was developed at the Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program at the Tisch School of the Arts at NYU.

Berkshire Theatre Festival
Main Stage Main Street (Route 102), Stockbridge
Unicorn Theatre Route 7, Stockbridge
Box Office 413.298.5576

GHOSTS: August 12 to 29 on the Main Stage. One of the most anticipated offerings of the summer, this classic of the stage by Henrik Ibsen is being presented in a new adaptation by Anders Cato and James Leverett. Read our Review Cato also directs a superb cast which includes David Adkins as Manders, Mia Dillon as Mrs. Alving, Jonathan Epstein as Engstrand, Tara Franklin as Regina Engstrand and Randy Harrison as Oswald.

A woman struggles to keep several terrible family secrets, the implication of which are only worsened by a puritanical Pastor, a lascivious son, and her own guilt-ridden, well hidden past. Full of dark symbols, Ghosts exemplifies Henrik Ibsen's uncanny ability to overturn Victorian social values by using them as the damning elements in his work.

SICK: Now to September 6 in the Unicorn Theatre. A small home on the Lower East Side of Manhattan is the only safe haven for the children of the Krebs family. But despite Mrs. Krebs' attempts to protect her family with scrubbers, masks, and isolation, the delicate balance is brought to the breaking point when her husband's academic career brings a stranger into their safe house. In its New England Premiere of the play by Zayd Dohm, Sick seeps onto the stage as a terrifying family drama filled with dark comedy, mistrust, and shocking realism. With Rebecca Brooksher, Lisa Emery, Michael Gill, Greg Keller and Ryan Spahn.

PETER PAN: The Musical - September 4-13 on the Main Stage. Head towards the "second star to the right" and re-discover this wonderful tale of the boy who wouldn't grow up. BTF is proud to once again stage a production cast completely from the Berkshire County community. Join the Darling children, the Lost Boys, and evil Captain Hook for an evening of music, merriment, and wonder. Based on the play by James M. Barrie, with Lyrics by Carolyn Leigh (and others) , Music by Mark Charlap and directed  by E. Gray Simons III and Travis Daly.

Goodspeed Musicals
6 Main Street
East Haddam, CT
Box Office: 860.873.8668

CAMELOT: Now - September 19. It's bit of a drive, but Goodspeed Musicals, the only two-time Tony Award winning theatre company in the country is always worth the effort. Their new production of Camelot, with the music of Lerner and Loewe is to die for.  Read our Review Directed by Rob Ruggiero, once a Berkshires regular at Barrington Stage, this show gets the full scale production with live  orchestra and lavish sets that makes Goodspeed productions so special. Tickets are tough to secure on the weekends, so plan ahead.

Shakespeare & Company
Founders Theatre, Rose Footprint, Bernstein Theatre
70 Kemble Street, Lenox
Box Office 413.637.3353

EXTRA PERFORMANCES ADDED: The Divas are back. Two of the most popular plays of 2009 are back for an encore. Shirley Valentine starring Founding Artistic Director Tina Packer and Golda's Balcony starring audience favorite Annette Miller return for two performances each.

However, because the performance of Willy Russell's Shirley Valentine on September 11 is sold out Read our Review a second performance has just been added for Saturday, September 12 at 8:30pm.  Some seats still remain for the performance of William Gibson's Golda's Balcony on Sunday, September 13 at 3pm and another performance has been added Read our Review , to kick off this encore of the Diva Series on Wednesday, September 9 at 2pm.  The Diva Series takes place in the Elayne P. Bernstein Theatre, and is dedicated to the theatre's namesake—someone who knows first hand what can be accomplished through the passion and dedication of one woman.

HAMLET: Now through August 28.  Read our Review. Shakespeare's uncontested masterpiece Interview with the Director. played to packed houses at Shakespeare & Company in 2006, and returns for a limited run. With Jason Asprey as Hamlet, Tina Packer as Gertrude, Dennis Krausnick as Polonius and Nigel Gore as Claudius. Founder's Theatre.

OTHELLO: Now through September 6. Mainstage in the Founder's Theatre. Back for a second year, this gut-wrenching story of love, racism and betrayal is as startling, relevant and timely today as when it first performed over 400 years ago. Directed by Tony Simotes Interview with Simotes. John Douglas Thompson Thompson Interview. gives a powerful performance as The Moor of Venice, and which was cited last year as the best of the season by BFA.

MEASURE FOR MEASURE: Now - September 5. Performed in the Elayne Bernstein Theatre as part of the new Lunch Box Shakespeare Series. Read our Review. Performances are at 12:45 PM with a boxed lunch before the performance. This Shakespeare shortie is directed by Dave Demke and tells the story of Isabella who must choose an awful choice - the death of her condemned brother or surrendering her virginity to a corrupt politician who can commute the sentence. Written as a thinly veiled comedy about hypocrisy, corruption and sex for trade in high places, it's a story as contemporary as today's cable news coverage.

TWELFTH NIGHT: Now - September 5 in the Founders' Theatre.  Some comedies are born great. Some achieve greatness. Some have greatness thrust upon them. The laughs are back-to-back, tipsy-turvy and echo all through the house in Shakespeare's festive holiday of misrule, madness, switched identities, gender bending and comic fantasy.

THE DREAMER EXAMINES HIS PILLOW: Now - September 6 in the Elayne P. Bernstein Theatre. This play by John Patrick Shanley and Directed by Tod Randolph is rarely performed and a personal favorite. Read our Review.  Biting, comic, and totally today, this unusually revealing voyage into the puzzling nature of relationships and the clash of heart and mind reveals a truth that is too often hidden.

WHITE PEOPLE: August 21 to September 4 in the Bernstein Theatre. A cutting edge play written by J.T. Rogers and directed by Anna Brownsted asks "What does it mean to be a white American?" A brutally honest and surprisingly funny examination of race and language in our culture, White People tracks the lives of three ordinary Americans, and the guilt, prejudice, and the price they pay for being born white. With Jason Asprey, Dana Harrison and Michael Hammond.

FURIOUS IMPROVISATION: August 23 at 2:00 at Studio 1 in the PAPA Center. A multi-media presentation by Susan Quinn, author of Furious Improvisation, a recent book about the WPA Federal Theatre Project, which moved American theatre leagues ahead with projects like Orson Welles' Macbeth with an all black cast.
FESTIVAL OF PLAYS: There's an early kick-off for its fifteenth season August 31 at 7 in the Founder's Theatre with a staged reading of William Coe Bigelow's Leap Year. In the cast are Olympia Dukakis Read our Interview as well as  Elizabeth Aspenlieder, David Adkins, Corinna May, and Josh McCabe, among others. It is directed by Tony Simotes, the company's Artistic Director. A meet-the-cast event follows the performance.

The full festival of seven plays takes place starting at 11:30 AM, September 7 and continues until the late evening at the Bernstein Theatre. Here's the slate:

11:30: The Dick and the Rose
written and directed by Robert Biggs
Featuring Caley Milliken, Ryan Winkles, Laurie Riffe and Barby Cardillo

The Dick and the Rose is a musical for clowns and puppets all in one perhaps violent yet very entertaining act. It is a love story of ecstatic coupling, domestic boredom, betrayal, mayhem and remorse. The play circles and darts within the tension between up and down, dark and light, life and death, either/or, awake or asleep, doom or redemption. It's a bumpy ride. Hold on to your hearts. There's light at the end of the tunnel.

1:00: Mengelberg and Mahler
By Daniel Klein
Directed by Kevin Coleman
Featuring Robert Lohbauer

Mengelberg and Mahler, a one-man show, portrays critical moments in the life of the great Dutch conductor Willem Mengelberg, an early champion and friend of the Jewish composer, Gustav Mahler, and later a dutiful ally of the Nazis during their occupation of The Netherlands. A one-man, one-hour drama interposed with Mahler's music, the play raises questions about the relationship between art and politics, exploring the moral ambiguities of Mengelberg's choices. The play stars Shakespeare & Company veteran Robert Lohbauer as Mengelberg, and is directed by another company veteran, Kevin Coleman. It is written by Great Barrington resident, Daniel Klein, co-author of the bestseller, "Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar."

2:30: Shooting Simone
By Lynne Kaufman
Directed by Daniel Gidron (Golda's Balcony, Full Gallop)
Featuring Elizabeth Aspenlieder, Robert Biggs, David Joseph and Annette Miller.

Paris 1937. Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir, the celebrity couple of the Intelligentsia, make a vow to always be each other's "necessary love." They will have "contingent" love affairs, but nothing will threaten their primary and equal relationship. Enter Olga. Simone's young country cousin bewitches Sartre, undermines Simone, and very nearly destroys the "writing couple." Something has to be done! Act Two jumps ahead to Paris 1980. Kate, a young documentary film-maker, who has modeled her life after the great feminist, is attempting to resurrect the details of the affair, and to find the true Simone. Through her disillusionment, Kate finds her own individuality. This funny play explores sexual jealousy, long-term love, the changing face of feminism and the subjective nature of "truth."

" INTERMISSION (food and drinks available in the Bernstein lobby) "

4:20: Comedian Doug Wilson

Performer Doug Wilson channels several of his outrageous comedic personas' from a Winnebago-driving lounge lizard, to a crystal-worshipping Yoga fanatic, to a nicotine-obsessed Shakespearean veteran in this unique intermezzo of caricature and humor to kick off Act Two.

4:30: The Goat, or, Who is Sylvia?
By Edward Albee
Directed by Eric Tucker (Pinter's Mirror)
Features Elizabeth Aspenlieder and Campbell Scott, others TBA

Welcome to the quagmire of human sexuality. The Goat, or, Who is Sylvia? places the audience in the jury box. The accused are Martin, his wife Stevie and their gay teen-aged son Billy. Albee challenges us to question the nature and meaning of love. Can love and shame coexist? Who defines normal? Who, or what, has been betrayed? Who decides which behaviors are acceptable? After the evidence has been presented and issues debated we realize that this play isn't about bestiality or infidelity, but rather intolerance, nonconformity and the arbitrariness of societal standards. Does Albee provide any answers? No, he insists, as he always has, that you find your own. A truly great play. Winner of the 2002 Tony Award for Best Play.

6:00: If The Whole Body Dies: Raphael Lemkin And The Treaty Against Genocide
By Robert Skloot
Directed by Anna Brownsted (White People)
Featuring Jonathan Epstein, Elizabeth Raetz, Josh Aaron McCabe, Sonya Hamlin, Danny Kurtz (stage directions)

If The Whole Body Dies brings to light the complicated life and extraordinary achievements of Raphael Lemkin, the man who coined the term "genocide." Skloot weaves together a series of monologues, historical facts and surreal conversations with people from Lemkin's past to create a rich drama that gives a sense of the experiences and cultures that shaped and influenced him. Through this thoughtful look at Lemkin's world, we are reminded that the battle against genocide is far from over, yet the courage to raise our ideas into action lives within us all.

7:00: Rembrandt's Gift
By Tina Howe
Directed by Tony Simotes
Featuring Annette Miller, Nigel Gore, Jonathan Epstein.

Rembrandt's Gift offers audiences a chance to catch one of America's hottest and award-winning playwrights Tina Howe and her hysterically funny new play. The story explores the unique relationship between a married middle-aged couple Walter Paradise, and Polly Shaw -- Walter is a former actor obsessed with collecting costumes and Polly, a world-class photographer. Their fine line between fantasy, romance and reality really starts to heat up when an unexpected famous Dutch visitor arrives on the scene and all 3 test the limits of art, love and old age.

9:00: Alfred Returner
By Melinda R. Smith
Directed by Tina Packer
Featuring Jason Asprey, Susannah Millonzi, Julie Webster, and Jake Waid.

Alfred is the rebel who has returned home and creates havoc. And no-one knows whose son he really is. John is dying but someone needs to take over the fire - steady Peter or irresponsible Alfred? The fire must be kept alive. But who will do that, when the young do not understand the old and the old cannot speak to the young? An allegorical tale.

Free Events at Shakespeare & Co.
TOAD OF TOAD HALL: A.A. Milne's Toad of Toad Hall is a distillation of one of the stories found within the beloved classic Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame. It is directed by internationally acclaimed director Irina Brook, features music by S&Co.'s Resident Music Director Bill Barclay, and is brought vividly to life by a tireless troupe of some of the Company's finest young actors, many of whom have honed and seasoned their craft in the Education Program's New England Tour of Shakespeare or past Bankside productions. Plays in two parts at the outdoor, tented Rose Footprint Theatre. Through September 6.
WORDPLAY: This fast-paced farce follows in the tradition of Rose Footprint favorites Wild and Whirling Words and Shakespeare And The Language That Shaped A World, which intersperse scenes from Shakespeare's work with historical information and bits of trivia. Wordplay is a new adventure, however, as it frames some of Shakespeare's best-loved scenes with a hysterical connecting story the antics of The Bard's theatre company as it tries to mount a play calledÂ…Wordplay. Plays August 13 through September 6.
PRELUDES: These hilarious, 15-minute performances happen outside Founders' Theatre at 6:45pm before evening performances, and wittily refer to that evening's mainstage Shakespeare production in the lively spirit of great street theatre. Plays through September 6.
SPHERICAL SOUNDS: This series of cabaret-style musical entertainment is curated by Resident Music Director Bill Barclay, and takes over the Bernstein Theatre Lobby every Thursday at 10:15pm in August. Drinks and light fare are available for sale, but the friendly mood of cozy festivity is free!

Ventfort Hall
104 Walker Street
Lenox, MA 01240
Box Office: 413.637.3206

PARIS 1890 - UNLACED! Now to September 6. A wonderful show that provides a humorous, slightly risqué and poignant glimpse into Parisian society of the Gilded Age and its controversial "Grand Horizontal" ladies.  The play was commissioned by Ventfort Hall from playwright Juliane Hiam and stars Anne Undeland in a one-woman adventure into the past. Sarah Taylor, formerly of Shakespeare & Company, directs. A delightful way to spend an hour and fifteen minutes with the courtesans of the past.

Williamstown Theater Festival
'62 Center for Theatre and Dance
1000 Main Street (Route 2), Williamstown
Box Office: 413.597.3400

QUARTERMAINE'S TERMS: August 12-23. The season winds up with the Tony-nominated director Maria Aitken directing this somewhat amusing British 1960s comedy by Simon Gray about an endearingly eccentric group of English teachers in Cambridge.  Read our Review. The actors unite with the audience in secretly longing for a play with passion, romance, and true happiness. The cast includes Jeremy Beck, Ann Dowd, Morgan Hallett, John Horton, Simon Jones, Stephen Kunken and Jefferson Mays.


Performances at Koussevitzky Shed, Ozawa Hall, Gould Auditorium, Theatre
297 West Street, Lenox

The Boston Symphony Orchestra - Featured Performances:

All-Mendelssohn Program
August 22, 2009 8:30 PM

Ives and Beethoven
August 23, 2009 2:30 PM

JAMES TAYLOR and Band: Conversations Among Friends: August 27, 2009 8:00 PM. Lawn Seats Still Available. James Taylor presides over an informal and intimate evening of conversation and performance with members of his legendary band.

JAMES TAYLOR with Sheryl Crow and Yo-Yo Ma. August 28-29, 2009 7:00 PM. James Taylor and his band return to the Shed stage and are joined by special guests in two unforgettable evenings. Benefit performances for Tanglewood

JAMES TAYLOR with John Williams and the Boston Pops: August 30, 2009 2:30 PM. Two Tanglewood favorites reunite in concert for the season finale.

2009 TANGLEWOOD JAZZ FESTIVAL: September 4, 2009 8:00 PM. An evening with Paquito d'Rivera.

2009 TANGLEWOOD JAZZ FESTIVAL:: September 5, 2009 8:00 PM. Regina Carter Quartet "Reverse Thread" and "Dreaming the Duke" with Nnenna Freelon, Harolyn Blackwell and Mike Garson.

2009 TANGLEWOOD JAZZ FESTIVAL: September 6, 2009 2:00 PM. Piano Duet with Kenny Barron and Mulgrew Miller
Vanguard Jazz Orchestra.

Saratoga NY Performing Arts Center (SPAC)
109 Avenue of the Pines
Saratoga Springs, NY 12866
Box Office 518.584.9330

The Philadelphia Orchestra is in residence at SPAC from August 5 to 22 with a wide ranging program of classic and popular favorites under conductor Charles Dutoit. Among the highlights are:

THE TCHAIKOVSKY SPECTACULAR ON August 21, featuring the Polonaise from Eugene Onegin, his Violin Concerto, the Rococo Variations for cello and the 1812 Overture. Fireworks after the live cannon display. Free ice cream.

CHAMBER MUSIC FESTIVAL: Final Performance on August 23 at 2:15 PM.

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN: August 25 at 7:30 PM.

THE MOODY BLUES: August 26 at 8:00 PM.

BLINK 182: August 31 at 8:30 PM.
CRUE FEST: September 1 at 8:00 PM
JOURNEY: September 2 at 7:30 PM
TOBY KEITH: September 3 at 7:30 PM


Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival
358 George Carter Road, Becket
Box Office 413.243.0745

PACIFIC NORTHWEST BALLET: August 19-23 in the Ted Shawn Theatre. The work of the late Ulysses Dove, a former star dancer of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, seamlessly combines speed and attack with daring sensuality, emotional strength and power. In this exclusive Pillow engagement, the superb dancers of Pacific Northwest Ballet, under the direction of Peter Boal, perform a passionate, all-Dove program of Vespers to Mikel Rouse's percussive score, Red Angels which featured Peter Boal in the original New York City Ballet cast and the incomparably beautiful and moving Dancing on the Front Porch of Heaven with music by Arvo Pärt.

KIDD PIVOT: August 19-23 in the Doris Duke Theatre. Among the smartest international dancemakers of today, Kidd Pivot artistic director Crystal Pite and her fearlessly athletic dancers explore movement to the fullest in Lost Action. A former dancer with the Frankfurt Ballet under the direction of William Forsythe, Pite's wit, rigor and inventive approach to movement and ideas interact with a perfectly diverse soundscape by Owen Belton, featuring everything from choral melody to ukulele and spoken word. A thrilling analysis of dance and the body becomes a metaphor for life and loss. These performances feature Crystal Pite herself, a rare occurrence.

A JAZZ HAPPENING: August 23, a benefit for the school with live music.

BALLET HISPANICO: August 26-30 in the Ted Shawn Theatre. Since 1970, the company has fused Latin, classical ballet and modern dance, creating a style all its own. This engagement will honor Tina Ramirez, who steps down as artistic director this year and who first performed at the Pillow as a teenager in 1948. The program will include will feature the world premiere of Locked Up Laura, a new work by choreographer Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, the Jacob's Pillow premiere of Destino Incierto by choreographer Carlos Sierra-Lopez, Good Night Paradise by Ramón Oller, Tito on Tambales by William Whitener, and delicious excerpts from Club Havana, stirring up the intoxicating rhythms of the Rumba, Mambo and Cha Cha brought to life by Cuban choreographer Pedro Ruiz.

DOUG ELKINS AND FRIENDS: Fräulein Maria. August 26-30 in the Doris Duke Theatre. A rollicking, deconstructed take on Rodgers and Hammerstein's The Sound of Music, lauded by critics and audiences alike through numerous sold-out runs in New York. Called "a jewel of choreographic invention and comic subtlety" by The New Yorker and "ceaselessly brilliant and often hilarious" by The New York Times, this show is a gem. Vaudeville gags, astute references to the choreography of Martha Graham, José Limón and others and a multitude of social dance moves enliven the original film soundtrack and offer an open-hearted invitation to Doug Elkins' fantastic imagination.

ONGOING FREE PERFORMANCES AND EXHIBITS: Free performances continue on the Inside/Out stage through August 30 at 5:30 PM.

In Blake's Barn, A Dance to Jules Feiffer, the exclusive exhibit of works by Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Jules Feiffer, enters its final two weeks on display at Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival. Free to the public through August 30, this exhibit relates the art of movement and expression as seen through Feiffer's eyes. It brings together an expansive array of original works, interspersing cartoon strips with watercolors, and political commentary with dance imagery. Also on display is an Alvin Ailey: Anniversary Salute which celebrates the 50th anniversary season of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater with rare photographs by John Lindquist and John Van Lund.

In the Ted Shawn Theatre lobby, The Art of Merce Cunningham, a tribute to Cunningham's 90th birthday that documents his collaborations with distinctive visual artists with costumes, sketches, posters, and other artifacts from the Merce Cunningham Dance Foundation Archives. 

Outsiders, a selection of open-air images of dance at the Pillow including classics by John Lindquist and John Van Lund, in Bakalar Studio, and Tap!, a photography exhibit featuring acclaimed artists such as Jimmy Slyde, Gregory Hines, Savion Glover, Dianne Walker, and others, can be seen in the Doris Duke Theatre Lobby.

Berkshire Performing Arts Centers

Colonial Theatre
111 South Street, Pittsfield
Box Office 413.997.4444

AN EVENING WITH MOUNTAIN: August 19 at 7:30.  Few artists can be credited with forging a style and sound that forever changes the face of rock music. The innovative music of Leslie West, Felix Pappalardi, Corky Laing and Steve Knight and their seminal rock band, Mountain, is one of those elite examples. Hits include "Mississippi Queen" and "Nantucket Sleighride."

WOODSTOCK, THE FILM: August 20 at 7:00. As part of the Third Thursday downtown Pittsfield celebration of Woodstock,  the Colonial will be showing Woodstock: The Director's Cut which reportedly includes an hour of performances not seen in the initial film.

MELANIE with SARAH LEE GUTHRIE and JOHNNY IRON: August 21 at 8 PM. "Melanie's cult has long been famous, but it's a cult that's responding to something genuine and powerful — which is maybe another way of saying that this writer counts himself as part of the cult too," wrote John Rockwell in The New York Times. If you know who she is, you will probably be there, she is a magical performer. Melanie has sold more than 80 million records over a 40 year career. Her hits, including "Brand New Key" and "Look What They've Done To My Song, Ma," plus her classic Woodstock performance of "Lay Down (Candles In The Rain)" have made her a legend.

MENOPAUSE THE MUSICAL®: Four performances on August 29 (4:00 and 8:00) and August 30 (2:00 and 5:30). Four women at a lingerie sale with nothing in common but a black-lace bra AND memory loss, hot flashes, night sweats, not enough sex, too much sex and more! Menopause The Musical® is a 90-minute production which includes 25 re-lyricized tunes from the '60s and '70s and culminates with a salute to women who are experiencing The Change. 11 million fans all over the world have had a good time laughing with this great show, why not make it 11 million and one!

Mahaiwe Peforming Arts Center
14 Castle Street, Great Barrington
Box Office 413.528.0100

BUDDY, VALENS and FRIENDS: August 22. This is their long awaited Last Show - 50 Years Later!! On Feb. 3, 1959, the plane carrying Buddy Holly & Ritchie Valens went down. Now, 50 years later, their last show is re-created as the music lives on with; Cousin Ernie Valens as Ritchie Valens, and the nation's leading Buddy artist, Brian Best: "Chantilly Lace", "Peggy Sue", "LaBamba", "That'll Be The Day"

A CONVERSATION WITH CONSTANCE ROSENBLUM. August 23 at 1 PM. This free event is a with writer and former NYTimes City Section Editor highlighting her latest work: Boulevard of Dreams - Heady Times, Heartbreak, and Hope along the Grand Concourse in the Bronx. Constance Rosenblum unearths the colorful history of this grand street and its interlinked neighborhoods. With a seasoned journalist's eye for detail, she paints an evocative portrait of the Concourse through compelling life stories and historical vignettes.

BERKSHIRE PLAYWRIGHTS LAB: Wednesday, August 26 at 8 PM.  Co-Artistic Director Bob Jaffe will direct a staged reading workshop production of The Birthday Boy by Chris Newbound. The Birthday Boy is about what happens when there's a sudden connection between two people that if pursued could interfere with a life that has been going along just fine; about the paths we choose to take and those we choose not to; the commitments we do honor, the worthwhile sacrifices we must make. In short, a celebration of the messy, imperfect, life that being a husband, a wife, a father, a mother, all entails in order to evolve into the grownups we're meant to be. The cast for the reading of The Birthday Boy includes Geneva Carr and Charles Socarides and two more actors TBA.

BUTCH CASSIDY AND THE SUNDANCE KID: August 30 at 7 PM. Film showing of a brand new and restored print for the 40th Anniversary of this movie which starts Paul Newman and Robert Redford and was directed by George Roy Hill.  To evade a relentless posse, the boys flee to Bolivia, thinking they'll find easier pickings there. But trouble finds the fugitives wherever they go, and soon, the charming desperadoes are on the run again.

BIG BAD VOODOO DADDY: September 11 at 8 PM. This is a personal recommendation and extra notice to get your tickets for America's Favorite Little Big band! This contemporary swing band from southern California specializes in tunes from the 1940's and 1950's and has sold more than three million albums.  The seven-man group forged a massively successful fusion of classic American sounds from jazz, swing, Dixieland and big-band music, building their own songbook of original dance tunes, and, sixteen years later, BBVD is a veteran force that to this day adds new fans by the roomful every time they play.

Mass MoCA
1040 Mass MoCA Way, North Adams
Information: 413.662.2111

PROJECT BANDALOOP: The Intimacy of Spectacle. August 21, 22, 23. Inspired by the possibilities of climbing and rappelling, (and very possibly by Cirque du Soleil's KA and the Argentine group De la Guarda) Project Bandaloop's choreography draws on aerial, vertical and horizontal movement to craft dances, many site-specific. Under the direction of Amelia Rudolph the work explores the relationship between movement and gravity and the way we frame our expectations of what dance and performance can be. This performance will evolve from the artists working in and on the MASS MoCA's 19th century buildings and courtyards from "seeds" of choreography developed in their studio in California. Those "seeds" will grow on the walls of the museum into a moving installation of dance, song and unexpected use of gravity and space.

BALTHROP, ALABAMA: August 29 at 8:00. The theatrical folk-rock art collective Balthrop, Alabama combines the siblings Lauren and Pascal Balthrop with former members of Rainer Maria and their Brooklyn neighbors. Artist Michael Arthur accompanies the band on pen and ink, illustrating the songs live with the drawings projected behind the band in the vaudeville tradition of a "chalk talk," a precursor to animation.

SON LUX WITH JOSHUE OTT: September 4 at 8:00, Club B-10. Named 2008 Best New Artist by NPR's All Songs Considered, the composer turned beatmaker Ryan Lott a.k.a. Son Lux has whipped critics and fans alike into a frenzy with what might be the most original debut album of the decade says Mass MoCA. His performance is accompanied there by the cinematic visual improvisations of multidisciplinary artist Joshue Ott.

LIVE DISCO PARTY WITH ESCORT: September 6 at 8:00. Mass MoCA describes this as the real deal, full-on disco orchestra from deep in the heart of Brooklyn led by storied genre revivalist DJs (and serious musicians) Dan Balis and Eugene Cho, Escort will bring the party to Western Mass for you to enjoy.


Images Cinema
50 Spring Street, Williamstown
Movie Line: 413.458.5612

August 17-20 Cheri (R) and Summer Hours (Not Rated).
August 21-27 The Hurt Locker (R)
August 28-  September 3 In The Loop (Not Rated)

Little Cinema at the Berkshire Museum
39 South Street
Pittsfield, MA

August 14 - 20 Girl from Monaco (R)
August 21 - 27 Seraphine (NR)
August 28 - September 3 In the Loop (PG-13)

Pick of the Month - Third Thursday: August 20

On Thursday, August 20 they're celebrating the 40th Anniversary of Woodstock in downtown Pittsfield! There will be incredible live music throughout the downtown area, as well as vendors, fire dancing, henna tattoos, and face painting! Stores and restaurants are open late and don't forget to wear your favorite Woodstock-inspired outfit because there will be a Costume Contest at the Crowne Plaza!

There is also a STELLA!! Shouting Contest hosted by Barrington Stage Company in the great tradition from New Orleans. All of this is arranged and coordinated by the Cultural Pittsfield staff and dozens of volunteers.


Crowne Plaza (rain: The Underground Pub)
6pm Shut Up and Dance performs

Hot Harry's Walkway (rain: Crawford Square)
5:30-7pm Rhythm B-Boys perform break dancing

City Hall (rain: Patrick's Pub)
5pm Vision performs
6:45pm Rosen, Hairston and Link Trio performs

Palace Park (rain: Rebel Sound Records)
5:00pm Epic Purple performs
5:45pm Over the Mountain performs
6:30pm Rhythm Keepers perform
7:15pm Art Decade performs
8:00pm The Inheritance performs
8:45pm Maria Mariposa fire dances

BCC Downtown Center
5:30-8pm Berkshire Bateria performs

Sotille Park (rain: Berkshire Museum)
5-8pm Magician John Nesbit performs

Senior Center (rain location: inside Senior Center)
5-7pm Chris & Woody bluegrass duo perform

St. Joseph's Church
5-6pm Yoga demonstration
7-9pm Nagiowaci fire dancers

City Stage at Greystone Parking lot
(rain: Jae's Spice Upstairs)
5pm Bella's Bartok performs
6pm Stella Shouting Contest
6:30pm Lauren Melle performs
6:45pm Asteroid #4 performs

5-8pm WTBR-FM broadcasts live!

6pm STELLA!! Shouting Contest on City Stage

Woodstock Costume Contest at Crowne Plaza