Bits & Bytes: ‘What a Heart Loves;’ more than 300 attend legislative breakfast; Bach’s birthday dinner party; ‘As Time Goes By;’ James P. Cousins at Scoville Memorial Library

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By Thursday, Apr 6 Arts & Entertainment
Simon's Rock senior Regan Humphrey at the Globe Theatre in London. Humphrey will present her senior thesis, a five-act Shakespearean-inspired play called 'What a Heart Loves,' this weekend at Saint James Place in Great Barrington.

Simon’s Rock senior wrote, directs ‘What a Heart Loves’

Great Barrington — Bard College at Simon’s Rock senior Regan Humphrey will present her senior thesis “What A Heart Loves” at 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 8, and Sunday, April 9, at Saint James Place.

Channeling William Shakespeare in a five-act play complete with iambic pentameter, Humphrey balances wit and wisdom with mischief, mayhem and matchmaking in “What A Heart Loves,” which highlights different types of love and the way audiences receive them in particular creative genres. The play includes a cast of 10 actors: Humphrey, Jonathan Cadiz, Genevieve Windbiel, Hannan Mir, Lily Berlstein, Heidi Singe, Audrey Russell, Erika Sullivan, Zoe White and Paxton Guy.

Although she has been acting and writing for 14 of her 19 years, Humphrey’s interest in Elizabethan English ignited five years ago when she started working alongside Shakespeare professionals at the New American Shakespeare Tavern in Atlanta. She credits the faculty and administration at Simon’s Rock for their support in her ambitious thesis endeavor, a project that also includes a novel she penned. She will graduate in May with a B.A. in cross-cultural Relations as well as a B.A. in creative arts, writing and performance.

Admission is free and members of the community are welcome to attend. There will be a talkback with the writer/director and cast following the show on Saturday and a closing reception on Sunday. For more information, contact Simon’s Rock at (413) 644-4400 or info@simons-rock.edu.

–E.E.

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Annual legislative breakfast attracts more than 300 attendees

Berkshire County Arc president and CEO Kenneth W. Singer at the 17th annual legislative breakfast in Pittsfield held on March 24.

Berkshire County Arc president and CEO Kenneth W. Singer at the 17th annual legislative breakfast in Pittsfield held on March 24.

Pittsfield — On Friday, March 24, legislators, caregivers, individuals and staff from Berkshire County human service agencies gathered for “Let Our Voice Be Heard: Advocating for Support and Services for People with Disabilities,” the 17th annual legislative breakfast at the ITAM Lodge. Berkshire County Arc president and CEO Kenneth W. Singer facilitated the event, which included forum participation from Sen. Adam Hinds and Reps. William “Smitty” Pignatelli, Tricia Farley-Bouvier, Gailanne Cariddi and Paul Mark. Pittsfield Mayor Linda Tyer and North Adams Mayor Richard Alcombright provided remarks that were followed by stories from human service employees, individuals, and parents about the extensive level of care they provide and/or receive from these local organizations.

The legislators in attendance expressed their understanding of a tough road ahead due to new legislation and budget cuts, said they will continue to fight for the rights of individuals with disabilities in Berkshire County and in Washington, and expressed that voices will be heard through their representation.

Individuals, family members and staff from human service agencies in Berkshire County told stories of their trials, tribulations and triumphs living with and serving those with disabilities.

Connie, who has cerebral palsy and is wheelchair-bound, is able to live at home with her mother, largely in part to the services she receives from Berkshire County Arc’s Center for Development in Lee.

Paraplegic, widower and AdLib Inc. client Dan Hermanski told his story of perseverance and strength working for MassDOT 25 hours per week, driving himself to work, downhill skiing at Jiminy Peak with his wheelchair support group, and providing for his family through his daily interaction with program staff.

Through United Cerebral Palsy of Berkshire County’s family support services, Doris Sartori receives help taking her three children to medical, dental and vision appointments, as well as with laundry and cleaning, allowing her to keep her children in her home and in her care.

–E.E.

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Berkshire Bach Society throws birthday party for J.S. Bach

Ethan Chen.

Ethan Chen.

Salisbury, Conn. — On Saturday, April 8, at 6 p.m., the Berkshire Bach Society will throw a party to celebrate the 332nd anniversary of the birth of Johann Sebastian Bach at the White Hart Inn. In the tradition of Bach’s colleguim musicum, which focused on students and professionals collaborating on performances held in coffeehouses, Berkshire Bach has invited young musicians from the Juilliard Pre-College Division to perform an all-Bach program. They will begin with an opening recital and will challenge partygoers with a “Name that Bach Tune” game over dessert.

Megan Yao.

Megan Yao.

Violinists Ethan Chen and Megan Yao and cellist Max Bobby are teenagers and award-winning musicians who are in rigorous study with Juilliard teachers. Chen is this year’s recipient of the Clara Collens Violin Scholarship, which honors the late mother of Berkshire Bach board member Richard Collens who arranged the appearance of Ethan and his colleagues at this celebratory event.

Max Bobby.

Max Bobby.

Tickets are $75. Hors d’oeuvres will begin at 6 p.m., followed by the recital at 6:30 p.m., and a buffet dinner, dessert and party games. Reservations are required and must be made in advance. For tickets and more information, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact the Berkshire Bach society at (413) 528-9555 or info@berkshirebach.org.

–E.E.

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Music on Main to present ‘As Time Goes By’

Steve Hassmer.

Steve Hassmer.

Stockbridge — The Music on Main series at the First Congregational Church of Stockbridge will present vocalists Steve Hassmer and Christine Enderle, accompanied by Jacob Fennell on piano, in a program titled “As Time Goes By” on Saturday, April 8, at 5 p.m. A light reception will follow.

Hassmer is a baritone whose repertoire spans many musical styles. His recent credits include Colonel Pickering in “My Fair Lady” and Emile De Becque in “South Pacific” at the Mac-Haydn Theatre, and Uncle Yakuside in “Madama Butterfly” with the Berkshire Opera Festival. He has also been a production singer with Royal Caribbean and Celebrity cruise lines.

Christine Enderle.

Christine Enderle.

Enderle has worked all over the country touring and in regional theatre, and has sung with choral ensembles and in cabaret, participating in shows including “Room Service,” “Fiddler on the Roof,” “Tintypes” and “A Christmas Carol.” She holds a B.A. in music from Luther College in Iowa and M.Ed. from Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts. Enderle teaches voice, beginning piano and Kindermusik.

There is a suggested donation at the door of $20 for adults and $15 for seniors and students. Proceeds will help support the music ministry of the church, including a 2015 refurbishment of its historic 1908 Steinway B piano.

–E.E.

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Scoville Memorial Library to host James P. Cousins

Dr. James P. Cousins.

Dr. James P. Cousins.

Salisbury, Conn. — On Saturday, April 8, at 4 p.m., the Salisbury Association Historical Society and the Scoville Memorial Library will present Dr. James P. Cousins, who will discuss his new book “Horace Holley: Transylvania University and the Making of Liberal Education in the Early American Republic” at the library.

Outspoken Salisbury native Horace Holley (1781–1827) was an unlikely choice to become the president of Transylvania University, the first college established west of the Allegheny Mountains. Holley ushered in a period of sustained educational and cultural growth at Transylvania and the university received national attention for its scientifically progressive and liberal curriculum. The resulting influx of wealthy students and celebrated faculty lent Lexington, Kentucky, a distinguished atmosphere and gave rise to the city’s image as the “Athens of the West.”

Cousins is associate dean at Western Michigan University’s College of Arts and Sciences. He is the author of more than 20 essays, reviews and peer-reviewed articles and co-author of “Collaboration and the Future of History Education: Preserving the Right to Think and Teach Historically.” He was a 2012 scholar in residence at Transylvania University and a 2015 WMU Center for the Humanities fellow.

For more information, contact the library at (860) 435-2838 or scovlibn@biblio.org.

–E.E.


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