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A scene from Boston Early Music Festival's 2016 production of 'Versailles: Portrait of a Royal Domain,' which the organization will present this weekend at the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center in Great Barrington.

Bits & Bytes: ‘Versailles’ at the Mahaiwe; Horses and Hikers for Healing; ‘I’m Dying Up Here’

By Monday, Jun 17, 2019 Life In the Berkshires

Boston Early Music Festival to present ‘Versailles’

Great Barrington — The Boston Early Music Festival will present “Versailles: Portrait of a Royal Domain” Friday, June 21, at 8 p.m. and Saturday, June 22, at 3 p.m. at the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center.

As king of France for over 72 years, Louis XIV oversaw a massive shift in the political and cultural life of French society. Among his accomplishments was the transformation of the pastoral hunting lodge at Versailles into a lavish palace that served as the seat of government and culture in France. “Versailles: Portrait of a Royal Domain” is a spectacle from the celebrated Sun King’s reign with masterworks by some of the most revered composers from Louis’ court. Originally performed in the King’s private apartments at the palace in 1682, Charpentier’s “Les Plaisirs de Versailles” features personifications of the courtly pleasures bickering for supremacy until the god of banquets restores the peace. The pleasures then usher in a selection of divertissements from Lully’s “Atys,” a 1672 masterpiece called the “King’s Opera” for the enduring favor it enjoyed with Louis. Finally, Lalande’s “Les Fontaines de Versailles,” first performed in the king’s apartments in the spring of 1683, sees the sculpted deities that ornament the garden’s dazzling fountains come alive to sing in praise of the Sun King.

The works are brought to life by the all-star BEMF vocal and chamber ensembles in a presentation that features gorgeous costumes and sumptuous period staging, produced in partnership with the Centre de Musique Baroque de Versailles.

Tickets are $25–$85. For tickets and more information, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or conact the Mahaiwe box office at (413) 528-0100.

–E.E.

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Berkshire HorseWorks to host Horses and Hikers for Healing

Children enjoy the festivities at a recent Berkshire HorseWorks Horses and Hikers for Healing event. Photo courtesy Berkshire HorseWorks

Richmond — Berkshire HorseWorks will host its Horses and Hikers for Healing scavenger hunt Saturday, June 22, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m

Scavenger hunt clues will be hidden throughout Berkshire HorseWorks’ seven acres of easily navigated nature trails, paddocks, natural pond and gardens. The 10 clues will be a combination of Berkshire fun facts and horse trivia. Special awards will be given to the first three teams that solve all clues. A barbecue and hoedown will immediately follow.

Registration is $35 for individuals and $55 for families of five, and includes the scavenger hunt and barbecue/hoedown. Those wishing may attend the hoedown only for $25 for adults, $10 for children ages 12 and under, and $50 for families of five. All proceeds will go toward funding EAGALA model equine assisted psychotherapy, life skill development and team-building programs at Berkshire HorseWorks. For more tickets and more information, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact Berkshire HorseWorks at (413) 698-3700 or info@berkshirehorseworks.com.

–E.E.

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Wet Ink Reading Series to feature ‘I’m Dying Up Here’ by Danny Klein

Danny Klein

Great Barrington — Barrington Public Theater’s Wet Ink Reading Series will present a staged reading of “I’m Dying Up Here” by Danny Klein Wednesday, June 19, at 7 p.m. in the Leibowitz Black Box Theater at Bard College at Simon’s Rock’s Daniel Arts Center.

Said Klein: “It’s a monologue by an aging Jewish comedian who has outlived his relevance. It features local actor Jeff Kent as the comedian. The piece is very politically incorrect, very Jewish, and—I hope, I hope—funny. Some may find it controversial. There will be a ‘talk-back’ after the reading.”

Klein is a best-selling author, philosopher and humorist perhaps best known for having co-authored “Plato and a Platypus Walk Into a Bar: Understanding Philosophy Through Jokes.”

The reading is free and open to the public. Reservations are encouraged due to limited seating. For tickets and more information, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact Barrington Public Theater at 413.579.8088 or barringtonpublic@gmail.com.

–E.E.


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