Sunday, July 14, 2024

News and Ideas Worth Sharing

Bits & Bytes: ‘Beyond the Veil’ at the Mahaiwe; Kimball Farms art exhibit; ‘New Illuminations’ with Suzi Banks Baum; Sauerkraut Seth at Roe Jan Library

Inspired by the exclusion of Du Bois from the region’s cultural history, 'Beyond the Veil' examines racism in the higher echelons of society and ponders what would happen if the racial veil were lifted and two iconoclasts could see each other clearly.

Du Bois Legacy Festival to open with ‘Beyond the Veil’ staged reading

Great Barrington — On Friday, Jan. 25, at 7 p.m., the town of Great Barrington’s W. E. B. Du Bois Legacy Committee will launch the 2019 W. E. B. Du Bois Legacy Festival with a staged reading of “Beyond the Veil” by Emily DeVoti, directed by Regge Life, and performed by actors from Shakespeare & Company at the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center.

Frances Jones-Sneed, Ph.D. Photo courtesy Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts

“Beyond the Veil” stages a fictitious meeting between W. E. B. Du Bois and Edith Wharton at the Mount, Wharton’s home in Lenox, in 1910. Inspired by the exclusion of Du Bois from the region’s cultural history, the play examines racism in the higher echelons of society and ponders what would happen if the racial veil were lifted and these two iconoclasts could see each other clearly. The performance will feature Ariel Bock, Andrew Borthwick-Leslie, MaConnia Chesser, Charls Hall, Rory Hammond, Tamara Hickey, Tom Jaeger and Devante Owens. The performance will be followed by a talkback with the writer, director, actors, and Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts professor Frances Jones-Sneed, Ph.D. The talkback will be moderated by NAACP Berkshires President Dennis Powell and Gwendolyn VanSant, CEO of Multicultural BRIDGE and vice president of the W.E.B. Du Bois Legacy Committee.

DeVoti has had her plays presented in New York City and London and published by Samuel French and Smith and Kraus. She holds a Master of Fine Arts in dramatic writing from the New York University Tisch School of the Arts and a Bachelor of Arts from Princeton University. She is a native of the Berkshires and a resident of Great Barrington.

The event is free and open to the public. Reservations are recommended. For reservations and more information, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact the Mahaiwe box office at (413) 528-0100.

–E.E.

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Kimball Farms exhibit to feature local artists

‘Gemini’ by Michael Fabrizio. Image courtesy Kimball Farms Life Care

Lenox — Kimball Farms Life Care will host an opening reception for art works by local pediatrician Dr. Michael Fabrizio and Pratt Institute graduate Ivor Parry Sunday, Jan. 27, from 3 to 5 p.m. The exhibit will be on display through the end of March.

Fabrizio has been practicing medicine in Pittsfield since 1979. He has had no formal art training but finds joy in direct engagement with the fullness of life, which he brings to expression in bold, original paintings. Fabrizio said of his work: “My paintings, despite their abstract nature, are representative of the dialogue we all have with living, of the contact between us and our world. They are an art made of many moments of observations of life, long and short, sweet and stinging. They are a collection of impressions, messages from living, and thoughts from the heart.”

‘Set Sail’ by Ivor Parry. Image courtesy Kimball Farms Life Care

Parry worked as an art director in various advertising agencies and later as designer and illustrator at Parry Design. His colorful, lively work in varied media has been shown in galleries throughout New England. Parry has been living for the past 20 years in Hinsdale with his wife and several animal friends.

The reception is free and open to the public. For more information, contact Kimball Farms at (413) 637-7000.

–E.E.

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Suzi Banks Baum to discuss New Illuminations residency

Suzi Banks Baum in Armenia. Photo: Knar Babayan

Great Barrington — Artist Suzi Banks Baum will discuss her New Illuminations artist residency in Armenia Sunday, Jan. 27, at 2 p.m. at Elixir.

In a short presentation and discussion, Baum will share photographs, artwork and stories from her three residencies in Gyumri, Armenia, where she first traveled in 2016 with John Stanmeyer. She has established a lasting link with the community there, and plans to return in 2019. The New Illuminations residency brings book arts and personal narrative writing to Armenian women artists by providing art supplies to eager artists and is building a community of makers in a city hobbled by trauma and poverty.

The cost of the program is $35 and includes Armenian-inspired refreshments and a small donation to the project. Reservations are required due to limited seating. For reservations and more information, contact Elixir at (413) 644-8999.

–E.E.

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‘Sauerkraut’ Seth Travins to give children’s concert

‘Sauerkraut’ Seth Travins. Photo courtesy Roeliff Jansen Community Library

Hillsdale, N.Y. — The Roeliff Jansen Community Library will present “Sauerkraut” Seth Travins in a concert for children and families Saturday, Jan. 26, at 11:30 a.m.

Travins is a singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist who has resided in Columbia County for 20 years. He has been singing folk songs to children, particularly those by Woody Guthrie, since his time as a student at Bard College. He plays with the Wiyos, a band that has played many children’s concerts over the years including at Carnegie Hall as well as some outer New York City boroughs through the Carnegie Neighborhood program. For several years, Travins has been hosting his own, old-style roots-music revues at Club Helsinki Hudson. When not performing, Travins can often be found making organic lacto-fermented sauerkrauts and kimchi under his own label in Hudson.

The concert is free and open to the public. For more information, contact the Roeliff Jansen Community Library at (518) 325-4101 or rjcl9091@gmail.com.

–E.E.

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