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Untitled creature by Yudelka Reyes. An illustration to accompany Phyllis Kornfeld's OLLI talk 'Cellblock Art: Set Free in the Penitentiary,' on Saturday, April 21, at Berkshire Community College. Image courtesy Cellblock Visions.

Bits & Bytes: ‘Cellblock Visions: Prison Art in America’; Lubchenco at Bennington College; ‘Russian and Soviet Film Music’ at the Mount; ‘QWERTY’ at Mixed Company

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By Tuesday, Apr 17, 2018 Life In the Berkshires

Kornfeld to discuss making art in prisons

Pittsfield — The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Berkshire Community College’s 2018 Distinguished Speakers Series will kick off Saturday, April 21, at 3 p.m. at the Berkshire Museum with an illustrated talk by Phyllis Kornfeld, author of “Cellblock Visions: Prison Art in America.”

Titled “Cellblock Art: Set Free in the Penitentiary,” the talk centers around artist, author and educator Kornfeld’s experience of who has working closely with incarcerated men and women around the country for 35 years to make art. Kornfeld’s book is a collection of artwork created behind bars. The artists transcend the cramped space, limited light and narrow vistas to triumph with resourcefulness—extracting color from shampoo, making paint out of candy and sculpting out of toilet paper.

Tickets are $15 for the general public, $10 for OLLI and Berkshire Museum members, and free for Berkshire Community College students and youth 17 and under. For tickets and more information, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact OLLI at (413) 236-2190 or olli@berkshirecc.edu.


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Jane Lubchenco. Photo courtesy Oregon State University

Lubchenco to speak on oceans

Bennington, Vt. — On Thursday, April 19 at 7:30 p.m., Bennington College will welcome Jane Lubchenco to speak on “Hope for People and the Ocean” in its Tishman Auditorium.

In her lecture, Lubchenco will draw on her four years as the under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and the administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, her two years as the first U.S. science envoy for the ocean, and her decades of research around the world to summarize the importance to people of sustainable use of the ocean as well as approaches that are working.

Lubchenco trained as a marine biologist and earned her Ph.D. from Harvard University. She is a long-time faculty member at Oregon State University and a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the Royal Society and the American Philosophical Society. Lubchenco has received many awards including a MacArthur fellowship, the NAS’ Public Welfare Medal and 20 honorary doctorates. After serving as president of several major scientific societies, she was appointed by President Obama in 2009 as the under secretary of commerce for oceans and atmosphere and administrator of NOAA, with responsibility for U.S. fisheries management, ocean policy, weather satellite programs and national climate assessments. After leaving NOAA in 2013, Lubchenco was appointed as the first U.S. science envoy for the ocean. She is respected for her work in engaging scientists with citizens and policy-makers to craft solutions to environmental problems.

On Friday, April 20 at 1 p.m., Lubchenco will give an additional talk titled “Science in a Post-Truth Word” in Dickinson 232. Both events are free and open to the public. For more information, contact Bennington College at (802) 442-5401.


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CEWM to present ‘Russian and Soviet Film Music’ at The Mount

Timothy Sergay. Photo courtesy Close Encounters With Music

Lenox — Close Encounters With Music will continue its “Conversations With…” series with “Russian and Soviet Film Music: A Tuneful Survey,” Sunday, April 22, at the Mount.

In a lecture illustrated with film clips, University at Albany professor Timothy Sergay will present an overview of Russian and Soviet film music. His focus will be not only the famous contributions of Sergei Prokofiev and Dmitri Shostakovich, but also the lesser-known Georgi Sviridov, the Soviet adoption of the Hollywood musical genre in the 1930s, the cultural role songs created for Soviet films, and the influence of Russian music on Hollywood film scores. Other composers to be discussed will include non-Russians such as the Armenian composers Aram Khachaturian and his student Mikael Tariverdiev, as well as Italian Ennio Morricone. The talk will conclude with a review of the conventions of Hollywood’s musical representation of Russia and the world beyond the Iron Curtain.

Sergay is a scholar and translator of Russian with master’s degrees in Russian language and literature from the University of Michigan, the Middlebury College Russian School, the Pushkin Institute of Russian Language in Moscow and Yale University. His Yale doctoral dissertation was on the Christian sensibility of novelist and poet Boris Pasternak.

Tickets are $20 and include light refreshments following the program. For tickets and more information, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact CEWM (800) 843-0778 or cewmusic@aol.com.


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Mixed Company to stage ‘QWERTY’

Ryan Marchione in ‘QWERTY’ by Joan Ackermann. Photo courtesy Mixed Company

Great Barrington — Mixed Company will present “QWERTY,” four one-act plays by Joan Ackermann that celebrate the typewriter, Thursday, April 19, through Saturday, May 19.

Directed by Ackermann, the cast includes Ariel Bock, Sam Bittman, Deann Halper, Mae Hedges, Ryan Marchione, Gray Simons, Taylor Slonaker,Caitlin Teeley, Julie Webster and Thom Whaley.

The shows will run Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings at 8 p.m. Tickets are $25. For tickets and more information, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact Mixed Company (413) 528-2320.


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