Friday, July 12, 2024

News and Ideas Worth Sharing

BITS & BYTES: City of Pittsfield’s First Fridays; The Old Guitarist at the Congregational Church of Salisbury; The Royal Ballet at Jacob’s Pillow; Drawing exhibition at Spencertown Academy; Arthur Palme at Arrowhead; Schumacher Center presents Dr. Bayo Akomolafe; Captain Nemo at The Mahaiwe; Chabad of Columbia County dedication

Carty’s paintings reflect a union of his love for the Impressionists combined with his graffiti and graphic design background, and Beauregard pushes recognizable scenes into a bright, bizarre world of saturated color and mythic design.

City of Pittsfield’s First Fridays at Five and First Fridays Artswalk

Pittsfield— On Friday, July 5th from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., the First Fridays Artswalk in downtown Pittsfield returns as part of the City of Pittsfield’s First Fridays at Five.

Participating venues include Berkshire Art Center, Clock Tower Artists, Dottie’s Coffee Lounge, Downtown Pittsfield, Inc., Hotel on North, Lichtenstein Center for the Arts, Living in Recovery, Marie’s North Street Eatery and Gallery, Marketplace Cafe, Methuselah Bar and Lounge, NUarts gallery + studios, Roots and Dreams and Mustard Seeds, Soda Chef, and THECOLLAB. There will also be Interactive Pottery Demos in Palace Park with Jim Horsford and a free kids’ “Paint and Sip” on Dunham Mall.

THECOLLAB at 163 North Street will feature artworks by Noah Beauregard and Mike Carty. There will be an opening reception with the artists during the Artswalk with a free live performance by SACR3D from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Michael Carty is a painter living and working in downtown Pittsfield. A Northeastern University graduate, he holds degrees in Graphic design, photography, and art history. His paintings reflect a union of his love for the Impressionists combined with his graffiti and graphic design background.

Noah Beauregard, ‘ETTA,’ 24”x24”, Oil stick and synthetic polymer on canvas.

Noah Beauregard is a Berkshire County painter. Drawn to painting and design and as a child, Beauregard’s art focuses on abstracting common images through form and color. Beauregard pushes recognizable scenes into a bright, bizarre world of saturated color and mythic design. The human form and unworldly plants are common motifs in his work.

Dottie’s Coffee Lounge will present live music with local cover band, Mr. Doubtfire, from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Check out the full schedule of July 5th First Fridays at Five events online. Download the Downtown Pittsfield app in the App Store or on Google Play to follow a virtual walking tour of art on your cell phone.

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Congregational Church of Salisbury presents Kevin Dolan, also known as The Old Guitarist, as part of its ‘First Friday’ music series

Salisbury, Conn.— On Friday, July 5th at noon, Congregational Church of Salisbury presents Kevin Dolan, also known as The Old Guitarist, as part of its ‘First Friday’ music series. The program will include a varied program of pieces including an arrangement of the “Prelude from Johann Sebastian Bach’s Cello Suite No. 1” and “Rickover’s Dream” by Michael Hedges.

The Old Guitarist, Kevin Dolan.

Dolan received his Master of Music degree from Yale University, where he studied with Eliot Fisk, Andres Segovia’s last student, as well as Peter Oiujian, first violinist with the Tokyo String Quartet, and Phyllis Curtin, head of the Tanglewood vocal department. He was awarded the Lucy G. Moses Fellowship while at Yale. He has been awarded grants from the Yamaha Foundation as well as Meet the Composer. He has performed as a chamber musician and soloist throughout the United States and Europe. His newest release “Bach and Bourbon” has been hailed as his best work in twenty years.

The performance is on Friday, July 5th at noon at Congregational Church of Salisbury at 30 Main Street in Salisbury, Conn. The doors will open at 11:30 a.m. It is free and open to the public. All are welcome. 

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Jacob’s Pillow presents The Royal Ballet of the United Kingdom including free livestream presentation

Becket— Through July 7th, Jacob’s Pillow hosts one of the most famous and celebrated companies in the world, The Royal Ballet of the United Kingdom, gracing both the Ted Shawn Theatre and the outdoor Henry J. Leir Stage with their unparalleled artistry and technical prowess.

The Royal Ballet. Photo by Tristram Kenton. Courtesy Jacob’s Pillow.

As their only U.S. stop in 2024, audiences will enjoy a repertoire that blends classical elegance with contemporary flair and Jacob’s Pillow is offering a free livestream of their magnificent performance on Saturday, July 6th from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m.

This performance will be available on Jacob’s Pillow On Demand for 24 hours from noon on Wednesday, July 10th to noon on Thursday, July 11th. Click this link to receive reminders and a link to watch as many times as you would like by signing up below.

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Spencertown Academy Arts Center presents ‘Drawn To Precision: In Monochrome’

Spencertown, N.Y.— From July 6th through August 4th, Spencertown Academy Arts Center presents “Drawn To Precision: In Monochrome,” a drawing exhibition that demonstrates the fine art that artists with extraordinary skill can produce using simple materials.

Co-curated by Munya Avigail Upin and David Lesako, the show features graphite and pen-and-ink works by Stephanie Anderson, Ario Elami, Melissa Forbes, Douglas Gilbert, Maja Kihlstedt, Monica Miller, and Kate Minford.

Stephanie Anderson, ‘Frenzy,’ 30” x 30”, Graphite on clayboard.

“We have seven artists whose work is very different except for dedication to extreme detail and expressive line quality,” says Lesako. “I’m intrigued by the diversity of drawing styles and how they communicate emotion,” adds Upin. “Drawings can be representational, abstract, fantastical, and even shocking. The artists in this exhibition are extremely thoughtful and talented.”

The exhibit runs from July 6th through August 4th at Spencertown Academy Arts Center at 790 State Route 203 in Spencertown, N.Y. There will be an opening reception on Saturday, July 6th from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Gallery hours are Saturdays and Sundays from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is free. More information can be found online. 

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Berkshire County Historical Society presents the photography of Arthur Palme at Arrowhead

Pittsfield— From July 6th through October 28th, the Berkshire County Historical Society at Herman Melville’s Arrowhead will be presenting a new exhibit featuring the photography of Arthur Palme (1884-1949).

Palme is best known for his photography showcasing the natural beauty of the Berkshires. His work was featured in the Berkshire Eagle, and he was one of the first contributors to the long-running “Our Berkshires” column in that paper. He wrote extensively on a variety of topics relating to photography, and his writing was published both locally and nationally. He developed a high-speed technique he called “speedlight” photography and published a book about it in 1946 which received national recognition.

Photography of Arthur Palme. Courtesy BCHS.

This exhibit will look at the full range of his work, both professional and personal. It will explore his photography, along with other aspects of his life. After emigrating to the Berkshires from Austria, he began a life-long career at General Electric in 1914. An engineer in the power transformer division, his scientific knowledge had a strong influence on his photographic work, merging with his interest in the natural world.

The exhibit runs from July 6th through October 28th, at Herman Melville’s Arrowhead at 780 Holmes Road in Pittsfield. It is free and open to the public. More information can be found online. 

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Schumacher Center for a New Economics presents ‘May We Live in Interesting Times: A Parable for Endings (and the Beginnings We Don’t Know Yet,)’ a public lecture featuring W.E.B. Du Bois Scholar Dr. Bayo Akomolafe

Great Barrington— On Saturday, July 6th from 1:30 p.m. to 5 p.m., the Schumacher Center for a New Economics presents ‘May We Live in Interesting Times: A Parable for Endings (and the Beginnings We Don’t Know Yet,)’ a public lecture featuring W.E.B. Du Bois Scholar in Residence Dr. Bayo Akomolafe.

Left or Right? Blue or Red? This or That? One of the stickiest assumptions about being a modern self is that “we” always have a choice. It’s our inalienable right to choose, we hear. But what happens when choice starts misbehaving? What is choice good for when it no longer plays a differentiating function?

In this public lecture, Dr. Bayo Akomolafe offers the parable of the Behemoth – a strange motif that warps choice and subjects it to forces beyond human agency. In a seminal year of wars and losses and apartheidic endings, when going left doesn’t feel that much different from going right, when justice feels inadequate to the rising tensions of the hour, where larger algorithms are in play, Dr. Akomolafe senses that a different, supplementary politics is needed, a different performance of power. Something stranger than hope, than clarity, than knowing what to do. And something that brings us to the feet of ‘the monstrous.’

W.E.B. Du Bois Scholar Dr. Bayo Akomolafe. Courtesy Schumacher Center.

Dr. Bayo Akomolafe, (Ph.D.), rooted with the Yoruba people in a more-than-human world, is a widely celebrated international speaker, posthumanist thinker, poet, teacher, public intellectual, essayist, and author of two books, “These Wilds Beyond our Fences: Letters to My Daughter on Humanity’s Search for Home” and “We Will Tell our Own Story: The Lions of Africa Speak,” He is the Founder of The Emergence Network and host of  “We Will Dance with Mountains.” He currently lectures at Pacifica Graduate Institute and sits on the board of many organizations including Science and Non-Duality (US) and Ancient Futures (Australia).

The lecture is on Saturday, July 6th from 1:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. at Saint James Place at 352 Main Street in Great Barrington. The event will be opened with a song from Eltavious Johnson, a Schumacher Center intern visiting from the Bahamas. Bayo will be introduced by Andrea Panaritis of the Christopher Reynolds Foundation. There will be a brief intermission with light refreshments provided. Tickets are priced on a sliding scale. Please note that the live lecture will be recorded and made available for free online at a later date. More information can be found online.

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Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center presents ‘Captain Nemo’s Adventure Academy: 20,000 Laughs Under the Sea’

Great Barrington— On Saturday, July 6th at 4 p.m., the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center presents “Captain Nemo’s Adventure Academy: 20,000 Laughs Under the Sea,” an engaging theatrical experience featuring beautiful sound effects, hilarious hijinks, magic, bubbles, and full audience participation.

David Engel as Captain Nemo. Courtesy The Mahaiwe.

Dive into this madcap homage to Jules Verne’s famous maritime hero Captain Nemo, created and performed by David Engel. He will entertain, inspire, and challenge your little guppies while quenching their thirst for knowledge. The cantankerous and ever-curious Captain Nemo lives to excite kids about our watery-blue planet with tales of the giant squid, the elusive Angler fish, and even how whale poop is part of the cycle of life!

The show is on Saturday, July 6th at 4 p.m. at the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center at 14 Castle Street in Great Barrington. Tickets are $12 and $8 for youth ages 12 and under. Tickets and more information can be found online. 

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Chabad of Columbia County to host a dedication ceremony for its new Torah Scroll

Hudson, N.Y.— On Sunday, July 7th from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., Chabad of Columbia County will host a dedication ceremony for its new Torah Scroll. The streets of Hudson will be filled with song and dance, as members of the Jewish community will joyously parade a new community Torah scroll through the town in a celebratory ceremony.

“Welcoming a new Torah Scroll is a special milestone for our community,” said Rabbi Mendel Kremer, who directs Chabad of Columbia County, “In these fraught times for the Jewish people, it’s an important show of pride, unity, and Jewish solidarity.”

The Torah Dedication ceremony will feature an expert scribe who will complete the Torah scroll live in front of the community, and attendees will have the opportunity to donate or inscribe a letter or portion in the Torah, beginning at $18 a letter. From there, the scroll will be marched in a grand procession with singing, dancing, live music, gourmet food, and much pomp and circumstance to its new home in the ark of Chabad of Columbia County.

Chabad of Columbia County.

“This ceremony is symbolic of our community,” Rabbi Kremer commented. “Every individual is celebrated; every person makes a difference. Together, we are building the future of this community and invigorating that sense of Jewish pride and Jewish life here in Columbia County.”

The ceremony is on Sunday, July 7th from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. at Hudson Hall at the Historic Hudson Opera House at 327 Warren Street in Hudson, N.Y. More information can be found online.

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