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The Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center in Great Barrington will present Catherine Russell and John Pizzarelli in 'Billie & Blue Eyes' Saturday, Dec. 23. Image courtesy Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center

Bits & Bytes: ‘Billie & Blue Eyes’ at the Mahaiwe; ‘Unsilent Night;’ Greenagers at Green Drinks

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By Monday, Dec 18, 2017 Life In the Berkshires

Mahaiwe to present John Pizzarelli Quartet, Catherine Russell in ‘Billie & Blue Eyes’

Great Barrington — The Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center will present “Billie & Blue Eyes” with the John Pizzarelli Quartet and Catherine Russell Saturday, Dec. 23, at 8 p.m.

“Billie & Blues Eyes” pairs Russell’s Grammy Award-winning vocals and Pizzarelli’s smooth quartet to evoke the glory days of jazz, taking on two of the greats: Billie Holiday and Frank Sinatra. The evening will feature soulful interpretations of chart-topping classics like “All of Me,” “God Bless the Child,” “Witchcraft” and “One More for My Baby.” Instead of stepping back in time, the artists will pull the music into the present.

Tickets are $30 to $100. For tickets and more information, see the Berkshire Edge calendar or contact the Mahaiwe box office at (413) 528-0100.

–E.E.

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The 2016 ‘Unsilent Night’ event in New York City. Photo: Sxip Shirey

Wave Farm to offer Phil Kline’s ‘Unsilent Night’

Hudson, N.Y. — In partnership with Wave Farm, Phil Kline’s mobile sound-sculpture “Unsilent Night” will return to Hudson for its second year Saturday, Dec. 23, at 7 p.m. Led by Kline himself, participants will gather at Public Square at Warren and Seventh streets and march to Promenade Park for the parade’s culmination. This year’s parade route will celebrate Hudson’s lesser-traveled alleys and enclaves, winding through corridors and byways that shade the city’s historic streetscape.

Phil Kline. Photo: Lovis Ostenrik

“Unsilent Night” is an original composition by Kline, written specifically to be heard outdoors in the month of December. It takes the form of a street promenade in which the audience members are the performer. Each participant gets one of four tracks of music. Originally the music was played using only cassette tapes in boomboxes but, as vintage boomboxes have become harder to find, more people use smartphones with portable speakers to blast the music. Together, all four tracks comprise “Unsilent Night.”

To take part in the event, participants should arrive at Public Square no later than 6:45 p.m. with a boombox or smartphone with external speakers. A limited supply of boomboxes will be available to borrow on a first-come, first-served basis. Participants will begin marching just after 7 p.m. The event will be broadcast live on WGXC. Those planning to use smartphones are asked to go to unsilentnight.com/participate before the event to download a track or download the Unsilent Night app.

The event is free and all are invited to participate. For more information, contact info@unsilentnight.com.

–E.E.

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Aretha Whitehead to speak on young people and climate change

Aretha Whitehead. Photo courtesy Berkshire Environmental Action Team

Pittsfield — Aretha Whitehead of the Housatonic-based nonprofit Greenagers will speak at the Pittsfield Green Drinks meeting Tuesday, Dec. 19, at 6 p.m. at J. Allen’s Clubhouse Grille.

Whitehead runs Greenagers’ Front Lawn Food program, which supplies raised garden beds to families in Berkshire County. Whitehead also heads up Greenagers’ Climate Action after-school program at Monument Valley Regional Middle School in Great Barrington and Mount Everett Regional School in Sheffield, which includes hands-on science curricula, field trips, nature journaling and service learning.

The meeting will begin at 5:15 p.m. For more information, contact Elizabeth Orenstein at (413) 717-1255 or elizabeth@thebeatnews.org.

–E.E.


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