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BUSINESS BRIEFS: Pop Up, North Berkshire; panel on NFTs; Berkshire Money Management, Shakespeare & Co., Berkshire Music School add staff; CHP welcomes two dentists

The Berkshire Innovation Center will host a free panel discussion, Non-Fungible Tokens: A New Frontier for Brick-and-Mortar, on Saturday, June 4, from 5–8 p.m.

1Berkshire, North Adams Chamber, proAdams to debut Pop Up, North Berkshire

ADAMS, NORTH ADAMS1Berkshire, in partnership with the North Adams Chamber of Commerce and proAdams, announces the launch of the Pop Up, North Berkshire program. Funded through a one-time grant award from the Massachusetts Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development, the program will support and supplement the establishment of up to four pop-up businesses in Adams and North Adams from July through September.

By providing an injection of capital, along with technical assistance and permit navigation, this collaboration of agencies will give pop-up businesses the best opportunity to become established and test their offerings in the local market.

To date, three of the four businesses have been selected and are in the process of getting ready for summer operations:

WallaSauce (North Adams): Owned and operated by Sarah DeFusco and Kirby Casteel, WallaSauce is a familiar name in the region as a locally produced streetwear brand focused on minimizing waste while exploring self-expression through clothing, merchandise, and creative thinking. They will be opening a retail storefront to both sell their products and produce their items in a prominent downtown space.

The Adams Incubator (Adams): Owned and operated by Yina Moore, The Adams Incubator is a conceptual co-working, art retail, and small event venue that will pair with the redevelopment of the Adams Theater. By providing a co-working space in the heart of downtown Adams, Incubator will offer an array of amenities to individuals seeking an office, a space to innovate, and a community of professionals, while also putting on dynamic programming.

Secret Sun Tanning Salon (Adams): Owned and operated by Jason Nocher, Secret Sun will inject new life into an updated downtown space, offering tanning options and filling a gap that has been identified over the last several years. By creating another service offering on a main downtown corridor, the pop-up will help draw traffic to the area.

An additional fourth business will be identified and supported for opening in North Adams in the coming weeks.


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Berkshire Innovation Center to host panel on NFTs

The Berkshire Innovation Center. Photo courtesy BIC

PITTSFIELD — The Berkshire Innovation Center (BIC) will host a panel discussion, Non-Fungible Tokens: A New Frontier for Brick-and-Mortar, on Saturday, June 4, from 5–8 p.m. This free event will take place in-person at the Berkshire Innovation Center, 45 Woodlawn Ave. in Pittsfield, and will also be livestreamed.

The discussion will be moderated by Ben Sosne, executive director of the Berkshire Innovation Center. Speakers will be Justin McKennon of CoinBusters; Dave Nadig, chief investment officer and director of research at ETF Database; Khalid Jones, principal at the Kolier Group; Giovanna Fessenden, counsel at Hamilton Brook Smith Reynolds; and Ryan Salame, co-CEO at FTX Digital Markets.

Click here for more information and to register for this free event.


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Berkshire Money Management adds to Financial Planning and Advising teams

Angela Elzner. Photo courtesy Berkshire Money Management

DALTON Berkshire Money Management (BMM) welcomes two new members to its team. Angela Elzner joins the firm as a paraplanner in the financial planning department and Kyle Lyman steps into the role of financial associate.

Elzner moved to the Berkshires from St. Mary’s, Georgia, 20 years ago. Before joining the Berkshire Money Management team, she served clients at Wellesley Financial, later known as the Bullfinch Group, and Greylock Investment Group. While at Greylock, Elzner obtained a securities license and aimed to help her clients meet their financial goals and address challenges. Elzner attended MCLA, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration. Recently, she received her Financial Paraplanner Qualified Professional (FPQP™) designation. In her role as a paraplanner, she will expand BMM’s capacity to serve its clients and help improve the financial planning process.

Kyle Lyman. Photo courtesy Berkshire Money Management

Lyman grew up in Dalton before moving to Hinsdale. After graduating from Bryant University in 2020 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration (and a concentration in finance and economics), he gained experience at the Bullfinch Group and MDS Wealth Advisors. In his new role as financial associate, he will support the financial advising team in their efforts to provide clients with quality service as he works toward becoming a licensed investment advisor.


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Shakespeare & Company appoints Sheila Bandyopadhyay Director of Training

Sheila Bandyopadhyay. Photo courtesy Shakespeare & Company

LENOX — Sheila Bandyopadhyay has joined Shakespeare & Company as its Director of Training, beginning her new position on August 9.

A director, movement specialist, performer, and devisor of original theater, Bandyopadhyay has an extensive background in both new work and Shakespeare, and has trained and taught with the Company as an Education and Training artist.

Bandyopadhyay has been an active player in New York’s independent theater scene, with work at venues including the West End Theater, the Brick in Brooklyn, the Tank, the 72nd St. Theater Lab, and multiple festivals for new work (directing/devising); the Boston Center for the Arts, Gallatin NYU, FSU/Asolo, and the American Academy of Dramatic Arts Company (movement and choreography), and The Humanist Project and Stages on the Sound as a performer.

Before becoming Director of Training, Bandyopadhyay served as Head of the Professional Training Program and Core Movement Faculty at Dell’Arte International School of Physical Theatre, and Head of Movement at The American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City.

In her new role, Bandyopadhyay will steward Shakespeare & Company’s Center for Actor Training into a new era, continuing to refine its aesthetic and enacting positive change for a more accessible, inclusive environment.


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Berkshire Music School welcomes four new faculty members

BMS berkshire music school logoPITTSFIELD — The Berkshire Music School announces the hiring of four new faculty members: Carl Bowlby on piano and organ; Abby Daggett on vocal instruction; Ashley Paradis on clarinet; and Julia Rousse Shippee on guitar and ukulele.

Carl Bowlby has played the piano most of his life and is a 1990 graduate of the then Pittsfield Community Music School (now Berkshire Music School). He went on to study piano performance, composition and recording studio technology at New York University, from which he graduated in May of 1995 with a bachelor’s degree from the Gallatin School of Individualized Study. Since then, he has studied the pipe organ locally and has played in churches since the late 1990s. He has also taught and performed in the Berkshires at local high schools, the Mac-Haydn Theatre, and Barrington Stage Company.

Abby Daggett is a musical theatre artist, opera singer, director, and music and vocal instructor. She has trained in voice, acting, and dance. For the past six years, she has focused on specialized vocal training, specifically the Bel canto method and Linklater technique. Daggett is best known for her acting work across performance mediums like musical theatre, straight plays, and opera/classical performance. As a leading lady, Daggett has performed as Susanna in “The Marriage of Figaro” and Charity in “Sweet Charity.” She earned dual degrees in music and theatre from the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts.

Ashley Paradis is currently the Band Director at Pittsfield High School, where she directs the PHS Concert Band, Jazz Big Band, and Jazz Combos. In addition, she teaches AP Music Theory and four music elective courses: Music Appreciation, Introduction to Guitar, World Drumming and Introduction to Music Theory. Prior to her position at PHS, she attended the University of New Hampshire, earning a master’s degree in conducting and serving as an assistant to the UNH Wildcat Marching Band, Wind Symphony, Symphony Orchestra, Symphonic Band and Concert Band. In 2015, she received her bachelor’s in music education, also from the University of New Hampshire.

Julia Rousse Shippee sings and plays many string instruments, including the upright bass, guitar and ukulele. She taught elementary general music for 17 years and recently received a master’s degree in music education from the University of Florida.


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CHP welcomes two dentists to practices in North Adams, Pittsfield

Dr. Ankineedu Babu Dasari. Photo: CHP

NORTH ADAMS, PITTSFIELD — Two dentists have joined Community Health Programs’ dental practices in Pittsfield and North Adams, where they will provide care to adults and children.

Dr. Ankineedu Babu Dasari has joined CHP North Adams Family Dental. A graduate of Sibar Institute of Dental Sciences in Takkellapadu, India, he earned an MBA in healthcare administration from the University of Findlay, in Findlay, Ohio. He completed his Advanced Education in General Dentistry Fellowship at Case Western Reserve University School of Dental Medicine.

Dr. Anubhav Jain. Photo: CHP

Dr. Anubhav Jain is a dentist at CHP Neighborhood Health Center in Pittsfield. He is a graduate of Jiwaji University in Madhya Pradesh, India, and earned a master’s degree in public health, specializing in epidemiology, from Temple University in Philadelphia. He also earned a graduate certificate in dental public health from the Maurice H. Kornberg School of Dentistry, also in Philadelphia.

CHP is gradually expanding its dental care operations in order to improve access for residents in Berkshire County, particularly for patients who rely on MassHealth for their care.



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