Rogovoy Report 9/22/17

Sep 22, 2017

The weekend highlights in our region include chamber music; mystical jazz; classical Russian music; a punk-rock memoir; multimedia performances; folk music; theater; and a whole lot more.

It’s a feast for chamber music aficionados this weekend, if only you could be in more than one place at one time. If you plan carefully, though, you could at least catch two of three top-notch chamber concerts on Saturday evening.

At 4:30pm, pianist Kyra Xuerong Zhao will play works by Ligeti, Debussy, and Beethoven at the Historic Meeting House in New Marlborough, Mass., as part of the Music & More series.

Then at 6pm, violinist Aleksey Semenenko and pianist Inna Firsova bring the curtain down on this year’s Tannery Pond Concerts series with a program including works by Grieg, Schubert, and Tchaikovsky. The concert by the two Ukrainian-born musicians takes place in The Tannery on the grounds of Mount Lebanon Shaker Village and the Darrow School in New Lebanon, N.Y.

And finally, at 7:30pm, the Philadelphia-based Jasper String Quartet, whose repertoire stretches from the Baroque through the Romantic to the modern to the contemporary, will perform works by Haydn, Debussy, Judd Greenstein, and Arthur Foote at St. James Church in Chatham, N.Y., as part of the Leaf Peeper Concert Series. The ensemble will be joined by series artistic director Eugenia Zukerman on Arthur Foote’s Scherzo for flute and string quartet.

If none of that interests you and you’re a jazz fan, Saturday night also features a concert by legendary composer and jazz pianist Randy Weston, performing “A Night of Mystical Music” at Berkshire Museum in Pittsfield, Mass., at 7pm. Weston, who has deep musical roots in the Berkshires, will offer an evening of music inspired by the mystical voice of Sufi teacher Hazrat Khan.

Or, if you prefer your music large and symphonic, the Orchestra Now kicks off its 2017–18 residency at Bard College’s Fisher Center this weekend with back-to-back concerts featuring an all-Russian program of music by Mussorgsky, Tchaikovsky, and Prokofiev. Led by Leon Botstein, the orchestra will be joined by soloist ChaoJun Yang — a winner of the Bard College Conservatory 2016 Concerto Competition — in Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 2. Concerts are on Saturday at 8pm and Sunday at 2pm.

But maybe theater is your thing. The summer theater season may be over and done with, but there’s still stuff to see. Yasmina Reza’s Tony Award-winning dramedy “God of Carnage” is getting a critically acclaimed staging now through October 8 at Shakespeare & Company in Lenox, Mass. Starring a quartet of the company’s finest actors – Elizabeth Aspenlieder, Kristin Wold, Jonathan Croy, and Allyn Burrows – the play is a contemporary cross between Edward Albee’s “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf” and TV’s “Modern Family.”

Remember punk rock? Author Richard Boch does. He had a front-row seat in its seminal years as the doorman at downtown New York’s famed punk nightclub the Mudd Club. Richard will read from his new memoir, “The Mudd Club,” at Hudson Hall on Sunday at 5pm. Filmmaker Amos Poe will be on hand to introduce Boch and moderate a post-reading discussion.

And finally, art meets landscape meets stage in “Performing Olana,” an original, site-specific play written by Darrah Cloud and staged on the grounds of Olana outside of Hudson, N.Y., today through Sunday. The theater piece draws inspiration from Frederic Church’s painting, letters, family life, and the celebrated landscape, and is presented as an immersive experience in which performer and audience journey together inside Church’s art.

Seth Rogovoy is editor of Berkishire Daily and the Rogovoy Report, available online at

The views expressed by commentators are solely those of the authors. They do not necessarily reflect the views of this station or its management.