Arts & Culture

Simon McBurney in The Encounter
Robbie Jack

The Encounter - conceived of, directed by, and starring, Simon McBurney is currently running at the Golden Theater in New York City. McBurney is a multi-Olivier Award-winning, Tony and SAG Award-nominated actor, writer, director and one of Europe’s most original theater makers. He is co-founder and artistic director of Complicite.

The one-man play tells the true story of National Geographic photographer Loren McIntyre in 1969 - lost in Brazil as he encounters the Mayoruna - a remote people whose ancient traditions are uninfluenced by the western world. In The Encounter, McBurney also shares the story of the creation of this unique piece of theater.

Molding and stretching the classic artform of storytelling, McBurney and The Encounter team use specific and immersive binaural audio technology and sound design. Each member of the audience wears headphones which create an experience that uses their ears to trick their brain into telling their body and comprehension that events are happening that - in reality - aren’t; a voice from over your shoulder, a mosquito in your face, a fire nearby, a warm breath a little too nearby.

Breathing Lights

Nov 23, 2016
Breathing Lights

This month and last, nightly from 6pm – 10pm, Breathing Lights has been illuminating the windows of hundreds of vacant buildings in Albany, Schenectady and Troy. Breathing Lights looks to transform abandoned structures from pockets of shadows into places of warmth. 

Concentrated in neighborhoods with high levels of vacancy, Breathing Lights was a winner of the Bloomberg Philanthropies Public Art Challenge which engages mayors to collaborate with artists on developing innovative public art projects that enrich communities and attract visitors.

But even after the closure, there will be months of programming and events to continue the conversation surrounding the issues. To tell us more – we welcome project architect Barb Nelson, Lead Artist Adam Frelin and Judie Gilmore, the project director. 

Candid Camera’s 8 Decades of Smiles! with Peter Funt will be presented at The Mahaiwe in Great Barrington on Friday night. Peter’s stage comedy is blended with clips, quips and behind-the-scenes tales from the show’s funniest moments.

Candid Camera holds a unique place in entertainment history as the only show to have produced new episodes in each of the last eight decades – from Allen Funt’s debut in 1948 through Peter’s recent run on TV Land.

The stage show incorporates the best Candid Camera clips in a fast-paced, laugh-filled romp through the decades. Peter’s topical humor is blended with audience participation and special surprises to make the show a great night of fun.

Peter joined his dad as co-host in the 1980s and took over as host in the 90s. His syndicated newspaper column appears regularly in the Berkshire Eagle.

Rob Edelman: Black Life

Nov 21, 2016

A number of high-quality, deservedly-acclaimed films that illuminate the lives of black Americans are arriving in movie theaters. They include MOONLIGHT, one of the very best films of the year: an intimate, moving character study about Chiron, a young black male who is an outsider in his world.

Any Questions #273

Nov 18, 2016

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel are back for a hoppin' good quiz.

Audrey Kupferberg: 'Arrival' And 'Hacksaw Ridge'

Nov 18, 2016

Two new films are playing in local theaters this month.  One is an innovative sci-fi feature called ARRIVAL starring Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, and Forest Whitaker.  Adams gets most of the screen time as Dr. Louise Banks, a brilliant university linguist, who is employed by the U.S. military to translate the language of aliens.  The story involves twelve alien spacecraft that land in a dozen locales across the earth.  The extraterrestrials, which are called Heptapods, are nothing like humans in their appearance, but they do seem to be capable of communication.  While they look absolutely primordial, they have powers that we on earth have not yet acquired.

Rogovoy Report For 11/18/16

Nov 18, 2016

The weekend’s cultural highlights in the region include a world premiere of new music by Magnetic Fields; the return of a husband-and-wife new wave duo; a Pulitzer Prize-winning art critic; a composer sharing thoughts on classical music’s glass ceiling; a concert of contemporary music from China; and a whole lot more.

Between stressing about his theater friends and reconciling his complicated feelings about an inconsistently wonderful New York City, Tony Award–winning playwright and Pulitzer finalist Richard Greenberg also maintains a reputation for being something of a hermit.

In Rules for Others to Live By, he shares lessons from his highly successful writing career, observations from two long decades of residence on a three-block stretch of Manhattan, and musings from a complicated and occasionally taxing social life.

His new play, The Babylon Line, is in previews at the Newhouse Theater at Lincoln Center, it will open on December 5.


  The exhibition The Art of Seating: Two Hundred Years of American Design, organized by The Museum of Contemporary Art, Jacksonville is currently on view at The Albany Institute of History and Art through December 31st.

 

In the show, the chair is experienced not only as a functional item, but as art -- with more than 40 unique chairs on view.

 

Public Relations Associate, Aine Leader-Nagy and Chief Curator Doug McCombs take us on a tour.

Shawn Stone, Digital Editor of The Alt joins us to talk about what he's seen lately and what cultural events are coming up this week in our region.

Alton Brown is the author of the James Beard award winning, I’m Just Here for the Food, and the New York Times bestselling sequence, Good Eats, and host of TV’s Cutthroat Kitchen, Camp Cutthroat, Iron Chef America and Good Eats on Food Network.

His new live show Eat Your Science is a follow-up to the smash Edible Inevitable tour. Brown is adding a slew of fresh ingredients including new puppets, songs and bigger and potentially more dangerous experiments.

The show will be at UPAC in Kingston, NY on Thursday, November 17 at 8:00 pm before it plays Broadway's Barrymore Theatre November 22-27.

Since his first recordings in 1955, Johnny Cash has been an icon in the music world. Now comes a collection of his as-yet-unpublished poems adding to his already prolific number of original songs: Forever Words: The Unknown Poems.

In these words, we see the world through Cash’s eyes, his reflection upon his own interior reality, frailties and strengths alike. The poetry reveals his depth of understanding; both of the world around him and within. Coming from purely American and gospel traditions of song writing, Cash reflects upon love, pain, freedom, and mortality.

John Carter Cash, who has been involved in music all his life, is an accomplished and award-winning record producer as well as a singer-songwriter and recording artist. The only son to Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash, he is the author of three children’s books, and a biography of his father, one of his mother, and a fantasy novel, Lupus Rex

In a career that has spanned over sixty years, Robert Wagner has witnessed the twilight of the Golden Age of Hollywood and the rise of television, becoming a beloved star in both film and TV. During this time, he became acquainted, both professionally and socially, with many of the greatest female screen personalities of all time.

His new book, I Loved Her in the Movies: Memories of Hollywood’s Legendary Actresses, gives us an account of the charisma of these women on film.  Among Wagner's subjects are Joan Crawford, Bette Davis, Marilyn Monroe, Gloria Swanson, Loretta Young, Raquel Welch, Glenn Close, and the two actresses whom he ultimately married, Natalie Wood and Jill St. John.

Robert Wagner is the star of such films as A Kiss Before DyingThe Longest DayThe Pink Panther, and most recently, the Austin Powers franchise. On television, he starred in It Takes a Thief (with Fred Astaire), Switch (with Eddie Albert and Sharon Gless), and Hart to Hart (with Stefanie Powers). 

The Berkshire Concert Choir was formed in 1977 with the merger of the Stockbridge Singers, Inc. and The Cantata Choir of South Congregational Church of Pittsfield. The Choir is a membership organization open to all who enjoy singing and are willing to devote one evening a week to rehearsals.

The Choir presents Carl Orff's cantata, Carmina Burana, on Saturday, November 19 at 7:30 pm in the Boland Theater at Berkshire Community College, 1350 West Street, Pittsfield. 

To tell us more, we welcome Paula Nuss, Artistic Director, Marilyn Gerhard, tenor and President of the choir, and Francis Stone, bass and board member.

Rob Edelman: Andrzej Wajda

Nov 14, 2016

Andrzej Wajda is the best-known and most revered Polish filmmaker of his generation. His films are daring, provocative, and personal. Plus, many are decidedly political in that they focus on individuals who valiantly resist repression or ponder the realities of war and heroism.

Any Questions #272

Nov 11, 2016

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel are back with this week's show.

Rogovoy Report For 11/11/16

Nov 11, 2016

The weekend’s cultural highlights in the region include a Pulitzer Prize-nominated playwright at the microphone and piano; a world-renowned jazz trumpeter inaugurating a new venue; the editor of a new collection of essays on womanhood; a museum exhibition of Saturday morning cartoon classics; and a whole lot more.

Before the rise of basic cable, Saturday mornings for many children in America were spent watching cartoons on one of three available television channels. From 1958 through the 1980s, a majority of those cartoons bore the Hanna-Barbera imprint. Creating scores of popular series such as The Flintstones, The Jetsons, Jonny Quest, Scooby-Doo, Super Friends, and The Smurfs, Hanna-Barbera was an animation powerhouse.

Hanna-Barbera: The Architects of Saturday Morning is the first museum exhibition on the world’s most successful animation partnership. It opens tomorrow at the Norman Rockwell Museum and runs through May 29th.

LATHAM - If you haven’t yet had your fill of vile people engaging in political backstabbing - you will be happy to know that “Farragut North” continues at  Curtain Call Theatre in Latham through November 26.

Shawn Stone, Digital Editor of The Alt (launching 11/15), joins us to talk about what he's seen lately and what cultural events are coming up this week in our region.

The 6th annual Made in the Berkshires festival features cutting-edge theatrical works performed as staged readings, live music, film, short stories and dance in a festival atmosphere like no other. New and innovative pieces as well as established work will be presented by local Berkshire County playwrights, actors, directors, musicians and performers.

Featured as performance blocks, Made in the Berkshires will allow audiences to enjoy the breadth and depth of the artistic talent that has landed in Berkshire County while celebrating the best in the visual and performing arts.

Professional artists and artists-in-the-making gather to share their talent with the Berkshire community. The festival will once again be curated by Hilary Somers Deely and Barbara Sims; two local artists who have helped create the rich cultural tapestry that permeates the Berkshires.

We are joined by Hilary and Barbara as well as Berkshire Theatre Group’s Artistic Director and CEO Kate Maguire.

Rob Edelman: Arrival

Nov 7, 2016

These days, so many science fiction films either dazzle viewers with special effects or terrify them with doomsday-laden end-of-the-world scenarios. So it is a happy surprise to find one that is genuinely intelligent, emotionally powerful-- and one of the best films of the year. Such a film is ARRIVAL, directed by Denis Villeneuve, which presently is arriving in movie theaters.

Any Questions #271

Nov 4, 2016

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel switch seats for their last show before Election Day.

A Bronx Tale: The Musical begins previews on Broadway at the Longacre Theatre tomorrow night. The new musical features a book by Academy Award nominee Chazz Palminteri, music by Oscar, Grammy, and Tony Award winner Alan Menken, and lyrics by Grammy Award winner and Oscar and Tony Award nominee Glenn Slater. The show is co-directed by two-time Oscar winner Robert De Niro and four-time Tony Award winner Jerry Zaks, with choreography by Tony nominee Sergio Trujillo.

Based on the one-man show written and performed by Chazz Palminteri that inspired the now classic film, this streetwise musical will takes the audience to the stoops of the Bronx in the 1960s—where a young man is caught between the father he loves and the mob boss he’d love to be. Featuring an original doo-wop score, this is a tale about respect, loyalty, love, and above all else: family.

The musical premiered at the Tony Award-winning Paper Mill Playhouse in Millburn, NJ to critical and popular acclaim earlier this year and officially opens on Broadway on December 1st.

Alan Menken joins us.

Audrey Kupferberg: Denial

Nov 1, 2016

DENIAL, a newly-released film, relates a very important true story, one that actually drew headlines 16 years ago.  The focus of the plot is a lawsuit that worked its way through English courts from 1996 into the 21st century.  In this suit, self-proclaimed historian David Irving sued Penguin Books and Deborah Lipstadt, an eminent American scholar on Holocaust Studies, for libel for characterizing some of his writings and public statements as Holocaust denial.

johnny Irion
Fionn Reilly

Our friend Johnny Irion is opening two concerts in our region this week.

On Thursday he’ll be at Iron Horse Music Hall in Northampton, MA with Good Friends, a new musical project from Ian O'Neil & Dennis Ryan of Deer Tick. Johnny will start the evening  with a solo set followed by Ian & Dennis in one of the first live gigs for Good Friends project, They will all play a few at the end of the show together.

On Saturday he’ll be at Helsinki Hudson, opening for Raleigh, N.C.-based Chatham County Line.


  Nick Cave is an American fabric sculptor, dancer, and performance artist. He is best known for his Soundsuits: wearable fabric sculptures that are bright, whimsical, and otherworldly.

In his new work, “Until,” Cave uses MASS MoCA’s football field-sized space to create his largest installation to date, made up of thousands of found objects and millions of beads, which will make viewers feel as if they have entered a sensory tapestry, like stepping directly inside the belly of one of his iconic Soundsuits.

For the piece Nick Cave and his curators and assistants have gathered 16,000 wind spinners; millions of plastic pony beads; thousands of ceramic birds, fruits, and animals; 1 crocodile; 17 cast-iron lawn jockeys -- and so much more.

We visited MASS MoCA during the installation of “Until” - which opened on October 15th and will be on view in North Adams, MA through early September of next year.

Nick Cave and curator Denise Markonish lead us through the exhibition.

Any Questions #270

Oct 28, 2016

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel return to one of their old favorites this week.

Rogovoy Report For 10/28/16

Oct 28, 2016

The weekend’s cultural highlights in the region include a film festival, a world-renowned violinist, an orchestra, a performance artist, a folk-blues legend, and a whole lot more.


  Earlier this week the New York premiere of Vietgone, opened at Manhattan Theatre Club in New York City. Written by Qui Nguyen and directed by May Adrales, the comedy tells the love story of two refugees from the Vietnam War who have settled in a relocation camp in Middle America - where their “new life” isn’t anything near what they’d hoped.  

 

They play isn’t what you might imagine based on that description either - for instance - one of the bios in the Playbill is for Rap Consultant, Miriam Hyman.

 

Miriam is a 2016 Leonore Annenberg Fellowship recipient for Performing Arts. She is a 2012 graduate of Yale School of Drama where she earned her MFA in acting and a 2011 Princess Grace recipient of the George C. Wolfe award in Theater. Since graduating she’s worked in film, television, regional, and Off-Broadway Theaters including LaMaMa, The Public, Manhattan Theater Club, and Lincoln Center.

 

Under her moniker, Robyn Hood, she will soon release an EP entitled For Higher.

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