Arts & Culture

  Spencertown Academy Arts Center is presenting the new exhibit: “Mysterious and Unexpected: The Merger of Art and Science.” There will be an opening reception on Saturday, July 23rd from 4-6PM and the show will remain on display through August 14th.

Curator Barbara Lax Kranz says the exhibit displays the work of six artists who incorporate science to create their art. We will meet two of the featured artists this morning.

Often inspired by current issues in science, Carrie Crane’s recent work uses the tools of Knowledge Visualization (graphs, maps, and diagrams) to address issues of ambiguity and subjectivity in visual communication.

Karen Schoolman is an abstract painter, a student of botanical illustration, and a physician. A packet of 50-year-old x-rays of her mother’s leg inspired her current artwork.

Rob Edelman: Todd Solondz, Wiener-Dog, And More

Jul 18, 2016

Upon first hearing the title WIENER-DOG, written and directed by Todd Solondz, one of the most idiosyncratic and fiercely independent American filmmakers of the past two decades, I was immediately reminded of WELCOME TO THE DOLLHOUSE, his breakthrough feature, which dates from 1995. WELCOME TO THE DOLLHOUSE remains a brilliant film, not just one of the best of its year but a top film of its decade.

Audrey Kupferberg: Pioneers Of African-American Cinema

Jul 15, 2016

The 1920s through the 1940s are the Golden Age of Cinema.  It was a time of tremendous growth in the film industry, when billions of investment dollars were poured into the purchase of Hollywood real estate, and the studio system perfected the production of sophisticated motion pictures. 

Any Questions #255

Jul 15, 2016

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothnagel focus on cable news this week.

ALBANY  -  In the musical “Chicago” there are two leads – Velma Kelly and Roxie Hart.  Both women murdered their husbands and have manipulated their way to become media darlings – which assures they will be acquitted by a celebrity obsessed jury.


  In her one woman show, Forever, Pulitzer prize finalist Dael Orlandersmith travels to the famed Père Lachaise Cemetery in Paris where, by the graves of legendary artists such as Marcel Proust, Oscar Wilde, and Jim Morrison, she finds unexpected grace in a gripping tale of the legacy a daughter inherits from her mother.

Forever opens tonight on Weston Playhouse’s OtherStages in Weston Vermont, directed by Steve Stettler.

  The Drama Critics Circle Award and Drama Desk Award-winning rock, horror, musical comedy, Little Shop of Horrors, is open for business at The Colonial Theater in Pittsfield, MA!

The Berskhire Theatre Group production is directed by Ethan Heard the celebrated, farcical production has music by Academy Award, Golden Globe Award and Tony Award-winners Alan Menken and lyrics by Howard Ashman.

Stanley Bahorek plays Seymour Krelborn. He and Ethan Heard join us. 

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

Seen: Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates

Upcoming:

  Constance Shulman is best known as Yoga Jones on Orange is the New Black on Netflix and the voice of Patti Mayonnaise on the cartoon, Doug

She is currently performing at The Williamstown Theatre Festival as The Strega in Tennesse Williams' The Rose Tattoo, starring Marisa Tomei and directed by Trip Cullman. Shulman's daughter, Gus Birney, plays Rosa in the production. 

A perilous romance. A tragic history. An infamous wager.

Shakespeare’s most controversial yet poignant play, The Merchant of Venice, offers a visceral display of courtship, prejudice, money and revenge, ending ultimately in a choice between life and death.

Shakespeare & Company’s Founding Artistic Director Tina Packer reunites with longtime Company member Jonathan Epstein as Shylock, the Bard’s most memorable and highly charged outsider. Tamara Hickey plays Portia in the production. 

This summer, The Williamstown Theatre Festival brings together professional theatre artists with Berkshire residents to create and perform new work. Born of the belief that theatre is central to understanding, building and maintaining community, this initiative invites the people of Western Massachusetts to be a part of the Festival’s creative process — not just as audience members, but on stage!

Obie Award-winning playwright Lucy Thurber puts a new spin on the Orpheus myth, set in Western Massachusetts. When Orpheus, a teenage girl, realizes that something is amiss in her neighborhood, she embarks on a treacherous journey to save her hometown.

Helmed by Festival Associate Director Laura Savia, and developed in collaboration with community partners, this World Premiere features a cast of 75 Berkshire residents performing alongside Festival actors. Performances are July 14-16 at 7:30PM and July 17 at 5PM.


  Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Pirates of Penzance will swashbuckle and sing their way onto Barrington Stage’s Boyd-Quinson Mainstage in Pittsfield, MA July 15th through August 13th.

 

The production is directed by John Rando, choreographed by Joshua Bergasse  and stars David Garrison as Major General Stanley, Kyle Dean Massey as Frederic, Scarlett Strallen as Mabel, and Will Swenson as The Pirate King.

These talented and lauded performers joined us at The Linda along with Musical Director Darren Cohen and Barrington Stage Company’s Artistic Director, Julianne Boyd to talk about the show and perform a few songs.

Yidstock 2016

Jul 12, 2016

Now in its 5th year, Yidstock celebrates the best of klezmer and new Yiddish music with a wide-ranging lineup of concerts that demonstrate the diversity and breadth of the genre, along with workshops, talks, and other programs.

Headlined by the legendary Klezmatics, this year’s lineup also includes the Klezmer Conservatory Band, the Eleanor Reissa Trio, the Yidstock All-stars, and Sklamberg & the Shepherds and many more.

Yidstock Artistic Director Seth Rogovoy, author of The Essential Klezmer: A Music Lover's Guide to Jewish Roots and Soul Music is here to tell us more along with Lisa Newman - Director of Communications at the Yiddish Book Center. 

Rob Edelman: Fastball

Jul 11, 2016

One does not have to be a sports fan, or a baseball fan-atic, to thoroughly enjoy FASTBALL, a documentary which has just been released to home entertainment. FASTBALL offers up a knowing portrait of baseball in the 21st century. Now sure, a major part of that portrait is the importance of a pitcher challenging a batter by throwing a baseball 100-plus miles per hour. But on a broader scale, FASTBALL offers an overview of how the world is constantly, endlessly changing, on so many levels. Plus, that change should not be judged, particularly by those who have been around for decades and who fondly recall what the world was like in the so-called “good old days.”  

  This Summer, Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival presents productions of The Bard’s Measure for Measure, As You Like It, and Macbeth in repertory in the tent at Boscobel House and Gardens in Garrison, NY.

Davis McCallum and Annie Purcell join us.

Davis is Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival’s Artistic Director, he has been in the position for two full seasons. The award winning director has also directed this summer’s production of Measure for Measure -- which stars Annie Purcell as Isabella. Her Broadway credits include The Coast of Utopia, Dividing the Estate, and Awake and Sing!.

Emma K. Rothenberg-Ware / Berkshire Theatre Group


  This is the final week to see Berkshire Theatre Group’s production of the Tennessee Williams classic Cat on a Hot Tin Roof in Stockbridge, MA. It ends it’s run this coming Saturday.

Jim Beaver plays the doomed patriarch of the family, Big Daddy. Beaver is an actor best known for his roles on The CW’s Supernatural and HBO’s Deadwood -- where he played  Ellsworth - a prospector with a good heart and (like everyone else on that show) an incredible affinity for creative cursing. He also recurred on FX’s Justified and several other shows and has appeared in film and on stage. He is playwright, a film historian, and a television and film writer.

Any Questions #254

Jul 8, 2016
Wall Street Journal
Wall Street Journal / Wall Street Journal

WAMC's Ian Pickus and resident quizzer Mike Nothangel switch seats for a show about the media.

Rogovoy Report For 7/8/16

Jul 8, 2016

The weekend’s cultural highlights in the region include a new music ensemble; a deadpan standup comic; a rock-horror musical comedy; futurist and futuristic puppet theater; the return of a virtuoso violinist; a one-night festival of performance art, and a whole lot more.

  Barrington Stage Company, a professional award-winning Equity regional theatre located in the heart of the Berkshires, in Pittsfield, MA, was founded in 1995. Barrington Stage’s mission is three-fold: to present top-notch, compelling work; to develop new plays and musicals; and to find fresh, bold ways to bringing new audiences into the theatre—especially young people.

On their two stages they present new plays and musicals created by the best theatrical minds working today as well as classics.

Julianne Boyd is the co-founder and Artistic Director of Barrington Stage and she joins us now with an overview of the season.

  Ellen Highstein, Director of the Tanglewood Music Center joins us along with two outstanding TMC fellows.

Cellist Francesca McNeeley - a Graduate of Princeton and Rice University and Mezzo-soprano Fleur Barron was the 1st Prize Winner of the 2013 Liederkranz Competition. In 2016, Fleur was a Palm Beach Opera Young Artist, singing Mercedes and covering the title role in Carmen.

  The Capitol Steps were founded in December, 1981 when some staffers for Senator Charles Percy were planning entertainment for a Christmas party. Since then, they’ve been putting the “mock” in democracy in Washington, D.C., on tour, on the radio, and – during the summer – here in Lenox, MA.

The musical satirists call The Cranwell Spa and Golf Resort their summer home – performing here every night except Tuesday through September 2nd.

We are joined this morning by longtime steppers, Bari Biern and Jack Rowles.

  Seth MacFarlane is the creative force behind TV's Family Guy, American Dad!, and The Cleveland Show. He was also the writer-director of the films Ted, its sequel Ted2, and A Million Ways to Die in the West.

He has also released three successful albums of standards including Music is Better than Words and No One Ever Tells You. MacFarlane's voice has been celebrated for its perfect phrasing, richness, and consistency. He has been nominated for 4 Grammys. 

He has played to sold out audiences as London's Royal Albert Hall, New York's Carnegie Hall, and Symphony Hall in Boston. He will be back with The Boston Pops this Sunday at 2:30pm in The Shed at Tanglewood

  Tanglewood is a name that's recognized around the world. Just about every time we interview a conductor or musician, they mention the venue's reputation and cache.

That doesn't just happen by accident. There's a hard-working team of professionals that keeps Tanglewood on the lips of both audience-members and performers.

And, it is quite a season that gets underway tonight. To give us a State of Tanglewood report – we welcome back our friend Mark Volpe – the Managing Director of the BSO.

  The Boston Cello Quartet was founded in 2010 by the Boston Symphony Orchestra cellists Blaise Dejardin, Adam Esbensen, Mihail Jojatu and Alexandre Lecarme.

Since its acclaimed debut concert, the BCQ has quickly won the hearts of music lovers through their own arrangements of staples of the classical music repertoire, as well as jazz, contemporary works, and even comic medleys, all which showcases the limitless possibilities of the instrument they love.

The Quartet will perform the Tanglewood Family Concert tomorrow afternoon at 2:30PM in Ozawa Hall. 

  The Boston Symphony Orchestra opens its 2016 Tanglewood season tonight at 8PM with an Opening Night at Tanglewood program featuring music by Ravel, Saint-Saëns, and Prokofiev, led by conductor Jacques Lacombe.

Jacques Lacombe is the Principal Conductor of the Bonn Opera in Germany beginning with the coming 2016-2017 season. He served as Music Director of the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra for several years. He conducts around the world and we last spoke with him a year ago when he again opened up the Tanglewood season.

Tony Fogg has been Artistic Administrator of the Boston Symphony Orchestra since 1994 and assists the Music Director in the planning and selection of all BSO concerts and repertoire. 

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

Seen:Our Kind of Traitor

Upcoming:
Dust Bowl Faeries - Upbeat on the Roof/Tang Teaching Museum & Gallery, Saratoga Springs, Friday 7/8
Boston Symphony Orchestra with violinist Joshua Bell (Opening Night: Prokofiev, Saint-Saens) - Tanglewood, Lenox, Mass., Friday 7/8
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater - SPAC, Saratoga Springs, Friday (8 PM)-Saturday (2 and 8 PM), 7/8-9
Wussy - The Low Beat, Albany, Friday 7/9
The Muppets Take Manhattan - Proctors, Schenectady, Sunday 7/10 (10:30 AM & 1 PM)
The Hydes & Rembrandt - The Hyde Collection, Glens Falls, opens Sunday 7/10 (exhibit continues through 10/2)
Steely Dan, Steve Winwood - SPAC, Saratoga Springs, Sunday, 7/10
Blood Sweat & Tears feat. Bo Bice & Dylan Elise, Super 400 - Empire State Plaza, Albany, Wednesday 7/13 (5-9 PM)
NRBQ - Helsinki Hudson, Hudson, Wednesday 7/13
Jim Gaffigan - Times Union Center, Albany, Wednesday 7/13

New Movies: Weiner Dog, The Secret Life of Pets, Mike & Dave Need Wedding Dates, The Music of Strangers: Yo-Yo Ma & the Silk Road Ensemble

  The Music Haven Concert Series presents world-class concerts in Schenectady, NY. All their shows are scheduled to take place in Schenectady's Central Park on the Agnes MacDonald Music Haven Stage – with a rain-site at Proctors in case of inclement weather.

The Music Haven Concert Series continues its tradition of ‘traveling the world one concert at a time’ with their 2016 season of free, open-air concerts in Schenectady’s Central Park. This year’s series is stacked with international touring talent that promises to transport Music Haven audiences to locales such as: Senegal, Nashville, Puerto Rico, Trinidad, Jamaica, Harlem, Ukraine, Macedonia, Cuba and County Sligo, Ireland.

Mona Golub is the Music Haven Concert Series producing artistic director and she joins us to tell us about their schedule for this summer that runs Sundays at 7PM beginning this Sunday, July 10th.

  Voice Theatre in Woodstock, NY creates new productions and explores relevant dimensions of classic works. From play development readings and in-school workshops, to full-scale productions and international tours, Voice Theatre cuts through barriers of ethnicity, language and nationality, bringing together diverse peoples seeking mutual respect because of their shared experiences of humanity.

They join us to talk to talk about their Summer Youth Workshop which creates a fun supportive environment for young people to explore skills that develop confidence, social skills, focus, independent inquiry and collaboration while having fun in a creative environment.

We are joined by Voice Theatre artistic director Shauna Kanter and ensemble member Christa Trinler.

  The Green River Festival, Western Massachusetts' favorite music and hot air balloon festival will take place July 8, 9, and 10 on the grounds of Greenfield Community in Greenfield, MA.

Presented by the record label, Signature Sounds, the first Green River Festival took place in 1986 as a free one day headlined by NRBQ, who are returning to the festival this year to help celebrate its 30th anniversary.

Headliners include Dawes, Tedeschi-Trucks Band, Shovels & Rope, and Shakey Graves. There will be music on three stages, family events, hot air balloon rides, a new sustainability partnership with Klean Kanteen and more.

Jim Olsen is the President of Signature Sounds and he joins us to tell us more about this weekend’s Green River Festival. 

Rob Edelman: Two Views Of New York

Jul 4, 2016

New York City is a city of vast extremes. On the one hand, you have celebrities. You have glitter. You have Big Money and Manhattan Towers. You have the power and influence that emanates from Wall Street and Madison Avenue.

Pages