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    Movie Times | Movie Reviews | Theater Reviews
Tanglewood's Learning Institute Opens This Week
12:03PM / Tuesday, June 25, 2019
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The summer concert season has arrived, and how fortunate are we music lovers to be living right here, in the Berkshires or Southern Vermont, at what can only be described as "music and cultural central." It's clear that this will be an especially exciting and brilliant festival season.

Here are my recommended picks of the week for the upcoming concerts and related events to be experienced in venues at three of our most noteworthy regional music festivals.

Tanglewood

One of the most anticipated events of Tanglewood's 2019 music season - the official opening weekend of the Linde Center for Music and Learning and Tanglewood Learning Institute programs - will take place June

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Gearing Up for Old and New Pop Idols
By Grace Lichtenstein, Guest Column
11:32AM / Tuesday, June 25, 2019
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Alan Freed. Queen. Earth, Wind & Fire. Southside Johnny. These are among the treats awaiting Berkshire pop and dance enthusiasts in the week before July 4.

Berkshire Theatre Group

Older folks surely remember the pioneering DJ Alan Freed, who practically invented rock 'n' roll radio (for white listeners) back in the day. The music was considered dangerous in the beginning and Freed was a pied piper leading teenagers astray. Now, at the Colonial Theater in Pittsfield, the Berkshire Theatre Group and Caiola Productions presents a new musical, "Rock and Roll Man: The Alan Freed Story," starting Thursday June 27. The show runs through July 21.

Even those who don't

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'Late Night': Funny Business
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
04:17PM / Thursday, June 20, 2019
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Somewhere between my wild youth and the acquiescence to middle-class mediocrity if not respectability, there was my bachelor pad era. The Cohens, a childless couple who had no designs on a single-family home until they inherited one, had relinquished their pink apartment on Pingry Place. And thus, after a bribe, unbeknownst to me, from my Mom to the super, the digs were mine.    I later learned that said financial inducement was followed by regular sub-rosa gratuities in return for information on yours truly's comings and goings. In Mom's defense, I think she had a FISA warrant. And yes, this indulgent preamble has everything to do with director Nisha Ganatra's smartly

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Tanglewood's New Learning Institute Is A Bold New Chapter
by Stephen Dankner,
11:36AM / Wednesday, June 19, 2019
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For many music lovers, Tanglewood, on the Lenox/Stockbridge border, virtually defines music in the Berkshires. It is the largest summer presenter, with the most comprehensive schedule of performances across the full spectrum of musical styles and genres. Before getting into the exciting, imminent opening events, bookmark the Boston Symphony’s website, tanglewood.org, to easily access the full summer concert schedule, season highlights, tickets and general information.

The exciting news from the Boston Symphony is the opening at the Tanglewood campus of the Linde Center for Music and Learning and the new programs of the constituent Tanglewood Learning Institute. This bold initiative

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Gotta Dance, Gotta Sing: There's Both This Week on Local Stages
By Grace Lichtenstein, Guest Column
11:12AM / Wednesday, June 19, 2019
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Downtown Pittsfield Third Thursdays — TL Collective

Each third Thursday of the month, streets are closed in downtown Pittsfield and all kinds of music rocks the city. Featured June 20 at 6 p.m. in the Dance Zone at the north end of the street festival is TL Collective, the athletic, family-friendly contemporary and hip-hop moves of Micaela Taylor's company. The group performs an evening length work "Drift." The aim, according to organizers, is to "demonstrate an individual's ever-changing relationship to self while exposing a personal season of self-growth."

You can find the dance zone near the corner of Bradford and North Streets in front of St.

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'The Spy Behind Home Plate': Glove, Mask, Cloak-and-Dagger
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
06:05PM / Friday, June 14, 2019
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"Get your scorecards. Get your scorecards. Can't tell the spies from the conspirators without a scorecard."   Such was just one of my thoughts after seeing filmmaker Aviva Kempner's fascinating, incredible and rather mind-blowing documentary about Morris "Moe" Berg, Major League catcher, Princeton (B.A.) and Columbia (LL.D.) graduate, speaker of 12 languages who studied Sanskrit at the Sorbonne and, oh, almost forgot, spy for the OSS.    Psst ... He was assigned to help undermine the Nazi atomic bomb program during WWII.    But what drives you crazy as you partake of Kempner's scholarly and entertaining treasure trough of the superbly

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CATA Breaks Ground for New Art Center & Headquarters
02:23PM / Friday, June 14, 2019
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The 6,400 square foot center is designed by Clark & Green Architects. It's expected to take about a year to renovate the structure.  GREAT BARRINGTON, Mass. — Community Access for the Arts broke ground on Wednesday morning for a new art center at 420 Stockbridge Road.   The center will be a permanent home for CATA and allow the organization to expand its innovative arts programs for people with disabilities.   The two-story, 6,400-square-foot facility will double the organization's existing studio space, with two studios — one for visual arts and writing, the other for dance and performing arts. CATA's new arts center will also embody the

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Sandisfield Arts Center Presents 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory'
10:51AM / Friday, June 14, 2019
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SANDISFIELD, Mass. — Roald Dahl’s beloved classic "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" will be brought to life by the Sandisfield Players at the Sandisfield Arts Center this Father's Day weekend, with evening performances at 7 p.m. Friday, June 14, and Saturday, June 15, and a matinee at 3 p.m. on Sunday, June 16. 

This production is one of the most ambitious projects ever undertaken by Ben Luxon and the Sandisfield Players. While Luxon has directed such memorable productions as "Shakespeare Unchained," "Under Milkwood" and "Our Town, "Charlie" is the first musical the group has undertaken. 

The production includes

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Summer Music Festival Season is About to Begin
by Stephen Dankner, Guest Column
12:24PM / Wednesday, June 12, 2019
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After a particularly severe and brutally cold winter, the upcoming seasonal musical offerings will be balm to both popular music and classical aficionados, who, each June, anticipate the feast of music these diverse festivals and series present.

These are the music festivals that make our locality a cultural capital, drawing thousands to hear great music – popular, classical chamber, symphony, choral, opera, musical theater, contemporary classical, et al – to experience legendary artists perform masterworks within the verdant hills and dales of the Berkshires and southwestern Vermont we call home.

For this first week of Classical Beat, here's a capsule preview of six of

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BBBBBzzz: Bombino, Berkshire Jazz Start the Pop Season with a Bang
By Grace Lichtenstein, Guest Column
11:57AM / Wednesday, June 12, 2019
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Summer is almost here, and so is pop, jazz, dance, musical theater and new music throughout the region. As before, I'll preview what's coming up each week to help you kick off your shoes.

Hopefully, I'll encourage you to attend a performance of music you know you love, or even music you don't know but that you might love. A great, varied season awaits from Great Barrington to North Adams.

 

Tanglewood Music Festival

Let's begin with Tanglewood, in Lenox, with its early season non-classical lineup in the Shed. On Saturday, June 15, at 5:45 p.m. it's an American Public Media "Live from Here" broadcast with Chris Thile. The show features not just

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