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    Movie Times | Movie Reviews | Theater Reviews
Book Review: Mister E's Mysteries Are Great Fun
By Stephen Dankner, Guest Column
09:29AM / Friday, August 24, 2018
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Often, when we think of our greatest, we may assume that their lives are fully taken up by mastering their art. So, it may come as a surprise that occasionally, a maestro can find the time and passion to dedicate her/himself to a completely different art form – and to, over the years, excel equally at that "secondary" activity. Such is the case with former Boston Symphony violinist Gerald Elias.

A graduate of Yale University, Elias has also been associate concertmaster of the Utah Symphony, adjunct professor of music at the University of Utah, first violinist of the Abramyan String Quartet and music director of the Vivaldi Candlelight concert series.

Elias is also a

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Great Jazz, Super Musicals Wrap Up Summer Music Scene
By Grace Lichtenstein, Guest Column
03:04PM / Wednesday, August 22, 2018
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The final days of August bring a rush of terrific jazz, a dance party and musical comedies to all corners of the Berkshires.

 

Berkshire Jazz Showcase

Head for the Pittsfield Common on Saturday, Aug. 25, for a brand new enterprise, the the first Berkshire Jazz Showcase. Between 1 and 6 p.m. five of the area's most popular bands will take the stage for an extravaganza: The Lucky 5, Gruppo Mondo, the Ben Kohn Quartet, the Jason Ennis Quintet with vocalist Natalia Bernal and Andy Kelly Gypsy Jazz.

Founder Ed Bride explains that the event offers a showcase for local talent and a signature jazz event with artists who "could easily establish careers in jazz havens like New York,

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Final Summer Tanglewood Concerts Honor Bernstein
By Stephen Dankner, Guest Column
02:28PM / Wednesday, August 22, 2018
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This week, Tanglewood concludes its 2018 classical programming, culminating with the always-anticipated traditional final concert, on Sunday, Aug. 26, featuring Beethoven's glorious and triumphant Ninth Symphony, which will be preceded by two brief works of Leonard Bernstein – a fitting tribute to cap this "Centennial Bernstein Summer" festival season.

Before the "Ninth," there are three exceptional programs you should consider attending in Ozawa Hall and in the Shed this week – most importantly the astounding lineup of talent that will comprise “Celebrating Lenny at Tanglewood” – an evening-long festival-within-a-festival, on Aug.

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First Berkshire Jazz Showcase Set for Aug. 25 on Pittsfield Common
01:56PM / Monday, August 20, 2018
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Berkshires Jazz has announced the lineup and final schedule for the inaugural Berkshire Jazz Showcase, a free festival to be held on the Pittsfield Common on Saturday, Aug. 25, from 1 to 6 p.m.

The jazz extravaganza features five of the most popular regional bands: The Lucky 5 at 1 p.m.; Gruppo Mondo at 2 p.m.; the Benny Kohn Quartet at 3 p.m.; the Jason Ennis Quintet with vocalist Natalia Bernal at 4 p.m.; and Andy Kelly’s Gypsy Jazz Ambassadors at 5 p.m.

The showcase will also include food vendors, as well as a beer and wine garden. Consumables will be available from Assembly Coffee Roasters, Balderdash Cellars, Ernie's Hot Dog Cart, Lucia's

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Daughter's Book Celebrates Legacy of Leonard Bernstein
By Stephen Dankner, Guest Column
12:00PM / Friday, August 17, 2018
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It's hard to imagine the classical music world without Leonard Bernstein. His death, 28 years ago, left a void that will be very difficult, if not impossible, to fill. Yes, there are young, stellar conductors now on the scene who hold great promise – Ken-David Masur in Boston and the fiery Gustavo Dudamel in Los Angeles. Time will tell if they, or others, possess the potential of the mature Bernstein, who was blessed with unparalleled musical and communicative gifts as conductor, composer, pianist and mentor/lecturer - classical music’s, and America’s, emissary to the world.

There were three great composers who created and thus changed the course of early-to mid-20th

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'BlacKkKlansman': There's no Politics like Show Business
By Michael S. Goldberger, iBerkshires Film Critic
03:35PM / Thursday, August 16, 2018
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I doubt I've ever reviewed a movie more important than Spike Lee's "BlacKkKlansman."   Greater? Most likely. Although, in astutely fashioning his heartfelt SOS about America's burgeoning racist threat, Spike Lee is no slouch in the art department, either. This scintillating film based on a true story about how, via a white counterpart, Afro-American cop Ron Stallworth infiltrated the Ku Klux Klan, wouldn't be nearly as shocking in its appeal to our better angels were it not such a fine achievement in cinema.   Will it win Best Picture? A mere bag of shells. If Lee's magnum opus proves to be this generation's "Uncle Tom's Cabin" and

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Enjoy Great Music at Tanglewood, Sevenars, Tannery Pond
By Stephen Dankner, Guest Column
08:26AM / Wednesday, August 15, 2018
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Come late August, classical aficionados are grateful for the cornucopia of musical riches the Boston Symphony Orchestra bestows to rapt audiences within the incomparably bucolic setting that is Tanglewood. Many of those superlative concerts will reside in our collective memory for a long time.

During this penultimate week of the Tanglewood Music Festival, the spotlight will focus on a range of classical fare in varied genres: from chamber and solo piano music by Beethoven, Brahms, Britten and Mahler to symphonic works by Beethoven, Copland, Bartók and Shostakovich. A special treat – part of Tanglewood's "Bernstein Centennial Summer" - will be the Boston Ballet

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Unique Musical Shows Coming to Berkshires This Week
By Grace Lichtenstein, Guest Column
07:58AM / Wednesday, August 15, 2018
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It's an unusual week for music in the Berkshires, with one-offs on offer at two of the major venues in the county. Don't miss these unique shows!

Jacob's Pillow

A benefit at Jacob's Pillow called "Gotta Dance: New Faces for Broadway” is among the highlights of the summer at the Pillow near Becket. 

With an onstage band, the show, once called "A Jazz Happening," was created by director/choreographer Chet Walker, playwright Shaun McKenna and composer/lyricist Stephen Schwartz features original numbers that provide a chance for all to see new work being readied for the Broadway stage. 

The show includes an onstage band and is set for 5 p.m.

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413Heart Music & Arts Festival Returns to Dalton
02:12PM / Monday, August 13, 2018
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DALTON, Mass. — In its third year, the 413Heart Music & Arts Festival is bringing an exciting mix of art to the Berkshires.

Opening the festival on Thursday night, Aug. 16, is a night of dance. Members of the Albany Berkshire Ballet will be performing "Spindown," inspired by Michael Boroniec's sculpture series Spatial Spirals and Verdant Fire Movements I and II. Verdant Fire explores one woman's quest to "shed her skin," discover her true self, and find joy in the new world around her.

Also performing will be Professor Sleepwalker and The Magic Pusher, an intergalactic collusion among sound, within movement. The live performance will be followed

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Jazz Camp to Be Hosted at Hoosac Valley
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
02:23AM / Monday, August 13, 2018
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CHESHIRE, Mass. — Hoosac Valley and the Adams Anthony Center are hosting a free Berkshire Jazz Day Camp this week.   Berkshire County music students will get a week of face time with five professional New York City musicians that will culminate in a live performance at the Bounti-Fare.   "I have always wanted to bring as much music and my experience as an artist back to the area," North Adams native and jazz trumpeter Richard Boulger said. "I always wanted to do that for years and years … and I always thought an opportunity like this would be great for the kids."   Boulger will bring with him a team of professional New York City

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