January 27 2021 Edition
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By the Way
Torches flicker in a long curve into the darkness — a quarter-mile of oil lamps lighting the road. The Mount is a new place tonight. Firelight lines the path between the pine trees, and the boles show tall and clean, the needles in shadow high above. A bass beat sets a quiet pace like a heart-beat. Low strings begin to rise.

I've never imagined the woods like this, the walled gardens and the linden trees. NightWood opens this week, and it is a light and sound show designed by a team of theater artists who know opera like a familiar language. This isn't a glow of holiday lights and carols, which have their own spirit. This is winter solstice, ice crystals and storm winds and every winter holiday that burns candles on the longest night of the year.

In the Italian Garden, domed shapes like tunnel houses were gleaming in any colors. Their texture reminded me of seed pods, curn husk and milkweed. The light on the stone wall and the arched colonade took me back to Carcasonne on a long-ago college summer, and the music was running in a clear quick pattern like a celesta over a murmer of voices. It felt like a new planet. I wanted to laugh for the sheer exhilarating unexpectedness of it.

Circling up the quieter paths, I walked into the forecourt, and the music lifted as I stepped under the arch. A long table filled the center, a clear surface gleaming with lights, and the house felt for a moment as though it was rising along with the sound — as though someone ought to waltz up the courtyard.

The lighting designer, Chris Bocchiaro, told us he had climbed up to the cupola earlier in the evening to orchestrate the set up. The local press were walking with him through the tech rehearsal, the first night when he could see everything in place. And I imagined standing on Edith Wharton's roof — how many people have ever seen the view from up there? — watching the woods and gardens and pathways coming to life like a stage. By the Way Berkshires

Stories

Purple flowers from Brazil

Reclaiming Land, Reclaiming the Body: Z Estimé and Roots Rising

Z Estimé reflects on their experience with Roots Rising and the importance of connecting their body's health with the environment.

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WAM Theatrer will perform a contemporary comedy by Nationally acclaimed playwright Larissa Fasthorse

Satire for a post-election season: Larissa FastHorse's 'The Thanksgiving Play'

Larissa FastHorse, a member of the Sicangu Lakota Nation and a nationally recognized playwright, asks probing questions in satire as WAM Theatre virtually performs of the acclaimed comedy 'The Thanksgiving Play.'

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A hand turns the pages of an open book. Creative Commons courtesy photo.

Acclaimed writer Danielle Evans navigates grief and strength

On a fall evening, acclaimed writer Danielle Evans is talking about her newest book with a clear eye and compassion, humor and deep sadness.

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Events

A glass of port wine gleams amber in sunlight.

Beaujolais celebration outside with Berkshire Co-op

November 19 from 4 to 6 p.m.

The Berkshire Co-op will celebrate Beaujolais, the youngest wine of the season, outside on their patio with crepes and music and heat lamps for distancing.

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In the film Horizontes, young dancers in the Grand Theatre of Havana, Amanda and Viengsay, follow in the footsteps of the prima ballerina Alicia Alonso.

Dance on Screen: Horizontes

November 20 and 21 at 7 p.m., November 22 at 2 (online)

The Williams College '62 Center's Dance on Screen Film Festival presents three generations of Cuban ballet dancers in a loving, deeply observant documentary from director Eileen Hofer.

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Homemade pumpkin pie glows a rich spiced amber.

Berkshire Grown holiday markets

November 21 Great Barrington - November 22 North Adams

Berkshire Grown announces their Holiday and Winter Markets with local grown and produced foods found in the Berkshires — from winter squash and greens to apples, meats, cheeses, honey and maple syrup.

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Brightly colorful knitted socks keep a couple of feet warm. Creative Commons courtesy photo

Williamstown holiday Sock Drive

November 23 to 29

The Williamstown Chamber of Commerce is reimagining Williamstown’s annual Holiday Walk as a three-week celebration of small shops and community, with weekly collections for local nonprofits, opening with a sock drive.

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Challah (bread) on the shabbat table.

From Where I Sit: WordxWord

November 23 at 7:30 p.m. (online)

WordxWord offers a virtual evening of storytelling and poetry live on zoom — share notes from inside of the year it’s been, stories and poems from aching hearts, a kick in the gut, survival and sourdough.

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Images Cinema and the New York Interntional Children's Film Festival present Lessons Learned by the Sea. Press image courtesy of Images Cinema.

New York International Children's Film Festival

Through December 2

Images Cinema presents the New York International Children’s Film Festival, a range of short films from around the world to watch at home.

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Williamstown, MA 01267