You can’t stop the beat in the Berkshires (#this weekend)

High point in the last week? We’ve had so many as summer hits the Berkshires, even in these chaotic days. Scarlet, my first summer intern, has been getting me out to explore.

We went to Jacob’s Pillow together on their opening day, and I sat transfixed by the beauty of movement that has lived a thousand years and more, and all the pain and joy and past and future these artists embody — Jasmine Hearn danced with light and shadow. Dormeshia shook the room with the music of Nina Simone.

The Warwick Gombey troup took me back to the exaltation of walking through town behind the timpany drums in the college marching band, the sheer energy of being that present.

And Scarlet has brought me along to places and people I’ve wanted to know. She introduced me to the Chingon Taco Truck, and I got my first taste of their carnitas, sitting in the sun in the Mass MoCA courtyard.

Friday afternoon we were walking slowly through the gardens at the Mount, from the sea serpent to the dolphin fountain. She met me here to wander through the house and talk about Age of Innocence on the lawn …

Edith Wharton has a way of suggesting passion and pleasure in the world if we have the nous to look, even when her storytellers turn away. In AoI, Ellen Olenska grew up dancing flamenco, as we saw Nelida Tirado and her company perform.

And she would have walked around the corner from her apartment in Paris to see Rodin’s work at the Louvre, as we saw his bronzes a week ago at the Clark. But he would have been alive then, shaping psyche and eros out of clay in his studio. Loie Fuller would have been talking with him over coffee and inventing modern dance in Paris as Ted Shawn and Ruth St. Denis traveled the world.

This weekend …

We discover a whimsical sea serpent, sculpture and June flowers in the gardens at the Mount, above, and Rose B. Simpson’s ceramic sculptures and Chingon tacos at Mass MoCA, and an evening of Internationally acclaimed American dancers at Jacob’s Pillow, from Jake George and the Traditional Iroquois dancers (above) to tap legend Dormeshia, poet and artist Jasmine Hearn and ballet powerhouse Sara Mearns

Events coming up …

Find more art and performance, outdoors and food in the BTW events calendar.

The Bear and Bee Bookshop gleams at dusk on a cool night.
Dec 6 2022 @ 10:00 am
North Adams plans to go full Clark Griswold downtown this year, as local shops and businesses hang lights and create a window displays.
Ventfort Hall hangs stockings by the chimney. Photo by Susan Geller
Dec 6 2022 @ 10:00 am
Ventfort Hall is decorated for the holiday season in Victorian finery through the end of the year, decked in evergreen and lights for festive self-guided tours.
A Reindog makes friends at the annual Reindog Parade at the annual Williamstown Holiday Walk. Photo courtesy of the Williamstown Chamber of Commerce
Dec 6 2022 @ 10:00 am
Williamstown downtown shops and businesses will collect necessary items in December to help Berkshire communities in need.

By the Way Berkshires is a digital magazine exploring creative life and community — art and performance, food and the outdoors — and I’m writing it for you, with local voices, because I’ve gotten to know this rich part of the world as a writer and journalist, and I want to share it with you.

If you’d like to see the website grow, you can join me for a few dollars a month, enough for a cup of coffee and a cider doughnut. Members get access to extra stories and multimedia, itineraries a bookmark tool. Let me know what you're looking for, and we’ll explore together.

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