Tap dance and flamenco artists are rehearsing in a spare and sunlit studio in a renovated barn. The rhythms of their feet and bodies becomes music and movement in one, and the energy builds between them as they improvise, challenging and laughing.

Long Beach City College dancers perform on the Inside / Out Stage at Jacobs Pillow Dane Festival

The dance world has had a hub in the Berkshires since modern dance pioneer Ted Shawn came here in the 1930s. Jacob’s Pillow International Dance Festival brings companies from across the country and across the world to his mountaintop in Becket.

Homegrown and global artists perform on college stages, theaters and concert halls, and community events get everyone on their feet together. And on a sunlit image, dancers (like the company at Long Beach City College) perform at Jacob’s Pillow.

Berkshire Dance Venues

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Jacob's Pillow

Jacob’s Pillow

Dancers, companies and choreographers come from around the world to the top of a mountain in Becket, where an old farm has become the campus of an international festival. The pioneering Modern dance choreographer Ted Shawn founded Jacob’s Pillow here more than 80 years ago.


Mass MoCA

Mass MoCA is now the largest contemporary art museum in the country, and one of the largest on the planet. Artists from across the U.S. and the world have come to show their work in a former mill North Adams along the Hoosic River.

Courtesy photo


The Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center brings music to the Berkshires year-round, and dance, film, comedy and theater as well, in a restored 1905 concert hall and cinema.

Dada Masilo as Giselle / Photo by Kevin Parry

Williams ’62 Center

Williams College renovated a brick-and-column theatre into the ’62 Center for Theatre and Dance, a 21st-century performance space, with four stages and high-end sound and video. In the fall and spring, national and international performers appear here along with student groups, and in summer it is the home of the Williamstown Theatre Festival.

Photo by Kate Abbott

Williams College

Williams College is named the top liberal arts college in the country, out in the Berkshire hills with an art museum, theater and music, talks and trails — and a spirit of making its own fun.

Courtesy photo by Sam Whited

North Berkshire dance

Contra and square dancing is a living New England tradition, as casual as dancing barefoot in the kitchen on a summer night. The North Berkshire Community Dance holds a monthly dance on second Saturdays at the First Congregational Church in Williamstown, with live music.

Photo by Dejan Krsmanovic

Dewey Hall

At the center of Sheffield’s town green, along Route 7, an old fieldstone and marble hall has acted as a community center for more than a hundred years. A community group hosts art shows and talks here, concerts, swing and contradances and the Dewey Hall Folk Series.

Courtesy photo by Sam Whited

Lenox Contra dance

The Lenox dance has evolved from community gatherings with a local house band into a regional monthly gala — on Third Saturdays year-round — with bands from across the country and sometimes beyond.

BTW Berkshires