African Dance with Tara Murphy
Tuesday, October 1 6:30-8pm
With LIVE drumming! OPEN LEVEL/BEGINNERS WELCOME. This dance will get your blood pumping and your heart soaring… feel the rhythms and shake what you got! Participants will learn the basic style of West African dance as well as a traditional dances from Mali, Guinea or Senegal, West Africa. The class emphasizes community, self-expression and the joy of movement. We will let our spirits fly! Wear comfortable movement clothes; women often wear sarongs. Please bring water.
About the Teacher
Originally from Washington, D.C., Tara Murphy grew up studying ballet and theater. She earned her B.A. in theater and religious studies at Yale University, where she also began studying African dance. At this time Tara began exploring her African heritage through African studies at Yale, and was awarded a fellowship to study traditional dance and drumming at the University of Legon in Ghana, West Africa. For the past 20 years, she has studied closely with many African and Afro-Caribbean artists in Washington, D.C., New York City and Boston. Her primary mentors have been Issa Coulibaly and Joh Camara of Mali; Mohamed Kalifa Kamara of Guinea; Fatou N’Diaye and Astou Sagna of Senegal; and Jean Appolon of Haiti. In addition to African dance, Tara has also practiced yoga and meditation since she was a child. Tara recognizes the practice of African dance and drumming as a tremendous force for healing, meditation, empowerment and community. It is her greatest honor to share the inspiration of these ancient traditions.
Rhythm in Movement Workshop
with Kathleen Oliver
For Adults and Teens ages 12+
Tuesdays: July 9, 16, 23, 30
6:30 – 7:30 PM
Cost $64 series or $20 a class
This class will enhance a dancer’s sense of rhythm, creativity, and technique while learning different, fun styles of dance. Students will be coached in a wide range of movement vocabulary and will study West African and Caribbean influences in movement. Class time will include a warm-up, structured choreographed, traditional movement and students gain a sound understanding of the connection between the dance and drums.
BERKSHIRE PULSE TO PRESENT “MOVING LIFE STORIES”
ON JUNE 16, 3PM at St. James Place, Great Barrington
These performances are the culmination of an intergenerational collaboration where senior residents of Kimball Farms, the retirement community in Lenox, worked together with teen dancers in Pulse’s Young Choreographers Initiative (YCI) to create pieces that combine poetry, prose, and dance to tell the seniors’ life stories.
This year’s program matched 7 senior writers with 7 young choreographers. The process began in December with writing workshops with the seniors led by Bell and continued with Quinn and Bell guiding the process of each team working together throughout April and May.
Moving Life Stories will be presented on Saturday June 15 at 3 pm at Kimball Farms (235 Walker Street, Lenox) and Sunday June 16 at 3 pm at. Saint James Place (352 Main Street, Great Barrington). Admission is free, with a suggested donation of $10-$20. All donations will assist Pulse to further launch and foster educational workshops and events for the YCI.
Directed by Susan Quinn, the Berkshire Pulse YCI is an empowering project that gives young people a voice and a forum to express their concerns and viewpoints through movement, encouraging them to become ambassadors of the art form, their generation, and their community. The YCI is supported in part by a grant from the YouthReach program of the Massachusetts Cultural Council.
Workshop Begins January 12th, 2019
Dances by Isadora – Boston will return to Berkshire Pulse to offer a workshop on the technique and choreography of Isadora Duncan. Considered by many to be the Mother of Modern Dance, Duncan was inspired by nature, music, and a longing to express the freedom of the soul through movement. In this workshop, we will explore the use of weight, the flow of movement through the body, and moving from the solar plexus. We will also teach some of the Duncan repertoire. This workshop will also serve as an opportunity to find dancers with an affinity for this work who would be interested in participating in a performance with us on June 9 at Chesterwood, the estate of sculptor Daniel Chester French.
Dances by Isadora – Boston is a professional company dedicated to preserving the art and technique of Isadora Duncan. The work of Duncan has been passed down directly through generations of dancers. Our Founder, Patricia Adams, was taught by Sylvia Gold, who was taught by Irma Duncan, who was taught by Isadora herself. We have performed and taught most recently at Jacob’s Pillow. Other performance credits include Boston area venues such as Mount Auburn Cemetery, New England Conservatory, Cambridge Multicultural Arts Center, and the Dance Complex among others, as well as various performances in New York, Chicago, Russia, Japan, Hungary, Finland, and Canada.
January 12, 2019 Intro/Class/Rehearsal 1:00-3:00PM
February 9, Class/Rehearsal 1:00-3:00PM
March 16, Class/Rehearsal 1:00-3:00PM
April 6 and 27 th , Rehearsal 1:00-3:00PM
May 11, Rehearsal 1:00-3:00PM on site at Chesterwood or at Pulse
June 1, Rehearsal 1:00-3:00PM on site at Chesterwood
June 9, Performance at Chesterwood, Time TBD
Move Your Story (Out of the Way)
Workshop, series 1
For non-dancers and beginners, Ages 18+
With Kristine Waterman
Monday 6:15-8:15 PM
January 28- April 8
Cost: $150 for 10 weeks
Move your story is an opportunity to use movement as a vehicle for change. A unique class, individually designed for each group, using a variety of dance genres that will allow participants to create original movement and choreography. Infused with strength training and stretching, stamina building and dance techniques, this class will heighten your understanding of ‘inner potential’. Join us as we embark on the creative process and learn how to navigate through challenges, roadblocks and old stories (while having a whole lotta fun!). It’s “a game changer!”
The Acting Body
A class for actors and dancers, Ages 18+
With Tom Truss
Thursday 7:30-8:45 PM
January 24-April 4
No class Feb. 21st
Cost: $150 for 10 weeks
Doing is one of the best ways to get better! If you want to improve your acting chops; practice scene work auditioning and monologues, or develop your public speaking skills and voice then take a semester of the ACTING BODY. This class is open to all levels of performers and would be performers age 18 and up. These 90 minutes classes will start off with vocal and physical exercises and improvisational games that will increase range, listening abilities and impulse following. From there we will investigate text, partnered scene work, staging, and character development. The semester will end with a showing of scenes, monologues, and improvs.
January Workshops continue this month.
Workshops ~ recurring & on demand
Fathers, Sons, & Other Guys (Movement Enhancement Workshops)
Vincent Thomas (bio here)
A one-session workshop or a week-long workshop is available in August annually.
** Be notified when the next workshop is happening! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org **
Spots are limited, pre-registration required. Reserve your spot by contacting us at email@example.com or (413) 274-6624.
This is a fun and rich bonding experience for men, teens, and boys to explore their values and negotiate consciousness around masculinity. In this physically engaging workshop, fathers and sons, extended family, and individuals will explore verbal conversations and physical conversations around the topic of movement and masculinity. Using movement games and structures to enhance and further the discussions, participants will unearth assumptions, truths, and myths about their personal and societal views. This workshop gives you a unique opportunity to spend time together with other men and boys.
For Men, teens, and boys of all backgrounds (no prior movement or dance skills required). Fathers (and/or male guardians) may come with one or more sons, as well as individual guys interested in exploring this topic.
See a video about the Movement Enhancement for Men program here: https://vimeo.com/275548988
Past Workshops & Events
Young Choreographers’ Initiative at Saint James’ Place
On Sunday, December 9th from 3:00 to 4:30 p.m., Berkshire Pulse—the dance and performing arts education center based in downtown Housatonic—hosted a works-in-progress performance of choreography created by teen students in the Young Choreographers Initiative (YCI) at Saint James Place (352 Main Street, Great Barrington). The presentation featured group and solo works, including improvisations and in-the-moment choreography involving audience participation. The work explored issues that matter most to the students, including sexual assault, consent, and explorations of gender.
The Hat Factory
Tom Truss, Emma Dweck, Amy Brentano, & Dave Edson
August 18, 8 PM
$5 – $15 Suggested Donation at the Door
No one turned away for lack of funds.
What does a tango, a secret source of music, and 30 seconds of stillness have in common? WE DON’T KNOW EITHER…at least not until showtime!
Isadora Duncan Workshop Series
July 30-August 2, daily, 2:30-3:30 PM
$80, pre-registration required
Intermediate and Advanced level students
Join us for this immersive workshop in the technique and repertoire of legendary dance innovator, Isadora Duncan. An unconventional genius in her time, Duncan created works which have retained their vitality and relevance to today’s movers. Considered by many to be the mother of modern dance, Duncan developed a specific dance technique which involves initiating movement from the solar plexus. Her choreography draws on elements of nature, Greek myths, and themes of love and loss. We will experience the breath/flow of the technique and explore different facets of Isadora’s choreography.
See the teacher bios here.
Sophie Alpern ~ Community Ballet Workshop
- Fri., July 20, 2-3:30 PM, included only when signing up for the 4-session package, $80 (pre-reg. required; Intermediate to Advanced dancers)
- Sat., July 21, 10-11:30 AM Workshop, $17 walk-in or included in Pass (Open Level, no beginners)
- Sat., July 28, 10-11:30 AM Workshop, $17 walk-in or included in Pass (Open Level, no beginners)
- Sat., July 28, 11:30-1:00 PM Repertory, for those participating in the 4-session package (Intermediate to Advanced dancers)
Diata Diata International Folkloric Theatre
Multi-level, inter-generational (Ages 12-adult)
Tuesdays 6:30-7:45 PM, July 3, 17, 24, 31
$80 for 4 classes
$60 for remaining 3 classes, or $22 per class
$5 off class total for additional family members and current Pulse students
Explore traditional African dance in this high-energy class. Students move through a warm-up using isolations and rhythmic movement into a dance combination that travels across the floor. No prior experience is required for participation in this class. WITH LIVE DRUMMING AND SONG!
Kimball Farms Performance
Young Choreographers Initiative (YCI) & Kimball Farms Collaboration!
June 10, 2018; 1:30 PM
235 Walker Street Lenox, MA 01240
We’ve been working with Kimball Farms, the assisted living facility in Lenox, on a program that matches residents with members of our YCI. They’re creating pieces combining poetry, prose and movement to tell the seniors’ life stories. Performances are planned at Kimball Farms, Pulse’s studios and other area venues late spring/early summer.
To donate funding for this program, please click here and write “Kimball” in the notes area.
Rozann Kraus ~ Call for Dancers!
First meeting/rehearsal: Saturday, March 24 at 4:00 PM
Dancers are needed for a structured improvisational modern dance supporting the West Stockbridge Historic Society.
Award winning choreographer Rozann Kraus is creating a work for an outdoor event in a fundraiser for the West Stockbridge Historical Society. The piece will be a combination of modern choreography and sophisticated improvisation, to be performed on Friday, 8 June, 2018, 5:00pm at Turn Park, a 14-acre piece of heaven in West Stockbridge. She’s looking for diverse dancers with solid modern technique, varied performance experience, an openness to experimentation and a sense of humor. There will be at most 4 rehearsals, to be arranged based on availabilities, during April and May.
Questions to: Rozann@Rozann.net
FREE! Family Show at Berkshire Pulse, “TOP BANANAS!”
Bring the kids! Nutshell Playhouse kicks up its heels at Berkshire Pulse!
Sunday, March 25 at 1:00 PM
TOP BANANAS! is a fantasy filled performance of visual and musical delights, with special guests Annie Anaconda the singing snake, Engelburt, the morphing storyteller, Zesty with her melodious saw, tap dancing by Nemonee, a motley crew of instruments played by Donut, brand spanking new songs, and of course, our usual abundance of frolicsome shenanigans. Performed by Berkshire County Actors Stefanie Lynx Weber, Maizy Broderick Scarpa and Mark Hohlstein with live music by Don Jordan. Supported by the Great Barrington Cultural Council.
Nutshell Playhouse is committed to bringing imaginative live theater to diverse audiences. If cost is a concern, please reach out to us. Together we can develop a plan to fund a performance for your community. Let’s encourage each other and keep these unique offerings on the map and available for all. www.nutshellplayhouse.org
ZUMBATHON! ZUMBA FUNDRAISER FOR DRUMS
Saturday, March 3rd, 2-4:00 PM
Live Drumming 4-4:30 PM
Adults: $25, students 18 years and under: $15
Pre-Register by calling or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Zumba with special guest instructor, Tuan Nguyen, and your favorite Pulse teachers Lindsey Berkowitz, Erin Naylor, Kim Waterman! Plus boogie to live drumming 4:00-4:30 PM with Rick Shrum and Pulse drummers! Whether you dance for the entire time, or just drop in and out of the studio, join us for refreshments and fun. All proceeds go to buying new drums for Pulse’s World Music and Dance Program and In-School Programs!
If you can’t join us, you can still support our drum fundraiser by clicking here!
DISTILLING DANCE: A workshop investigating the embodiment of movement and the choreographic process
Moscelyne ParkeHarrison & Sean Lammer
For Teens & Adults ages 14+, Intermediate Level
March 9, 2018, 3:45-6:45 PM
COST: An additional $10 fee for the teens that are already part of the level 3 ballet class on that afternoon. All other students pay $20.
Moscelyne ParkeHarrison (Berkshire Pulse Alum) and Sean Lammer will lead a workshop influenced by their shared experiences in the dance world. Throughout their training and experience working with choreographers they have learned about the importance of embodying movement, and supplying one’s own creative voice in a choreographic process. Their objective is to expand the minds and bodies of young dancers through the exploration of his/her own range of motion. They aim to instill a sense of the inquisitive nature required of making dance as well as a new sensitivity to art and the creative process. With a loose frame in place, each dancer/thinker will be free explore how he/she fits into the workshop as an individual.
The three-part workshop includes a guided improvisation warm up focused on giving new sensory meaning to familiar technical ideas; a base phrase for a duet which they performed at Juilliard, and plan to dance in the Emerging choreographers Gala at Berkshire Pulse in May, for the participants to feel confident in their execution and individual interpretation of the phrase; and with coaching students will develop their own version of the phrase, and share their discoveries via movement.
REPERTORY – MODERN 3 – Advanced
Ze’eva Cohen, Bettina Montano and Laurie Freedman
Saturdays 1:00-3:30 PM
Repertory Workshop, Spring 2018
Introductory rehearsal, Saturday, Jan 13, 1-3:00 PM
Intergenerational, Age 14+
Adult participants may purchase a 10-class or 20-class Community Class Pass to participate.
“Sharing of the Water” Choreographed by Dancer/Choreographer/Educator Ze’eva Cohen
This repertory workshop will encompass the restaging of Ze’eva Cohen’s piece “Sharing of the Water.” The cast will be comprised of 10 or more dancers including intermediate/advanced level 3 Pulse students ages 14+ and adult women performers of mixed ages.
The subject of “Sharing of the Water” is migration and the yearning for a land that is a safe home. The choreography suggests peacemaking and reconciliation between a tight-knit community and a lone figure, representing a foreigner, a refugee, and “the other.” As danced to an Israeli/Middle Eastern song sung by Ofra Haza, the piece depicts a unified community of women that is shattered due to a man-made or a natural calamity from which a bond, for survival’s sake, is made between remnants of that group and the stranger. The piece is performed by women. The movement material is derived from Middle Eastern and Modern Dance traditions, unique to Ze’eva’s heritage and style.
In addition to learning a new movement style and artistic sensibility, students will have the opportunity to experience and understand that dance can represent a human situation and bring about new thinking and change.
Rehearsals and performances will take place as follows:
Saturday, Jan 13: Introductory rehearsal 1-3:00 PM with Ze’eva
Saturdays, Jan 27-May 19: 1-3:30 PM Warm up class/rehearsal with Bettina Montano and Laurie Freedman
Rehearsals with Ze’eva:
Jan 20, Feb 3 and 17, March 3 and 17, April 7, 1:30-3:30 PM
Wed, Thurs, and Fri April 18, 19, 20, 5:30-7:30 PM
Sat, April 21, May 12, 1:30-3:30 PM
Tech Rehearsals and Performances:
Thurs, May 24: Tech rehearsal at the theater (evening time TBD)
Fri, May 25: Dress rehearsal (evening time TBD)
Sat and Sun May 26-27: Matinee performances 2 PM at Simon’s Rock Daniel Arts Center.
Saturday, June 9, Community Day at Jacobs Pillow (Time TBD)
When Ze’eva is not in residence Bettina will offer weekly warm-up/class on Saturdays from 1-2:15 (optional for adult participants) and Laurie Freedman will conduct rehearsals from 2:15-3: 30 PM. When Ze’eva is in residence, there will be a warm-up from 1:00-1:30 and then Ze’eva will conduct rehearsal until 3:30 PM.
Friday, December 22nd
Hip Hop class for teens and adults
all levels ages 12+ $20 or included in your community class pass if you have one.
Saturday, December 16, 2017 @ 2 pm
Please join us for a very special presentation of work created by our YCI under the guidance of dance making teacher Susan Quinn.
Berkshire Pulse, 420 Park Street, Housatonic, MA
Open Studio Week
December 13-21, 2017
December 13-21 is our annual Performing Arts Program OPEN STUDIO period. This is a time to observe your child in class and also a wonderful opportunity for students and friends to observe each other’s classes. Interested prospective students may also visit to observe at this time. New community class members get the added bonus of trying 1 FREE class.
Berkshire Pulse | 420 Park Street, Housatonic, MA | 413.274.6624 | email@example.com