Innovate, Inspire, Dance!

Berkshire Pulse invites you on Tuesday, May 7 at 6pm to The Foundry for an evening of innovative & inspired dance created and performed by the 2023/2024 members of the Berkshire Pulse Young Choreographers Workshop and Young Choreographers Initiative

This program is a fundraiser for our Diane Pearlman Young Choreographers Initiative Scholarship.

Launched in 2023, this scholarship underwrites the Young Choreographers Initiative tuition for all students, as well as the senior choreography project, providing graduating dancers with the studio space, professional mentorship, and production support needed for the senior solo creative process. Choreographic exploration and process is an essential component of the Pulse Youth Performing Arts Program curriculum, incorporated into classwork beginning at age 6 and continuing with increasing intention as students progress throughout the levels.  

Can’t make the presentation? Support the Diane Pearlman Young Choreographers Initiative Scholarship here.


Come Shake Your Soul!

Shake Your Soul®

with Madeline Despres-Chen

Shake Your Soul® is a movement practice that relaxes the nervous system, energizes the body, and awakens the soul through a fluid dance repertoire set to music from around the world. All levels welcome!

Class typically begins with a Qi Gong warm up followed by movement sequences that help you connect with your fluid nature. The final portion of the class includes creative exercises that allow for individual expression, solo exploration, and moving in pairs or with the group. This class is about feeling and embodying, not about how you or your movement looks. Participants are encouraged to adjust any movement that is offered according to their own needs and level of comfort.

All Levels – Ages 18+ – 📆Thursdays – 5:30 – 6:30pm & 📆Fridays – 9:00 – 10:00am


Thank You Soul Steps!

This past Saturday, April 6th Soul Steps concluded their 3-week artist residency with Berkshire Pulse by teaching a step class and sharing excerpts of their work with our community. During their residency, the company reached approximately 70 students at Pittsfield High School and Taconic High School, leaving a lasting impact on the students. We are incredibly thankful to the Soul Step artists for their care, energy, and inspiration, and we’re looking forward to continuing our partnership next year. Thank you so much, Maxine, Destiny, Daisha, Brandon, and Mark!

Step and Stretch into Spring!

Soul Steps is offering a free Community Workshop and informal presentation of excerpts from their musical “Step Show: The Musical” for ages 10 and up from 1:00-3:00pm on Saturday, April 6th!

Soul Steps is a NYC-based dance-theater company founded in 2005, dedicated to teaching and performing African American step dance. They are in residence at Berkshire Pulse for 3 weeks while they teach step dance in the Pittsfield Public Schools and develop their new musical about the history of step dance.


Want to be a part of the Spring Celebration? Consider becoming a sponsor! Sponsorships help fund our Tuition Assistance Program, which make educational and empowering arts experiences accessible to all.


Yoga is Stretching Out until May!

All Levels Yoga: Lunar New Year’s Series

with Bethany Trozzo

A weekly class series to help students explore their mind-body connection through foundational yoga postures, sequences, and breathing exercises. Focus is on creating safe alignment, cultivating body awareness, and relaxation.

Postures introduced and practiced will include: Sun salutations A/B, chair, downward facing dog, warrior 1 & 2, balancing poses, mountain, spinal twists, savasana, Ujjayi breath, and others. Class themes will focus on connecting with the energy of the Lunar New Year, Year of the Wood Dragon.

Please bring your own yoga mat.

Ages 18+

 📆Tuesdays March 26th – May 7th

🕕5:45pm – 6:45pm

Save the Date for our Annual Spring Celebration!

We’re pleased to announce our annual Spring Celebration will take place on May 25 & 26 at the Daniel Arts Center at Simon’s Rock.

The Spring Celebration will showcase the work of our Youth Performing Arts Program students, as well as alumni and teachers. 100% of the proceeds from these performances will benefit our Tuition Assistance program.  

More information on the performance and ticket sales coming soon!


Want to be a part of the Spring Celebration? Consider becoming a sponsor! Sponsorships help fund our Tuition Assistance Program, which make educational and empowering arts experiences accessible to all.


Congratulations Bettina!

Bettina has been chosen by the Southern Berkshire Chamber of Commerce for the Women in Leadership Change Maker Award!

The recipients were selected from more than 90 nominations by a non-Board sub-committee, in conjunction with the SBCC Board Programs Committee and then submitted to the Southern Berkshire Chamber of Commerce board of directors.

Congratulations Bettina, and all the wonderful leaders in our community who were nominated and awarded this year!

Share Your Love for Berkshire Pulse

Thanks to community nomination, Berkshire Pulse made it to the voting round of the Rural Intelligence Readers’ Choice Awards!

Berkshire Pulse is nominated in multiple categories, including Best Dance Classes/Studio and Best Arts Organization.

Help spread the word about Berkshire Pulse by visiting RuralIntelligence.com/ReadersChoice to cast your vote! Voting runs until November 13, and you can cast nominations every day. Voting is easy – you just need to enter a valid email!


Upcoming Community Classes & Workshops

Flamenco Dancers outside

We’re excited to have new classes and workshops for teens and adults beginning in October and November.

FRIDAY HIP HOP & STREET STYLE SERIES
📅 Fridays
🕕 6:15pm

Join us for a special series of Beginners Funk Box Breaking for Adults and Teens with Andres Ramirez, on October 13, 20, 27 and November 3 from 6:15-7:15pm. For ages 16 to adult

Then, come dance with Dashawn Davis on November 17 and Shakia Barron in December and January from 6:15-7:45pm! For ages 12 to adult
ABSOLUTE BEGINNER FLAMENCO SERIES
📅Mondays in November
🕤9:30am

Joanne Bockemuehl-Jackson leads a beginner series this November. This series is targeted to everyone that is curious about tapping into their own passionate courage to allow themselves to stand up and be seen! For ages 18+
COMMUNITY WORLD PERCUSSION
📅Tuesdays starting November 7
🕕6pm

Angel Lau teaches the basics of how to play any percussion instrument. Using these foundations, you’ll learn different rhythms from all over the globe with a focus on West African, Afro-Cuban, and Brazilian percussion. For ages 11+. Absolute beginners and experienced drummers are all welcomed.
DUNHAM TECHNIQUE SERIES
📅Thursdays during Community Modern starting November 9
🕕6pm

Explore Dunham Technique, an Afro-Modern dance technique, with Saroya Corbett in this special series. For beginner and intermediate dancers ages 14+

Wacky Wednesday Workshops

a rotating workshop series with classes for all levels

Dancers doing salsa in a studio

Join us for 3 weeks of Salsa with Luana Dias David, as part of our rotating workshop series with guest teaching artists.

WACKY WEDNESDAY SERIES

for ages 12 to adult

📅 Wednesdays

🕡 6:45-8pm

All workshops are open to absolute beginners, meaning you don’t need any related experience to participate. Just bring your curiosity and an open mind!


Youth Classes Starting Soon

Dancers following their instructor in a studio

There are a few classes starting next week in our Youth Performing Arts Program.

DANCE FOUNDATIONS 2
for ages 10-13
📅Mondays starting October 23
🕠5:25-6:25pm

DANCE FOR BOYS
for ages 10-13
📅Wednesdays starting October 25
🕓4-5:30pm

Coming soon: DANCES OF AFRICA
for ages 8-10
📅Tuesdays starting November 7
🕟4:45-5:45pm

Fall in love with dance!

Summer may be coming to an end, but we are so excited for fall. Our Fall 2023 Schedule is live on our website now.

Important Dates for Fall:

  • August 23: Online registration opens
  • August 29-31: In-person registration for Youth Performing Arts Program Classes available from 2-7pm; online registration continues
  • September 4-10: Studios closed for Labor Day and maintenance, online registration continues
  • September 11: First day of fall session for all Community & Youth Performing Arts Program Classes

New Class Highlight:

Musical Theater Collective

with Tom Masters, Teak Welch, and Wendy Welch, plus guest teaching artists

📅 Saturdays🕑 2-4pm
for ages 10+
We’re excited to debut a new program for our musical theater dancers, actors, and singers. Become a triple threat while taking this workshop with classes in Broadway Jazz, voice, acting, and improvisation. Students will learn healthy warm-up practices for the voice and body, and work on character development, expression, ensemble, and more. 


Community Class Highlight:

Capoeira

with Tarcisio “Taz” Ramos Dos Santos

📅 Mondays🕓 6:45-8pm

for absolute beginners ages 13 to adult

Discover the essence of Afro-Brazilian martial art with our captivating Capoeira class at Berkshire Pulse.

Experience acrobatic movements, dance, powerful kicks, and the enchanting rhythms of traditional Capoeira music. This dynamic practice cultivates strength, flexibility, rhythm, and coordination. Suitable for all levels, come and embrace the spirit of Capoeira with us today!

*Please note: this class requires commitment to attending for the first 4 weeks.

Spirits of Chesterwood

Thursday, July 27 at 4pm and 6pm

Rain date: Friday, July 28

Spirits of Chesterwood is an intergenerational dance project created by seven local choreographers in the Berkshire Pulse community. This roving, site-specific performance will be presented as a part of Chesterwood’s Arts Alive! series on Thursday, July 27, once at 4pm and again at 6pm, to allow an intimate group of audience members to follow the performers along the route. 


Dunham Technique Workshop Series

With Saroya Corbett

A group of dancers pose for a photo in a studio.

Open level, for ages 13-adult

📅 Saturdays, August 5 – 26

🕦 11:30am – 1pm

In this series, Saroya Corbett, Arthur Levitt Jr. ’52 Artist-in-Residence Fellow at Williams College, will share her expertise in Dunham Technique, an Afro-Modern dance technique. 


Sharing Summer Intensive Joy

A circle of student dancers surrounding a dance teacher in a dance studio

Our Dance Discovery Intensive brought together dancers ages 8 to 12 for two weeks of exploration! In particular, they loved their African Dance class with Nkoula Badila and Angel Lau (pictured here).

Upcoming Summer Intensives

It’s not too late to register for our upcoming summer intensives!

Hip Hop/Street Style Intensive
(July 31-August 4)
ages 12 to adult

Musical Theater
(August 7-12)
Day Camp: ages 10 to 14
Evening Series: ages 14 to adult

Deep Dive! Contemporary Intensive
(August 14-18)
for advanced teens and adults ages 17+


Dance with us this summer!

Summer Intensive season is finally in full swing! Here’s just a taste of what our schedule looks like: 

Want to participate in any of our intensives? Click below to learn more and register!  


Upcoming Community Classes

Basic Dance Composition with Rebecca Alson-Milkman

Beginner, for ages 16-adult

📅 Tuesdays beginning July 11 

🕠 5:30-7:00 PM

Have you ever been curious about making your own choreography but thought you missed your chance? Here it is!

Through group improvisations and assigned studies, budding dancemakers will be introduced to the building blocks of composition: movement theme and variation, varying ways to code and carve the dance space, and how to define relationships between dancers. 

Capoeira with Tarcísio Ramos Dos Santos

For beginner movers and all levels, ages 13-adult

📅 Tuesdays and Thursdays beginning July 11 

🕠 5:30-6:45 PM

Experience acrobatic movements, dance, powerful kicks, and the enchanting rhythms of traditional Capoeira music. This dynamic practice cultivates strength, flexibility, rhythm, and coordination. Suitable for all levels, come and embrace the spirit of Capoeira!

Community Musical Theater with Wendy Welch

Open level, for ages 16-adult

📅 Wednesdays starting July 5

🕠 5:30-6:30pm

For everyone who loves to sing!

In this class, you will learn healthy vocal techniques, breath support, and how to connect to the material! You will also explore ‘acting the song’ through improvisation and acting exercises, while also having the opportunity to learn solo and group songs.


Spirits of Chesterwood

Spirits of Chesterwood is an intergenerational dance project created by 7 local choreographers in the Pulse community. This will be performed as a part of Chesterwoods’ Arts Alive series on Thursday, July 27, with shows at 4pm and 6pm.

Join us for our Spring Celebration!

There is still time to buy your tickets for our annual Spring Celebration this weekend!

All tickets are general admission and available on a first-come, first-served basis. 100% of the proceeds will benefit our Tuition Assistance program.

Sponsor Spotlight

We are so grateful to our generous sponsors for making this year’s performance celebration possible.

Alander Construction
Berkshire Mountain Bakery
Indian Mountain School
Jacob’s Pillow
Nature Works Organic Land Care Inc
Gail Belmuth
Joan & Peter Coombs
Alan & Benès Glackman
Claudia & Joe Gold
Bruce Humes/Tall Tree Productions
Diane Pearlman & Jeff Diamond


Save the Date

Mohican Roots: Building Community through Council Dialogue

Alliance for a Viable Future will be holding community peacemaking dialogues to build relationships toward ancestral healing and reconciliation this June.

Wanonah Spencer, a member of the Stockbridge-Munsee Band of the Mohicans, received a six-month fellowship from Alliance for a Viable Future to deepen her relationship with her ancestral homeland—the Berkshires.

Join us in dialogue at Pulse on June 22 at 6pm. You can register here. The program is free and open to all.

◾June 1st – In-person Council @ Flying Deer Nature Center
◾June 22nd – In-person Council @ Berkshire Pulse 
◾July 20th – In-person Council @ Random Harvest


Summer Community Classes

A teacher looks on as a group of students do a three-legged downward dog in a dance studio.

Our summer community class schedule is on our website, and we are adding classes every day!

Many classes we currently offer will be continuing this summer, as well as some exciting new classes and workshops! Summer community classes include:

African Dance
African Drumming
Basic Dance Composition
Ballet (Beginnning, Adv Beg/Int, and Int/Adv)
Contact Improvisation
Jazz
Modern (Beginning, Int/Adv)
Musical Theater
Shake Your Soul® 
Swing
Tap

Plus special workshops, including Pride BalletQueer Men of the Berkshires Dance Workshop, and a new Feel Into Your Wholeness series!


Upcoming Spring Workshops & Events

Tickets are on sale now for our Spring Celebration, taking place on May 27 & 28 at the Daniel Arts Center at Simon’s Rock.

Did you know 100% of the proceeds from these performances will benefit our Tuition Assistance program?

This year, we’re inviting our community to help sell program ads in support of our Tuition Assistance Program. Whoever sells the most ads wins a Pulse sweatshirt! Learn more here.


Structural Yoga Workshop

with Jovanina Pagano

📅 Saturday, May 6
🕑 2-4pm

In this workshop, we will focus on specific areas of our skeleton and its associated musculature and how they function to support every yoga pose – or asana – in our practice. Focusing on our internal systems can profoundly enrich any movement practice and can help us find curiosity and freshness even in poses that we have done over and over.

If you find anatomy fascinating, then this workshop is perfect for you! And if anatomy is a foreign land, then this workshop will present a new landscape for you to explore.

We will come together with the knowledge that all bodies are deeply wise. Questions, curiosities, and confusions are all welcome, as are all identities, bodies, and levels of experience.


Contemporary Partnering Workshop

📅 Saturday, April 29 
🕦 11:30am to 1pm

Pulse alum Moscelyne ParkeHarrison and collaborator Chase Buntrock will lead participants through fundamental principles of contemporary partnering. The workshop will culminate in learning a section from ‘newave’, a duet that Moscelyne and Chase are restaging for BODYSONNET’s Season 4. The workshop approaches partnering through a post-gender lens and encourages listening and mutual support.

This workshop is open to dancers ages 13 to adult.


Summer Intensive Highlight

🎭Musical Theater (Ages 10+)

A teacher leads a musical theater class.

📅 Monday to Saturday, August 7 – 12  

with Tom Masters, Molly Welch, and Wendy Welch

All levels, full-day program for ages 10-14, evening series for ages 14+

🕘 9am – 3pm (day program)

This week-long intensive gives students the opportunity to jump right into the world of musical theater with classes in tap, broadway jazz, voice, acting, and improvisation. Students will learn healthy warm-up practices for the voice and body, and work on character development, expression, ensemble, and more. The program directors will work with students to produce an informal performance for the program’s final day.

🕔 5pm – 7pm (evening series)

This-week long evening series for students ages 14+ will give the students an opportunity to take a daily musical theater workshop rotating between singing, acting, and improv and work on developing something for an informal performance at the end of the week.


You’re Invited: Our Annual Spring Celebration

Tickets are on sale now for our Spring Celebration, taking place on May 27 & 28 at the Daniel Arts Center at Simon’s Rock.

Did you know 100% of the proceeds from these performances will benefit our Tuition Assistance program?

This year, we’re inviting our community to help sell program ads in support of our Tuition Assistance Program. Whoever sells the most ads wins a Pulse sweatshirt!


Contemporary Partnering Workshop

📅 Saturday, April 29 
🕦 11:30am to 1pm

Pulse alum Moscelyne ParkeHarrison and collaborator Chase Buntrock will lead participants through fundamental principles of contemporary partnering. The workshop will culminate in learning a section from ‘newave’, a duet that Moscelyne and Chase are restaging for BODYSONNET’s Season 4. The workshop approaches partnering through a post-gender lens and encourages listening and mutual support.

This workshop is open to dancers ages 13 to adult.


Summer Intensive Highlight

👟Hip Hop and Street Style (Ages 12+)

📅 Monday to Friday, July 31 – August 4
🕘 9am – 3pm

All levels, two groups: ages 12-14 and 15+

In this week-long program, dancers will learn foundational movements and techniques of hip-hop and street style dance, alongside discussions about the cultural meaning and significance of these dance forms. The program will create an encouraging space to try out what you learn and most importantly show off your unique style and personality while freestyling in daily cyphers.


Berkshire Pulse