Savoring the end of summer

There has been so much joy in our studios this summer! The picture above is from an Appalachian Flat Footing Workshop with Miriam Piilonen during our Pulse Intensive.

This week, our Hip Hop/Street Style Intensive is underway, and we are having a blast!

New Chapters at Pulse

We’re excited to share that staff members Veronica Bone and Gillian Ebersole have updated job descriptions and positions.

Starting this Weekend: Dunham Technique Workshop Series

with Saroya Corbett

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

Open level, for ages 13-adult

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.

Jumpstart Your Fall Dancing

A dance instructor teaching a group of dancers at ballet barres

New and returning students ages 10-18

This program offers students who are new or returning to Pulse the opportunity to resume training with a week of afternoon ballet and modern classes before the Fall session begins.

Upcoming Summer Intensives

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

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+

(August 28 – September 1)
new and returning students ages 10-18

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+

What’s New at Pulse

Our summer session is in full swing! We’re so excited for our Dance Discovery program to begin next week. Plus, our Community Classes with new and continuing class and workshop options for all ages and levels of experience.

Next Tuesday, June 27, join the Feel Into Your Wholeness Workshop Series with Madeline Despres-Chen, Registered Somatic Movement Therapist & Educator. Madeline will guide you through a gentle somatic yoga experience to connect with your heart and lungs, followed by a therapeutic expressive arts process. The workshop will conclude with a facilitation of guided movement to support your fluid nature and deepen your mind-body-spirit connection.

World Percussion & African Dance

with Angel Lau & Nkoula Badila

A group of dancers in an African Dance Class. They are moving and a drummer plays while looking on.

Starting next Monday, June 26, join Nkoula Badila and Angel Lau for back-to-back community classes.

World Percussion 
Open Level and Intergenerational, for ages 8-adult
📅 Mondays, June 26-July 17
🕓 4-4:45pm

The world of percussion is so vast and exciting! In this course, you will learn the basics of how to play any percussion instrument, learning different rhythms from all over the globe with a focus on Afro-Cuban and Brazilian percussion.

African Dance 

Open Level, for ages 14-adult
📅 Mondays, June 26-July 17
🕓 5-6pm

This class will focus on a combination of Central West African + Contemporary dances, getting in touch with your own rhythm and flexibility, and finding a strong foundation in the relationship between the drum and the dance.

Save the Date: Spirits of Chesterwood

Spirits of Chesterwood is an intergenerational dance project created by 6 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.

Upcoming Performance This Week

Two dancers lay on their stomachs behind a row of assorted stuffed animals and toys. A third person holding a guitar kneels next to them.

why are you all still here

📅 Friday, June 23
🕢 7:30pm
📍 The Foundry, 2 Harris St, West Stockbridge

Pulse Teaching Artists Gillian Ebersole, Shannon Nulf, and Benjamin Court perform this Friday at The Foundry in West Stockbridge! Set to a soundscape of ambient blues music, their show why are you all still here explores the connection between knick knacks and nostalgia through movement and poetry, inspired by the items that stick with us, persisting even after every iteration of spring cleaning.

Thank YOU for making our Spring Celebration a success!

Thank you to all of our community members, teaching artists, families, and dancers who made our 2023 Spring Celebration a huge success! 

On May 27 & 28, our dancers performed in two sold-out shows at the Daniel Arts Center at Simon’s Rock. 100% of the proceeds from these performances will benefit our Tuition Assistance program.

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

Join us this Saturday at the upcoming Housatonic Party in the Park! Come learn more about Pulse’s summer programming and join an African Dance and Drumming class. 

Music & Storytelling (ages 4-6)

with Jeffrey Howard

📅 Mondays, July 3 to Aug 21
🕞 3:45-4:45pm

Using basic percussion instruments like shaky eggs, djembes, and the ukulele, this class will engage young children in music! Activities include: using rhythm to say your name in syllables; using the sounds of the instruments to cook a recipe; and acting out animals using sound and motions.

Plus, the class incorporates books like “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” and “How Things Work in Busytown,” teaching young musicians to augment the stories and scenes using the sound from their instruments and the motion of their bodies.

Pride Ballet Workshop

📅 Saturday, June 17
🕤 9:30 to 11:30am

Set to pop tunes of queer greats, this workshop gives beginning and experienced dancers a chance to take up space, play with weight and momentum, and reframe their experience with ballet as one of joy.

This class centers queer folks but all are welcome! Dress in whatever way supports your identity and range of motion; rainbows encouraged. 🌈

*All proceeds from this class will be donated to the Elizabeth Freeman Center, an organization that offers hope, help, and healing to all experiencing or affected by domestic and sexual violence through free, accessible, and confidential services in Berkshire County.

Summer Intensive Highlight


Introducing our Teaching Artists: Isaiah (Critical) Artis, Ben Court, Dashawn Davis, Miriam Piilonen, Andres Ramirez, and Peter (P-Boogie) Reynolds Jr. Read their bios here.

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

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

Join these teaching artists to 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.

Save the date for our Annual Spring Celebration

We’re pleased to announce our annual Spring Celebration will take place on May 27 & 28 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, community members, and teachers. 100% of the proceeds from these performances will benefit our Tuition Assistance program.  

More information on this performance, as well as sponsorship opportunities and ticket sales, coming soon!

Dunham Workshop

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

with Saroya Corbett

📅 Saturday, March 25
🕙 10am-12pm

Ages 12 to adult

Join Saroya Corbett, Bolin Fellow of Dance, for a second workshop in Dunham Technique, an Afro-Modern dance technique. As a certified instructor, Chair of History and Theory for the Institute for Dunham Technique Certification, and a life-long practitioner of Dunham Technique, Saroya will discuss the dance technique as a holistic practice and the work of Katherine Dunham, the technique’s creator. After the discussion, participants will experience a Dunham Technique movement class which will combine the theories and philosophies of the technique into physical practice.

Biodanza at Pulse

The Montreal School of Biodanza is returning to Pulse in March!

📅 Friday, March 31 
🕖 7-10 pm

Biodanza is an invitation to cultivate the “Art of Vivencia” – the ability to be completely present to life in the moment. Biodanza encourages us to explore the gestures and embodied vocabulary of Vivencia, letting us rekindle our connection to self, others, and the world.

All are welcome; Biodanza is a dance practice for everyone.

Summer Intensive Highlight

Berkshire Pulse Intensive (Ages 11-18)

A dancer wearing a Berkshire Pulse tshirt in an advanced contemporary class.

📅 Monday to Friday, July 10 – 21
🕘 9am – 4pm

For students with at least two years of prior dance training. Two groups: beginner and int/adv

This two-week program allows dancers to develop excellence in technique, as well as versatility and collaboration in the creative process. Daily classes will include ballet, contemporary, jazz, hip hop, swing, salsa, and flamenco. Dancers will explore dance-making through partnering and improvisation. Plus, field trips to local partnering organizations!

Our Studios Are Buzzing with Summer Intensives!

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

  • We are just wrapping up a fun, engaging, and challenging week of our Dance Discovery session.   
  • Our Hip Hop Intensive begins next week, which we couldn’t be more excited about. (Want to join? Scroll down for more info.) 
  • Our Contemporary Intensive starts on July 18th. Due to popular demand, we’ve decided to open up our Contemporary Intensive—as well as our August Ballet Intensive—to adults who are willing to commit to the entire program. If you’re interested, please feel welcome! 

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


Adult dancers (18+) can now join individual morning or afternoon classes from the summer Ballet, Contemporary, and Hip Hop/Street Styles Intensives!

This is a great option for adult dancers who can’t commit to a full day program, but crave a semi-intensive dance experience. Participants are required to commit to the daily class for the entire duration of the week or 2-week intensive. 

THIS SUNDAY! Authentic Movement Workshop

Sunday July 10th, 1-4:30pm

with Paula Josa-Jones

Authentic Movement is a meditative, intuitive, improvisational movement practice involving a mover and a witness. It is a practice of listening, attunement; slowing and opening to a deeper sensing of body and psyche. It was developed by dancer and psychotherapist Mary Starks Whitehouse, who, following her work with Carl Jung, became curious about moving without intention, or the practice of “waiting to be moved.” 

This simple meditation will provide the container for this workshop for both experienced movers and those who are new to this practice.

STARTS NEXT WEEK! Hip Hop & Street Style Intensive

July 11-15th, 8am-3pm, ages 12-adult

Taught by Andres RamirezKing CharlesKelli Forman, and Jackson Whalan

In this week-long program, students will learn foundational movements and techniques of hip-hop and street style, alongside the cultural meaning and significance of these moves.

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. Styles will include beginner’s breaking, party grooves, and footwork. 

NOTE: The Celebration Jam and All-Styles Battle has been moved to Friday July 15th at 1pm.

Don’t Miss These Upcoming Classes + Guest Artists!

*Photo credit for featured image: Susan Quinn

Save the Dates… for Our Performances & Intensives!

Summer 2022 is really starting to shape up! We’re so pleased to share that our end-of-year performance will take place on Saturday, May 28th and Sunday, May 29th. These performances will be held at the Daniel Arts Center again—for the first time since 2019!

And while you have your calendar open…

Our summer intensive dates are officially up! Take an early peek at our Rhythm Alive, Dance Discovery, Hip Hop/Street Style, Contemporary, and Ballet intensives—more details and registration info to come.

February Break Reminder

During the break, all Youth Performing Arts Program classes are on break for the week of February 19-25, resuming on the 26th. Select community classes are ongoing—a full schedule for community classes during the break can be viewed here. Questions? Contact us here, or simply reply to this email.

Berkshire Pulse