“In my years at Berkshire Pulse I learned the value of a passionate artistic community, one that is centered on diversity in dance forms and its members. I thrived in the environment, which was as accepting and adventurous, as well as challenging. Through my years in dance I have met many other dancers from different backgrounds, none of which can be compared to the uniqueness of the Berkshire Pulse experience. It’s a place that nurtures not only a love of dance, but also a consciousness of the individual and her own power to express herself artistically. It’s a place, which has imbued me with a drive, a background, and a passion for dance. I left the Pulse after 8th grade because my family moved away. But it has stayed with me through my time at Walnut Hill. I know it will be with me at Juilliard and I know it will be with me for my entire life. Thank you Bettina and Ruby.”
– Moscelyne Zia ParkeHarrison | Pulse Alumni / Walnut Hill / Julliard
“It is not often that you find some of your closest friends, dearest mentors and members of your family in such a short period of time, but somehow I was lucky enough to do so.
Berkshire Pulse has molded me into a well-rounded dancer, giving me access to all sorts of classes. I have learned modesty and how to take corrections
along with self-confidence, determination and commitment.
I cannot thank Berkshire Pulse enough for the values they have taught me,
the commitment they have had to their dance community and their focus on artistic detail. It is because of Berkshire Pulse that I feel completely prepared and excited for all of the new things that lie ahead of me.”
– Lindsey Jacquier | Pulse Alumni / Wheaton College
Berkshire Pulse has been an unbelievably important
part of my life for the past six years.
I have learned so much from everything
Berkshire Pulse has had to offer.
When I started out I was an energetic
seventh grader who needed an outlet for
all of my tapping. Since then I have gained
so many more skills than I ever could have imagined.
Aimee Gelinas saw potential in me then, and now,
thanks to her classes, I feel like a trusted,
well-equipped musician. I have cherished my time
with everyone so much. And, although our space
wasn’t always the same, I can say with certainty
that Pulse will always feel like home.
I am graduating from Monument Mountain High School
and will be attending Ithaca College, studying
Vocal Performance, in the Fall of 2015.
– Nick Duffin | World Music Program Graduate, 2015 | Ithaca College
A Letter to the Boston Globe
Dear Jeffrey Gantz,
I have just witnessed the most extraordinary dance performance. And it was entirely unexpected. Bettina Montano the founder and leading force in Berkshire Pulse had the ground-breaking idea that young students would respond to the idea of capturing the rhythm and grace of everyday movement and transforming it into emotional communication. This results in gripping, intense, funny and surprising dances with performers as young as five.
This is not the typical spectacle of technical expertise, glitter or prepubescent sexuality that is often seen in the shows of neighborhood or even leading dance studios. These performers, perhaps not by chance creating Mark Morris-like moves, are an absolute delight.
If there is any way for you or a Western Mass reporter to catch their performance on Sunday June 11 (at Bard College at Simon’s Rock in Great Barrington) you will be doing the world of dance, and yourself, a huge favor.
I hasten to add that I have no relation to the company other than the presence of a 11 year old grand-daughter with the equivalent of a walk-on role, brought me to the performance. I have attended dance performances here and in Europe for six decades and I have never before been moved to write a recommendation. This is the real deal.
Hope you can make it and thanks for your attention,
Audience member at the Berkshire Pulse Annual Performance Gala
The Dancer Within
“To my astonishment and delight, less than a year ago my life suddenly veered off course, landing me in the spacious studios of Berkshire Pulse to awaken “The Dancer Within.” My eldest daughter and two teen-age grandchildren have been training for years in this magical, visionary, and dynamic dance school under the skillful direction of Bettina Montano. Bettina’s sensitive intelligence and creative intuition know that dance is rooted in all of us. We dance from within. We connect. The music of dance connects us to our inner life and to others.
Thus, a dynamic array of classes taught be expert and fully-involved teachers, is available both to those seriously pursuing dance and to those who simply dance. This outreach’s unique offering drew me in. Now, just as I watched my dancing family grow into self-assured, self-disciplined individuals who express so naturally an ease and grace, I find that it is my turn – the third generation – to step up to the barre and join in too. The challenge and the hard work, the sweat – nothing makes me happier than this! From this dancing grandmother: kudos, and thank you Berkshire Pulse!”Flo Mason, community class student
A Master Class with David Howard
In partnership with the Mahaiwe Performing Arts Center, October 2011
“This October, our upper level ballet students (ages 12+) had the unusual privilege of partaking in two consecutive master classes with the renowned ballet master, David Howard, at the Mahaiwe Theater. The experience certainly brought me full circle as I was formerly one of Mr. Howard’s scholarship students at the Harkness House for Ballet Arts in NYC, 40 years ago. Sitting and observing him teach our B.P. students on the stage of the Mahaiwe Theater was deeply moving. Our student’s ballet training is based on the same organic movement principles that Mr. Howard still uses to coach countless successful professional dancers. Afterwards, I fully enjoyed participating in Mr. Howard’s teacher training along with Bettina, and our B.P. colleagues Tom, Ilana and Annabelle – another wonderful opportunity to deepen my understanding of his principles as well. This extraordinary day is just one example of the B.P. magic that so enriches our community year round. Much gratitude to the Mahaiwe Theater for their efforts in bringing David Howard to the Berkshires!”
Ballet Director, Associate Director – Berkshire Pulse Performing Arts Program
Collaboration with Moscow Ballet
Dancing with the Moscow Ballet in the Great Russian Nutcracker, November, 2011
“On Tuesday, October 4th, we formed a line according to height and filed into the studio, anxiously awaiting the outcome. At the end of the audition I was excited to hear that I had been cast as a party guest and an angel. We started rehearsing right away! We had three days to learn the material with Natasha, a dancer from the Moscow Ballet, and then Ruby and Bettina took over. Ruby and Bettina prepared us so well, teaching us about the acting components and helping us perfect the material. Ultimately, we felt confident despite the crowded stage. I was incredibly inspired by how the Moscow Ballet dancers used every spare minute of their time to practice. I felt very lucky to have been a part of Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker and I will treasure these memories forever. ”
Ella Carlson, age 12 – Performing Arts Program student