Cultural Pittsfield: Dec. 7-13

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Friday: First Fridays Artswalk!

Head downtown tonight for the biggest First Fridays Artswalk yet! Over fifty artists, art openings (including one at Pittsfield City Hall!) and great holiday shopping. A festive night out for the whole family!  Click here for a map and the full list of exhibitors.

Friday, December 7 | 5pm-8pm | Upstreet Cultural District | 413-499-9348 | FREE

Charlie Tokarz  

Friday: First Fridays Live Music at Mission

Before, during or after First Fridays Artswalk, enjoy live music at Mission. The Sister City Jazz Ambassadors play from 5:30- 8:00pm, followed by The Last Chance Band from 8:30pm-11pm.  The Sister City Jazz Ambassadors are a group of committed musicians dedicated to building peace through music and people-to-people connections. 

First Fridays | 5:30pm-11pm | Mission Bar + Tapas | 438 North Street | No phone | No cover

Holiday Shindy  

Friday-Sunday: Holiday Shopping Shindy

Enjoy the work of forty regional artisans, from holiday trees, roping and greenery to recycled sweater wreaths (pictured left), paintings, handmade clothing, pottery, holiday delicacies, jewelry and much much more, in the gorgeous setting of the former Notre Dame Church, now the Shire City Sanctuary! Crispina ffrench and friends' annual holiday sale opens tonight during the First Fridays Artswalk and continues through the weekend.

Friday-Sunday, December 7-9 | Fri 5pm-8pm Sat & Sun 10am-6pm | Shire City Sanctuary (the former Notre Dame Church) | 40 Melville Street | 413-443-7171 | Free!

Cookie Platter  

Friday:  Cookie Platter Painting Party at Bisque, Beads & Beyond

Come as a family and paint a personalized cookie platter or a set of handcrafted dinner plates for the holidays. No experience necessary. Pre-registration is suggested. Click here for a calendar of more fun classes and events at Bisque, Beads & Beyond! 

Friday, December 7 | 5pm-8pm | Bisque, Beads & Beyond | 141 North Street | 413-442-9300 | $18-$24/per plate

Chicken with Plums  

Friday-Monday:  Chicken with Plums at the Little Cinema

Remember the amazing film Persepolis? Director Marjane Satrapi is back with Chicken with Plums. Set in 1958 Teheran, it tells the tale of Nasser Ali Khan, who loses all taste for life after his violin breaks. He plunges into deep reveries, with dreams as melancholic as they are joyous, taking him back to his youth and even to a conversation with Azraël, the Angel of Death. Roger Ebert gave Chicken With Plums 4 stars, calling it "a grand, romantic life story.”

Friday-Monday, December 7-10 | Fri-Mon 7pm Mon 1:30pm & 7pm | Little Cinema at the Berkshire Museum | 39 South Street | 413-443-7171 | $5

Rumors at Pittsfield High  

Friday & Saturday:  Rumors at Pittsfield High School

It's your last chance to catch Pittsfield High School's drama society's production of the hilarious Neil Simon comedy, Rumors. Several affluent couples who gather in the posh suburban residence of a couple for a dinner party celebrating their hosts' tenth anniversary discover there are no servants, the hostess is missing, and the host – the deputy mayor of New York City - has shot himself through the earlobe. Comic complications arise when they decide they need to do everything possible to conceal the evening's events from the local police and the media.

Friday & Saturday, December 7 & 8 | 7:30pm | Pittsfield High School | 300 East Street | 413-499-9535 x 1102 | $10 adults/$8 students

Misty Blues  

Friday & Saturday:  Misty Blues Upstreet!

Misty Blues will be livening up Flavours of Malaysia Friday night and Spice Dragon Saturday night.  Misty Blues pays homage to the older blues music made popular by the bold and brassy women of its time, while still paying respect to the more contemporary female artists that carry on their rich traditions. 

Friday, December 7 | 9:30pm | Flavours of Malaysia | 75 North Street | 413-443-3188 | $5

Saturday, December 8 | 9pm | Spice Dragon | 297 North Street | 413-443-1234 | No cover

Jesse Adams  

Friday & Saturday:  Punch Drunk Comedy Show at Cafe Reva

Pittsfield native Jesse Adams will be showing off some of his new material at this intimate comedy show.  Part of the proceeds will benefit Hurricane Sandy victims.  Tickets available at Cafe Reva.  Refreshments will be served. Cash bar.

Friday & Saturday, December 7 & 8 | 8pm | Cafe Reva | 238 Tyler Street | 413-442-6161 | $25

Senior Center Holiday Bazaar  

Saturday:  Holiday Bazaar at the Senior Center

The Friends of the Pittsfield Council on Aging will be hosting their Holiday Bazaar. More than a dozen vendors will be on hand with the perfect holiday gift for your loved ones. Santa will also be making an appearance from 11am–1pm.

Saturday, December 8 | 9am-3pm | Ralph Froio Senior Center | 330 North Street | 413-499-9346 | FREE


Saturday:  Festival of Trees Family Day at the Berkshire Museum

Bring the family to enjoy the sounds, sights, and tastes of the holiday season with a visit to Myths & Magic Festival of Trees and a full day of fun.  Activities include: Animals Up Close with a live animal show featuring kangaroos, macaws, porcupines and more; Berkshire Singers performing holiday carols; Cookie Decorating; a Cookie Contest; and the Taconic High School Honors Chorus

Saturday, December 8 | 11am-5pm | Berkshire Museum | 39 South Street | 413-443-7171 | Prices vary 

Met Opera Live  

Saturday:  Met Opera: Live in HD

The Metropolitan Opera season continues with Un Ballo in Maschera.  Director David Alden's dreamlike setting provides a compelling backdrop for this dramatic story of jealousy and vengeance. Marcelo Álvarez stars as the conflicted king; Sondra Radvanovsky is Amelia, the object of his secret passion; and Dmitri Hvorostovsky is her suspicious husband. Kathleen Kim is the page Oscar, and Stephanie Blythe sings the role of the fortune-teller Ulrica. Fabio Luisi conducts.

Saturday, December 8 | 12:55pm | The Beacon Cinema | 57 North Street | 413-358-4780 | $25


Saturday & Sunday:  The Nutcracker!

One weekend only! The Albany Berkshire Ballet brings its annual production of The Nutcracker to the Colonial, featuring choreography by Artistic Director Madeline Cantarella Culpo, lavish sets and scenery designed by theater and movie set designer Carl Sprague, and costumes designed by Rita Watson and Victile Donahue. A family tradition!

Saturday & Sunday, December 8-9 | Saturday 2:30pm & 7pm Sunday 1:30pm & 4:30pm | The Colonial Theatre | 111 South Street | 413-997-4444 | $19.50-$39


Saturday:  Local Author Speaks at Berkshire Athenaeum

Pittsfield native and St. Joseph High School graduate, Dr. Peter Drennan will speak about his book Sixteen:  An American Hockey Story.  Dr. Drennan describes a young boy and his encounter with one of our great games: hockey.  In that sport and others he played, lessons were presented that would help him get ready for the challenges ahead in the bigger game: life. Presented by the Friends of the Berkshire Athenaeum.

Saturday, December 8 | 3pm | Berkshire Athenaeum | One Wendell Avenue | 413-499-9480 | FREE

Code Blue  

Saturday:  Code Blue at PortSmitt's

Scott and Kurt have been playing together for 12+ years. In their current incarnation as Code Blue they present a unique combination as an energetic musical duo which can transition, from acoustic music, to a full band sound using midi technology.

Saturday, December 8 | 7:30pm | PortSmitt's | 370 Pecks Road | 413-236-5727 | NO COVER

Berkshire Magazine Live  

Sunday: Reinventing Pittsfield panel 

Berkshire Magazine presents Reinventing Pittsfield, a lively panel discussion. The panel includes Jeremy Goodwin, Berkshire Magazine contributing writer; Jim Ruberto, former Pittsfield mayor; Mary McGinnis, Artswalk chair and business owner; Jim Benson, founder of WordXWord and business owner and Julianne Boyd, executive director of Barrington Stage. Berkshire Magazine editor Anastasia Stanmeyer moderates.

Sunday, December 9 | 11am | Beacon Cinema | 57 North Street | 413-528-2111 | FREE

Eagles Band  

Sunday:  The Eagles Band Holiday Concert

The Eagles 60 piece concert band holiday concert includes classical, contemporary, novelty, swing and holiday tunes. Selections include In the Bleak Midwinter, Celtic Carol, and Sleigh Ride. Patrons can also enjoy the band's traditional homemade intermission bake sale, holiday raffle, and sing along. 

Sunday, December 9 | 3pm | First United Methodist Church | 55 Fenn Street | 413-499-2071 | FREE

Deck the Halls at St. Stephens  

Sunday:  Deck the Halls Christmas Concert

In keeping with the tradition of featuring local high school choruses at this festive holiday concert, the Berkshire Lyric Chorus and the Blafield Children's Chorus will be joined by the Monument Mountain High School Chorus and the Spartones.  There will also be a special appearance by Gaudeamus, a select a cappella chorus of 10 young men from Simon's Rock College in Great Barrington that specializes in early music.

Sunday, December 9 | 3pm | St. Stephen's Episcopal Church | 67 East Street | 413-448-8276 | $20 adults/FREE students and children

Dottie's Gingerbread Houses  

Sunday:  Gingerbread House Decorating Party 

Dottie's Coffee Lounge hosts its fifth annual Gingerbread House Decorating Party. Delightful and delectable, these decorative houses are sure to make any room more festive. Plus, they're a blast to make! With 24 houses and all of the delicious decorations you can imagine, Dotties is just the place to embrace your holiday spirit.

Sunday, December 9 | 3:30pm | Dotties Coffee Lounge | 444 North Street | 413-443-1792 | $29 for 2 people/1 house


Monday:  Watermarks: Film and Talk

The Jewish Federation of the Berkshires presents the film documentary Watermarks about the champion women swimmers of the legendary pre-WW2 Jewish Austrian Sports Club.  Watermarks details the reunion of the women, now in their 80s and living around the world, as director Yaron Zilberman meets them in their homes and arranges for them to have a reunion in their old swimming pool in Vienna.  The presentation will be facilitated by Stella Schecter who was one of the swimmers.

Monday, December 10 | 1pm | Congregation Knesset Israel | 16 Colt Road | 413-442-4360 x 15 | $3

Holiday Party for Moments House  

Thursday:  Holiday Party for Moments House 

The Moments House Community Holiday Party features fun for the entire family. Terry a la Berry will perform with kids activities throughout the party.  Whiskey City takes the stage at 8 to get everyone up and dancing. There will be a dinner buffet courtesy of UNICO and much more.  Moments House works to provide a warm home-like location for all Berkshire County residents living with a cancer diagnosis and their families. 

Thursday, December 13 | 5pm-11pm | Itam Lodge | 22 South Shore Street | 413-443-6800 | $6-$12/kids under 3 FREE

Open Mic Night at Marketplace Cafe  

Thursday:  Young Artists' Open Mic!

The Marketplace Cafe in Pittsfield's Upstreet Cultural District hosts young artist open mic nights each month, inviting any and all local talent 21 years old and younger to share their performing skills in its intimate environment for many to listen to and enjoy. Come check out the talents of the next generation!

Thursday, December 13 | 6:30pm-8:30pm | The Marketplace Cafe | 53 North Street | 413-358-4777 | NO COVER



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