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Rogovoy Report 8/5/22

Chvrches (courtesy MASS MoCA).jpg
Chvrches (courtesy MASS MoCA).jpg

With so much going on culturally speaking in our region, this is my highly selective, curated snapshot of some of the most promising events happening this weekend …

Female-led indie pop is on tap tonight at MASS MoCA in North Adams at 8pm, with Scottish electro-pop trio Chvrches, featuring the heavenly vocals of Lauren Mayberry, and Brooklyn-based alt-pop duo Cafuné, featuring singer-songwriter Sedona Schat and writer/producer Noah Yoo. Chvrches live show is inspired by the trio’s 1980s horror-flick-themed release “Screen Violence,” replete with trippy visuals, blood-drenched makeup, and hooks so sharp they “could cut glass,” according to NPR. Cafuné’s particular blend of indie-pop reminds me of French indie-pop group Phoenix. (Fri, Aug 5)

This weekend Lenox-based Shakespeare & Company tackles the rarely performed Samuel Beckett work, “All That Fall,” originally a radio play and Beckett’s first work centered on a female protagonist, here played by Shakespeare & Company veteran Annette Miller, playing Saturday and Sunday at 1:30pm in the Tina Packer Playhouse. (Aug 6-7)

Berkshire Opera Festival presents an evening of arias and art songs by Black composers at the Berkshire Museum in Pittsfield, Mass., next Wednesday, August 10, at 7:30pm. The free concert, “High on the Ramparts: A Spotlight on Music of Black Composers,” features renowned soprano Kearstin Piper Brown, who this year scored a triumph as the lead in Ricky Ian Gordon's new opera, “Intimate Apparel” at Lincoln Center Theater; and acclaimed tenor Joshua Blue. The program includes music by the 18th-century composer Joseph Bologne, Sammy Hayward and Langston Hughes’ “(Checkin’ on the) Freedom Train”, and contemporary composer B.E. Boykin. (Wed, Aug 10)

Vance Gilbert, the multitalented virtuoso new-folk singer-songwriter who is funny enough to be a standup comedian, brings his brilliant songcraft and wit to the Guthrie Center in Great Barrington on Saturday at 8pm. (Sat, Aug 6)

It’s a busy, jazzy weekend at the Mahaiwe in Great Barrington, Mass., beginning tonight at 8pm, when legendary singer Michael Feinstein salutes and celebrates the great Judy Garland on her 100th birthday. Feinstein will lead a nostalgic and historical journey through Garland’s life, performing songs from her repertoire and telling stories that he has learned from Garland’s daughter Liza Minnelli and close friends of Garland’s. (Friday, August 5)

Then again at the Mahaiwe on Saturday night at 7:30, renowned pianist/composer Ted Rosenthal’s jazz opera, “Dear Erich,” makes its Berkshires debut, featuring members of the NYC Opera accompanied by Rosenthal and his trio. The opera tells the true story of Erich Rosenthal, Ted’s father, who was able to escape Nazi Germany, leaving behind his family, who were murdered by the Nazis. Frustrated and powerless to help them emigrate, Erich lived with survivor guilt, which affected his relationships with his wife and children. (Saturday, August 6).

Progressive Ukrainian ensemble DakhaBrakha performs its live soundtrack to Oleksandr Dovzhenko’s “Earth,” the 1930 Ukrainian silent film masterpiece, at PS21 in Chatham, N.Y., next Thursday at 7pm. The self-styled “ethno-chaos” band—a quartet from Kyiv—builds upon Ukrainian folk music, adding rhythms of the surrounding world to create the unique and original style that has become their hallmark. (Thurs, August 11)

Seth Rogovoy is editor of the Rogovoy Report, available at rogovoyreport.com.

The views expressed by commentators are solely those of the authors. They do not necessarily reflect the views of this station or its management.