The 48th Annual Curtisville Consortium Concert Series

Curtisville Consortium 2017 Summer SeriesDon’t miss the 48th season of one of the Berkshire’s best kept secrets, The Curtisville Consortium. The 2017 season is set to start on Tuesday, July 18th, 8pm at Lenox’ Trinity Episcopal Church.

Did you know that members of the Boston Symphony Orchestra perform intimate concerts of chamber music each summer at the Trinity Episcopal Church in Lenox, MA?

No, truly.

The Curtisville Consortium is made up of several Boston Symphony players who summer here. While much of the player’s summer hours are spent at Tanglewood, they still make the time to come and play in Lenox on their nights off.

The group was founded in 1969 when BSO members and their families in the Interlaken area of Stockbridge decided to share their musical passions with the Lenox area community. Interlaken was once home to a small community called Curtisville, hence the group’s name. That first series of concerts was a success and 48 years later and they’re still at it, much to our collective benefit. (more…)

Celebrate the 40th Season of The Berkshires’ Shakespeare & Company!

shakespeare & companyThe 2017 Summer season of the Berkshires’ Shakespeare & Company is off and running: May 25th through August 26th, 2017! This year’s season includes three Shakespeare plays, Lynne Nottage’s Intimate Apparel, Lovers’ Spat – Shakespeare’s Famous Couple’s Encounters, two Edith Wharton comedies (Roman Fever, and a newly adapted work, The Fullness of Life), and more! Shakespeare & Company’s 40th season also includes a special August series: Storytellers and Songwriters.

Shakespeare & Company, one of the largest Shakespeare Festivals in the country, was founded in 1978. Originally based at Edith Wharton’s The Mount, the company performs both Shakespeare and new plays, as well as actor training programs for professionals and students. Alumni/ae include such famous names as Richard Dreyfuss, Andie MacDowell, Bill Murray, Keanu Reeves, Sigourney Weaver, and Olympia Dukakis.

The 2017 Summer Season opened Memorial Day Weekend with Amy Herzog’s 4000 Miles with muc more to follow. This year’s festival promises a host of audience and critics’ favorite actors, along with a crowd of exciting newcomers to the Company.

And that’s not all!

2017 also marks Shakespeare & Company’s 40th Anniversary Season. In celebration, the 2017 summer program includes a special August series: Storytellers and Songwriters. The series explores a variety of solo performances interwoven with live music and song in the Shakespearean vein.

2017 Shakespeare & Company Summer Season
4000 Miles – May 25 through July 16 at the Elayne P. Bernstein Theatre
by Amy Herzog
Directed by Nicole Ricciardi
Cast: Gregory Boover, Emma Geer, Zoë Laiz, and Annette Miller

Intimate Apparel – June 20 through August 13 at the Elayne P. Bernstein Theatre
by Lynn Nottage
Directed by Daniela Varon
Cast: MaConnia Chesser, Lee Edward Colston II, Nehassaiu deGannes, ChristiAnna Nelson, Tommy Schrider, and Whitney White

Cymbeline – July 04 through August 6 at the Tina Packer Playhouse
by William Shakespeare
Directed by Tina Packer
Cast: Jason Asprey, Thomas Brazzle, Jonathan Epstein, Nigel Gore, Deaon Griffin-Pressley, Tamara Hickey, Ella Loudon, Josh Aaron McCabe, and Bella Merlin

The Tempest – August 10 through September 03 at the Roman Garden Theatre
by William Shakespeare
Directed by Allyn Burrows
Cast: Jason Asprey, Thomas Brazzle, Nigel Gore, Deaon Griffin-Pressley, Tamara Hickey, Ella Loudon, Josh Aaron McCabe, Bella Merlin, and Mark Zeisler

Roman Fever and The Fullness of Life – August 17 through September 10 at the Elayne P. Bernstein Theatre
by Edith Wharton, adapted by Dennis Krausnick
Directed by Normi Noel
Cast: David Joseph, Corinna May, and Diane Prusha

A Midsummer Night’s Dream – July 11 through August 19 at The Dell-Outdoors at the Mount
by William Shakespeare
Directed by Jonathan Croy
Cast: David Bertoldi, Caroline Calkins, Tim Dowd, Lori Evans, Rory Hammond, Luke Haskell, Kate Kenney, Mairead Kohler, Caitlin Kraft, Madeleine Rose Maggio, Devante Owens, Thomas Randle, Thomas Reynolds, Leon Schwendener, and Dara Silverman

God of Carnage – September 14 through October 8 at the Elayne P. Bernstein Theatre
by Yasmina Reza, translated by Christopher Hampton
Directed by Regge Life
Cast: Elizabeth Aspenlieder, Allyn Burrows, Jonathan Croy, and Kristin Wold

Other special events planned for this amazing season include: The 40th Season Ruby Gala on July 1st and the Fourth of July Community Celebration on Independence Day. Visit the SHakespeare & Company website for the full calendar of special events!

Shakespeare & Company

70 Kemble Street, Lenox, MA 01240

Berkshires Lodging
Brook Farm Inn is less than five minutes drive from Shakespeare & Company’s headquarters, right here in Lenox, MA! In fact, our B&B’s convenient location puts the very best of the Berkshires right at your fingertips! Choose from 15 guest rooms and a carriage house, all nestled among beautifully maintained trees and gardens. Book your Berkshires getaway at Brook Farm Inn today!

Artists Added To The 2017 Tanglewood Popular Artists Series!

2017 Tanglewood Popular Artists Series additions

Diana Ross, Chris Botti, Sting, and others have been added to the 2017 Tanglewood Popular Artists Series.

In the last few weeks, a number of dates have been added to the upcoming Tanglewood Popular Artists Series. Sting, Melissa Etheridge, Diana Ross, and many more will be lighting up the Berkshires this summer. Where will you be? (more…)

Attend the 85th Annual Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival!

The 85th Annual Jacob’s Pillow Dance FestivalThe 85th Anniversary Season of Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival is almost upon us and promises a momentous experience for all! June 17th through August 27th, 2017.

Modern dance pioneer Ted Shawn did more than legitimize men’s dance when he bought Jacob’s Pillow farm in 1931. He also started a beloved Berkshire tradition! Every year, people come from all over the world to perform in and enjoy Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival.

This year’s festival is hopping with the inclusion of the famed Miami City Ballet and the legendary Paul Taylor Dance Company. Camille A. Brown, the 2016 Jacob’s Pillow Dance Award recipient, will perform, along with UK-based artist Aakash Odedra, and Japanese-born artist Eiko Otake. (more…)

Explore the Lenox Leg of the Berkshires Beer Trail!

Explore the Berkshires Beer TrailAre you a fan of fresh, local and regional craft beer? I so, you’ll want to treat yourself to the local leg of the Berkshires Beer Trail! The excellent quality and wide variety of the craft beers available is truly amazing.

Craft breweries, also called “microbreweries” have been popping up all over the U.S. in the last 20 years, especially in the last ten! This is good news for people with discriminating taste. Beer is only just now being taken seriously in the U.S. after decades of being treated like adult soda pop.

Getting in on this revolution of taste is as easy as visiting your own, local brewpub. Things get even more exciting when you travel to new areas and get to try the local, microbrewed beer. It’s especially fun if you can tour the brewery as brewmasters can be some very colorful, impassioned folks!

Even if you can’t get a tour of the brewery, though, sampling fresh, local beer at their tasting room or beer pub is a reward in itself. Brewery tasting rooms serve the freshest beer you’ll ever find. Brewers are particularly impassioned about their product and work to see that your beer is as fresh and clean as possible. At a tasting room, you know you’re tasting beer at it’s very best.

To get you going, we’ve included a list below of our local leg of the Berkshires Beer Trail. All of the craft breweries listed are within less than an hour of our Berkshires B&B, Brook Farm Inn, in Lenox, MA.

The full Berkshires Beer Trail can be found on the www.berkshirefarmandtable.org website. The list includes the four breweries below and a number of others throughout the Berkshires. While the Berkshires Beer & Cider Trail is not a comprehensive list of all the craft brewers and cideries in the area, it is a great start!

Lenox Area Berkshires Beer Trail

Wandering Star Brewery
11 Gifford Street, Pittsfield, MA 01201
Wandering Star is a 15 barrel microbrewery witha wide variety of styles. Their facility includes a tasting room and is open for tours, tastings, and growler fills on Saturdays from 12pm to 3pm.

Barrington Brewery & Restaurant
420 Stockbridge Road, Great Barrington, MA 01230
Barrington Brewery makes 25 different beers over the course of a year and always has nine beers on tap. The brewery is solar powered and the restauruant features a pub style menu. If the Chocolate Stout Cake is on the menu, you should order it. It was Bon Appetit’s recipe of the year and we dare you to try and eat an entire piece by yourself! Barrington Brewery offer no tours but is open 7 days a week.

Big Elm Brewing
65 Silver Street, Sheffield MA 01257
Big Elm Brewing reates several seasonal beers and 3 full-time beers: 413 Farmhouse Ale, Gerry Dog Stout, and IPA. Stop by their taprooom from 12-6 on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays for a pint or two. You can also buy 4 packs, 6 packs, and fill your growler. Free tours on Saturdays.

While you’re in the Big Elm Brewing area, if you’ve s nose for spirits as well, be sure to check out Berkshire Mountain Distillers. They’re just around the corner from the brewery: 356 South Main Street, Sheffield, MA 01257.

Glass Bottom Brewery
Glass Bottom Brewery shuttered its physical location in Lee, MA in 2016 – but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t track down their outstanding beers! You can find Glass Bottom beers on tap at:
The Prairie Whale, 178 Main St, Great Barrington, MA 01230
Thistle and Mirth, 44 West St, Pittsfield, MA 01201
Hops and Vines, 16 Water St, Williamstown, MA 01267

So go ahead, come explore the Berkshires. When you do, Brook Farm Inn would love to be your Berkshires lodging choice!

 

Step Into Another World: The Historic House Museums of the Berkshires

Visit Berkshires historic House Museums, like Herman Melville's Arrowhead!

Spring has sprung! Though there can still be a bit of a nip in the air, the sun is out, the birds are singing, and the flowers are blooming! Now is the perfect time to visit the historic house museums of the Berkshires!

The Berkshires have so much to offer: scenery, history, culture, shopping, dining, and more. Once the weather begins to warm, it can be hard to choose what to do and see first! We often suggest one or more of the many historic house museums of the Berkshires. Many of them reopen their doors in May, so now is a great time to see them freshened up after winter.

Visiting the homes of authors, artists, statesmen, or those simply very well off can be quite interesting and instructive. The opportunity to walk the same floors and fields a famous person once did can do more than just show you how they lived. Visiting a historic home may also provide insight into what drove, inspired, or otherwise influenced the lives of these fascinating people.

The Berkshires have a great many historic house museums that you can visit and explore. In fact, five of the best house museums are within ten minutes of our Berkshires B&B. One is right down the street!

Berkshires Historic House Museums

Freylinghuysen Morris Home and Studio
92 Hawthorne Street, Lenox
The Bauhaus-inspired Frelinghuysen Morris House and Studio in Lenox is a historic house museum of American Abstract Artists George L.K. Morris and Suzy Frelinghuysen. You’ll see the artists’ original furnishings, collected art, unique home, and 46 acre estate.
www.frelinghuysen.org

Visit Berkshires historic House Museums, like Ventfort Hall!

Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum

Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum
104 Walker Street, Lenox
Ventfort Hall is a Jacobean-style mansion and museum listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It was also used as a set in the 1999 film, Cider House Rules. Visit for tours of the estate or attend one of their many events: concerts, lectures, tea socials, and more.
gildedage.org

The Mount – Edith Wharton’s Home
2 Plunkett St, Lenox
Come tour the magnificently restored estate & gardens of author, Edith Wharton! The Mount, house and grounds, was designed by Edith Wharton. Fascinating and beautiful.
www.edithwharton.org

Naumkeag
5 Prospect Hill Rd, Stockbridge
This Gilded Age mansion is the former country estate of noted New York City lawyer Joseph Hodges Choate. The stunning home is filled with original furnishings and art and surrounded by ten acres of iconic gardens.
http://www.thetrustees.org

Herman Melville’s Arrowhead
780 Holmes Road, Pittsfield
Arrowhead was the home of American author Herman Melville during his most productive years, 1850–1863. Yep – this 18th century farmhouse is where Melville wrote Moby Dick! Visitors will enjoy guided tours, the museum shop and more.
www.mobydick.org

Brook Farm Inn
15 Hawthorne St, Lenox
Our Victorian home here in western Massachusetts may not be a house museum but it is a historic Berkshires treasure! Accommodations include 15 guest rooms and a carriage house surrounded by trees and award-winning gardens. You’ll feel serene and secluded at our Berkshires B&B but, as shown above, the best of the Berkshires are at your fingertips! Book your stay at Brook Farm Inn today!

Discover The Hidden Waterfalls Of Berkshires County

The Hidden Waterfalls Of Berkshires County - Bash Bish Falls

Beautiful Bash Bish Falls

The arrival of spring is a cause for celebration. What better way to celebrate the warmer weather than by getting outside? There are lots of pretty hikes to take in our area but why not make your outing spectacular? Take your hike to the next level by visiting a few of the hidden waterfalls of Berkshires County!

I’m not sure why we’re all so attracted to splashing cascades of water – but we sure are! People flock from all over to see a waterfall. Maybe it’s the soothing white noise generated by the falls or the feel of the cool spray on our skin. Falling water releases negative ions into the air that have a positive effect on our moods. Combine these factors with the hypnotic sight of a waterfall and maybe we’ve solved the why of waterfall popularity.

There are lots of waterfalls in the Massachusetts Berkshires. Many are some of the most beautiful falls you will ever see. It doesn’t hurt that they are couched in Berkshires scenery, either!

Instead of going over every last waterfall in the area, we decided to highlight some of our favorites. What we refer to as the hidden waterfalls of Berkshires County. (more…)

Don’t Miss "Victor Borge: Take One" Tea & Talk At Ventfort Hall!

Victor Borge: Take One at Ventfort Hall, March 25th, 2017Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum just announced the presentation of “Victor Borge: Take One” Tea & Talk with Rikke Borge, March 25th, 2017! This rare and exciting event returns by popular demand, as anyone familiar with Victor Borge will understand!

Victor Borge (1909-2000) was a Danish-American conductor, concert pianist, and comedian. He achieved fame and popularity through Europe and the U.S. with his unique blend of classical music and comedy.

The key to Victor’s success was the depth of his talent. Not only was he hysterically funny, he could actually play the piano – and not just a little. Victor Borge regularly performed with top symphony orchestras as a world-renowned concert pianist. As an entertainer, he was one of a kind, generating packed houses of international audiences whenever he appeared. (more…)

Get Your Tickets For The 2017 Tanglewood Popular Artists Series!

Tanglewood Popular Artists Series 2017

What do David Sedaris and Natalie Merchant have in common? They’re both part of the 2017 Tanglewood Popular Artists Series!

Tanglewood may be the summer home to the BSO but their summer festival isn’t just classical music. The Tanglewood Popular Artists Series brings big names from the world of rock, pop, and jazz to the Berkshires’ stage, too!

If you plan to be in the Berkshires this summer, you’ll want to set aside some time for Tanglewood. The festival routinely brings some of the brightest stars of the musical firmament to the Berkshires.

The Tanglewood Popular Artists Series has featured legends as Bob Dylan, Dolly Parton, Jackson Browne, Lady Gaga, and James Taylor. The Tanglewood Popular Artists Series generates lots of anticipation and surprises each year – and this year is no different!

A number of performance dates that have yet to be announced, including  July 3rd, 4th, and Labor Day Weekend. James Taylor, in particular – a regular guest for the series – is noticeably absent from the current schedule. (more…)