THEATRE: The season is starting! Or, in some cases, closing! An Iliad, the final show of the season at The Theatre Company at Hubbard Hall, runs weekends through May 17. WilliamsTheatre wraps up their year with The Hour of Feeling by Mona Mansour, May 7-9 on the CenterStage in the ’62 Center. Then promptly on May 1 Oldcastle Theatre Company opens with Lanford Wilson’s Talley’s Folly, also running through May 17; and in North Adams Mill City Productions offers A Bright New Boise by Samuel D. Hunter, May 1-3 & 8-10. Hunter’s controversial “A Great Wilderness” played on the Nikos Stage at the WTF last summer. Barrington Stage Company starts with Butler on their St. Germain Stage May 14-June 13`. Further afield, Shakespeare & Company starts previews of The How and The Why in the Bernstein Theatre on May 22; the Berkshire Theatre Group presents Masha’s Seagull on their Unicorn Stage in Stockbridge May 22-24; and the Mac-Haydn Theatre in Chatham, NY, opens their season of musicals with The Baker’s Wife, May 21-24 & 27-31. The much anticipated 6th grade musical at the Williamstown Elementary School concludes the month with Peter Pan, playing May 28-31.
MUSIC: If you can’t find something you like in the cornucopia of free musical events scheduled at Williams College in the first 19 days of May, you officially have a Tin Ear! There are concerts and recitals of all varieties every day—jazz, contemporary, and classical; vocal, choral, and instrumental; American, African, and Asian—visit the Williams Music Department Web site to plan your concert-going itinerary.
HISTORIC HOUSE TOUR: Tickets go on sale May 1 for the Williamstown Historical Museum’s House Tour, scheduled for Sunday, May 17 from 12:30-4:30 pm. Among the properties featured this year will be the estate of George Alfred and Elizabeth (Marchisi) Cluett, built in 1911 and currently occupied by Pine Cobble School; and main building on the Buxton School campus, built by B.W. Warren in 1900 and formerly the home of the parents of Buxton founder, Ellen Geer Sangster.
CLOSINGS AND OPENINGS: Catch ‘em while you can! Three exhibits are closing this month at the Williams College Museum of Art: The Publication Studio on May 10, Frank Lloyd Wright:The Early Work on May 24, and Immortal Scripts on May 31. May 17 is the last day for Machine Age Modernism: Prints from the Daniel Cowin Collection at The Clark. At MASS MoCA Ann Hamilton: Paper Chorus and Kidspace: It’s Only Human end their runs in May.
May 23 is the big opening day for three new exhibits at MASS MoCA. In addition to her solo exhibit Liz Deschenes: Gallery 4.1.1, specifically made for MoCA, Deschenes has curated a group exhibition Artists’ Choice: An Expanded Field of Photography featuring new and existing work chosen by the six artists represented. Clifford Ross’s exhibit Landscape Seen & Imagined includes a 24’ high x 114’ long photograph on raw wood that spans the length of MoCA’s tallest gallery and an immersive installation of animated video on twelve separate 24’ high screens. And don’t miss the brief Senior Studio Exhibition at the Williams College Museum of Art from May 15-June 7.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Starting in May, adult admission to The Mount will be $18 and include access to the house, gardens, and exhibits for up to seven days from the date of purchase. With admission costs rising at museums and historic sites across the County, this seems like a wise move—extending accessibility will encourage repeat visits and engender good word of mouth. It would be nice to see other large attractions—Hancock Shaker Village (top admission price $20), The Clark ($20), MASS MoCA ($18)—explore similar pricing plans. (Although it bears noting that there is free admission for all to The Clark on May 3 and the first Sunday of every month May-October, and that everyone with an 01247 zip code gets into MASS MoCA free on May 18.)