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Culture to Do: Nov. 1, 2023

Valley Light Opera presents Iolanthe at the Academy of Music in Northampton. It runs Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from Nov. 3 – Nov. 12.

Valley Light Opera Presents Iolanthe
Academy of Music, Northampton
Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from Nov. 3 – Nov. 12
Maybe it’s not as famous as Pirates of Penzance, but some argue that Iolanthe is the best of all of Gilbert and Sullivan’s operettas. Valley Light Opera is bringing new life to this wonderful show with an array of beautiful voices, lively dancing, glorious costumes, and a healthy helping of humor. Michael Greenebaum will offer pre-curtain talks at the two Sunday matinee performances.

LIZZIE The Musical
Gateway City Arts, Holyoke
Friday, Nov. 3 – Saturday, Nov. 11
In 1892, Andrew Borden and his wife are found murdered in their house. The main suspect in the murders is Andrew’s youngest daughter from a previous marriage, Lizzie Borden. Using a searing rock score, and based on the historical record, LIZZIE explores the heady and heated days leading up to the murder and Lizzie’s controversial acquittal of all charges and the creation of a new American myth.

Franklin County CiderDays
Friday, Nov. 3 – Sunday, Nov. 5
CiderDays is an annual community celebration in Franklin County with tours, cidermaking and tastings, workshops and more in orchards and venues county-wide from Greenfield, Deerfield, and Turners Falls to Shelburne Falls, Colrain, Heath and the towns in between. Whether you are a cider aficionado (hard or sweet), make your own cider, or just enjoy soaking up all the goodness of autumn in New England, CiderDays is for you.

49th Annual Multiband Pops Concert
Tillis Performance Hall, UMass
Friday, Nov. 3 at 7:30 p.m.
It’s Homecoming Weekend at UMass, so that means it’s time for the popular fast-paced showcase of wind, brass, jazz, vocal, orchestral & percussion ensembles The Minuteman Marching Band performs for the entire second half. You will be enveloped by the rich sound as ensembles perform in different parts of the hall.

Eastworks Open Studios
Saturday, Nov. 5 and Sunday, Nov. 6 from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
This revitalized textile mill in the heart of Easthampton’s Mill District is a launchpad for creativity and entrepreneurship. Over 50 community studios are opening their doors to showcase everything form upcycled metal enamelware, vintage photographs, colorful accessories, creative ceramics and one-of-a-kind art pieces and. Plus, there’s music both days from noon to about 4 p.m. both days.

Springfield Symphony Orchestra: Heavenly!
Springfield Symphony Hall
Saturday, Nov. 4 at 2:30 p.m.
Join conductor Nicholas Hersh and the SSO for a musical voyage that explores the vast expanse of our Solar System. Carl Nielsen’s Helios Overture portrays a sublime sunrise over the ocean. Mozart’s Symphony No. 41 is at once so powerful that it was compared to Jupiter, king of the heavens. Gustav Holst’s The Planets transforms the orchestra into a spacecraft on a billions-mile journey from fleet Mercury to lonely Neptune at the very fringe of our place in space.

Pioneer Valley Symphony Choral Concert: Here at Home
Episcopal Church of Saints James & Andrew, Greenfield
Saturday, Nov. 4, 2023 at 4 p.m.
Dr. Allegra Martin conducts an inspired program with music from regional composers including Frederick Tillis and Alice Parker, and a new commission to the words of Emily Dickinson from composer and PVS Assistant Conductor Anthony Ferreira. With Larry Picard, piano and organ; Nancy Rich, cello; Anna Chinetti, flute; Hannah Elliott, clarinet; and Elizabeth Orchulek, bass clarinet. Nice touch: a community reception after the concert.

Carol's Jazz Night: Samirah Evans and Friends
CitySpace, Easthampton
Saturday, Nov. 4 at 7 p.m.
Samirah Evans is known for her dynamic, soulful approach to jazz and blues, among other genres. Her style is also heavily influenced by the New Orleans sound where she was one of the city’s most in-demand singers. Friends playing with Samirah include, Grammy-nominated producer, singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, Anand Nayak, Berkshire-based pianist Benny Kohn, and Jimmy Robitaille who has over 20 years of experience in the percussive arts.

First Sunday Free: Music
The Clark, Williamstown
Sunday, Nov. 5
This month’s “First Sunday Free’ at The Clark has a musical theme. Join artist and educator Molly Hess for all-ages dance workshops at 1 and 2 p.m. that incorporate rhythm, pulse, and the visual elements of music. Then, through the magic of a guided soundscape experience, add your own chorus of sounds to the galleries, activating the artworks. Construct miniature instruments and enjoy additional activities throughout the day.

Monica Jakuc Leverett, piano
Sweeney Concert Hall, Smith College
Sunday, Nov. 5, at 3 p.m.
In celebration of her 80th birthday, Monica Jakuc Leverett, Elsie Irwin Sweeney Professor Emerita of Music at Smith College, will present her signature piece that she has known and performed for the last 60 years, Bach’s Goldberg Variations. This lovely concert is free and open to the public.

Close Encounters with Music: Virtue and Virtuosity
The Mahaiwe, Great Barrington
Sunday, Nov. 5 at 4 p.m.
Pyrotechnics and acrobatics? Mastery of content and form? According to Rodin, the greatest virtuosity is when you don’t notice it. Sarasate and Saint Saëns will dazzle (his gorgeous Rondo Capriccioso, a minefield for the violinist, will be performed on the cello, exponentially more challenging!). And introducing Russian/Ukrainian composer Nikolai Kapustin, whose Preludes offer a “Red and Hot” fusion of jazz and classical forms. The program culminates with Brahms' Piano Trio Op. 8.

Leverett Crafts & Arts: November in the Galleries
Opening Reception Sunday, Nov. 5, from 4 – 6 p.m.
Galleries open Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Mondays from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
“Oh Beautiful Glass” is a yearly exhibition curated by local glass artist Sally Prasch that features glass works from artists that range from realism to surrealism to abstraction. Plus, Leverett Crafts & Arts resident artist Sue Mulholland will show colorful new paintings focusing on local scenes of lakes and woods as well as animal friends.

Bill Charlap Trio
Bombyx, Florence
Sunday, Nov. 5 at 7 p.m.
Grammy Award-winning pianist Bill Charlap has performed with many of the leading artists of our time, from Wynton Marsalis and Tony Bennett to Phil Woods and Ron Carter. Since 1997, he has led the Bill Charlap Trio, recognized as one of the leading groups in jazz. They tour all over the world.

Tuesday Morning Music Club
Hannah Berube, clarinet and the Wistaria String Quartet
Trinity United Methodist Church, Springfield
Tuesday, Nov. 7 at 10:30 a.m.
Hannah Berube is a local clarinetist and music educator. She has served as principal clarinet of PanOpera and Valley Winds, and as associate clarinet with the Chicago Civic Orchestra. Hannah has performed with members of the Boston Symphony and with the Catskills Symphony. She will join the Wistaria String Quartet to perform clarinet quintets by Mozart and Coleridge-Taylor.

Ranky Tanky with very special guest Ms. Lisa Fischer
Bowker Auditorium, UMass
Wednesday, Nov. 8, at 7:30 p.m.
Grammy-winning band Ranky Tanky from Charleston, South Carolina — whose name is taken from a Gullah phrase for “get funky” — have established themselves as passionate global ambassadors for their local culture and community. Ms. Lisa Fischer spent four decades as a background singer, working with The Rolling Stones, and Tina Turner and others. It’s her voice that soars on “Gimme Shelter.” The 2013 documentary Twenty Feet from Stardom put the spotlight on Fischer’s musical journey. When Ranky Tanky and Lisa Fischer come together at Bowker, they will turn in performances that will exceed all expectations.

Double Edge Theatre: Lightning
The Farm, Ashfield
Wednesday, Nov. 8 – Sunday, Nov. 12 at 7:30 p.m.
After sold-out performances during their 2022 fall performance series, Double Edge Theatre is presenting another iteration of Lightning, directed and devised by DE Design Director Jeremy Louise Eaton, and co-created with the DE Company. Layering large puppetry, shadow, and song, Lightning takes place at the collision point between the worlds of our internal and external experiences.