Sunday January 6, 2013

PITTSFIELD -- The 10x10 Upstreet Arts Festival returns to downtown Pittsfield for the second year from Feb.14 to 24 with new theater works, dance parties, art shows and spoken word events.

Spearheaded by Barrington Stage Company and the City of Pittsfield, the 2013 festival (formerly 10x10 on North) will expand in size and geography to include more programming in venues throughout the city’s newly designated Upstreet Cultural District.

Last year’s debut 10x10 festival attracted more than 3,000 people for 44 performances and events featuring 120 new works including plays, songs, poems, visual art, film and dance.

"We’re thrilled to see Pittsfield’s vibrant Upstreet Cultural District come alive with creative art, performances and programming again this February," said Pittsfield Mayor Daniel Bianchi. "Winter is going to be a whole lot livelier in the Berkshires. I’m especially excited by all the events for youth and families this year.

The 2013 festival will include the return of Barrington Stage’s New Play Festival featuring ten 10-minute plays; the TEN SPOT art show at the Lichtenstein Center for the Arts, including 10 billboards around Berkshire County featuring local artists; the smartphone 10-minute film festival at the Beacon Cinema featuring short films 10 minutes or less; a 10x10 art show at Gallery 25; 10 singer/songwriters at Mission Bar + Tapas; and 10 poets at y bar.

New festival programming includes 10 decades of jazz composers from Berkshires Jazz; 10 improvised mini-musicals by the Royal Berkshire Improv Troupe at the Colonial Theatre Garage space; PechaKucha at Berkshire Museum; the "One Billion Rising" WAM SLAM dance party at Spice Dragon; a 10x10 stand-up comedy show presented by Thomas Attila Lewis.; Berkshire Art Association and Storefront Artist Project’s 10x10 RAP/ REAL ART PARTY at the Berkshire Museum; a visual art exhibition by Hancock Shaker Village; and an interdisciplinary spoken word and art exhibit by WAM Theatre and Alchemy Initiative.

Family programming for the 2013 10x10 Upstreet festival includes "10 Days of Play" at Berkshire Museum, 10 creative projects in 10 days at Bisque, Beads & Beyond, a Shaker music and dance program by Hancock Shaker Village, and "THE TEEN TEN: A High School Art Show" at Pittsfield City Hall, organized by Miss Hall’s School students.

All 2013 Upstreet festival events and exhibits will take place in downtown Pittsfield’s Upstreet Cultural District, that stretches from the Colonial Theatre on South Street to Barrington Stage’s Sydelle and Lee Blatt Performing Arts Center in the North, and from First Street to Center Street.