May
15
Sun
Reading of Play – “Mr. Fullerton, Between the Sheets”
May 15 @ 7:00 pm

Anne Undeland’s newest play, Mr. Fullerton, Between the Sheets was produced in 2021 by Great Barrington Public Theater and was nominated for four Berkshire Theater Critics Association Awards, including Outstanding New Play. After a sold-out run at Great Barrington Public Theater in 2021, Mr. Fullerton has been picked up by Gloucester Stage for a whole new production this summer! The Berkshire cast, along with brilliant director, Judy Braha, will do a reading at Ventfort Hall on Sunday, May 15 at 7 pm.

 Mr. Fullerton takes us to Paris in 1908 and brings together Edith Wharton, her dear friend Henry James, her lover Morton Fullerton and her Irish lady’s maid Posy in an eyebrow-raising retelling of Wharton’s actual mid-life romance. A literary and historical banquet of language, sex, mores and manners, Mr. Fullerton sparkles with wit while it examines class differences and the complexity of human relationship. More than anything, the play makes us fall in love — with Edith Wharton, the people in her life, and best of all, her glorious writing.

What the critics had to say: A fantasiasaid Jesse Green of the New York Timeswhich the playwright sets up perfectly. One of the most delightful works of historical fiction to be seen….Explodes with theatricality and imagination — Barbara Waldinger, Berkshire on Stage. Mr. Fullerton fans the flames…the writing is so good and the staging so clever — J. Peter Bergman, The Berkshire Edge. Wharton’s celebratory awakening…witty, urbane…and something more sobering and penetrating — Jeffrey Borak, The Berkshire Eagle.

Anne Undeland is a member of the Dramatists Guild, Howl Playwrights, The Writers’ Rock, and Berkshire Voices. Her work has been presented around the country with her short, The Kiss winning best play at the Ten Minute Play Festival at the West Side Y and her audio piece, Adeline’s Gambol, a finalist for the Miller Audio Award at the Missouri Review. Her full-length play, Lady Randy, was produced by WAM Theatre and performed at Shakespeare & Co in Lenox, MA in 2019,

Tickets are $25. Reservations are required. For reservations visit https://ventfort051522.eventbrite.com or call us at (413) 637-3206. Please note that all tickets are nonrefundable and non-exchangeable. Proof of vaccination and ID required.

May
20
Fri
Ghost Tours with Robert Oakes on May 6, 20, June 4 and 17
May 20 @ 7:30 pm

Join us as Robert Oakes, author of Ghosts of the Berkshires, leads you through the rooms and halls of this historic estate sharing tales of its hauntings. Stand in the places where the eerie encounters occurred, listen to the first-hand accounts of those who experienced them, and maybe even experience something unusual yourself. This is not an active investigation.

Robert Oakes is an author, teacher, storyteller, and singer/songwriter originally from northern New Jersey and currently residing in the Berkshires in Western Massachusetts. Since 2010 Robert has led the ghost tours at Edith Wharton’s The Mount in Lenox, MA, and has represented the museum and its ghosts on Syfy’s Ghost Hunters, Jeff Belanger’s New England Legends series on PBS, and The Apple Seed show on BYUradio. In 2020, Robert’s debut book, Ghosts of the Berkshires, was published by Arcadia Publishing.

The tours will take place on May 6 and 20, June 4 and 17 all at 7:30 pm. Admission is $27 and minimum age to attend is age 12. Reservations are required. To purchase tickets please call us at 413-637-3206. Please note that all tickets are non-refundable and non-exchangeable. Payment is required to make a reservation for an event. Proof of vaccination and ID required.

May
21
Sat
Documentary Film – “Gatsby in Connecticut, the Untold Story”
May 21 @ 3:30 pm

Filmmaker and director Robert Steven Williams will show his documentary film Gatsby in Connecticut, the Untold Story at Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum on Saturday, May 21 at 3:30 pm. The seventy-minute film will be followed by a discussion about the making of the documentary by Mr. Williams. Attendees are encouraged to wear 1920’s inspired attire. A special tea will be served following the program.

Scott Fitzgerald’s classic novel, The Great Gatsby, has become synonymous with the lifestyle of the rich and famous on Long Island’s Gold Coast. According to Williams, the writer’s inspiration came not from his time spent on Long Island’s Gold Coast, but rather from the wild summer of 1920 in Connecticut where the Fitzgeralds lived next door to a mystery millionaire who threw wild parties.

With local historian Richard Webb, Williams dug into the Princeton University Archives; they interviewed more than a dozen Fitzgerald scholars and met with Scott and Zelda’s granddaughter. Did that mysterious millionaire inspire the character of Jay Gatsby? Why does the geography of the novel reflect Westport more than it does Long Island’s Great Neck? These questions and many more will be answered. After the screening, Mr. Williams will also show a few clips that didn’t make the documentary.

Gatsby in Connecticut, featuring Sam Waterston and Keir Dullea, was chosen by The New Yorker as one of thirty-six Best Movies for 2020.  It was also selected by seventeen film festivals and won Best New England film at the Mystic Film Festival. Learn more about the documentary at GatsbyinCT.com. Robert Steven Williams is also an award-winning novelist. He won the silver medal for popular fiction from the Independent Book Publisher Awards for My Year as a Clown. He was nominated for Harvey for his work on the CBGB Comic Book series (executive producer and writer of one of the twelve stories in the series).

The admission for the Gatsby in Connecticut screening with director, Robert Steven Williams is $30 per person with advance reservation, $35 day of and $28 for Ventfort Hall members. Reservations are strongly recommended.  For tickets please call us at (413) 637-3206. Please note that all tickets are nonrefundable and non-exchangeable. Proof of vaccination and ID required.

May
28
Sat
Lawn Sale
May 28 @ 9:00 am – 2:00 pm

Come to our giant one-day Lawn Sale, organized and donated solely by members of the program committee, staff, volunteers and board of directors of Ventfort Hall on Saturday, May 28 from 9 am to 2 pm.

What could be more appropriate than a one-day lawn sale of cast-offs that could become valued treasures for you! Only at historic Ventfort Hall!

Lawn Sale to benefit Ventfort Hall

Jun
3
Fri
CLOSING AT 2 PM FOR A PRIVATE EVENT
Jun 3 @ 6:52 pm – 7:52 pm
Jun
4
Sat
Ghost Tours with Robert Oakes on May 6, 20, June 4 and 17
Jun 4 @ 7:30 pm

Join us as Robert Oakes, author of Ghosts of the Berkshires, leads you through the rooms and halls of this historic estate sharing tales of its hauntings. Stand in the places where the eerie encounters occurred, listen to the first-hand accounts of those who experienced them, and maybe even experience something unusual yourself. This is not an active investigation.

Robert Oakes is an author, teacher, storyteller, and singer/songwriter originally from northern New Jersey and currently residing in the Berkshires in Western Massachusetts. Since 2010 Robert has led the ghost tours at Edith Wharton’s The Mount in Lenox, MA, and has represented the museum and its ghosts on Syfy’s Ghost Hunters, Jeff Belanger’s New England Legends series on PBS, and The Apple Seed show on BYUradio. In 2020, Robert’s debut book, Ghosts of the Berkshires, was published by Arcadia Publishing.

The tours will take place on May 6 and 20, June 4 and 17 all at 7:30 pm. Admission is $27 and minimum age to attend is age 12. Reservations are required. To purchase tickets please call us at 413-637-3206. Please note that all tickets are non-refundable and non-exchangeable. Payment is required to make a reservation for an event. Proof of vaccination and ID required.

Jun
12
Sun
Premier of Children’s Play – “Spyjinks”
Jun 12 @ 1:00 pm

Self-described kooky Creator-in-Chief Don Jordan of the Nutshell Playhouse will bring his troupe to appear in an original production, Spyjinks, premiering for the first time at Ventfort Hall Mansion and Gilded Age Museum on Sunday, June 12 at 1 pm. The program is appropriate for children of all ages accompanied by their grown-ups, according to Jordan.  Kids ages 3 – 10 will particularly enjoy the show. Admission tickets are $15 for adults, $7.00 for ages 4 – 17 and ages 3 and under are free. The performance will be held outside on the mansion grounds, weather permitting. Please bring chairs or blankets.

Four intrepid spies and a parrot named Taco are on their very first spy mission. They must rescue the beautiful Jolandalinda, who has been kidnapped and hidden on Malumboo, the Island of Very Bad Luck. How will they rescue her?

Follow their adventures as they battle the ferocious Malumboosquito, sink up to their bellybuttons in quicksand, get unexpected help from a local llama, defy gravity, learn to speak backwards, and a lot more silliness. Oh, and did I mention the toucan? Will they succeed? There is only one way to find out…

Jordan, Artistic Director/Accompanist, founded the Nutshell Playhouse in 2003.  Before then, he taught and performed with Teatro Studio and I Gesti di Roma in Italy before being invited to perform with Mummenschanz on Broadway. He directed the Pan Twilight Circus’s 1995 production of Creatures of the Lawn, and served as Artistic Director of the Pickle Family Circus.

Jordan has taught as an adjunct faculty member at Smith College, Berkshire Community College, Shakespeare and Co., Barnard College and the Julliard School.  He has also taught at schools in France and Spain.  He is a graduate of the Ecole Jacques Lecoq in Paris.

Nutshell Playhouse productions have been performed throughout the Berkshires, including the Barrington Stage Company, Berkshire Athenaeum, Main Street Stage, The Gutherie Center, Clark Art Institute and Whitney Center for the Arts.

Reservations for attending the performances are required by calling Ventfort Hall at 413-637-3206.  Please note that all tickets are nonrefundable and non-exchangeable. Proof of vaccination including ages 5 and over, ID for ages 18 and over. The mansion is located at 104 Walker Street in Lenox.

Jun
14
Tue
Tuesday Tea & Talk – A Dirty Year 1872: Sex, Suffrage and Scandal in Gilded Age New York
Jun 14 @ 4:00 pm

Brooklyn storyteller and author Bill Greer will kick off Ventfort Hall’s 2022 Tuesday Summer Tea & Talk series on June 14 at 4:00 pm. He will talk about the city of his book A Dirty Year: Sex, Suffrage, and Scandal in Gilded Age New York. Tea will be served after his presentation.

The year is 1872, seven years after the Civil War.  New York is convulsing with social upheaval and sexual revolution. In this illustrated talk, Bill Greer paints a picture of the city from the man’s world of Wall Street to the mansions of Fifth Avenue, from the smut dealers of Nassau Street to the limelights of Broadway, from pious Christians to free-loving iconoclasts. He highlights larger-than-life characters who fascinated the city – suffragist and presidential candidate Victoria Woodhull, vice hunter Anthony Comstock, celebrity preacher Henry Ward Beecher, and more – and the issues of the day that play out through their lives, issues that resonate today, from sexual impropriety and reproductive rights to attacks on the press and the chasm between rich and poor.

Bill Greer has spent decades exploring New York, along with the world.  As a travel writer and Internet entrepreneur, he built the early web’s leading community for outdoor adventure. His turn to telling New York’s stories began with his novel The Mevrouw Who Saved Manhattan, exploring the city’s founding as New Amsterdam. He has served as an officer and trustee of the New Netherland Institute, chairing the Institute’s program to establish the New Netherland Research Center and receiving the Institute’s Howard Hageman award. More recently, he has focused on New York’s Gilded Age with his nonfiction narrative A Dirty Year: Sex, Suffrage, and Scandal in Gilded Age New York. Bill holds a Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. He has spoken on New York history throughout the Hudson Valley.

Tickets are $30 for members and with advance reservation; $35 day of; $22 for students 22 and under. Reservations are required as seats are limited. For reservations call us at (413) 637-3206. Please note that all tickets are nonrefundable and non-exchangeable. Proof of vaccination and ID are required. The historical mansion is located at 104 Walker Street in Lenox. The summer series of Tea & Talks is sponsored in part by board member Lucille Landa and William Landa.

ABOUT BILL’S BOOK

A Dirty Year: Sex, Suffrage, and Scandal in Gilded Age New York is a nonfiction narrative of 1872 New York, a city convulsing with social upheaval and sexual revolution and beset with all the excitement and challenges a moment of transformation brings.  As the year begins, the New York Times headlines four stories that symptomize the decay in public morals the editors so frequently decry.  Financier Jim Fisk is gunned down in a love triangle. Suffragist and free lover Victoria Woodhull is running for president.  Vice hunter Anthony Comstock battles smut dealers poisoning children’s minds.  Abortionists are thriving.

Through the year these stories intertwine in ways unimaginable, pulling in others famous and infamous – suffragists Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Brooklyn’s beloved preacher Henry Ward Beecher, the nation’s richest tycoon Cornelius Vanderbilt, William Howe, preeminent counsel to the criminal element, and more.

Through the lives of these larger-than life characters, the issues of the day play out – rigged elections, everyday shootings, attacks on the press, sexual impropriety, reproductive rights, the chasm between rich and poor – issues holding up a mirror to the country today.  Political parties split over a bitterly contested election, suffragist battles suffragist over bettering women’s place in society, pious saints fight soulless sinners, until at year-end, this jumble of conflicts explodes in the greatest sensation of the nineteenth century.

Jun
17
Fri
Ghost Tours with Robert Oakes on May 6, 20, June 4 and 17
Jun 17 @ 7:30 pm

Join us as Robert Oakes, author of Ghosts of the Berkshires, leads you through the rooms and halls of this historic estate sharing tales of its hauntings. Stand in the places where the eerie encounters occurred, listen to the first-hand accounts of those who experienced them, and maybe even experience something unusual yourself. This is not an active investigation.

Robert Oakes is an author, teacher, storyteller, and singer/songwriter originally from northern New Jersey and currently residing in the Berkshires in Western Massachusetts. Since 2010 Robert has led the ghost tours at Edith Wharton’s The Mount in Lenox, MA, and has represented the museum and its ghosts on Syfy’s Ghost Hunters, Jeff Belanger’s New England Legends series on PBS, and The Apple Seed show on BYUradio. In 2020, Robert’s debut book, Ghosts of the Berkshires, was published by Arcadia Publishing.

The tours will take place on May 6 and 20, June 4 and 17 all at 7:30 pm. Admission is $27 and minimum age to attend is age 12. Reservations are required. To purchase tickets please call us at 413-637-3206. Please note that all tickets are non-refundable and non-exchangeable. Payment is required to make a reservation for an event. Proof of vaccination and ID required.

Jun
21
Tue
Tuesday Tea & Talk – Before HBO’s ‘The Gilded Age’
Jun 21 @ 4:00 pm

Did the actors of Julian Fellowes’ latest period drama look familiar? Berkshire Eagle Features Editor Jennifer Huberdeau will tell us what past appearances these actors have made here in Berkshire County during her presentation at Ventfort Hall on Tuesday, June 21 at 4:00 pm. Her talk will be followed by a Victorian tea.

Before appearing on HBO’s hit, The Gilded Age, many of the show’s actors appeared on stages across “inland Newport,” as the Berkshires was known. This talk will explore which actors have performed in the Berkshires, as well as the real-life connections of some of its characters.

Jennifer Huberdeau is the editor of Berkshire Landscapes, a new arts and culture magazine published by the Berkshire Eagle, and is the features editor of the Berkshire Eagle, overseeing the weekend edition of Berkshires Week, as well as the food page, Berkshires Week and Summer Previews. She is 2021 Rabkin Foundation Award Winner for her work in visual art journalism and wrote the Berkshires Week column, “The Cottager” for three years. She resides in Adams with her husband and two children.

Tickets are $30 for members and with advance reservation; $35 day of; $22 for students 22 and under. Reservations are required as seats are limited. For reservations call us at (413) 637-3206. Please note that all tickets are nonrefundable and non-exchangeable. Proof of vaccination and ID are required. The historical mansion is located at 104 Walker Street in Lenox. The summer series of Tea & Talks is sponsored in part by board member Lucille Landa and William Landa.