Nearly 50 Artists, Writers and Actors Set for WAM Theatre's 10X10on10 Festival, 2/16-24


Nearly fifty visual artists, writers, and actors participate in 10X10on10, a collaborative event of Alchemy Initiative and WAM Theatre. 10X10on10 is a multi-media theater and visual art exhibition exploring women's lives and inspiration throughout life's decades. The event is part of the 2nd annual 10X10 Upstreet Art Festival. The six performances and opening and closing art receptions will be held at Y Bar in Pittsfield from February 16 - 24.

Playing around with the idea that some of our biggest inspirations continue through the decades, while others change dramatically, Alchemy Initiative invited girls and women to reflect on the question: 'What are the 10 things that inspire you most at this decade of your life?'. From these inspirations, each girl/woman created a piece of artwork. The visual exhibit, curated by Diane Firtell, reads like a timeline of inspiration. Beginning as you enter at one side of the room is the work of young artists under age 10. The artwork and lists of what inspires the artists continue around the room, where it ends with the artwork of women aged 90 to 100. All pieces are sized 10x10 and are for sale.

Diane Firtell, artist and curator says: "This is exactly the type of collaboration that exemplifies the mission of Alchemy Initiative, by using the creative process to inspire and build community. It is so exciting to see how an idea comes to life through the arts. We have almost 25 participating artists in varying mediums including painting, photography, collage, and ceramics."

WAM Theatre presents an original theatre piece that weaves together stories, narratives and reflections by and about women exploring inspiration throughout life's decades. Director Sara Katzoff, co-founder and Artistic Director of the Berkshire Fringe, reached out to a variety of writers with the question 'What are the 10 things that inspire you most at this decade of your life?'. Working with a small ensemble of local professional actors, Sara has taken the diverse answers and created an original short performance piece.

Kristen van Ginhoven, Artistic Director of WAM Theatre says: "WAM is delighted to have the innovative Sara Katzoff directing the theatre portion of this collaboration. Everyone Sara has reached out as writer or performer has shown delight at the theme and excitement about exploring the ten things that inspire them at this point in their lives. We can't wait to share their work with the limited audience who will be lucky enough to get tickets to see it!"

With limited seating and show dates, pre-ordering tickets is encouraged. Tickets are just $10 and can be purchased at or by calling 1-800-838-3006.

Actors: Barbara Cardillo, Joan Coombs, Kelly Galvin and Erin Ouellette.

Visual artists include: Karen Arp-Sandel, Suzi Banks Baum, Lucy Burns, Roselle Chartock, Laurie Coyle, Sarah Dunton, Diane Firtell, Collette Hartcorn, Ellie Kreischer, Sophia Lee, Natalie Levine, Melanie Mowinski, Gabrielle Senza, Jordan Skowron, Nina Silver, Carol Stegeman, Diane Sullivan, Rebecca Weinman, Amelia Wood, Paige Wright and Parker Wright.
Writers include: Loren AliKhan, Suzi Banks Baum, Nakeida Bethel-Smith, Valerie Gene Costas, Linda Bidwell Delaney, Jane Burke, J. Thalia Cunningham, Nichole Dupont, Susan Dworkin, Mallory Fehrensen, Margot Faught, Mackenzie Sax, Rachel Siegel, Jenn Smith, Amanda Van Allen and Truus van Ginhoven.

Alchemy Initiative and WAM Theatre are encouraging the community to participate. Using the hashtag #10x10on10, they are calling for fans to post photos on Instagram of what inspires them at this decade in their life. Similarly, they are asking fans to post a list of their top ten inspirations on Twitter under the same hashtag.

Alchemy Initiative and WAM Theatre's 10x10 on 10 (a multi-media theater and visual art exhibition) will run at the Y Bar, 391 North Street, Pittsfield. All performances at 6pm. Exhibit hours 5:30 to 9 pm., Saturday, Feb 16 (with opening art reception from 5 to 6pm) *Performance nearly sold out, Sunday, Feb 17, Thursday, Feb 21, Friday, Feb 22, Saturday, Feb 23 *Performance nearly sold out, and Sunday, Feb 24 (with closing art reception from 7 to 8pm). How much: $10. To purchase tickets visit or call 1-800-838-3006.

10x10 Upstreet Art Festival: The 10x10 Festival is a collaborative effort spearheaded by Barrington Stage Company and the City of Pittsfield. Now in its second year, for ten days (February 14-24), new theatre, dance parties, art shows and spoken word, will warm up the Berkshires winter.

WAM Theatre: WAM Theatre is a theatre company based in the Berkshires of Massachusetts and the Capital Region of New York State. Inspired by the book 'Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide' by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn, WAM Theatre was founded in 2009 by professional theatre artists Kristen van Ginhoven and Leigh Strimbeck. WAM's philanthropic mission is two-fold; first, producing theatrical events for everyone, with a focus on women theatre artists and/or stories of women and girls; second, to donate a portion of the proceeds from those events to organizations that benefit women and girls. WAM has donated over $7000 to its beneficiaries by creating professional theatre for everyone that benefits women and girls.

Alchemy Initiative: Through the exploration of sustainability and creativity, Alchemy Initiative enlivens, engages and educates the greater Berkshires, fostering a healthier community. Founded in 2009, Alchemy Initiative produces programs and presents events across the County.

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