Jacob’s Pillow On the Road 2021

At Across Berkshire County: Jul 31 - Aug 8

Event Dates

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This event took place across Berkshire county from July 31 to August 8, 2021.

Free Pillow Pop-Ups around Berkshire County over two weekends. Pack a blanket or your favorite outdoor chair, invite your family and friends, and bring a snack to enjoy this 45 minute pop-up performance in a park near you!

Performances happened on a uniquely designed portable stage and featured local performers, as well as the all-female intergenerational Ladies of Hip-Hop Dance Collective (July 31 – August 1) known for illuminating the strength, power, and diversity of women in hip-hop and Philadelphia-based Kulu Mele African Dance & Drum Ensemble (August 7-8) dedicated to preserving the traditional dance and music of West Africa and the African diaspora.


Location: North Becket Park – Maple Street
Performance Dates and Times:
Saturday July 31 at 1pm
Sunday August 8 at 5pm


Location: Town Hall Park
Performance Dates and Times:
Sunday August 1 at 5pm
Sunday August 8 at 1pm


Location: River Grove Park – Corner of River & Houghton St.
Performance Dates and Times:
Sunday August 1 at 1pm
Saturday August 7 at 5pm


Location: The Common, 100 First St
Performance Date and Time: Saturday July 31 at 5pm

Location: Rosemary and Reverend Willard Durant Park, 30 John St
Performance Date and Time: Saturday August 7 at 1pm

Ladies of Hip-Hop Dance Collective, LDC, is an all female intergenerational dance collective that creates dance works illuminating the strength, power and diversity of women in Hip-Hop. Ever present in the work is the freestyle, ciphering, dancing with your family… call and response aspects of cultural dance forms that serve as the essence of street and club dance culture; while still exploring the space of cultural forms in proscenium performance. Founded by director and choreographer Michele Byrd-McPhee, LDC creates collaborative works that celebrate and center feminist narratives examining the intersections of gender, race, and resistance.

Black Dancing Bodies Project
Led by Ladies of Hip-Hop Executive Director Michele Byrd-McPhee and LOHH Chairwoman, LaTasha Barnes, this intersectional project captures the knowledge, beauty, and power of Black female street dancers. It seeks to look beyond the traditional lens of exposure for Black bodies in dance, which has overwhelmingly focused on Eurocentric dance aesthetics, including modern, contemporary, and ballet.

Launched in 2018, The Black Dancing Bodies Project is an ongoing documentary effort to represent Black women in street and club dance culture (including street and club dance, hip-hop, house dance, Waacking, and Lite Feet) through a series of sessions that include photography and interviews.

Addressing the erasure, miscoding, and often intentional exclusion of Black women in art, BDB has embarked on the journey to collect, preserve and tell the stories of these women. This intersectional transgenerational project captures the knowledge, beauty, and power of Black female street dancers that looks beyond the traditional lens of exposure for Black bodies in dance.

This project is of immense importance for the continued empowerment of women working in the world’s most popular culture, Hip-Hop. Women remain underrepresented in Hip-Hop, and current representations often negatively impact women’s sense of self-worth within the community. The need for women-led change to the culture is relevant now more than ever.

This project specifically focuses on Black women as a subset within the overall narrative and mission; however, it is just as important to achieving equity in the arts.

Inspired by the voices of its ancestors, Kulu Mele African Dance & Drum Ensemble preserves, presents and perpetuates the traditional dance and music of West Africa and the African Diaspora. Based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Kulu Mele’s performance repertoire features authentic, traditional dance and drumming from West Africa, Cuba and the African Diaspora, as well as contemporary American hip hop. Kulu Mele performs year-round throughout Philadelphia and tours nationally and internationally. Kulu Mele has performed at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM), the Frank Gehry-designed Disney Hall at The Los Angeles Music Center, the Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts at UPenn and – now and in 2015 – at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival. In September, 2015, Kulu Mele performed as part of the official entertainment during the Philadelphia visit of Pope Francis. Founded in 1969 by celebrated percussionist Robert Crowder, 50-year-old-Kulu Mele has been led by artistic director Dorothy Wilkie for more than three decades.

Lead sponsor: Mill Town Capital

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