Pittsfield’s 10X10 Festival will Return in 2013
Tuesday March 20, 2012
Tony Dombrowlski, Berkshire Eagle Staff
The first contemporary arts festival to take place in downtown Pittsfield during the winter months will return for a second season in 2013.
Director of Cultural Development Megan Whilden said the city will hold the second 10X10 On North Festival next year from Feb. 14-24.
Last month’s festival, which took place Feb. 16-26, drew more than 3,000 visitors to its 44 performances, according to the Barrington Stage Co., which compiled the numbers. BSC hosted the event in conjunction with the City of Pittsfield. The Berkshire Eagle was the event’s lead media sponsor.
“It was a great success,” Whilden said. “We had a lot of interest from additional organizations and artists who want to participate.
“It’s a great opportunity for artists to be involved in something creative in the middle of the winter,” she said.
BSC press director Charlie Siedenberg indicated the decision to bring back the event next year was an easy one for all involved. “We had over 3,000 people for the first year — that’s incredible,” he said.
The event included a mixture of plays, films, comedy, music and art exhibits. More than 120 new works were performed, including 50 created specifically for 10X10 On North. Performances took place at several downtown venues.
This year’s event did take place when public schools were on vacation, and during Presidents Day weekend. Siedenberg said mild weather also was a factor in the festival’s
success, but Whilden noted that the warm conditions also limited the number of people who would normally be here.
“It’s interesting because in one sense it was good for us because there was no giant storm that sent everyone home,” Whilden said. “But on the other hand, it was such a mild winter that there were less people here overall.
Siedenberg said each group involved in the festival kept their own attendance figures, then sent them to Barrington Stage’s marketing director, Laura Roudabush.
Downtown restaurants also reported higher than usual traffic during the festival’s 11-day run, according to BSC.
“I saw that myself,” Whilden said.
Mayor Daniel L. Bianchi is also pleased that 10X10 On North will return.
“The 10X10 On North Festival adds to the City of Pittsfield’s year-round vibrancy and helps make our community more attractive to new businesses, new residents and new visitors,” said Bianchi in a written statement. “I look forward to seeing an even bigger impact in 2013.”