Parties & Openings
March 16 - Williamstown
WCMA Season Celebration
March 3 - Lenox
Andrew DeVries Benefit Party
Feb. 23 - Pittsfield
Real Art Party
The Writerly Whirl of WordFest Weekend at The Mount
Sarah Todd reports from Lenox.
When writers come together, stories get passed around like dinner rolls. The authors’ dinner on opening night of The Mount’s second Berkshire WordFest writers’ festival, held at the historic estate of literary lion Edith Wharton, was no exception. On a terrace overlooking Laurel Lake, some of today’s leading wordsmiths swapped tales over couscous and roasted vegetables. Outgoing board chair at The Mount, Gordon Travers, wearing his trademark animal-print slippers, talked with The Atlantic’s Kate Bolick and The New Yorker’s Adam Gopnik (pictured together at left) about an upcoming trip to India. Just down the table, Francine Du Plessix Gray, author of the historical novel The Queen’s Lover, told biographer Angeline Goreau about being photographed by Richard Avedon. The vibrant evening was just the beginning of a weekend-long celebration of the power of the pen. The next day, after spirited poetry readings and panels on subjects like the literary lure of self-destruction, attendees mingled with authors at a special edition of The Mount’s Music After Hours. The Zack Cross Quartet, with special guest singer Jessica Freeman, cast a Jazz Age spell over the terrace as bibliophiles nibbled on baskets of herbed popcorn and sipped champagne with a shot of St. Germain elderflower liqueur. All told, it was a weekend of which Wharton—whose hostessing prowess made The Mount a prime destination for cultural movers and shakers in her own day—would be proud.
Heidi Julavits, author of The Vanishers, with Litchfield County’s Dani Shapiro, author of the memoir Devotion; Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil author John Berendt with writer and activist Sean Strub.
Brenda Opperman, Andrew DiRienzo, Annie Rye, and Debbie Opperman.