Northampton Arts Council

The Northampton Arts Council is a city board and a non-profit organization whose goal is to support and promote the arts in Northampton. Originally created as a Local Arts Lottery Council, it began its work by administering a grants program in which proceeds from a state lottery are distributed to local artists, arts groups, and public schools.


The Northampton Arts Council works to support and nurture the arts in the city of Northampton. The Council awards grants twice each year to artists and arts groups from both state and locally-raised funds, and seeks to improve public awareness of the arts. Its' goals include maintaining and preserving the rich and diverse cultural heritage of Northampton, programming such annual events of interest to the community as Transperformance and Four Sundays in February, and advocating on behalf of the arts community.

Founded in 1980, the Northampton Arts Council has an all-volunteer board, and staff, consisting of a director, a part-time events producer, one seasonal assistant producer, and one student intern from Smith College. Each fall, the Massachusetts Cultural Council (MCC), a state agency, allocates money to all of Massachusetts' 351 cities and towns through 329 Local Cultural Councils (LCCs), of which the Northampton Arts Council is one, in support of community arts activities. This is the largest decentralized program of its kind in the United States.

In addition to administering the LCC program, The Northampton Arts Council was the first cultural council in the Commonwealth to raise money for a second round of funding every spring, with only a few other LCC's following our lead. The ArtsEZ Spring Grant round is made possible by two major fundraising events produced by the Northampton Arts Council; first, Transperformance, an end-of-summer music festival at Look Park held every August, and second, the Four Sundays in February Series which includes events such as the Silver Chord Bowl, KidsBestFest, and the Really Big Show. In addition to grant programs, the Northampton Arts Council offers arts enrichment programs in the public schools, initiates public art projects and advocates for the arts in the city. We also produce or help produce many other events in Northampton including but not limited to Northampton Summer Concert Series, RETROFAIRE, Cinema Northampton, Bi-ennial Exhibit at Forbes Library, Northampton Film Festival, Northampton Print and Book Fair.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Double Edge Theatre’s Summer Spectacle: WE THE PEOPLE opens July 19

WHAT: Double Edge Theatre’s Summer Spectacle: WE THE PEOPLE
WHEN: Previews: July 14-15, Performances: July 19-Aug 6 (Wed-Sun) & Tues Aug 1 8pm, rain or shine
WHERE: Double Edge Theatre, 948 Conway Road, Ashfield, MA

Purchase tickets at
or call 413.628.0277 for more info

We The People has its roots in Double Edge’s thirty-five-year question of what makes up identity. What are the paradoxes, stories, and dreams that make up a human being, a community, a society? The audience will experience the beauty of the hills, pastures, and gardens of the Farm surrounded by music and flight, weaving through different paths toward a culminating grand scene.

Through this work we ask how we choose to define ourselves and our evolving communities, beyond what we are told by the dictating voices and forces of our society. The audience will walk freely between intimate installations where characters from nature, history, and imagination create and inhabit lyrical, integrated worlds. We The People is a traveling rumination on finding freedom through creativity, a profound relationship with the land, and a curiosity and reverence for past generations. 

Zea Mays Printmaking Exhibit in Hosmer Gallery

WHAT: Zea Mays Printmaking Studio New Works
WHEN: July 5-31, 2017 Reception: Monday July 31, 5:00-7:30 PM
WHERE: Hosmer Gallery, Forbes Library, 20 West Street. Northampton, MA.

A collection of new prints by 63 members of Zea Mays Printmaking Studio will be on display in July. The exhibit features a wide breadth of styles and techniques, all using non-toxic, alternative printmaking processes with a clear commitment to innovation and quality.

Founded in 2000, Zea Mays Printmaking is a studio, workshop, gallery, educational facility and research center dedicated to the safest and most sustainable printmaking practices available. Attracting artists worldwide, Zea Mays Printmaking shares its
research into safer printmaking practices through workshops and tutorials. 

Northampton Jazz Workshop features guest saxophonist Scott Mullett

WHAT: Northampton Jazz Workshop features guest saxophonist Scott Mullett
WHEN: Tuesday June 27th, 7:30 to 8:30PM and again at 9PM
WHERE: City Sports Grille at Spare Time Northampton, 525 Pleasant St, Northampton.

We are looking forward to playing again with one of our most popular and longest running guest artists. Scott Mullett, besides being and exciting and powerful saxophonist is also an exceptional and committed teacher. He has been teaching at Keene State for many years and has been instrumental in bringing along and inspiring many gifted young musicians, some of whom participate regularly in our jam sessions. 

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Donna Verville’s Digital Photography at Arcadia

Donna Verville’s Digital Photography

WHEN: July 2017, Monday-Saturday 9:00 am-3:00 pm
WHERE: Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary 127 Combs Rd., Easthampton, MA 01027

Gallery Information:
The gallery is located in the Nature Center.

Gallery Hours:
Monday-Saturday 9:00 am-3:00 pm
Sunday seasonally

Contact Information:

The Mother Plucker Harpists at Hotel Northampton Every Thursday

WHAT: The Mother Plucker Harpists & Other Plucker Valley Musicians
WHERE: The Hotel Northampton, 36 King St, Northampton, MA
WHEN: Thursdays, 5:00-7:00pm

Local harpists including Rosemary Caine and her fellow colleagues play every Thursday in the Hotel Northampton Atrium (lobby) from 5:00pm to 7:00pm. The artists play for the benefit of Whole Children, a local organization that works for children with disabilities. The hotel series features a great roster of some of the Valley's best harpists.

Upcoming Performances:
June 22 - Rosie Caine, Harp
               Ann Walaszek, Harp
               Corki Demers, Guitar / Mandolin
June 29 - Piper Pichette, Harp

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Northampton Jazz Workshop features guest tenor saxophonist Houston Person

Northampton Jazz Workshop features guest tenor saxophonist Houston Person 
Tuesday, June 20th, 7:30 to 8:30pm and again at 9:00-10:00pm
City Sports Grille at Spare Time Northampton, 525 Pleasant St. Northampton, MA.

This week we have a special treat in store for us all. The great tenor saxophonist Houston Person will be fronting to band for two sets; at 7:30 and then again at 9PM. As a result there will be no jam session. Houston is one of the most respected tenor players in world today, having recorded over 80 albums under his own name and appearing on many more as a sideman. He is most known for his sassy sound in the soul-jazz idiom but is a master of swing and bop and ballad for sure. He started recording and touring in the 60's and hasn't slowed down a bit, still traveling all over the globe making great music. This will be Houston's fifth appearance with us and we can't wait. Come early for good seats but again, there will two shows so hopefully we can accommodate everyone interested in hearing this master of the music.

Join Make Music Day Northampton 2017

Make Music Day Northampton 2017
Wednesday June 21 6:00pm
Forbes Library Lawn, 20 West Street. Northampton, MA. 

Since it was started in 1982 in France as "Fete de la Musique", musicians have been gathering in cities all over the world to play music together on the summer solstice. This year Northampton is joining the party with a multi-part celebration on the lawn at Forbes Library. Our ukulele club, AEIOUkes, will be hosting a sing-along at Forbes Library lawn at 6 pm next Wednesday, June 21. We'll be singing six songs:

When The Saints Go Marching In
All My Loving
You Are My Sunshine
Five Foot Two (Eyes of Blue)
This Land Is Your Land

We'd love you to join us. Come around 5:30, bring your stringed instrument and your voice. If you'd like sheet music for the songs, reply to this email and I'll send it to you. When it's over, stick around for a show by our great local reggae band, the Alchemystics.


Connect & Follow

Artist News

    Council News

      Blog Archive