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Arts Week Returns to Canterbury Shaker Village

Five lucky artists are moving to Canterbury Shaker Village in July, not to become Shakers but to find new inspiration and share their creative process with visitors.  Amid the lush and peaceful hilltop setting of historic buildings and gardens, there will be painters and sculptors, plus yoga, dance, theater, live music, and aerialists throughout the two-week celebration of the arts from Tuesday, July 23 through Saturday, August 3.   The complete schedule of events is at


Arts Week culminates on August 3rd with the world premiere of The Changemakers, a collaboration between Ballet Misha and N Squared, two dance companies from Manchester.  “This is a multifaceted investigation into the Shaker values of gender equality, inclusion and love,” notes Village Trustee Joan Brodsky, whose NH Dance Collaborative is a sponsor of the event.


On Sunday July 28th, Theater Kapow of Manchester will stage a reading of As It Is in Heaven by Arlene Hutton, accompanied by the Canterbury Singers of Concord Community Music School performing original Shaker music.  The play depicts a fictional group of Shaker sisters grappling with change in their community, and faces the universal tensions that arise when an established order is threatened by outside forces.  


On Wednesday July 24th and Thursday July 25th, children can take part in interactive workshops in dance and yoga.  On August 3rd, families can enjoy Shaker Saturday activities in the morning and a dynamic performance by the graceful aerialists, Go Ninja, of Manchester, at 1 pm.  Children are admitted for free on Shaker Saturdays, always the first Saturday of the month at Shaker Village.


Dance artists will join the guided tours at the Village on Thursday July 25th and Thursday August 1st, subtly bringing the tour narrative to life through their complementary movements choreographed to reflect the Shaker lives once lived there. 


Painters Ann Saunderson, Jason Correia, and Patrick Cunha, video/performance artist Rachelle Beaudoin and ceramic artist Brandy Williams will each live and work at the Village throughout the two weeks, setting up their own studios and sharing artistry with visitors.  “It’s exciting to walk into these Shaker buildings and meet someone who is tapping into the Shaker story and giving it new expression,” said Maggie Stier, interim director of the museum.  Artists may have work for sale as well.


Five pieces of outdoor sculpture also grace the Village grounds during Arts Week.  Created by metal sculptor Will Jandl from Brookline NH, the ribbon-like abstract forms interject modern lines into the traditional ordered layout of the Shaker buildings, juxtaposing free-form shapes with the structured historic Village character.


Arts Week Sponsors are NH Dance Collaborative, the Joan Brodsky Fund, CCA Global Partners, and Brady-Sullivan.


This year marks the 50th anniversary of Canterbury Shaker Village’s incorporation as museum.  In honor of that milestone, this summer’s celebration of the arts is inspired by the concept of change. Throughout their 200-year history, Canterbury Shakers anticipated and embraced change, and the last sisters created a non-profit to assure that their community would be preserved and their legacy shared with future generations.

Canterbury Shaker Village is open Tuesday through Sunday, 10 am – 4 pm. 

Can’t make it to see Canterbury Shaker Village during the day?  Wednesday evening tours will be offered on July 24, August 7, & August 21 at 7 pm.  Enjoy a serene summer evening at the Village and experience the most successful utopian society in American firsthand on a 75-minute guided tour.  Tickets will be sold in advance over the phone (603-783-9511 x284), or at the Museum Store the day of the event starting at approximately 6:30 pm, and depending on availability.

Visit for more information about all of the Village’s 2019 special events and workshops, the benefits of membership, and opportunities to hold meetings, retreats, and special events at the Village. 


Canterbury Shaker Village, a National Historic Landmark, is located at 288 Shaker Road in Canterbury, New Hampshire, just off Route 106 south of Laconia and 12 miles north of Concord, NH.




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