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Holliston - Local Town Pages

Celebrating 10 years of community building at the Hopkinton Center for the Arts

Mar 01, 2021 03:20PM ● By Susan Manning

The Hopkinton Center for the Arts (HCA) has been an integral part of the community for the past 10 years, and was not about to let the pandemic bring it down.

“The center is a nonprofit community arts organization that works to create a place for people of all ages and abilities to study, enjoy, and participate in the visual and performing arts under one roof,” according to Kelly Grill, HCA Director.

HCA does this by providing year-round free and low-cost events and concerts, performance opportunities for local and national artists, educational partnerships with senior and disability organizations, and tuition assistance scholarship support.

And despite “Hopkinton“ being in its name, the center serves a large population. In fact, last year the HCA was able to offer over 200 classes to more than 2,000 students from more than 200 towns and cities in Massachusetts and host over 50 productions and exhibitions on-site in its state-of-the-art performance and gallery spaces. 

All of that was despite the COVID-19 pandemic. According to Grill, the staff at the center was able to adapt the facility and its programming to meet the needs of an unprecedented time. 

“Our students wanted a way to continue their studies and our artist-instructors did an amazing job bringing their classes online,” said Grill. “They created class packets for students to pick-up and turned their home studios into classrooms where they could stream lessons.”

This past summer, the HCA opened up its annual programs for kids, but with new modifications including limited class sizes and providing more tents for classes to spend time outdoors as much as possible, while following guidelines for social distancing and mask requirements. 

As the world moves—we hope— toward the light at the end of the COVID-19, the HCA continues to offer both online and in-person programming. Among those offerings are: 

• Art classes

• Dance program 

• Ceramics program

• Theater classes, including Actor’s Studio with Tony-Nominated Jere Shea 

• Private music lessons

Registration for summer programs for students ages 4 and up is now open. Space is limited and the current early registration discount ends March 31. 

In addition to the summer program for students, there are also other programs available:

“We want the HCA to be a place for the community to gather and we continue to develop programming that makes the arts accessible to all,” said Grill.

Coming up the HCA has a number of events scheduled, including a new Diversity in the Arts artist talk series, a new online web series “The Journey with Jere Shea,” a free children’s cultural art workshop, a March 14 children’s online concert with Stacey Peasley, and a March 17 online Celtic Concert with Stanley and Grimm. Plus, this summer will be packed with outdoor music concerts for audiences of all ages. Ticket links and registration information can be found online.

About the HCA

In 2015, the HCA opened its new arts center, consisting of a newly renovated, two-story barn with classroom space, a brand new gallery, and a 200-seat performance space. The Center houses classes in dance, music, fine arts, theater, and film, and is now home to theatrical, dance and musical performances year-round. In 2016, an anonymous donor gifted funds to renovate the farmhouse first floor into a ceramics studio. 

HCA Is located at 98 Hayden Rowe St., Hopkinton. Its website is: