Programs Presented by The Clarice

Artistic Planning at The Clarice

The Clarice presents programs that advance the learning and research of students and faculty at the University of Maryland while participating in developing our community’s arts ecosystem. By honoring artists and creative innovators who have broken barriers before us, we amplify people, partnership, process and performance. We aspire to reflect a narrative of equity, inclusion and representation of all voices.




Programs presented by The Clarice are supported in part by the Maryland State Arts Council and and The Morris and Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation.

Artists in Residence


The Clarice’s Artists in Residence program gives artists research, engagement and venue time, along with resources to develop new work in a collaborative and teaching relationship with University of Maryland students, Clarice professional staff and local community members. Projects are chosen based on whether the subject matter or themes of the performance are connected to contemporary social issues relevant to Clarice audiences and society at large.


BlackLight Summit


The Clarice’s BlackLight Summit aims to activate the unimagined possibilities in dance–it is a convening that envisions dance as a conduit to galvanize resilience and inventiveness. In 2021-22, the summit explored three fundamental inquiries: “What/who are we becoming?” “How do we return to one another?” and “Does progress equal healing?” Throughout the year, the BlackLight Summit fosters community connection by facilitating a series of mentoring and professional development opportunities, conversations and performances.



Maryland Day


Maryland Day is an opportunity  to explore the creativity of Terps! This annual campus-wide open house features a festival of artistic and creative performances, experiences and activities at The Clarice and across the University of Maryland campus.


National Orchestral Institute + Festival


The National Orchestral Institute + Festival trains aspiring orchestral musicians, composers, conductors and arts administrators from across the country in a month of dynamic music-making and professional exploration. Musicians are chosen through a rigorous audition process. Every year, these young artists present passionate and awe-inspiring performances of adventuresome repertoire both at The Clarice and in the College Park, Maryland community. Trailblazing conductor Marin Alsop was appointed as the first-ever Music Director of the National Orchestral Institute + Festival in 2020. In addition to conducting innovative programs onstage at The Clarice, Maestra Alsop launched the NOI+F Conducting Academy for rising young conductors in 2021. In 2015, NOI+F began a partnership with Naxos to record one concert of all-American music each year—Naxos’ first partnership with a summer festival of its kind. The 2019 recording “Ruggles, Stucky, Harbison” received a Grammy nomination in the “Best Orchestral Performance” category.





Established in 2014 through a partnership between The Clarice and Joe’s Movement Emporium, NextLOOK supports the development of new music, plays, dance and other experiences by performing artists based in DC, Maryland and Virginia who want to understand how their audience can become a creative partner. By removing logistical barriers and providing a sounding board for artists creating new work, NextLOOK invests in the regional DC/MD/VA arts ecology and creates an accessible, exploratory environment that connects intriguing artists with adventurous audiences. All performances are held at Joe’s Movement Emporium and are pay-what-you-wish.



NextNOW Fest


The Clarice’s NextNOW Fest is an inspiring arts experience that celebrates imagination, creativity and community. By amplifying the voices of intriguing, inventive artists from around campus and our community, NextNOW Fest creates a forward-looking microcosm where art transforms our future and (re)connects us all. NextNOW Fest is a signature event in University of Maryland's new Arts for All initiative, which leverages the combined power of the arts, technology and social justice to address the grand challenges of our time.



Visting Artist Series


The Clarice's Visiting Artist Series features regional, national and international artists who visit campus for performances and other activities. Beyond the stunning work these artists bring to the stage, they are also committed to extensive engagement that creates exciting connections with students and the community. These interactions happen through class visits, masterclasses, shared meals and conversations.



Vital Signs


In an effort to support student voice and action related to the Black Lives Matter movement, The Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center has partnered with the UMD Office of Diversity and Inclusion and UMD Office of Multicultural Involvement and Community Advocacy and Black Terps Matter to offer Vital Signs: Creative Arts for Black Lives Mini-Grants. These mini-grants are awarded each semester to UMD student artists who are creating projects that affirm Black life and vitality and interrogate white supremacy and anti-Blackness.