Common Ground on the Hill 2010

June 01, 2010

With a lineup of dozens of offerings – including “Native American Flute Construction,” “Music, Art and Social Change,” and “Learning Arabic” – Common Ground on the Hill will mark its 16th anniversary during two weeks of workshops, classes, dances, art exhibits and concerts July 4-10 and July 11-16 at McDaniel College.

“Our world is one of immense diversity,” says Common Ground founder and recording artist Walt Michael ’68. “As we explore and celebrate this diversity, we find that what we have in common with one another far outweighs our differences. Our common ground is our humanity, often best expressed by artistic traditions that have enriched human experience through the ages.”

Nationally and internationally known artists, filmmakers, musicians and scholars visit campus for the two-week series of workshops, known as Traditions Weeks, which are consecutive but separate weeks of workshops in music and visual arts, concerts, dances, dramatic performances, lectures and art shows. During these weeks, workshops meet daily on a five-period schedule with concerts, dances and other gatherings in the evening hours.

Common Ground’s youth program, World Village, is open to children ages 5-12 who have completed kindergarten and whose parents are enrolled at Common Ground on the Hill. Children will participate in music, dance, drama, crafts and other activities that draw upon many cultures around the U.S. and the world. Common Ground artists and musicians make scheduled stops at World Village to share their music, dance and art with the children.

Sandwiched between the Traditions Weeks is a two-day, four-stage Roots Music and Arts Festival July 10-11 at the Carroll County Farm Museum in Westminster. The festival will feature Traditions Weeks musicians and artists, as well as Grammy recipient Kathy Mattea, bluegrass standouts the Claire Lynch Band, Scotland’s Paul McKenna Band, Footworks, Sankofa Dance Theater, Walt Michael & Co., Scott Ainslie and Lea Gilmore.

Michael started Common Ground on the Hill after discovering the power and beauty of traditional music while working with the poor and disenfranchised in the Deep South during the 1960s. Common Ground on the Hill seeks to bridge the cultural gaps among people from diverse racial, ethnic, religious, age and gender groups through traditional art and music.

For more information about Common Ground workshops and to register, visit or call the Common Ground on the Hill office at 410-857-2771.