Past Event: July 7-12: Common Ground on the Hill

Finding Common Ground—on the Hill

The Vanaver Caravan has been teaching workshops at Common Ground since it’s inception 25 years ago! Every year, Livia, Bill and co. pack up the Vana-Van and head down to Westminster Maryland to teach and learn, dance and sing, talk and listen, write, craft and laugh with a huge pool of diverse and talented artists and thinkers. Come join this incredible community for three individual weeks of in-depth courses in art, dance, a variety of musical instruments, film, writing, songwriting, spoken word and literary arts, along with a broad range of discussion courses. Evening art lectures, concerts, dances and jams round out this extraordinary experience! College credit available.


Week 1: June 23 - June 28, 2019
Week 2: June 30 - July 5, 2019
Week 3: July 7 - 12, 2019
Livia and Bill will be teaching during week 3.


“What we believe … is that a healthy society is one that is highly involved in the arts.” —Walt Michael, founder and executive director of Common Ground on the Hill

Common Ground on the Hill offers three consecutive but separate weeks of workshops in music and visual arts, concerts, dances, dramatic performances, lectures, art shows and more.  These workshops and other events feature professional musicians, artists, dancers, actors, writers and thinkers from a wide variety of disciplines who hail from all over the United States and beyond, and who come to Common Ground on the Hill as instructors to teach and perform.  Common Ground on the Hill also enrolls a body of students who come to participate in workshops, attend concerts, play music, dance, paint, weave, make pottery, write, engage in dialog, learn, share, and much, much more. 

Students who enroll at Common Ground on the Hill come from the general public, from all walks of life, from varied backgrounds and places, varied interests and vocations, and with widely varying degrees of artistic inclination and training.  At Common Ground on the Hill, students will find themselves in the midst of a unique community of their fellow students and their instructors, all from diverse places and backgrounds.  In the midst of this diversity, it is not uncommon to find situations such as a professional doctor and a migrant farm worker together in a “Brazilian Guitar” workshop, a West Virginian and a West African drummer working out rhythm in “African Dance,” or a teenager and a septuagenarian weaving together in “Cherokee Basketry.”

Explore the website to learn more about Common Ground on the Hill’s Annual Traditions Weeks Workshops and Special Events.  You can view schedules of Traditions Weeks workshops and events, read course descriptions for each of the available workshops, read biographical information on each of the instructors and find their workshops, and register as a student at Common Ground on the Hill online!  Don’t forget that Common Ground on the Hill encourages family attendance.  Read about World Village to learn more about the extensive children’s programming during Traditions Weeks.