Summer Series at Next Stage offers music, culture, diversity, and creativity

PUTNEY — Next Stage Arts announces the lineup for the third summer of its outdoor, cultural performance series, running from May through October throughout Windham County. The series will include more than 20 performances ranging from a diverse group of musical styles, dance, and puppetry that will take place in fields, farms, and parks throughout the area.

“The Bandwagon Summer Series is an opportunity to cultivate friendships, experience new music, and bask in Vermont's outdoor beauty,” Keith Marks, executive director of Next Stage Arts, said in a news release. “The series began as a response to Covid, and it has blossomed into something the community looks forward to every summer. Kids running around, Vermont-made food and drinks, and the lineup add up to be an attractive way to meet friends and family. This year's lineup is easily the best we've had yet."

The Bandwagon Summer Series kicks off on Friday, May 19, at 6 p.m., with the return of Next Stage favorites Underground System, the Brooklyn-based, Afrobeat-influenced indie dance band that “blew everyone away at the Putney Inn last summer,” Marks said.

The Stone Church, which hosted Underground System in February, joins Next Stage as co-presenters. The venue is TBA.

The following week, Saturday, May 27, at 6 p.m., Crocodile River Music brings their African and African-influenced blend of Brazilian, Caribbean, and flamenco music to Retreat Farm.

The series continues with Canadian singer-songwriter Kiran Ahluwalia, whose nearly two decades of music making have taken her from Punjabi folk and Indian classical music to refreshingly original borderless songs. She performs on Friday, June 2, at 6 p.m., venue TBA.

The series continues throughout the summer and fall. Series passes and ticket bundles are available for purchase now; tickets to individual shows will go on sale in coming weeks.

The full roster, with information about ticket options, can be found at The series invites children 12 and under into any concert for free, boasts a kids' play zone, and the organization donates free tickets to every public library in Windham County and to select social service agencies. Vermont-made food and drinks will be available.

Subscribe to the newsletter for weekly updates