Our Mission and history



The Northampton Center for the Arts (NCFA) provides affordable space for artists, performers, and educators while developing programming dedicated to arts education, multidisciplinary collaborations, and community connections. NCFA actively fosters artistic expression by:

  • Providing accessible, affordable performance and gathering space

  • Supporting local arts educators by offering classes and workshops

  • Encouraging participation in diverse forms of expression by diverse populations

  • Producing quality events that bring people together in celebration of art and community

  • At the Northampton Center for the Arts, programming is always evolving, and you will find music, dance, theatre and visual art classes, rehearsals, art exhibitions, and performances of all kinds that strengthen the arts ecology of the greater Northampton area.


The Northampton Center for the Arts is a private, non-profit organization, established in 1983 as the result of a public/private partnership between the City of Northampton and the developers of the former Sullivan School in downtown Northampton. For 30 years, the Center’s ballroom and galleries served as venues for performances, exhibitions, arts-education programming and community gatherings. In July of 2013, the City of Northampton’s non-renewable lease for the space that housed the Center expired. NCFA continued its work in the community by producing First Night, sponsoring Arts Night Out, supporting its resident companies, and organizing events throughout the Valley. The Center operated out of a transitional office at 5 Strong Avenue until its September 2017 relocation to the Northampton Community Arts Trust Building at 33 Hawley Street.

Left to Right: Kelly Silliman, Joanna Faraby Walker, Melissa Dimetres. Photo by Ian Bauer.

Left to Right: Kelly Silliman, Joanna Faraby Walker, Melissa Dimetres. Photo by Ian Bauer.

our people

Managing Director: Joanna Faraby Walker

Associate Director: Melissa Dimetres

Program Director: Kelly Silliman

Operations: Steve Davis

Board of Directors:

  • Amy Putnam, Chair

  • David Boutilier, Clerk

  • Dorothy Nemetz, Treasurer

  • Stacey Phillips

  • Ginny Mayer

  • Michelle Meredith

  • Maddy Neely

  • Rachel Stevens

  • Jasmeet Singh

The Center for the Arts has two resident performance companies: the Lisa Leizman Dance Company, and the Happy Valley Guitar Orchestra.


Thank you for your interest in supporting the Northampton Center for the Arts. If you are interested in applying to be a board member, please fill out this online form. (If you have any issues with using this form, please e-mail ncfa@nohoarts.org for assistance, or call 413-584-7327.) Board representatives will review all submitted forms, and the interested member’s potential fit on the board.

The president of the board will contact interested parties within one week of receipt of a form and either issue an invitation to attend the next board meeting or provide direction towards other ways to participate in the Center’s operations.

Interested parties who choose to attend a board meeting will have the opportunity to introduce themselves to the board, participate in the meeting, and ask questions about the Center and the board. The board will vote on whether to invite the interested party to join the board at the end of the meeting.

The president will inform the interested party of the board’s decision within 24 hours.