Celebrating our 144th season
To inspire individuals and enrich communities by connecting audiences and artists in uncommon and engaging experiences.
UMS contributes to a vibrant cultural community in Southeast Michigan by presenting approximately 60-75 music, dance, and theater performances and over 100 free educational activities each season. UMS also commissions and produces new work, sponsors artist residencies, and organizes collaborative projects with local, national, and international partners.
Housed on the campus of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, UMS is one of the oldest performing arts presenters in the country, committed to connecting audiences with performing artists from around the world in uncommon and engaging experiences.
In 2014, UMS was selected as a recipient of the National Medal of Arts, the nation’s highest public artistic honor, awarded annually by the president of the United States at the White House.
We believe in the power of world-class performing arts to inspire, transform, and connect individuals with transcendent experiences. From the illustrious to the unknown, from the traditional to the experimental, UMS opens the doors to a fascinating journey, full of new discoveries.
The performing arts are not a one-way experience, but a conversation in which you participate. Our programs feature audience participation events, online dialogue after performances, community events, and so much more. We hope UMS lives beyond the walls of our venues and becomes part of our thinking, our memories, and our lives.
Learning is core to UMS’s mission, and it is our joy to provide creative learning experiences for our entire community. Every season, we offer a spectrum of Education and Community Engagement activities focusing on K-12 students, teachers, teens, university students, families, adults, and cultural and ethnic communities. We exist to create a spark in each person, young and old alike, exposing them to things they haven’t before seen, and leaving them with an ongoing and lifelong passion for creativity and the performing arts.
UMS acknowledges that our home at the University of Michigan, named for Michigami, the world’s largest freshwater system and located in the Huron River watershed, has its origins in a land grant from the Anishinaabeg (including Odawa, Ojibwe, and Bodéwadmi). We further acknowledge that our university stands, like almost all property in the United States, on lands obtained, generally in unconscionable ways, from indigenous peoples. Today, the University of Michigan’s three campuses are located on lands of the Anishinaabeg and Wyandot and have grown through the connection with and stewardship of the land by them and their neighbors the Seneca, Delaware, and Shawnee nations.
Knowing the history of the land where we work and convene cannot change the past, but acknowledging it and understanding the ongoing consequences remains vital for UMS as we welcome audiences to our venues and support performing artists and creators.