Next Fest Connects

RESOURCES for artists in need
CAREER GUIDANCE in uncertain times
CONNECTION between artists and audiences

These events are presented by Next Fest Connects, an initiative of The Next Festival of Emerging Artists and Next Edge Arts, Inc.  

Based on the generosity of an anonymous donor, The Next Festival of Emerging Artists offers Next Fest Connects, a program providing a support system for artists during difficult times.

Free Online Workshops and Masterclasses 
Information, support and resources for our community – an all-star roster of music and business experts lead sessions on the creative process, career advancement, mental wellness, building an online presence, and more.

Past presenters included: Ashley Bathgate, Angela Beeching, Derek Bermel, Lisa Bielawa, James Budinich, Miranda Cuckson, Ralph Farris, Tracy Friedlander, Matt Haimovitz, Megan Ihnen, Jennifer Koh, Gabrielle Lamb, Anne Leilehua Lanzilotti, Jessica Meyer, Yuka Nagashima, Todd Reynolds, Nahre Sol, Sarah Whitney, S. Ama Wray, Jeffrey Zeigler


“Next Fest has given me a platform to think outside the box and be more creative about performance platforms. My livestream through was one of the highlights of my year!”

Ana Luna Uribe-Leteinturier
Graduate Teaching Assistant in Violin, Lamont School of Music, University of Denver

“I especially enjoyed Sarah Whitney’s seminar, How to Tackle What’s Holding You Back. I loved all the tangible tips that she gave on being productive while staying realistic with what you can actually achieve. One of my biggest takeaways from Next Fest Connects is this quote by Sarah Whitney: ‘Overwhelm is a goal without a plan.'”

Céline Le Vu
Drummer for modern progressive metal band, Nothing But Echoes

“Such a wonderful and helpful program, facilitating student learning while offering others the chance to watch and listen; a heartwarming and unexpected gift that lifts our spirits in this time of adversity.”

Philip Foster
Founder and Executive Director of Open Dance Ensemble

“Next Fest Connects was truly a gift during these uncertain times. By attending the masterclasses, I got the chance to discover new repertoire and the seminars gave me many useful ideas on how to build my career as a young artist.”

Nina Vanhoenacker
Cellist studying at the Royal Conservatory of Ghent (Belgium) and member of Extended Music Collective

“Next Fest was new to me, but I found the event about Angela Beeching on Instagram. I signed up for the newsletter to get notices about upcoming events. The sessions with Angela Beeching and Megan Ihnen were insightful, inspiring, and informative in many ways. I’m glad Next Fest includes business pertinent events to help burgeoning musicians support themselves. Both speakers were so great about answering questions live, and they were very gracious with their time and knowledge. Thank you for setting up such an important series, especially during quarantine!”

Dr. Natalie Groom
Collington Retirement Community Artist in Residence
Clarinetist and co-founder of
Clarinetist and arranger of
Connect on

“I really appreciated the online offerings from Next Fest, even though I didn’t always attend live. Tuning into the series was a wonderful way to connect with the new music community, rouse motivation, and keep learning. Thank you.”

India Gailey

“I’ve been really enjoying the content and conversation that Next Fest has been creating! The opportunity to hear from a diverse and interesting group of artists dealing with the current state of the world has been one thing keeping me thinking about new ways to create and present my work. I am working to organize a different online festival – called zFestival, in which participants are organized into ensembles and paired with composers. During the month of July, we will rehearse (over Zoom) and attend presentations by guest artists (composers, performers, audio engineers, and everything in between). Thanks!”

Shoshana Klein
Sho K

Our workshops and masterclasses are free and open to the public, thanks to a grant from the Williamson Foundation and from generous donors like you. Please help us to continue to present these valuable resources with a tax-deductible gift.