TEAM (Town.Exeter.Arts.Music) is the first full-scale community initiative of the Arts Industry Alliance. AIA was formed in Exeter, NH in 2015, and our immediate order of business was to cultivate some arts and music programming in a town that had struggled with their current cultural identity since the IOKA Theater closed down several years prior. Efforts had been made through another non-profit organization to save the former movie house and performance space, but despite a groundswell of financial support from the community, the project never came to fruition. Recognizing that the movement lacked any working artists or musicians, a small group decided to create the TEAM initiative which would focus on the use of local talent and already available town spaces and venues to ignite the flames. The idea was to build a grassroots arts scene in need of a cultural center, instead of raising large sums of funding for another real estate development project.
In a few short years, TEAM is well on their way to accomplishing all of these goals, despite obstacles from the local establishment. The organization and it's representatives have used their experience to highlight and educate a broader audience about the challenges artists and musicians face when they try and help their own communities in their areas of expertise. Even in this small town, where the only existing cultural gatekeepers were a Parks & Rec Department, small business associations, and a volunteer arts committee made up of mostly non-artists, this movement spearheaded by industry veterans with over a hundred years of experience in film, music, fine art and performance has been met with resistance.
TEAM has produced dozens of arts, music, film and cultural events every year, established a First Friday live music and art walk series, and founded two annual festivals. The "Exeter Arts & Music Festival" kicks off summer every year the third weekend in May, and the "TEAM Fall Equinox Fest" ushers in the change of seasons the third Saturday in September. Both events feature some of the finest artists and musicians from the region in a very diverse spectrum of genres and styles.
For more information on TEAM, please visit: