SomArt is a program of the Somerville Arts Council which seeks to support the creation of new work in performance, visual arts, and trans/interdisciplinary disciplines.

Currently, SomArt has 3 locations, each geared towards specific priorities outlined below. Each space is unique in physicality and amenities available to artists. All spaces have movement-safe flooring with either wood on wood sub-floor, or sprung dance floor with marley. Both the Hive and Armory 3rd floor have no outside shoes policies to maintain a hygienic environment for all.

History

In May, 2021 the Somerville Arts Council entered into a partnership with Federal Realty opening up temporary use rehearsal space in Assembly Row, Somerville. Since that time, our space program has expanded to add two additional locations. The mission of this program is to provide rehearsal and creation space to performing artists keeping the costs low. With this in mind, our spaces cost just $0-$20/hour depending on use and the space!

All spaces are open to all performing artists regionally (you do not need to be a Somerville resident).

SomArt Space @ The Hive

Opened January 2024

Who does this serve/who is eligible: Working performing artists centered in dance, theatre, experimental performance.
What can happen here: Movement/Dance, Inter/Transdisciplinary Practices, Dance/Theatre Classes, Dance/Theatre Rehearsals, Performance.

Ineligible Activities: Fitness classes, martial arts, retreats, conferences, groups over 50, circus arts which require high ceiling heights.

  • 25′ x 43′ dance/performance area
  • Sound System
  • Lighting System
  • South facing windows
  • Sprung floor with adagio marley
  • Capacity: 49 max
  • ADA accessible
  • 4th floor, elevator access
  • 14′ ceilings
  • Showers, bathrooms, changing area (same floor or in the space)
  • Optional seating for guests
  • Blackout curtain
  • Projection capabilities

BIPOC Space @ the Armory

Who does this serve: BIPOC Visual Artists
What activities can happen here: Visual art exhibitions, group conversations (art-related), lectures, workshops

This initiative aims to provide a safe, vibrant, and free space to be curated by artists of color. The pop-up location features couple of rooms: a common room where there are new exhibitions on a rotational basis and a larger room that can be reserved for small events, lectures, workshops, and any programming that serves the local BIPOC arts community. Funds are provided depending on the programming and availability of funds. There is an application and interview process required before booking the space. This initiative aims to support the development of BIPOC artists to lead, program, and organize an environment that creates a sense of safety and encouragement.

To learn more please reach out to Iaritza Menjivar in our office imenjivar(a)somervillema.gov
Application to be considered can be found here. Deadline is open on a rolling basis. 

SomArt Space @ Armory

(Please note: SomArt is a program of the Somerville Arts Council and is not affiliated with Arts at the Armory who also manages space in the Somerville Armory building. The Somerville Armory is a multi-tenant building housing independently led organizations.)

Who does this serve/who is eligible: Performing artists centered in dance, theatre, experimental performance, community performing artists activities.
What can happen here: Movement/Dance, Inter/Transdisciplinary Practices, Dance/Theatre Rehearsals, Informal Showings.

Ineligible Activities: Fitness classes, martial arts, activities with high volume sound, retreats, conferences, groups over 25, circus arts which require high ceiling heights, children’s classes/rehearsals.

  • 20′ x 22′ main space
  • 10′ x 10′ room off of the main space
  • 30′ x 15′ “kitchen” space
  • Outside wrap around deck
  • Sound System
  • Lots of light/windows – white walls / no blackout capabilities
  • Wood over wood floor. Not sprung, but has enough ‘give’ for dance/movement
  • Capacity: about 15 moving only in the big space
  • ADA accessible
  • Space is on the 3rd floor of the Armory
  • No outside shoe policy

Sign Up / Our Policy

To Request Space:

Before proceeding, please be sure the activities you plan on using the space(s) for fit within the following criteria: Currently we are able to support activities for dance/theatre rehearsals, informal showings, performances, labs, and other activities centering working artist practices. We are unable to support activities that fall outside these priorities due to the high demand for scheduling in the spaces.

“Register” through our booking software. Required fields include: name, email, space use questions, and credit card information. There is no cost to join.

Schedule a walkthrough through our scheduling app for each space (the Som Art program has 3 distinct spaces) you want access too book. Each space requires a separate walk through to be approved to book it. Please read about allowed uses of each space before scheduling a walkthrough. Be sure you are signing up for the correct space you want to book.

After the walkthrough, you would be approved to book space up to 30 days in advance, but no less than 24 hours in advance through our automated booking system. This function will not be enabled until we approve you after your walkthrough.

  • Rate for rehearsal is $17/hr for the Hive space
  • Rates for classes/paid labs is $35/hr for the Hive space.
  • Rate for performance (with paid ticketing) is $250-$1000 for the Hive space and includes a 4 hour tech on a Thursday, Friday, or Saturday evening.
  • Rate for informal showing (no tech time) is $100 for a 4 hour block on a Friday or Saturday
  • The Hive has a RFP process for all seasonal or yearly contracts. Pop-ups/workshops or series classes can be booked via the scheduling system directly with 60 days notice.

Our Policy:

  • Artists must sign an agreement before they are able to book space.
  • All artists using the space must be able to “leave no trace” after their time in the space.
  • No disposal of food food/drink or containers in the spaces.
  • Dance floor policy includes no outside shoes. If you have worn your shoes outside, they are outside shoes. Barefeet, socks, dance shoes, etc. are permitted on the floors.
  • Artists will have a maximum of 6 hours per week of rental to create equitable booking availability for all. (if you need more, use our special space request form.)
  • Each new artist must attend a space walkthrough and policy overview before booking space. Walkthroughs are available 2x/week and scheduled through our scheduling system (see step 2 above).
  • Artists will have up to 60 days to book the space without a yearly or seasonal contract.
  • Hours of operation are 9am-9pm 7 days a week.
  • Key must be left in the lockbox at all times.
  • Each space has a checkout procedure accessible through a scannable QR code in the space at the end of each use.
Non-Contract RehearsalsContract RehearsalsLabsShowingsPerformances Ongoing Classes
How to Book Directly through the booking system Special Request Form for Armory or RFP for the HiveDirectly through the booking system with approvalSpecial Request Form for Armory or RFP for the HiveSpecial Request Form for Armory or RFP for the HiveSpecial Request Form for Armory or RFP for the Hive
Max Days Advance Booking60 daysSeasonal or Yearlyup to 2 Seasons before up to 2 Seasons before up to 3 Seasons before Yearly Sept start, Seasonal, or 60 Days
Min Days Advance Bookingno sooner than 24 hoursYearly – September start date
Seasonal – Sept, Jan, May start dates
no sooner than 48 hoursno sooner than 7 daysno sooner than 7 daysno sooner than 48 hours
Max Hours per Week666min 3min 46
Cancellationno later than 48 hoursno later than 14 days. Must have 90% use of contract datesno later than 48 hoursno later than 7 daysno later than 7 daysno later than 48 hours
Cost (all spaces)$8-$17/hr
New Rate $12-$17 4/1/24
$8-$17/hr
New Rate $12-$17 4/1/24
$8-$17/hr no pay participants
New Rate $12-$17 4/1/24 –  $20-$35/hr pay participants
$8-$17/hr no pay
New Rate $12-$17 4/1/24
participants –  $20-$35/hr pay participants
$100-$1000 depending on yearly budget, location, and tech time needed$20-$35/hr
Space AvailabilityHive or ArmoryHive or ArmoryHive or ArmoryHive or ArmoryHive OnlyHive or Armory

If you are an existing artist seeking space time/date usage that falls outside of our existing policy, please fill out this request form: