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February 21, 2024: The University Musical Society (UMS) and the City of Ypsilanti announce the details of its upcoming month-long residency in April 2024, featuring expanded programming for residents, families, and schoolchildren in Washtenaw County and beyond. Among the highlights of the upcoming residency are collaborations with the International Film Festival Ypsilanti (iFFY) and Head over Heels Productions; opportunities to participate in swing dance and orchestra performances, as well as an open mic night; and special events for families and K-12 students in the Ypsilanti Public Schools.

This residency is an outgrowth of a successful pilot residency week in April 2023 and a full month of programming in September 2023, both of which featured many unique programs — all free or Pay-What-You-Wish — and brought together multi-generational audiences from Ypsilanti and beyond, with enthusiasm and energy from artists and audiences alike. Programming featured works centering on the history of Ypsilanti and a variety of opportunities to engage with the arts locally, such as September’s world premiere of Marcus Elliot’s Sonic Contributions project, which was commissioned to celebrate Ypsilanti’s bicentennial.

Cayenne Harris, UMS Vice President of Learning and Engagement commented, “We’re so excited to continue partnering with the City of Ypsilanti to offer arts programming at the Freighthouse. We’re bringing back some of the most popular activities of our past residencies and collaborating with local organizations to offer some brand-new events. We continue to seek input from residents about what they want to experience at the Freighthouse and want to go even deeper in realizing ideas and suggestions we hear from the public.”

In addition to the engaging array of community-based arts programs, the April UMS Residency will utilize the Freighthouse with additional daytime learning and engagement events for K-12 students and other occasions to come together in Ypsilanti, such as a special convening for Ypsilanti school teachers. As part of Hub New Music’s 10th Anniversary concert at the Freighthouse, the contemporary chamber trailblazers will also take part in a residency featuring a K-12 performance of their HubLab work with elementary students at Estabrook Elementary School by using improv and storytelling in working with different classrooms to create original compositions.

As part of the Freighthouse residency, UMS will continue to prioritize access for Ypsilanti residents through both early registration for free ticketed events and a pay-what-you-wish structure for live performances.

Tickets and registration will be available on Tuesday, March 5, for Ypsilanti residents, and will open up to the full public on Tuesday, March 12 at The Ypsilanti Freighthouse residency is supported by Menakka and Essel Bailey, Matt and Nicole Lester, and the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan.



Swing Dance Party

Thursday, April 4 // 6:30 pm



Hub New Music

Friday, April 5 // 7:30 pm



Y2Gay: Drag Show at the Freighthouse

Presented in collaboration with Heads Over Heels Productions

Saturday, April 6 // 7:30 pm & 9:30 pm (two sets)



Alfred Hitchcock’s The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog

Featuring Little Bang Theory

Presented in collaboration with iFFY

Thursday, April 11 // 7:30 pm



Dancing Through México with El Ballet Folklórico Estudiantil

Sunday, April 14 // 11 am and 1 pm



Open Mic at the Freighthouse

Friday, April 19 // 7:30 pm



Joe Reilly Earth Day Performance + Family Activity

Sunday, April 21 // 11 am & 1 pm



Shigeto Live Ensemble

Friday, April 26 // 9 pm



Regenerate! Orchestra

Saturday, April 27 // 7:30 pm

Sunday, April 28 // 2 pm

A Pay-What-You-Wish Event


Find additional information and tickets at