As the weather gets warmer, there seems to be even more things to do in the Monadnock Region. One such thing, is a yearly music and arts festival called: The Thing in the Spring. This month, we were pleased to speak with Eric Gagne, one of the Thing’s creators.
2018 is our 11th Thing in the Spring! If you haven't checked it out yet, it's never too late! This year's edition consists of 14 concerts, several gallery shows, 10 writers, around 60 artists, and 4 films, all happening over 5 days within what amounts to one city block in Southwestern NH.
Tell us about the Thing in the Spring. When did it start and why?
The Thing in the Spring (aka The Thing) started in 2008 after me, Ryan Wilson, and Mary Goldthwaite-Gagne had become interested in recreating the wild posters and bills from the Fillmore era. The idea of an affordable arts fair was talked about, and then it was decided to just put all the ideas together into a single weekend. It has since grown to five days of music, art, writing, and film, and the trio has grown to a fully functioning 501c3.
The Thing fits perfectly into downtown Peterborough. We love this area. The people here are wonderful and we take pride in bringing art and music from all over the country, and in some cases, the world, to the Monadnock Region. This is a pretty tertiary market, so bringing more obscure music and art into town is super exciting; it is invigorating to be able to give locals a chance to advance their own work by bringing the world to them.
The buzz word in the arts these days, and in our region, is COLLABORATION. Tell us a little bit about how you collaborate in your community.
We are always happy to work with other organizations and artists. We do tend to have a particular aesthetic, but within that there are so many opportunities to involve other folks. This year we have an artist coming in from Berlin, Germany, to paint a mural; we are working with a variety of filmmakers and Arts Alive for the film series; we work with the MacDowell Colony and the Toadstool Bookshop every year on our reading series; and we have cultivated an excellent relationship with nearly every venue in Peterborough over the past eleven years to present hundreds of musical performances.
What is The Thing’s vision for arts in the region - where are we going?
We at the Glass Museum would love to see the kind of programming we bring to Peterborough annually happening more frequently. We're hoping that as attendance grows at the Thing in the Spring, and our profile grows, we will be able to inspire more people to come out at other points throughout the year. And we hope that folks see that one doesn't have to live in the city to experience exciting and diverse music and art.