New American Banjo Festival

The New American Banjo Festival

New American Banjo Festival

Festival Concert, April 23, 2022

Shea Theater, Turners Falls, MA and Live Streaming

Thank you:

The 2022 New American Banjo Festival was a huge success due in large part to your efforts. Thank you for all of your support and hard work!

We give thanks to these people and organizations:

Our Sponsors

  • Nixworks

  • Greenfield Cooperative Bank

  • RiverCulture

  • The Shea Theater

  • Allyance Productions

  • Massachusetts Cultural Council for a Festival Grant

  • The Local Massachusetts Cultural Councils of

    • Bernardston

    • Buckland

    • Charlemont-Hawley

    • Colrain

    • Conway

    • Montague

    • Northfield

    • Shelburne

    • Warwick

Newspaper Media articles

  • Sheryl Hunter, Sounds Local, The Recorder

  • Easton Smith, The Montague Reporter

Radio interviews

  • Kevin Bazan, Bear Country 95.3

  • Joshua Landes, WAMC


  • Heather Quinn

  • Doug Selwin

  • Lindy Whiton

  • Jan Mahar

  • Katie Clark Waddell

Attendees and Donors

Thank you to everyone who attended the live performance at the Shea Theater and to Live Stream Donors.

Ticket Links:


7:30 Aaron Jonah Lewis

8:45 Michael Nix and the New Classic Banjo Project

Contact: Michael Nix


The New American Banjo Festival will take place, April 23, 2022. The Festival Concert will take place live at the Shea Theater Art Center in Turners Falls, MA, and streamed live. The New American Banjo Festival will explore interesting and unique performance styles old and new; has a historical and cultural component, focusing on the banjo in New England and beyond. This year’s focus is on Classic Finger Style Banjo. There will be an admission fee for the live concert. The live stream is free, but donations will be accepted.

Performers for the New American Banjo Festival are Aaron Jonah Lewis, a classic finger style virtuoso from Detroit performing music from the ragtime and golden classic banjo eras; and Michael Nix with Chris Devine and Joe Fitzpatrick performing new compositions and arrangements from his New Classic Banjo Project.

NixWorks and Allyance Productions will facilitate the streaming performances. Detailed information on artists, presenters, schedule and registration can be found on the festival webpage at /p/1033/New-American-Banjo-Festival, and on the Facebook page at

Sponsors for the festival are The Shea Theater, RiverCulture, and Greenfield Cooperative Bank. This program is supported in part by a grant from the following local agencies, which are supported by the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency: Bernardston, Buckland, Charlemont-Hawley, Colrain, Conway, Montague, Northfield, Shelburne, and Warwick,

For more information contact Michael Nix,

New American Banjo Festival Artists

Aaron Jonah Lewis

Classic fingerstyle virtuoso music for banjo

As a banjoist, Lewis explores some interesting veins in the roots of Old Time, Bluegrass, Ragtime and Jazz music through his newest recording, “Mozart of the Banjo: The Joe Morley Project.” This project is devoted to the music of the great English prodigy and virtuoso composer Joe Morley (1867-1937), who wrote a significant body of great banjo pieces in a technique that people today call “classic fingerstyle.” Greg Adams, Archivist at the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage, says, “Lewis is one of the few performing musicians with the facility to build compelling musical bridges between the printed banjo music and techniques of the 19th century and the instrument’s journey into recorded sound by the turn of the 20th century.”

Michael Nix

New Classic Banjo Project

Banjo innovator and composer, Michael Nix designed the Banjar; a modern seven string banjo combining elements of the five-string banjo and classical guitar; bringing the classic finger-style banjo of the late 1800's into the twenty first century. He initiated the New Classic Banjo project to Compose, commission, record, and perform new works for the classic finger-style banjo.

Nix performs on classical guitar, banjo, and mandolin throughout the United States and Asia, and he has recorded for the PBS series “American Experience”, independent documentaries, and numerous CD projects. His compositions are performed internationally. His music has been heard on “Weekend Edition”, and other NPR programs. Recently Nix performed his compositions at the Smithsonian Museum of American History, and participated in Seegerfest 2014, commemorating the life of Pete Seeger.

Our Sponsors

For Bookings or More Information

Contact Michael Nix