Creative Arts Clubs

Bates College creative arts clubs are defined by their emphasis on artistic expression. All clubs in this category offer their members the chance to explore various facets of cultures both familiar and new through art.

You may view the list of creative arts club contacts, advisors, and storage spaces here.

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Ballroom Team FB-f-Logo__blue_29
The Bates Ballroom Team is open to anyone who would like to learn how to ballroom dance. All levels of experience are welcome and no partner is necessary. The team practices rhythm (cha cha, rhumba, swing) and smooth (waltz, tango, foxtrot, Viennese waltz). The team practices two to three times a week, focusing on social dancing and/or preparing students to compete at the inter-collegiate competitions. Interested students attend about five competitions a year. We also go to ballroom social dances in Portland, bring in professional ballroom dancers for workshops, and host small social dances on campus. The team also sponsors a beginner class once a week for 1.5 hours, for which PE credit can be earned. For more information see:, or visit our Facebook Page!

Storage: Chase Hall 207

Bates Arts Society FB-f-Logo__blue_29Instagram

Bates Arts Society is a creative showcase for your work – photographs, sculptures, science research videos, poetry, music, dance, painting, design, architecture, any creative work – to display to the Bates community everywhere. By submitting your work, you help create and strengthen a cohesive creative and artistic community that bridges barriers both socially and academically.

Office: Art Commons (Downstairs in Chase Hall)

Bates Authors Guild FB-f-Logo__blue_29

The Bates Authors Guild (BAG) is a collaborative that serves all Bates creative writers. We hold weekly meetings and readings, as well as workshops for writers seeking to get peer feedback on their work. We welcome all writers and readers in all genres of creativity, be it poetry, prose, slam, or whatever! We also collaborate with Language Arts Live, the Art House, and SEED in order to foster a vibrant and booming community of Bates writers. Every year we put out a small anthology of our club member’s best work to showcase student talent as an alternative to SEED. Come and join the Guild! Visit our Facebook Page!

Bates Musicians Union FB-f-Logo__blue_29

The Bates Musician’s Union represents an inclusive community of bands, musical artists, sound technicians, and performers coming together to organize and host live music events for Bates College and venues in the surrounding community. We are an independent resource from the Music Department that provides sound equipment, instruments, and rehearsal space to musicians who wish to form bands and further explore their instruments.

Office: Chase Hall 127, Bates Musicians Union
Key Access: Andrew Freeman, Ayesha Sharma, Ben Cuba, Claire Coleman, Declan Chu, Divyamaan Sahoo, Nicolas Lambert, Louise Marks, Matt Bodwell, Patrick Nelson, Porter Harrast, Rush Milam, Sacha Zabotin, Teddy Rube, Zach Kinsella

Bollywood Team FB-f-Logo__blue_29

The Bates Bollywood Team is focused on introducing Bollywood dancing, a unique and exciting culture of dancing inspired by the huge film industry, to the Bates campus and nearby community. We provide numerous workshops for Bates students and community members, and have performances throughout the year which are open to any student regardless of their dancing background. In this way, we hope to foster an energized and open dancing space, while sharing a cultural experience.

Circus Arts Club FB-f-Logo__blue_29

Bates Circus Arts aims to bring the newly flourishing art form of circus to Bates College. We explore different areas of circus, primarily aerials (such as silks and aerial hoop) and juggling, in addition to acrobatics, unicycling, diablo and other skills. Through weekly meetings, we work on strength, flexibility, and technique in a relaxed but focused setting tailored to the interest of club members. We also try to bring in at least one outside instructor per semester to enhance the circus learning experience. Circus club is open to everyone of all levels of experience and we are happy to help anyone with a passion learn the art of circus!

Crosstones FB-f-Logo__blue_29Instagram

The Bates College Crosstones is Bates’ oldest co-ed a cappella group. The Crosstones have always been known for their down-to-earth nature, humor, and energy, and have been performing everything from pop to classic rock both internationally and locally since 1996. Previous tours have taken them around New England, over to the West Coast, and even all the way up to Canada! Recently featured on the BOCA (Best of College A Cappella) 2012 compilation CD, the Crosstones strive for musical excellence and have a good time doing it. Auditions are held every fall, so be on the lookout for announcements!

Dance Club FB-f-Logo__blue_29

Dance Club aims to connect more Bates students, faculty, staff, and members of the Lewiston-Auburn community with the world of dance. Specifically, we want members of the Bates community to experience styles of dance not offered through the college. Our club gives students a way to maintain or discover a love of dance in a way which is not dependent upon being a dance minor or a member of the Modern Dance Company. Based on input from Bates students and academic departments, we bring guest artists to campus to give workshops, performances, and lectures throughout the year. We also take advantage of performances going on in Lewiston, Portland, and Boston; and invite anyone interested to contribute to a student run/choreographed show put on during short term. Any and all levels of experience are welcome; the club environment is very laid back and friendly; we are always looking for people who like to dance! Visit our Facebook Page!

Fac/ Staff Advisor: Carol Dilley

Deansmen FB-f-Logo__blue_29Instagram

Deansmen are a 12-14 voice, all-male a cappella group that has been entertaining the college community and beyond since 1957. Our repertoire is nothing short of dynamic, ranging from the traditional to the new. In our signature tuxedos, we happily sing at local charity events, as well as at other colleges and high schools. In the past, the Deansmen have performed for the Boston Celtics, George Bush, Sr., and Rockapella as well as on both Maine and Icelandic television. The group is known for maintaining a high musical quality while also delivering a powerful, entertaining, and occasionally hilarious performance. Auditions for the Deansmen are held during the first week of the Fall Semester. We hope to see you there!

Fac/ Staff Advisor: John Corrie
Storage: Chase Hall 212

DJ Society FB-f-Logo__blue_29twitter

DJ Society is the larger society of DJs on Bates campus. In addition, providing music for every, and any scene on campus from academic to social ventures. We are a grassroots organization with a focus on serving students. This is a great opportunity for new or experienced DJs and event planners to contribute to, and be the faces behind Bates’ largest and most memorable events. If you love music, event managing, or simply want to have a great time, DJ Society is for you!

Storage: Chase Hall 212

Dynasty Step

Dynasty Step Team, created in 2009, is an inclusive, co-ed dance group which specializes in stepping. Stepping is a electric and exciting dance with African-American roots that is often seen in HBCU sororities and fraternities. Dynasty’s goals are to create a sense of community within the group, spread awareness and appreciation regarding this historical dance style and lastly, to perform awesome step shows for Bates!

Inactive Winter 2016.

Freewill Folk Society FB-f-Logo__blue_29website

The Freewill Folk Society promotes folk culture on campus through music and dance. Students and community members come to Bates once a month for a contradance, which is a deformalized version of the dance you’ve seen in any Jane-Austen-novel-made-film. These events are open to the public and there is no experience required, so anyone can come and have a good time. We usually dance to traditional music (fiddles, guitars, mandolins), but we also introduce other forms of music for our techno contra, which is a hybrid between traditional dance and modern music. The Freewill Folk Society also hosts the annual Community Folk Festival, a weekend of concerts, contradances, and workshops with attendees from throughout Maine and New England. Whether you’re a musician, a dancer, or an appreciator of one or both, you have a place in this community tradition. We look forward to seeing you! Visit our Facebook Page!

Gospelaires FB-f-Logo__blue_29

Bates Gospelaires – “Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands.” (Psalms 100:1) Our mission is to sing praises unto the Lord and fully rejoice in it. We feel that our mission will bring hope, positivity, respect, optimism and, most importantly, love for our fellow brothers & sisters through the songs and its’ messages; not only within the Bates college community, but throughout the greater Maine community and beyond. Anyone can join! No matter the age, color, or background, our goal is to also spread light on a style of praise music that is not is not generally practiced here at Bates; Gospel Music! Though widely accepted as a traditionally African-American musical style, our organization will provide a mutually supportive and positive learning environment in which every member has the opportunity to develop and practice an art form which, in turn, will foster self-confidence and give an understanding and appreciation for other cultures and their musical background. One Goal, One Passion, One Voice … Bates Gospel Choir!

Manic Optimists FB-f-Logo__blue_29twitterInstagramwebsite

What do you get when you put 13 guys who love to sing alone with a piano? You’ll have to see for yourself to find out, but we’re pretty sure you’ll be manically optimistic about it! The Manic Optimists are Bates’ newest all-male a cappella group, performing a wide variety of current hits and classic favorites. We perform constantly throughout the year, at Bates, at other schools, and anywhere else they’ll have us, from the Boston Common to Sugarloaf ski resort and beyond! So what do you say? Do you have what it takes to be a ManOp? Audition this fall and find out! Visit our Facebook Page or our website!

Fac/ Staff Advisor: John Corrie

Merimanders FB-f-Logo__blue_29Instagram

Established in 1958, Merimanders is the only all-female a cappella group at Bates College. In addition to singing at various Bates events and holding our own concerts each semester, we organize joint concerts with groups from other schools! We love to travel to different places in the Maine/New England community to sing at restaurants, fundraisers, parties, and many other awesome venues. Tryouts are held at the beginning of each academic year. Come audition, we’d love to hear you sing!


Northfield is a non-audition, non-traditional acapella group that welcomes all singers on campus and draws from a variety of music traditions, including shape note singing, Appalachian folk music, and cultural music from around the world. As common among such vocal groups, we learn many of our pieces from each other and directly from other singers with similar interests. A core part of Northfield involves welcoming in a variety of singers at all experience levels so that we can teach and learn from one another, regardless of our backgrounds. Northfield was founded as a singing group open to all, meant to provide an opportunity for students to learn more about cultural music.

Inactive 2015-16.

Photography Club FB-f-Logo__blue_29Instagram

The Bates College Photo Club provides a forum for sharing work, ideas, and opinions about photography through critique and discussion. Whether you shoot in color, B&W, digital or film, the Photo Club is open to anyone with an interest in the subject. We provide access for the club darkroom where students can develop and print black and white film, and are open to ideas for group activities or projects. The Photo Club also publishes a photo magazine of aggregated student submissions.

Alumni Advisor: Sophia Pelligrini
Office/ Dark Room: Chase Hall 218

Robinson Players FB-f-Logo__blue_29website

The Robinson Players is the one and only Bates College student theater organization. We produce many student run theatrical shows a year. In the past we have done one-acts festivals, main stage production, main-stage musicals, and a production (typically a musical) that we perform for local elementary school students during short term – the ever-popular “Stages for all Ages.” Rob Players productions range in size from one-man shows to casts of over fifty students, faculty, and staff! We also host other events throughout the year (ex. Cast Parties, Oscar Night, Murder Mystery Dinners), and trips to off-campus theater events. Join the Rob Players for your theatrical amusement! Visit our website and Facebook Page for more information.

Fac/ Staff Advisor: Katalin Vecsey 
Storage: Chase Hall 203A

Sanofka Production

Sankofa is a student led cultural organization which seeks to explore the vibrant cultures of the African Diaspora through music, dance, poetry and prose. Students explore the meaning of “Blackness” by reflecting on personal experiences; researching and identifying historical and contemporary events that continue to influence the development of people who claim Black and/or African heritage. The goals of Sankof include fostering social and political awareness about issues that affect communities and individuals claiming African ancestry; embracing numerous cultural differences found throughout the African Diaspora; in addition to community building beyond campus borders and barriers. The group is open to students, faculty, staff as well as members of the Lewiston community.

Storage: Office of Intercultural Education

Strange Bedfellows FB-f-Logo__blue_29twitter

The Strange Bedfellows is the one and only improvisational comedy group at Bates, and the third best thing about Bates College according to They perform both short-form as well as long-form improv and continually explore and experiment with different types of long-form improv structures. The Bedfellows perform bimonthly at different venues all over campus as well as at venues in Lewiston such as She Doesn’t Like Guthrie’s. They also perform at other colleges such as Skidmore College for the annual National College Comedy Festival that Skidmore hosts every year. The Bedfellows bring professional improv and sketch comedy groups to Bates, who in the past, have included The Upright Citizens Brigade Touring Company and The Late Night Players. The main goal of The Strange Bedfellows is to bring laughter to the Bates community and the surrounding areas of Lewiston and Auburn using the increasingly popular art form of improvisational comedy as a tool and a medium. Auditions for The Strange Bedfellows are held once a year at the beginning of every fall semester and are open to everyone– experience not necessary!

Taiko Club

Taiko are stick percussion instruments originated from Japan. Bates Taiko Club meets once a week for official Taiko drumming lesson from instructor and additional meetings for practice purposes among members. In the past, Taiko Club has performed in Sangai Asian Night, International Club Coffee House and CBB Japan Fair. We also organized cultural activities for members such as watching Taiko performances in Boston.

Storage: Chase Hall 212

TakeNote FB-f-Logo__blue_29twitterInstagramwebsite

TakeNote is a dashing co-ed a cappella group founded in 2008. Our repertoire consists of an eclectic blend of classics and current hits, ranging from pop to folk to rap. We perform at all of the major concerts on campus as well as the community. We have also toured around New England and up to Montreal. Intrigued? Come audition! We’re always looking for new members to join in on the fun. Also check out our website or visit our Facebook page!


2B.E.A.T.S. is the only club on Bates Campus that covers Hip-Hop style dancing. We are centered around learning the different forms of Hip-Hop dancing, the culture behind it, and just having fun bustin’ a move. Open to anyone, regardless of experience, who is willing to teach, choreograph, learn, or just have some fun doing Hip-Hop! Those who choose to will also be able to perform throughout the academic year. There will be opportunities to hold classes for both the Bates and Lewiston/Auburn communities and to take master classes with professionals. So come join 2B.E.A.T.S. because everyone has a little Beyoncé in them!