About Us

Joye in Aiken, founded in 2009 under the name Juilliard in Aiken, is a non-profit organization dedicated to making the very best in the performing arts available to as many of our citizens as possible, especially students.

The Joye in Aiken Festival (held for one week each March) and the Education Outreach Program (conducted during the Festival but also at other times of the year) bring the world’s finest young musicians, actors and dancers to the charming, historic city of Aiken, South Carolina. During their visits, those rising stars present performances for the public but also conduct extensive outreach in area schools. In the program’s first six years, over 200 young artists and faculty from The Juilliard School have brought their remarkable talents and teaching skills to Aiken, providing inspiration and instruction to more than 20,000 area students and significantly enriching the cultural opportunities available in the region.

Today, Joye in Aiken celebrates that historic tie with one of the world’s premier performing arts conservatories by maintaining its focus on Juilliard students and alumni. However, as the Festival and Outreach Program has grown, our understanding of what is possible has grown beyond our early limits. With Juilliard’s encouragement and support, we are expanding our vision and our reach. We now see a future that might include both Juilliard’s spectacularly gifted artists, as well as exceptionally talented young artists from other prestigious conservatories, and that might provide opportunities for a wide variety of cultural expressions.

Joye in Aiken is named for Joye Cottage, a beautiful Gilded Age mansion that serves as a place of retreat and renewal for the artists who participate in our Festival and Outreach Program. The name is meant to honor the central role that Joye Cottage has played in our history, while suggesting the nature of the program itself, which has brought boundless joy to thousands of adults and children.

Joye in Aiken is a gift: of wonder, of magic, of excitement, of hope. Ours is an exciting and rewarding journey. We invite you to come with us.

Click here for exciting news about Joye in Aiken (formerly Juilliard in Aiken)