Incubate artists, change the world.

The work of Performing Diaspora artists is not easily categorizable, and the ways in which their work draws on or is rooted in tradition may take many forms. In this current moment we are interested in supporting artists that are drawing on tradition as a radical way to be responsive, inclusive, and support equity. We find ourselves with questions around how tradition can be a tool of anti-capitalism, anti-boarder control, anti-police violence, anti-homogenization, or anti-erasure. However, we are also interested in exploring beyond the polemic set by the frame of ‘anti.’ Therefore, we are also curious about how tradition is a tool of evolution? How is tradition alive? How does tradition move across space, time, boundaries and border? This residency seeks supports artists whose work carries the story of a previous life and lands it in this time and space. In a time when record numbers of refugees seek asylum and the erasure of people of color’s experiences and lives is visible than ever, the stories we carry in our minds and bodies are all the more important. What is your story of change?

The Performing Diaspora residency is made possible by support from the Kenneth Rainin Foundation, the Zellerbach Family Foundation, the Emmet R Quady foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Photo: From Performing Diaspora 2014, Nava Dance/Nadhi Thekkek, Photo courtesy of artist.

Archived Events

Mother the Verb & Lxs Desaparecidxs

Javier Stell-Fresquez, Ivan "Ivy" Monteiro, and Davia Spain & Randy Reyes
Thu–Sat, Dec 7–9 & 14–16, 7:30pm

Performing Diaspora 2016

SAMMAY & dana e. fitchett

Kimpa Vita!

Muisi-kongo Malonga
NOV 14-16, 2014, FRI-SAT at 8PM, SUN at 7PM

The Cloud Messenger

Nadhi Thekkek and Nava Dance Theater
SEP 11-14, 2014, THU-SAT at 8PM, SUN at 7PM (Post-show panel SAT)

A Delicate Power – Kathak Solo

Farah Yasmeen Shaikh
APR 11-12, 2014, FRI-SAT at 7:30PM, APR 13, SUN at 6PM

Padme – The Lotus in Asian Mythology

Shreelata Suresh
SEP 7-8, 2013, SAT at 8PM and SUN at 7PM


Ganesh Vasudeva
SEP 6, 2013, FRI at 8PM

Performing Diaspora Weekend Two

Laura Inserra, Muisi-kongo Malonga, and Nadhi Thekkek
AUG 22-25, 2013, THU-SUN at 8PM

Performing Diaspora Weekend One

Byb Chanel Bibene, Joti Singh, and Jia Wu
AUG 15-18, 2013, THU-SUN at 8PM

Performing Diaspora Symposium

AUG 10, 2013, SAT 10:30AM - 6PM

Work in Progress: Performing Diaspora

Byb Chanel Bibene, Jewlia Eisenberg, Muisi-kongo Malonga, Nadhi Thekkek, Joti Singh, Jia Wu
SAT JUN 29, 2013, 10AM-5PM

The Quest Unsaid

Navia Natarajan & Jyotsna Vaideeswaran
AUG 3-4, 2012, FRI-SAT at 8PM

Performing Diaspora 2013 Application Workshop

JUL 23, 2012, MON from 7-8:30PM

Natya & Narration – REBELution

Vidhya Subramanian
APR 20-22, 2012, FRI-SAT at 8PM, SUN at 3PM

Music Within

Savitha Sastry
JUN 26, 2011, SUN at 5 & 7PM