At Wellesley, a South Asian sampler

Malini Srinivasan will perform “Love Songs of the Dark Lord’’ Saturday at Wellesley College. Malini Srinivasan will perform “Love Songs of the Dark Lord’’ Saturday at Wellesley College. (Purpleganesh Photography)
By Nancy Shohet West
Globe Correspondent / September 29, 2011

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Bringing cultural diversity to its campus is a critical goal of the arts programming at Wellesley College, as a range of events taking place there within the next few weeks reflects. Three programs organized by three departments all have one common component: showcasing contemporary artists of South Asia, particularly India and Sri Lanka.

The lineup kicks off at 8 p.m. Saturday with a classical Bharatanatyam dance performance by Malini Srinivasan called “Love Songs of the Dark Lord’’ in Jewett Auditorium on the college campus, 106 Central St. Bharatanatyam is an Indian dance form that dates back 2,000 years, with complex rhythmic footwork and intricate patterns made by the dancer’s hands and arms.

Srinivasan is a third-generation Bharatanatyam dancer, teacher, and choreographer. She is a lecturer in the Asian and Asian-American studies department at the State University of New York Stony Brook, and a member of the dance faculty of the Young Indian Culture Group. This weekend’s performance, will include a Carnatic orchestra composed of voice, violin, mridangam, and tambura.

At 6 p.m. Tuesday in Jewett Auditorium, Sri Lankan-American performer D’Lo mixes theater, comedy, and rap in a program entitled “D’FaQTo Life.’’ Nominally the story of a mother coming to terms with her daughter’s homosexuality, the narrative more generally explores themes relating to South Asia and transgender social justice, particularly from the perspective of being a child of immigrant parents raised amidst a backdrop of American culture.

And at 7 p.m. Oct. 19 in Houghton Chapel, tabla player Ramchandra “Ramu’’ Pandit, sitar player R.N. Goswami, and world music percussionist John deKadt will explore rhythm, poetry, and song in “The Rhythm is Not Mine.’’ Pandit is a longtime professional performer and instructor of classical Indian music, and Goswami is a musician in the Indian city of Banaras.

The grouping of these three events into one month “shows how cross-disciplinary the arts program at Wellesley is, as well as our strong commitment to fostering South Asian culture on campus,’’ said Jennifer Hughes, director of publicity and coordination for the arts at the women’s college.

“The classical music performance is sponsored by the music department. Bringing D’Lo to campus was the effort of the women’s and gender studies department. And the world music concert is sponsored by the office of religious and spiritual life,’’ she said.

“These are three very different events organized by three different departments, but they unite the college in celebrating the culture of a particular part of the world.’’

Admission is free for all three events. For more information, visit or call 781-283-2028.

LOVE, WITH LAUGHS: Storytellers Clare Vadeboncoeur and Bob Reiser will perform their original comedic love story, “Moonshine,’’ at the Amazing Things Arts Center, 160 Hollis St., Framingham, on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.

Following their 30-minute set will be a range of local performers, including storyteller Helena Leet-Pellegrini, comic Michael Frank, standup Ed Alley, and magician Malik Haddadi. Tickets are $6, or $5 for members.

For details, call 508-405-2787 or go to

WRITERS WANTED: Theatre with a Twist Inc. is looking for new talent - writing talent, that is.

With a mission to showcase new works, the Lexington-based ensemble is encouraging novice and professional playwrights alike to submit one-act plays, ideally with six to eight characters and simple sets.

The deadline is Oct. 15 and work should be submitted in hard-copy format to TLP-Twist, 58 Outlook Drive, Lexington, MA 02421. (To have a script returned, include a self-addressed stamped envelope.)

Selected plays will be performed in Lexington and Westford in March, with auditions in December. For details, e-mail

SALUTING IRVING BERLIN: Reagle Music Theatre of Greater Boston is presenting “Say It with Music,’’ a song-and-dance salute to Irving Berlin narrated by TV personality Scott Wahle.

The production features 40 local singers, dancers, and a professional orchestra, with shows Saturday at 2 and 7 p.m., and Sunday at 2 p.m., at the Robinson Theatre, 617 Lexington Street, Waltham.

Tickets are $35 to $50, with a $2 discount for seniors; $25 for ages 5 to 18. Tickets may be purchased at, by calling 781-891-5600, or at the box office.

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