Mehfil Massive: South Asian Religions Remixed through Poetry and Music
Visions and Voices
Collaborations between poets and musicians have been a staple of South Asian religious life for centuries. This tradition will get a 21st-century update in a landmark evening featuring performances by legendary diasporic South Asian artists.
Legendary South Asian musicians and poets will come together to celebrate and investigate the rich diversity of South Asian spiritual influences. From ghazals set to music and sung throughout the Muslim world to Rabindranath Tagore’s Nobel Prize–winning Gitanjali (Prayer Offering of Song), collaborations between poets and musicians have been a staple of South Asian religious life for centuries. In Mughal courts, nightly mehfils brought these performers together and elevated their collaborations to high art. This tradition will get a 21st-century update in a landmark evening featuring performances by internationally renowned diasporic South Asian artists including Sufi-influenced rock guitarist Salman Ahmad, vocalist and ten-string double-violin master Gingger Shankar, Mumbai-based dubstep DJ Bandish Projekt and hip hop artist and producer Brooklyn Shanti in collaboration with award-winning poets Kazim Ali, Tarfia Faizullah, Bhanu Kapil, Mandeep Sethi and Amarnath Ravva.The evening will be hosted by comedian/writer/performance artist D'Lo.
Organized by Neelanjana Banerjee (Kaya Press), Varun Soni (Dean of Religious Life), Viet Nguyen (American Studies and Ethnicity) and Nayan Shah (American Studies and Ethnicity). Co-sponsored by American Studies and Ethnicity and the Office of Religious Life.