Please mark your calendar for these upcoming events

All events are FREE!

* Monday, November 17
Academic Colloquium: Over a Century of South Asian Presence in Canada
Time: 1 pm -7 pm
UBC RAGA Centre, Thea’s Lounge, GSS Building (6371 Crescent Rd)
Contact: Dr. Sunera Thobani, Amina Rai.

* Monday, November 17
Opening Reception at 8 pm.
Desi Downtown, 911 Denman Street. Including performances by Bass Poetry Music and more. Cosponsored by Desi Downtown. Contact Sitara Thobani:

* Tuesday, November 18
Representing South Asians in the Media: A Round Table
Roundhouse Community Centre (181 Roundhouse Mews- off Pacific Blvd), Vancouver from 7-9 pm
Moderator: Prem Gill (Telus TV). Speakers include: Fatima Jaffer; Indira Prahst, Sociologist at Langara College; Harjinder Thind, Red FM radio; Gurpreet Singh, Radio India

* Wednesday, Nov. 19
South Asian Women on Violence: Resisting and Speaking out
Community Forum from 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Langara College, Lecture Hall A130, 100 west 49th Avenue
Contact and Moderator: Indira Prahst, Sociologist, Langara College at (604) 323-5717,

Speakers: Dr Sunera Thobani, UBC Raga Centre; Shashi Assanand, Vancouver & Lower Mainland Multicultural Family Support Services; Ninu Kang, MOSAIC; Sitara Thobani, Odissi dancer; Karmajeet Kour Singh (Vicki); Gurjeet Ghuman, former cardiology technologist; and Mira Bains, CBC Radio News.

* Thursday, Nov. 20
Film screenings of Continuous Journey and Rex vs Singh
Followed by discussion with Film maker Ali Kazimi
6 – 9 pm at Raja Cinema, 3215 Kingsway, Vancouver.
Contact: Sunera Thobani. Co sponsored by Raja Cinema.

* Friday, Nov. 21
Commemorating the 100 year anniversary of the Continuous Journey Legislation
Debate, Discourse and Discussion at 10 am
University House, Centre for Indo Canadian Studies
University of the Fraser Valley, Abbotsford, BC
Contact: Dr. Satwinder Bains: 604-854-4547

* Friday, Nov. 21
From One Colonized Space to Another
UBC, SUB Room 212a from 1pm - 3pm
Excerpts of films: "The Legend of Bhagat Singh" and "Kanehsatake: 270 Years of Resistence" followed by a discussion.
Hosted by UBC Colour Connected Against Racism. Contact: Usman Majeed 604-264-8954

* Friday, Nov. 21
Public Forum and Exhibition of Community Publications
Vancouver Public Library, 350 West Georgia from 6:30 – 8:30 pm. Doors @ 5:45.
Contacts: Sunera Thobani, Harsha Walia, Indira Prahst.
Co-sponsored by Vancouver Public Library and Siraat Collective.

Keynote Speaker: Kabir Joshi-Vijayan on the “The Myth of the Model Immigrant". Kabir is a Grade 10 student from Toronto. He has been active in working-class and low-income immigrant communities, is a coordinator of the Toronto Haiti Action Committee, and also a co-producer and co-host of a radio program.

AND Dustin Rivers, a Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish) youth writer and artist. Fueled by generations of injustice, he searches for an authentic Indigenous way to create lasting change and decolonization for his people. He has worked at Redwire Native Youth Media and is featured in the film "Olympiad" on the impact of the 2010 Olympics on indigenous peoples.

* Saturday, Nov. 22
100 Years of Reflection, Resistance, Celebration: Surrey Community Forum
From 2:00 – 5 pm @ Kwantlen College (12666 - 72nd Av) Surrey. Room G 1205
Contact: Dr. Hari Sharma (SANSAD): 604-420-2972. Dr. Balbir Gurn (VIRSA): 778-578-0620. Sponsored by SANSAD, VIRSA, Kwantlen Faculty Association, No One Is Illegal, Surrey Urban Youth Project, Progressive Inter-Cultural Community Services (PICS), Komagatamaru Heritage Foundation, Anniversaries of Change Coalition.

> Film Screenings of "Continuous Journey"on the legacy of the Komagatamaru & "Hate Can Kill" on the beating death of Surrey Sikh temple caretaker Nirmal Singh Gill by white supremacists.
> Panel and comments by Film maker Ali Kazimi; Toronto Youth Activist Kabir Joshi-Vijayan; President of South Asian Network of Secularism and Democracy Dr. Hari Sharma; Dr. Balbir Gurn from Kwantlen College and President of VIRSA; community activist Harsha Walia; and UBC Professor Dr. Sunera Thobani.

* Saturday, Nov. 22
An Evening of Poetry from 6:30-8:30
Kwantlen College (12666 - 72nd Av) Surrey. Room G 1205
Contact and moderator: Surjeet Kalsey

* Saturday, Nov. 22
Children's Book-reading and Dance Workshops
Starting at 10 am. 6667 Main Street (near Frontier Cloth House).
Organized by SAFA. Contact Surita Janghiani 604 779 6075

* Sunday, Nov. 23
Jashan: A Night of South Asian Performance Arts from 7-10 pm
Massey Theatre, 735 Eighth Avenue, New Westminster
Contact: Sitara Thobani. Email:

Featuring Performances by:
Bass Poetry Music, Jawani Bhangra, Vidya Kotamraju, Daksh ft. Naqsh, Trisha Rampersad, Sitara Thobani and Vidyasagar Vankayala

Artist Info:

Vidyasagar Vankayala hails from a family of musicians. His father and elder brother are noted Mridangam vidwans in India. Steeped in Carnatic music since age 6, Vidyasagar continued his vocal training for 15 years, in a very formal, rigorous and highly demanding system of learning. He won the gold medal for Carnatic vocal music for 3 consecutive years in the Inter Collegiate music festivals. He is also the recipient of the gold medal from Visakha Music Academy. He has been introduced to Hindustani and Drupad music during his student days at IIT Bombay. Since moving to Vancouver in 1996, Vidyasagar has been active in promoting Carnatic music in the lower mainland. He is the founder president of Vancouver SaPaSa, a non-profit society for promoting Carnatic Music and Dance. Vidyasagar has given many concerts in Canada, US and India. He has performed for Vancouver Sacred Music Festival, Victoria Sacred Music Festival, and Caravan World Rhythms Showcase. Vidyasagar performed at Utsav 2005 festival in Seattle sponsored by Ragamala and Seattle Townhall. Vidyasagar regularly offers several lecture demonstrations and music appreciation workshops to several local communities. He is a sought-after teacher with over 20 students and collaborators working with him on Carnatic Music.

Vidyasagar will be accompanied by Lasya Vankayala on vocals, Sayenden Supramaniyom on mridangam and Kowmaran Ranjithanathan on ghatam.

Trisha Rampersad Born in South Africa, Trisha Rampersad has been dancing since the age of four. Over the years she has been involved with Bharatanatyam and Kathak Dance. However, when she immigrated to Canada with her family, she found her love for dance in Kathak. Trisha has studied with the Nritya Manjaree School of Kathak Dance for nine years, under the direction of Mrs. Madhu Khare. In August of 2004, she performed “Nrityangan,” a graduation performance, earning her the title of “Nrityamani.” Since then, she has been involved with many performances and community events in British Columbia. Her passion lies in the fusion of the various dance forms, as she believes that there is truth within art. “Dance, this almost spiritual movement, transcends all boundaries we mere humans have inflicted upon this Earth. It frees the soul and fuels the spiritual journey.” Trisha is proud to be a part of this great dance tradition that is Kathak, and hopes to share this classical art with the future generations.

Jawani Bhangra Team is an independent, all-girls bhangra team from Vancouver, BC. Founded in May 2004, it consists of dancers from diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds. Bhangra enables the expression of tradition, creativity, and passion. Jawani Bhangra is currently entering its 3rd successful competition season, and strives to convey these elements to every audience member. The girls dance for the pure of love of bhangra and are proud to represent Indian culture through this vibrant dance form.

BPM (Bass Poetry Music) is a dirty fusion of hip hop, bhangra and dancehall. "Banyen Roots, they dig deep down. Sounds of the underground; bound to the rhythm, bounce to this vision. Indian origins, organic instrumentalists, beat scientists..."Tarun Nayar of Delhi 2 Dublin and Beats Without Borders juggles beats on turntables and palpitates rhythms on tabla; he has a reputation for making dancing irresistible. Nadia Chaney scales tall lyrics in a cynical bound, wrapping words like bondage. She brings the boisterous, magnetic combination of MC, poet and cultural activist. Rupinder Sidhu illuminates the stage with his combustible presence, verbal currency, and fly hype jet engines. He is BPM's primary beatsmith.

Sitara Thobani began training in Odissi under the tutelage of Dr. Ratna Roy in 1997. She has also undertaken intensive training in India at the esteemed Nrityagram dance school and with leading choreographers in Bhubaneswar, Orissa. Sitara has performed at many cultural and art events in Canada, the United States, India, Tanzania, and England. She completed her solo debut Rangapravesh performance in Vancouver, British Columbia in August 2005. Sitara has since received a Canada Arts Council Grant for Emerging Dance Professionals (2005), a Shastri Indo-Canadian Institute scholarship for intensive dance training (2006-07) and a British Columbia Arts Council grant for dance production (2007). Her performance highlights include the Second and Third International Odissi Conferences (Washington, DC, 2003; Bhubaneswar, Orissa, 2006), the Mahari Festival (Bhubaneswar, 2007) and her solo productions of Arpan (London, 2006) and Sthayi (Vancouver, 2007).

Vidya Kotamraju began her bharatanatyam training with Sheila Kumar inIndia. She has been training under Jai Govinda for over four years andgraduated in 2007. In Vancouver, Kotamraju has performed notably for MandalaArts and Culture and the Scotiabank Dance Centre. Kotamraju is a computerengineer in the video-game industry.

Daksh has reached new heights with his performance of his own "Bachpan ki Kahani" and Atif Aslam's "Woh Lamhe" at the Aye Mausam - JoSH concert in Vancouver in May 2007 where he did the opening act for JoSH. Besides being an amazing singer, Daksh is also a dancer with the Academy of Cre8ive Arts. He performs with Imran Habib on lead guitar, Irfan Lawrence on base guitar and Aman Tohan on drums, and together they comprise Naqsh. The band has opened for the internationally renowned band Junoon, and recently closed for Vancouver Celebrates Diwali 2008. Their music combines Hindi and Urdu rock, with a hint of Sufi music and classic rock.