October 23rd Sunday 12-4pm African Arts Festival 2016 – FREE

Inspired by the diversity and vibrancy of the Bay Area’s African arts scene, Duniya Dance and Drum Company is presenting its second African Arts Festival!

Featuring performance by:
* Alayo Dance Company (Cuban/Modern)
* Chinyakare Ensemble (Zimbabwean)
* Fua Dia Congo (Congolese)
* Rara Tou Limen (Haitian)
* Shabbal Dance (Sudanese)
* The West African Dance Ensemble (Ghanaian)
* Duniya Dance and Drum Company (Guinean)
* Domou Africa (Senegalese)
* Students from the World Music and Dance department of the Ruth Asawa San Francisco School of the Arts.
Plus dance lessons with a couple of the performing groups.

For more information, click here.

CounterPULSE presents Performing Diaspora

Red, Saffron and Green

Performing Diaspora at CounterPULSE, featuring new work by Joti Singh.

August 15–18th, 2013; THU-SUN, 8pm

Red, Saffron and Green tells the story of the Gadar party, founded in 1913 in San Francisco by Punjabi activists to fight for Indian independence from the British; Singh’s great­grandfather was the president of this party from 1914­1920. The performance layers Singh’s experiences as the daughter of immigrants, with the life of her great­grandfather and the fight for independence.

More Information: http://counterpulse.org/performing-diaspora/artists/joti-singh/

AUG 8 Festival Kick-off
AUG 10 Symposium
AUG 15 – 18 Festival Weekend One
AUG 22 – 25 Festival Weekend Two
There are many shades of innovation, diaspora, and performance. From first generation culture bearers to third generation hyphenated-Americans, the six artists featured in CounterPULSE’s Performing Diaspora push the boundaries of their performance practice, each rooted in diverse cultural forms. Join us in August for a vibrant kick-off party, a thought provoking symposium, and two weekends of new work by Byb Chanel BibeneJoti SinghJia WuJewlia EisenbergMuisi-kongo Malonga, and Nadhi Thekkek.

Co-presented by: African Advocacy NetworkAmerican India FoundationChinese Culture CenterContemporary Jewish Museum, Jewish Music FestivalMuseum of the African DiasporaOakland Asian Cultural Center

December 10, 2013

Celebrate International Human Rights Day!

6:30 p.m., Jewish Community Center of San Francisco, 3200 California St.

American Jewish World Service – AJWS and the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco invite you to an evening of music, dance, and food!

Join Ruth W. Messinger, President of AJWS, and Claudia Samayoa, AJWS Grantee and Human Rights Activist, for an inspiring event. Entertainment by Duniya Dance and Drum Company.

February 9, 2014

Luna New Year at Oakland Museum

Oakland Museum’s Lunar New Year celebration!

Sunday, February 9, 2014, 12–4:30 p.m. Free with museum admission.

Don’t miss this favorite annual festival, as OMCA rings in the Year of the Horse with an array of Asian traditions in arts, crafts, food, demonstrations, live music, dance, family activities, and so much more. Elements of Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese, Japanese, Tibetan and other Asian cultures will be featured in the daylong celebration, including performances such as lion and dragon dances, acrobats, music, dance, magic show, martial arts, storytelling and cooking demonstrations for kids!

March 30, 2014

Asha SF Presents Holi 2014

Sunday, March 30, 12-3 pm, James Lick Middle School, SF.

Holi is the Indian festival of colors. It celebrates the colors and vitality of spring by marking the change of seasons. This year Asha SF is bringing this festival to you, right here in the heart of the city! What better way to welcome spring than by dousing friends with color, enjoying performances, and dancing the day away with a live DJ!

Asha SF is a non-profit organization with the goal of providing basic education to underprivileged children in India, and all proceeds from this event will go towards achieving that goal.

For details and tickets, visit www.ashanet.org/sf/events/holi/2014.

April 11, 2014

CubaCaribe Festival: Moving Forward

Dance Mission Theater, SF.

In honor of the festival’s theme, Artistic Director Ramos Alayo hand-selected exceptional dance companies to create new work that pushes forward, melds, or speaks to the evolution of their genre.

Featuring: Alafia Dance Ensemble, Alayo Dance Company, Cunamacue, Duniya Dance & Drum Company, Las Que Son Son, Las Puras, and Nicole Klaymoon’s Embodiment Project.

For more information, please visit cubacaribe.org.

Why Dance

Here I am, finally writing a blog. It’s not the writing that has kept me from doing this sooner but rather the commitment. So here I will state to my blog: I will do my best not to neglect you, not to put everything and everybody else above you and to always be truthful and sincere.

Duniya has a new Marketing and Communications Intern. Welcome Nitya! Having an intern is some dope stuff. When I asked her what I should write about in my first blog entry, she wanted to know why dance is important to me. Why dance? Why the heck would anyone give up luxury,  money, fancy job titles, and above all laziness and give everything to dance? Why dance? My answer, in short: Danceformation.

Dance is transformation. I am in the lucky position to see this on a daily basis. Dance makes a sad kid happy, dance makes an insecure woman feel like the bomb, dance turns violent youth into peaceful dance-makers, it turns ignorance into cross-cultural understanding and appreciation, it makes a dull life suddenly interesting. Dance turns a party you were invited to into a party you stayed at until 3 a.m.

When we created “Half and Halves,” our performance about the Punjabi-Mexican communities of California, as dancers we transformed ourselves into: devastated Punjabi women whose husbands were leaving us to come to America; Mexican and Punjabi farmers laboring in the scorching sun; subdued yet joyous guests at a wedding party; and feisty schoolgirls battling in the playground. The theater  transformed from the Brava in San Francisco’s Mission District in 2010 to the Imperial Valley fields in 1906. Some audience members were so moved by the performance that they cried. Many approached me afterwards and told me they were so proud to learn of this history, or that they wanted their Punjabi parents and Mexican friends to see this important show. They were transformed.

On a personal level, I metamorphosized completely, from being insecure about my ability to pull off the show and unclear about my voice as a director and choreographer, to confident with not only my own capability but also my responsibility to do important work. I delved more deeply into compromise (which doesn’t always come easy for me) and collaboration. This experience made me more empathetic, more experimental, and more clear about direction in my career and in my life.

Dance can communicate the beauties and the cracks of the world I live in, and help create the ideal world that I hope to experience. Dance transforms everyone who touches it. So, Nitya, that’s why I dance.



3 nights of Artist in Residence Joti Singh and Duniya Dance and Drum Company at CounterPULSE.

Balandougou Kan Connection

“Lanyee” (Peace and Unity) An exciting evening of West African music and dance, featuring a collaboration of artists from West Africa, the Bay Area and Los Angeles“Lanyee” (Peace and Unity) An exciting evening of West African music and dance, featuring a collaboration of artists from West Africa, the Bay Area and Los Angeles, including drummers Bongo Sidibe and Kahlil Cummings, balafon player Mohamed Kouyate, and kora player Karamo Sissoko.

In response to recent political unrest in Guinea, these artists present their visions for a peaceful outcome to current turmoil and their hopes for the unification of the population.

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Contact Us

Artistic Director Joti Singh 510.213.1537 joti@duniyadance.com