Prior Artist Residents

Academic Year 2013-2014

Fall 2013

Rajeeb ChakrabortySarod, Kolkata, India

Residency Description: Rajeeb Chakraborty is a musician, educationalist, composer and conductor. His talent has taken him across the globe for more than a decade to Europe, the United States, and Canada where he has participated in numerous concerts and major music festivals. Rajeeb started playing at the tender age of six under the guidance of his father, Pandit Rabi Chakraborty, himself one of the most distinguished and senior sarodist of the Maihar Gharana tradition. Apart from being a scholar in Indian classical music, Dr. Chakraborty earned his degrees in Western classical music from the Royal College of Music in London with distinction.

During the fall of 2013, Dr. Rajeeb Chakraborty’s main activities were assisting Professor Ed Sarath in the School of Music. On a weekly basis, Rajeeb shared his expertise with the “Improvisational Forms” class, “Contemporary Improvisation” class, “Basic Musicianship” class, and the “Music School of the Future” seminar. Through this experience, Rajeeb was able to establish a solid connection with both Professor Ed Sarath and his students who greatly appreciated the unique talent and perspective he brought into the classroom. 

Rajeeb Chakraborty also provided lecture demonstrations for affiliated faculty for the Center for South Asian Studies including Dr. Ho’s courses “Music of Asia II” and “Music and Islam,” Dr. Chanchani’s courses “Art of Yoga” and “Intro to South Asian Art,” and Christie-Ann Castro’s course “Intro to Music.”

When Rajeeb was not with Professor Ed Sarath or providing lecture demonstrations, he was spending his time with the Patient and Family Support Services at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center and the Medical Arts Program at the U-M Medical School.

Dr. Chakraborty’s main event was a public performance at the School of Music’s Stamps Auditorium in the Walgreen Drama Center on Monday, September 30, 2013 with tabla player Pandit Samar Saha. Both artists charmed over 350 audience members who expressed their gratitude with a thunderous standing ovation.

At the conclusion of his residency, Dr. Chakkraborty received the King, Chavéz, Parks award from Senior Vice Provost Lester Monts.

Learn more about Rajeeb Chakraborty’s visit in the 2014 winter International Institute Journal. 

Sponsors: CWPS; School of Music, Theatre and Dance; the Patient and Family Support Services at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center; the Center for South Asian Studies; the Medical Arts Program at the U-M Medical School; the King Chavéz Parks Visiting Professors Program; and the Office of the Senior Vice Provost.

Dates: 9/10/13 – 12/15/13

Dr. Rajeeb Chakraborty: (Media links below)



Candle Lighting Ceremony 9/21/13

An Evening of Hindustani Classical Music 9/30/13

Medical Arts Program 10/29/13

Improvisational Forms 11/12/13

Art of Yoga 11/13/13

Intro to South Asian Art 11/18/13

Research Into Reality 11/18/13

Music School of the Future 12/2/13

Contemporary Improv 12/3/13

KCP Awarr 12/3/13


Candle Lighting Ceremony 9/21/13

Music of Asia 10/17/14

Research Into Reality 11/18/13


David LockeProfessor of Music, Tufts University

Residency Description: After arriving to the University of Michigan, David Locke attended the World Percussion Ensemble Master class with Dan Piccolo in the School of Music, presented a guest lecture in Kwasi Ampene’s African Music and Cultures class, attended an African Ensemble Class at Oakland University with instructor Mark Stone, and finally presented a Musicology Distinguished Lecture at the University of Michigan.

Sponsor: CWPS, School of Music

Date: 9/25/2013 – 9/27/2013

Humberto MayolPhotographer and documentary film maker, Cuba

Residency Description:  Humberto Mayol, an award-winning Cuban photographer and documentary filmmaker working with the Palomas Group of the National Film Institute of Cuba, is a sharp ethnographic eye. He is continually looking to capture the complex social reality that has unfolded on the island since the 1959 revolution. His photographs have been widely exhibited in his native Cuba as well as in the United States, Europe, Latin America, and China. In his haunting images, he reveals the day-to-day lives of Cubans while also richly evoking the geographic and cultural landscape against which these lives unfold. While at the University of Michigan, he participated in Professor Behar’s ‘Cuba and Its Diaspora’class and held various exhibits displaying his work.

Sponsor:  Ruth Behar, Victor Haim Perera Collegiate Professor of Anthropology and Professor of Anthropology. Additional support from the Department of Anthropology, Latina/Latino Studies, the Center for Global and International Study, Latin American and Caribbean Studies, and the Graduate Library of the University of Michigan.

Dates: 9/24/2013 - 9/26/2013

Taous Claire KhazemPlaywright and performer, Twin Cities

Residency Description: Khazem teaches theatre to youth, young adults, and adults with disabilities at SteppingStone Theatre, The Children's Theatre, and Interact Center for the Visual and Performing Arts. She is also on the COMPAS artist roster. She has worked as a theatre artist in Algeria, Morocco, Jordan, Egypt, France and Cameroon. Locally, she has performed with Interact Center, Pangea World Theater, Frank Theatre, Savage Umbrella, Off Leash Area, and at Dreamland Arts.  Taous trained at the Jacques Lecoq International Theatre School in Paris, France and holds a B.A in Theatre and French from Macalester College. While at the University of Michigan, Taous performed at the Aimé Césaire's Symposium, participated in two workshop with students on how to perform different characters on the topic of Immigration, and finally performed a public play, TIZI-OUZOU, with her husband.

Sponsor: Frieda Ekotto, Professor of French, Romance Languages and Literatures, Professor of Comparative Literature

Date: 10/6/2013 – 10/12/2013

Academic Year 2012-2013

Winter 2013

Sivamohan Sumathy & YaliniDreamPoetry, theater, film & performance, Sri Lanka

Residency Description: Sivamohan Sumathy is a Poet, playwright and filmmaker and YaliniDream is a performer and writer. While at the University of Michigan, these two artists (along with sponsor Sugi Ganeshananthan) presented existing work; facilitated discussions and workshops that allowed students and audience members to analyze the artists’ processes and risk-taking in different political spaces; participated in a final performance; collaborated in the curriculum for an undergraduate English course focusing on political literature and literature of South Asia diasporas.

Sponsor: Sugi Ganeshananthan; Zell Visiting Professor of Creative Writing

Date: For one Month, Winter semester 2013

Sivamohan Sumathy: Photo Gallery One, Photo Gallery Two

YaliniDream: Website, YouTube, Indian Express article, Samar magazine article

Alanis KingPlaywright/Director, Ontario, Canada

Residency Description: Alanis King is an Odawa Playwright/Director originally from the Wikwemikong Unceded Indian Reserve. While on campus for two weeks, she worked with students from several programs to create a short production. She visited several classes and hosted a workshop for students across disciplines. Her final work was presented in the CSP Student Space. He class presentations included:

  • Ojibwe 223
  • Ojibwe 323
  • Ojibwe 423
  • AmCult 205: Anishinaabe Literature
  • English 346 Performance Studies: Embodiment/Environment/Community

Sponsor: Margaret Noori; Director, Comprehensive Studies Program and Lecturer II in American Culture Program

Date: Winter 2013, 2 weeks

Dobet Gnahoré and Acoustic AfricaMusic and Dance, Ivory Coast

Residency Description: Dobet Gnahoré and Acoustic Africa is a unique, one-of-a-kind music group that introduced music and dance from Francophone Africa to the University of Michigan. While in Ann Arbor, they performed the largest event ever organized by CWPS at Hill Auditorium; “Dobet Gnahoré & Acoustic Africa in collaboration with the UMMA Exhibition El-Anatsui: When I Last wrote to you about Africa.” This group also participated in class presentations including Race and Identity in Music by Professor Naomi Andre from the Residential College, African Musics and Culture and Arts in Cultural Contexts by Professor Kwasi Ampene and Naomi Andre, and Introduction to African Studies by Professor Omalade Adunbi, Department of Afroamerican and African Studies. They also held a roundtable discussion titled, “Music and the Experience of Female Performance” with Professor Frieda Ekotto from the Humanities Institute. They also participated in a Balofone Workshop at the School of Music with Professor Jonathan Ovalle.

Sponsor: CWPS and UMMA

Date: 2/18/13 – 2/21/13

Dobet Gnahoré: Website

Fall 2012

Kataoka IchiroBenshi (silent film narrator), Japan

Residency Description: Kataoka Ichiro is a Benshi, also known as a silent movie narrator. During Katoaka Ichiro’s residency, he participated in a performance at the Permanent Seminar on the History of Film Theories between September 20-23 followed by a Q&A; conducted weekly performances at the Center for Japanese Studies Fall Film Series; performed a December Finale with live music at the Michigan Theater; taught Benshi Workshops with UM faculty, students, and out-of-town Scholars; judged a Benshi Battle; and finally visited various classrooms.

Sponsor: Mark Nornes; Professor of Screen Arts and Cultures

Date: 9/1/12 – 12/31/12

Samuel and Fradreck MujuruMbira muicians, Zimbabwe

Residency Description: Samuel and Fradreck Mujuru are mbira musicians from Zimbabwe and participated in class presentations while at the University of Michigan including: Introduction to World Music Class by Professor Christi-Anne Castro, World Percussion Ensemble by Professor Kwasi Ampene, and Intro to Africa and its Diaspora class by Professor Kwasi Ampene and Professor Julius Scott.

Sponsor: CWPS, Kutsinhira Cultural Arts Center in Eugene, Oregon

Date: 9/10/12 – 9/13/12

Fradrick Mujuru: Website

Samuel Mujuru: Website

Watch the YouTube videos for:

DAAS Welcome Reception

World Music Class

World Percussion Ensemble

Introduction into Africa and its Diaspora


Leonora MianoNovelist and playwright, Cameroon, France

Residency Description: Leonora Miano is an internationally acclaimed, prize-winning Francophone novelist and playwright. While at the University of Michigan she collaborated on a mini-course on African literature for students with faculty sponsor Frieda Ekotto.

Sponsor: Faculty, Frieda Ekotto from the Department of Afroamerican and African Studies

Date: 10/1/12 – 10/31/12

Leonora Miano: Website

James AcheampongMaster drum carver, Ghana

Residency Description: James Acheampong is a master drum carver from Ghana. He provided daily drum carving demonstrations in the Palmer Commons public area and class demonstrations including Introduction to Art by Professor David Doris, History of Art and Department of Afroamerican and African Studies, Special Topic: History of Art: Power Objects: Africa Elsewhere by Professor David Doris, and Health and Illnes in African Worlds by Professor Nancy Hunt, History.

Sponsor: CWPS, Office of the Vice President for Research, Rackham Dean’s Office, International Institute, Humanities Institute

Date: 10/1/12 – 10/31/12

Grupo KrappTheater and dance, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Residency Description: Grupo Krapp is a theatre and dance company. While at the University of Michigan they attended classes in Dance, Theater, Interarts, Performance Studies, Romance Languages, and Latin American Cultural Studies culminating in a performance of their recent work Lado B at the Arthur Miller Theater.

Sponsor: Amy Chavasse, Associate Professor of Dance, in the School of Music, Theatre & Dance

Date: 10/6/12 – 10/12/12

Grupo TucandiraMusicians, Colombia

Residency Description: Grupo Tucandíra is a five-member group of Colombian vocalists and musicians directed by Arecio Manjarres García. They participated in class presentations including Introduction to World Music by Professor Christi-Anne Castro and Latin America: Society and Culture by Professor David Frye.

Sponsor: CWPS and the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies

Date: 10/7/12 – 10/9/12

Rolando Estevez Book designer, Cuba

Residency Description: Estévez is a visual arts book designer. While at the University of Michigan he taught a workshop on the making of artisanal handmade books while involving students in the production of the books. He gave a public lecture on his artistic work, offering a retrospective view of the wide range of his projects over the course of his career. There was an exhibition of his art, in collaboration with students and faculty. Professor Behar teaches a course on "Cuba and Its Diaspora" and Estévez was actively involved in discussions and projects with her undergraduate students. Finally, Estévez painted a mural, as a gift, to the University of Michigan.

Sponsor: Ruth Behar; Victor Haim Perera Collegiate Professor of Anthropology

Date: 11/26/12 - 12/10/12

Academic Year 2011-2012

Winter 2012

Vusi MahlaselaSinger-songwriter, South Africa

Residency Description: Vusi Mahlasela is a singer-songwriter and poet-activist. While at the University of Michigan he visited many classes including a combined class: Performing Arts and Power in Africa by Professor Kwasi Ampene & Arts in Cultural Contexts by Professor Naomi Andre, Introduction to African Studies by Professor Omolade Adunbi, Social Science Seminar on South Africa by Professor Adam Ashforth, and Introduction to World Music by Professor Meilu Ho. Additional events included film Screening of the “Amandla” documentary with DAAS in the Lemuel Johnson Center.

Sponsor: CWPS, DAAS

Date: 1/10/12 – 1/14/12

Aravind Enrique AdyanthayaTheater performer, Puerto Rico

Residency Description: Adyanthaya is a pioneer of the integration of computer and gaming technology as part of live theater and performance in Puerto Rico. While at the University of Michigan he visited American Culture 403 and Spanish 440, provided a four hour workshop, and performed “Translation/Traduccion” followed by a discussion for students.

Sponsor: Lawrence La Fountain-Stokes; Associate Professor of American Culture Program, Associate Professor of Romance Languages and Literatures

Date: 1/18/12 – 1/23/12

Wayang Troupe with Wayang KulitShadow theater and gamelan, Indonesia

Residency Description: Renowned shadow theatre drama master Purbo Asmoro of the Indonesian Institute of the Arts in Surakarta, and his troupe of top gamelan musicians, presented the living classical drama and musical traditions of Java, with a performance of a Wayang Kulit (shadow theater), and a series of workshops and lectures while at the University of Michigan.

Sponsor: Susan Walton, Lecturer IV in Musicology, Residential College, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts; and the School of Music, Theatre & Dance

Date: 3/10/12 – 3/11/12

Maxsym Kurochkin & John FreedmanPlaywright and critic, Russia

Residency Description: Maxsym Kurochkin is a playwright and John Freedman is a critic and translator. While at the University of Michigan, their residency centered around several public performances by students from two classes at the Residential College in the Keene Theater in East Quadrangle. Kurochkin and Freedman attended the performances and engaged students with discussions following each performance. Freedman also hosted a lecture on the contemporary arts environment in Russia, an event also held in the Keene Theater. The two artists also attended classes in the Slavic Department and Residential College.

Sponsor: Kate Mendeloff, Lecturer IV in Drama, Residential College, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts

Date: 3/12/12 – 3/17/12

Rony Barrak and The Fontomfrom Drum & Dance EnsemblePercussion and dance, Lebanon and Ghana

Residency Description: Rony Barrak is a Lebanese percussionist best known for his mastery of the darbuka, a goblet-shaped hand drum. He is also a composer and producer who has a leading presence in collaborations in jazz, funk, percussion and classical, as well as Arabic and Latin musical styles. The Fontomfrom Drum & Dance Ensemble are master drummers and dancers and former members of the National Dance Company based at the Center for National Culture in Kumasi, Ghana. While at the University of Michigan, they participated in classes including Performing Arts and Power in Africa by Professor Kwasi Ampene, Africanist Dance History class by Professor Robin Wilson, Introduction to African Studies Class by Professor Adunbi Omolade, Introduction to World Music class by Professor Meilu Ho, a Percussion Studies Master class, and a Dance Class by Professor Biza Sompa. Additionally, they performed a concert at U of M hospital and Carpenter Middle School. Their culminating signature event was a public performance in collaboration with the Creative Arts Orchestra and Percussion Studies Master Class in Palmer Commons.

Sponsor: CWPS, Africanist Dance Traditions (Department of Dance) and Percussion Studies (School of Music, Theater and Dance)

Date: Residency 3/25/12 – 3/31/12; Concert on March 31, 2012; CWPS Signature Event

Dr. Brenda Mhlambi & Prof. Donato SommaOpera scholars, South Africa

Residency Description: This residency is part of a larger project that explores the current vibrant opera scene in South Africa that features both a strong participation of black singers, as well as an arena for interracial artistic collaboration. While at the University of Michigan, they participated in class presentations including Arts in Cultural Context and Approaches to Feminist Scholarship on Women of Color.

Sponsor: Naomi Andre; Associate Professor of Women's Studies & Associate Professor of Residential College

Date: 3/30/12 - 04/6/2012

Fall 2011

ObsesiónHip hop artists, La Habana, Cuba

Obsesión; La Habana, Cuba

Residency Description: Obsesión is a Cuban hip hob group comprised of Alexey Rodrigues and Magia Lopez. While at the University of Michigan, Obsesión participated in Cuban Week during Spanish Heritage Month. Cuban week consisted of events such as cuban drumming, dance, and performances.

Sponsor: Ruth Behar, Victor Haim Perera Collegiate Professor of Anthropology
Organized by Anna Megdell, graduate student & Nicole Mueller, graduate student

Date: 9/18/11 – 9/25/11

Kolawole OshitolaYoruba ritual specialist, Nigeria

Residency Description: Kolawole Oshitola is a Yoruba ritual specialist. While at the University of Michigan he worked with faculty sponsor David Doris and participated in class presentations.

Sponsor: David Doris; Associate Professor of Afroamerican and African Studies, Associate Professor of History of Art, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts and Associate Professor of Art, Penny W Stamps School of Art and Design

Date: 9/30/11 – 10/8/11