From Srividya Venkatasubramanya, Executive Director, Ra-Ve Cultural Foundation
Working with Dhirana Academy of Classical Dance and Trike Theatre to produce The Jungle Book was an honor for Ra-Ve Cultural Foundation, a privilege, a creative and commercial triumph—and a lot of hard work!
Megha Rao at Dhirana and Kassie Misiewicz at Trike provided the essential artistic vision that made The Jungle Book so successful. But a work of this magnitude also requires significant administrative and logistical support, and this was the role of RVCF. We worked alongside Trike and Dhirana to take care of all the details such as the marketing, coordinated the space requirements for classes and rehearsals, recruited and scheduled the many volunteers, and in general furnished the critical behind- the-scenes support structure that is so important to an epic-scale event such as The Jungle Book.
The success of this unique and unprecedented collaboration can be measured by the sold-out crowd of over 1200 enthusiastic audience members, tidy profits for all three organizations, and the commitment from all of us to do it again next year––in fact, we’ve already started!
From Megha P. Rao, Artistic Director, Dhirana Academy of Classical Dance
The collaboration between Dhirana, Trike Theatre and Ra-Ve Cultural Foundation brought together artists from diverse backgrounds and art forms, resulting in the successful production of The Jungle Book. This collaboration provided a valuable learning experience for all involved, with individuals from different communities and cultural backgrounds working together in unison. As a Bharatnatyam artist, it was particularly enlightening to work with a theater artist like Kassie Mickiewicz and gain insight into the workings of theater production. The perseverance of Ra-Ve Cultural Foundation made this collaboration possible, highlighting the importance of working together to create something new and exciting. This collaboration is a testament to the growth and learning that can come from artists coming together to create something truly unique.
From Kassie Misiewicz, Artistic Director, Trike Theater
The strength of the jungle is us, and the strength of us is the jungle. Ra-Ve, Trike Theatre and Dhirana Academy of Classical Dance came together to create something new, something that neither of us had ever done before. Megha and I brought our unique strengths, along with the strengths of our production team, and co-created, learned from each other and grew as artists. I hope that this production (and future collaborations) inspires our community to create more opportunities for cultural exchange and creative partnerships.
Since its inception in January of 2022, Chai Time has proven to be one of the most popular events at RVCF. Informative, fun, and full of insights and laughter, Chai Time is now a must-do on social calendars throughout NWA, and the first quarter of 2023 was our best yet!
January’s theme was Game Night, with participants enjoying board games, table games, party games, team games—whatever the gaming style, we had it all! A bonus in January was that Sthri Couture generously donated a $100 gift card. The winner, Payal Shah, was randomly picked from all registrants present at the event at the time of drawing.
February was Travel and Destinations Day, when a certified travel agent from Destinations AR discussed cruise vacations and traveling by air to European destinations. Tracee Williams, Luxury Vacation Designer at Destinations AR, answered question such as:
How to plan for a cruise.
The best cruise line for kids.
Traveling by air to favorite places in Europe.
Costs of air travel versus cruising.
Tracee also sponsored a $100 gift card which was won by Jaishali Thakore. We are curious where Jaishali will go this year!
Finally, March Chai time was all about Spring Gardening. Local master gardeners explained how to plan, prepare, and plant a beautiful outdoor oasis. Horticulturist Laura Brewer, Site Manager for the Peel Museum and Botanical Garden, and Indian Community Gardening enthusiast, Lali Neha Dahal joined us to discuss plant care and answer questions. We also had a seed and plant exchange, where attendees could trade anything garden related with each other.
And don't forget the Maya Bazaar—great shopping and bargains galore! Purchases of our beautiful, gently-used Indian clothing and RVCF-branded items help raise awareness about our Indian music and dance programs at KIFA.
Ra-Ve Cultural Foundation Chai Time
Third Sunday of each month
3:00 PM to 4:30 PM
Kalaloka Institute of Fine Arts
1380 SW Westpark Drive, Ste #2
Bentonville, AR 72712
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