Drumming a Dream Collaborating Artists
Preeti Vasudevan: Artistic Director/Choreographer
Award-winning choreographer and cultural storyteller Preeti Vasudevan's provocative theatrical works redefine individual identity, uniting artists and audiences alike. Her creations have been lauded as a refreshing collision of eastern and western aesthetics pushing for a new expression in art-making. Using just about every mode of the performing arts (including dance, music, poetry, visual art, mime, and theater), Preeti invites cutting-edge collaborators to form a 21st-century language of expression. Her unconventional storytelling challenges the status quo of dance-theater, bridging ancient traditions with the contemporary world.
Known for igniting groundbreaking artistic partnerships, Preeti frequently collaborates with celebrated artists such as legendary cellist Yo-Yo Ma, Guggenheim awardee Paul Kaiser and with leading ensembles like Silkroad. Preeti’s works have been commissioned by distinguished institutions including The Metropolitan Museum of Art NY, Glimmerglass Opera Festival NY, Guggenheim’s Works & Process NY, New Victory Theater NY, Morph Dance Company UK, and The Alliance Francaise, among others. She has been invited to sit on panels at the National Endowment for the Arts US, US Consulate panel on women creatives, Joyce Theater, and Asian American Arts Alliance.
Preeti’s vibrant international career has brought her to the world’s stages as a performer, curator, and thought leader. From her early start as an award-winning classical artist from India to receiving a cultural scholarship as International Choreographer in Residence at the American Dance Festival, she has emerged as an artist to watch by leading global institutions where she has been in residence. Her works have been supported by prominent organizations like TED; Centre National de la Danse, Paris; Lincoln Center, NY; Guggenheim Works & Process, NY; The Joyce Foundation, NY; and Mahindra Excellence in Theater Awards, India. In recent years, original works performed by her performing arts collaborative, Thresh, have earned international acclaim for their fresh juxtaposition of traditional and contemporary voices.
Roopa Mahadevan: Music Collaborator
Roopa Mahadevan is known for her powerful and emotive voice; and is versatile among Carnatic (South Indian classical) performers, bringing the art form and her explorations in genre, text, and theater across the U.S., India, and South Asian diaspora. Based in New York City, Roopa frequently collaborates with artists in jazz, creative/improvised music, and R&B/soul genres and has her own crossover ensemble Roopa In Flux. Roopa also directs the innovative Carnatic choir Navatman Music Collective and is an active member of Brooklyn Raga Massive (Women’s Raga Massive; Rubin Art Museum, Joe’s Pub). She is a highly sought-after vocalist for Bharatanatyam and contemporary dancers. Through her creative endeavors, Roopa is driven by an instinct to find joy, build community, and celebrate difference.
Max Pollak: Music Collaborator
Max Pollak takes his ground-breaking, unconventional approach to performing arts across multiple cultures. As a native Austrian, Pollak combines the German language and the wide-range Yodel that can be seen in his 70-minute solo performance of “All In One.” Pollak is recognized worldwide as the first person to merge Afro-Cuban music and dance with American tap and body percussion. This new style inspired the creation of his band RumbaTap, which has performed in the United States, Canada, Japan, Brazil, Cuba, Turkey, France, Germany, Austria, and Finland. Pollak also breaks into the resurgence of contemporary Austrian folklore music (otherwise known as New Austrian Sound of Music) with a traditional, classical twist. As an award-winning choreographer, educator, and composer, Pollak is also co-creator of the off-Broadway hit show Carmen, to Havana and Back. His CD RumbaTap was released in 2015 and he is on faculty at Sarah Lawrence College and Drew University.