The Tiger Hunter

Danny Pudi in "The Tiger Hunter"
Danny Pudi in “The Tiger Hunter”

There is so much great work being done by film makers and actors outside of the realm of Bollywood and I want to do my part in helping them succeed. This will be the first in a series of posts about independent movies. As I watch them, I’ll update the post to include my review or thoughts.

 

Plot Summary: A young Indian man relocates to 1970s Chicago to become an engineer, but when his job falls through, resorts to an elaborate charade with misfit friends in order to woo his childhood sweetheart.

The Tiger Hunter deals with my favorite topic: the Indian-American Immigrant experience, and takes place in my favorite city – Chicago! Also, the movie features my favorite Chicago Desi Actor, Parvesh Cheena. Go see the movie and leave a comment below with your thoughts!

Read this article for insights from The Tiger Hunter‘s director, Lena Khan, and why this movie is so important for the Indian-American community or this one in Teen Vogue on being a South Asian Muslim in Hollywood.

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Job Opportunity: South Asian Community Health Specialist

The NIH grant is expanding the original SAHELI pilot study done by Northwestern to include South Asians in and around Skokie.

Job Opportunity for South Asian Health Study in Skokie

The Skokie Health Department is seeking applicants for a new National Institute of Health (NIH)-funded full-time position as a Community Health Specialist. This employee will work on the South Asian Healthy Lifestyle Initiative (SAHELI), collaborating with Northwestern University. The aim of the SAHELI is to evaluate and implement health interventions targeted specifically toward South Asians and their lifestyles. The NIH grant is expanding the original SAHELI pilot study done by Northwestern to include South Asians in and around Skokie. Interested applicants can find the job description here. The deadline for applications is Tuesday, September 5, 2017.

For more information on the study, check out this story.

SAAPRI-LOGO
Job posting as advertised by SAAPRI

 

Anoushka Shankar at the CSO

For one night only, come see Anoushka Shankar perform Indian classical and progressive world music on her sitar at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Receive 10% off ticket prices, courtesy of Natya Dance Theatre by using code SHANKAR at checkout. March 25th at 8pm.

For one night only, come see Anoushka Shankar perform Indian classical and progressive world music on her sitar at the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Receive 10% off ticket prices, courtesy of Natya Dance Theatre by using code SHANKAR at checkout. March 25th at 8pm.

Anoushka Shankar
Anoushka Shankar

Watch Recap of South Asian International Film Festival on Zee TV

Zee TV will be playing a telecast of NYC’s South Asian International Film Festival on Saturday, January 14th at 5:30 EST.

South Asian International Film Festival
Zee TV replays SAIFF on 1/14

 

The 13th Annual South Asian Film Festival was held in New York City on November 30 – December 4, 2016. Check out the awesome films and talent showcased at the event!

Desi Theater in Chicago

Living in Chicago, I’m lucky enough that we have the talent, space, patrons, and interest to cultivate South Asian arts. One of the most special artistic outlets we have is Rasaka Theater Company, a Desi theater company that performs “South Asian stories” by “South Asian artists”.

Rasaka Theater Company Logo
Rasaka Theater Company Logo

I first learned about Rasaka back in 2011 when I went to watch their production of Gruesome Playground Injuries, a play by Rajiv Joseph, starring Mouzam Makkar (who later went on to act on such TV shows as The ExorcistVampire Diaries, and upcoming Chicago Justice). I was serving on the associate board of a local non-profit and helped sell tickets to the play as a fundraiser. Ever the one to celebrate South Asians making the American experience their own, I was so excited to see a medium that isn’t the most mainstream art, being showcased and accessible. Hence why I am choosing to write about them now.

Rasaka was founded in 2003 by a group of South Asian artists who were looking to put on a production and worked together to bring their gifts to the community. Check out their mission statement:

Rasaka Theatre Company is based in Chicago and is the Midwest’s first South Asian American ensemble. Our goal is to increase diversity among artists and audience by engaging and illuminating the South Asian American experience. We are particularly dedicated to providing a platform for the artistic expression of South Asian artists.

Our vision encompasses the production of theatrical projects – newly created, adapted and already established. We aim to broaden, strengthen and enrich the experience of the theatre going audience thereby enhancing the local, regional, national and international reputation of Chicago theatre.

“Rasa” means the essence or inspiration of a work of art, and adding “ka” behind a word makes it “of” that, as in “of the essence of art.”  Rasaka’s goal is to increase diversity among artists and audience by engaging and illuminating the South Asian American experience, with particular dedication to providing a platform for the artistic expression of South Asian artists.

If you’re interested in supporting their mission, I encourage you to check out some of their productions. They are currently running a play based on Anton Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya adapted by Lavina Jadhwani. It’s playing at the Edge Theater in Uptown thru February 3rd and you can buy tickets here.

Vanya (or, 'That's Live!')
Vanya (or, ‘That’s Life!’) Pictured from L to R: Puja Mohindra, Richard Costes, Rom Barkhordar, & Tiffany Renee Johnson
“Anton Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya continues to be one of the greatest and continually relevant of plays – concerned with family relationships, broken hearts, and the rampant disappointment of midlife crisis. In this hilarious and sharp reinvention, there is great providence in the shattering of a teacup, time moves backwards, and our bored, sad Chekhovian friends have a tendency to lapse into singing American Indie folk tunes. What could be more Russian? Or American?”

MODERN MANGALSUTRA

Sampat Jewelers has created what they call a “modern mangalsutra” for the “millennial woman’s desire for a unique and versatile piece”.

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“Modern Mangalsutra” by Sampat Jewelers

My favorite part of the description is where they “throwback” to our mother’s way of storing and protecting family treasures in bank “lockers” (I constantly get into fights with my mother about this).  I also like the “silver” look of the white gold chain because I’m currently in a years long phase where I don’t like the look of traditional 22K gold.

South Asian Bride Magazine has partnered with Sampat to give one lucky winner their own “modern mangalsutra” and you can enter here by February 1st! Chances increase the more you share and refer.

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This post was not sponsored by any company – just my own opinion!