Feb. 23: Ars Nova Presents Vision Resident Rona Siddiqui’s MENASAfied Featuring George Abud, Sherz Aletaha, Shoba Narayan, Jonathan Raviv, Sharone Sayegh, Vishal Vaidya, and Kuhoo Verma

On Tuesday, February 23 at 7pm EST, Ars Nova will stream MENASAfied, curated by composer Rona Siddiqui as part of the new Ars Nova Vision Residency program. Helmed by Sharone Sayegh, arranged & music directed by Mona Seyed-Bolorforosh, the cast features George Abud, Sherz Aletaha, Shoba Narayan, Jonathan Raviv, Sharone Sayegh, Vishal Vaidya, and Kuhoo Verma. 

The evening will feature beloved pop, musical theater, and folk songs reinvented through the lens of the Middle Eastern, North African and South Asian (MENASA) musical soundscape, featuring Broadway and NYC’s most exciting MENASA performers and musicians.

Videography & Video Editing by Brian Vinik. Watch the preview below.

All events will take place on Ars Nova Supra, a new streaming platform from Ars Nova that showcases some of New York City’s most promising emerging artists and currently serves as the online home for the majority of Ars Nova presentations.

Designed to foreground Ars Nova’s values through the creation of more equitable and power-sharing curatorial practices, the Vision Residency expands Ars Nova’s artistic vision by inviting seven artist-curators to each program one month of events on Ars Nova Supra. Programming can include their own work as well as work by artists they champion and admire, with Ars Nova providing financial and staff resources to develop each piece. In addition to Siddiqui, the 2020-2021 Vision Residents are Starr Busby, nicHi douglas, JJJJJerome Ellis, Raja Feather Kelly, Jenny Koons, and David Mendizábal.

Vision Resident Rona Siddiqui said, “I brought together a small group of MENASA friends to brainstorm ideas for my residency’s programming, and so many ideas and phenomenal artists immediately came to mind. It goes to show how easy it is to spotlight brilliant brown people when you just reach out and collaborate. So, in making MENASA voices the focus of my residency, I want to show the world that we’re here, and we’re creating and contributing to the vitality of America and the dream of its potential. In heightening our visibility, I want to show that we’re multi-faceted: We’re complex, we’re independent, we’re queer, we’re disabled, we’re silly, we’re fierce – and we’re also about to take you on a multi-sensory ride through these six events.”

Tickets for Ars Nova Supra livestream events are $5-10 per event, with subscriptions available for $15 per month. Subscribers receive access to all monthly livestreams at one low price, plus exclusive on-demand access to the Ars Nova Supra library, where they can catch any shows they may have missed.

More details can be found here.  

About Rona Siddiqui

Rona Siddiqui is a composer/lyricist based in NYC. She is a recipient of the Jonathan Larson Grant and Billie Burke Ziegfeld award. She was named one of Broadway Women’s Fund’s Women to Watch. Her show Salaam Medina: Tales of a Halfghan, an autobiographical comedy about growing up bi-ethnic in America, had a reading at Playwrights Horizons (dir. by Raja Feather Kelly). Other musicals include One Good Day, Hip Hop Cinderella, and The Tin. She is the recipient of the ASCAP Harold Adamson Lyric Award, the ASCAP Foundation Mary Rodgers/Lorenz Hart Award and ASCAP Foundation/Max Dreyfus Scholarship. She has written pieces for Wicked’s 16th anniversary commemoration Flying Free, 24 Hour Musicals, Prospect Theater Company, The Civilians, and has performed concerts of her work at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and Feinstein’s/54 Below. Rona music directed the Off-Broadway Pulitzer Prize-winning A Strange Loop for which she received an Obie along with the cast and creative team (Playwrights Horizons). She has orchestrated for Broadway Records, Broadway Backwards, NAMT and Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera. www.ronasiddiqui.com

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