Tasveer Newsletter

May 5, 2022

In this newsletter, read about:

  • Community Speaks: Frames of Mind
  • Tasveer News and Events

Tasveer re-opens with Community Speaks

Tasveer returns to in-person events in 2022 with Community Speaks: Frames of Mind, a powerful South Asian storytelling event being held at Benaroya Hall on May 7th. Community Speaks, 2022 uses the power of live storytelling to create empathy around mental health issues, shift perspectives and challenge social norms. These vivid, bold, heartwarming and poignant monologues are captivating in their intensity, and their raw messages questioning societal norms, judgments and prejudices. This impactful storytelling program will honor both Mental Health Awareness Month and Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month with personal stories performed by South Asian community members.

The event will open with a composition by Seattle Raga Institute, of Raaga Bhatiyar portraying the nuanced nature of mental health through melodies and cyclical structures that represent the cycle we often find ourselves trapped in, in our own lives.

Our partner Jaipur Avenue will serve delicious free chai!

When: Saturday, May 7th 2022

Time: 7:00pm-9:00pm PST

Where: Benaroya Hall, Seattle

Buy Tickets


7 PM: Seattle Raga Institute will present two new compositions in raga Bhatiyar, portraying the nuanced nature of mental health through melodies and cyclical structures that represent the cycle we often find ourselves trapped in, in our own lives. These compositions are written specifically for this program by Brandon McIntosh, performed by Brandon McIntosh (Sarod), Anoushka Ayyadevara (Piano), Akanksha Ayyadevara (Piano), Rishabh McIntosh(Sarod), Vrinda Satyavolu (Guitar), and Ravi Albright (Tabla).

7:15 PM: Introduction by Secretary of State Dr. Umair Shah

7:20 PM: Community Speaks: Frames of Mind Monologues

No one will be turned away due to a lack of funds. Please write to info@tasveer.org for a sliding scale ticket.

Parking: Benaroya Hall Parking- $17 (Event rate).

Alternative parking: There are many other garages within a one-block radius of Benaroya Hall, along with numerous on-street parking options.

Masks must be worn at all times in Benaroya Hall and proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test is required upon entry to Benaroya Hall. 

Community Speaks Participants, 2022


Harsh Agarwal

Harsh is an Indian writer, filmmaker, and researcher. Born in the Jhumka famous Bareilly, Harsh loves, food, traveling, and reading. Harsh is an advocate for LGBTQ rights and was the first runner-up for Mr. Gay India in 2020. He decided to participate in Tasveer’s Community Speaks to find a place to belong and connect after he moved to the United States and to be a part of a collective that was working together to tell their stories.

Finding My Spirit- A Story of Transformation

Bhavna Chawla

Bhavana is an Intuitive Healer who helps empower people to live their best lives, discover their true self and develop spiritually. She lives on Kauai island with her 2 cats Angelina & Raja, wild chickens, lizards & songbirds. She enjoys cooking & dancing. She’s thrilled to reconnect with her love of writing & share her story: Finding my Spirit is a story of transformation with the support of Tasveer. She hopes it’ll inspire people to find their greatest joy. She’s also working on 2 books, an autobiography & a cookbook.

My Darkest Hour

Sheila Houlahan

Sheila is a South Asian actress, writer, producer, and mental health advocate. Her debut feature film as Executive Producer “Night, Mother” has been selected as an Official Nominee by the 2022 Webby Awards, and focuses on a mother and daughter dealing with the daughter’s imminent plan to commit suicide. As an actress, she appeared in a supporting role opposite Denzel Washington in Warner Bros’ “The Little Things” and in a cameo role in Michael Bay’s new feature “Ambulance.”

Sheila is passionate about de-stigmatizing suicide and mental health and hopes that sharing her personal story will help others feel more comfortable sharing their own stories/and getting help if needed. 

Broken Open

Nosh Khurram

Nosh is a multimedia artist who loves being behind the lens to capture moments and tell stories on screen through the videos she captures using mostly her iPhone. She migrated from Pakistan at the age of 11. As a Mom and a wife, she is passionate about spreading mental health awareness and a holistic lifestyle in the South Asian Community. Nosh shares her struggles and journey of trying to overcome depression and anxiety as a South Asian Muslim woman. It took her over a decade to find the courage to talk openly about her struggles with Mental Health and her hopes are that her story will inspire anyone struggling to reach out and get help sooner than later.

Towards Acceptance

Aarti Kumar Pani

Aarti Kumar Pani was born and raised in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. After living in cities around the country, she now resides in the Houston metro area with her two elementary-aged children and her adopted Schnoodle. Prior to becoming a mother, she worked in elementary education and non-profits.

Promises are Made to be Broken

Jamal Siddiqui

Jamal is a comedian in the northwest but grew up in Texas. His story is about his relationship with his father who recently passed away. He decided to participate in this year’s event as a way to get closure and understand the relationship he had with his father.

Buy Tickets

No one will be turned away due to a lack of funds. Please write to info@tasveer.org for a sliding scale ticket.

This program is sponsored by Parul and Gary Houlahan, and IACS (Indian American Community Services)

Thank you to Jaipur Avenue Chai for partnering with us and serving delicious chai at the event.

We thank our Community Partners Seattle Raga Institute, Bitchitra Collective, South Asian American Film Festival, Northwest Film Forum, South Asia Center UW, Asian Languages and Literature UW, East Hub, NAMI Washington, Asha For Education, API Chaya, Seattle Arts and Lectures

Tasveer News and Events

TSAFF 2021 Film Submissions

Tasveer is organizing its much awaited 17th annual Tasveer South Asian Film Festival #TSAFF2022 from November 4th to 13th, 2022 and film submissions are now open! Early bird deadline for submissions is June 1st, 2022.


Free Concert: Ram Tori Maya with composer Reena Esmail

Friday, May 13, 8 PM, Illsley Ball Nordstrom Recital Hall


Tasveer Book Club

Tasveer launches Tasveer Book Club for Members. Diversify your reading list with new South Asian writing and expand your perspectives. As you collectively reflect on the world, here and beyond, make new friends and strengthen existing bonds.

First Book Discussion

Book: ‘You Can’t Be Serious’ by Kal Penn

Date: June 2022 (Date to be decided, register for updates)

Time: 6:00pm- 7:00pm PST

Join TBC

Join Tasveer Youth Board

Our mission is to support South Asian youth in the local community to gain skills and confidence in broadcasting their stories and expressing themselves in a fun, supportive and safe space while building their leadership roles.

Sign up

Attention TOM lovers:

The next Tasveer Open Mic will be held on May 26!

Sign up for Tasveer newsletter

All Tasveer Events

Facebook  Twitter  Instagram