Red delight: ArtBeat to color Davis Square

On July 14, 2011, in Latest News, by The Somerville Times

The Michael J. Epstein Memorial Library will grace the Music on the Park Stage, Seven Hills Park, as part of the ArtBeat festivities on Saturday, July 16.

By Carrie Stanziola

If you are looking for a fun, inexpensive, and red-filled weekend, come to ArtBeat in Davis Square on Friday and Saturday. Expect to enjoy local talent including artists, craft vendors, musicians, and specialty performers. As some Somerville residents already know, each year ArtBeat is based around a different theme, this year’s being the color red. Saturday’s festival will commence with a Red Menace Parade that will feature beating red hearts, pirate puppets and fruit jugglers. Red-themed activities including plein art painting and the construction of a giant, red-scaled dragon on the Davis Square traffic island will take place.

Festival goers can also look forward to mingling with the likes of Basil Halwagy’s Untitled Man and Behind the Mask mask-makers. Musicians including Mean Creek, Tall Heights, Dub Apocalypse and The Michael J. Epstein Memorial Library will be performing. ArtBeat will also feature dance performances including the Navarasa Dance Theater, the Lorraine Chapman Company, and the Danny Swain Dance Company.

Especially interesting is the Navarasa Dance Theater, led by Aparna Sindhoor. Sindhoor has been practicing the classical Indian dance form of Bharatanatyam for over 20 years. She has performed professionally since 1989, and, perhaps most impressively, has developed and choreographed more than 20 full-length dance works. Sindhoor has performed in such places as India, Germany, Canada and the United States.

Basil Halwagy as the Untitled Man.

Aparna Sindhoor is also an academic, having published Contemporization of an Indian Dance Form: Bharatanatyam Shylis (Styles) as her doctoral dissertation at Boston University. Her other works include A Choreographer’s Journey, Dance Like Rice is for Everyone, and Enraged Bodies.

For those looking to learn Indian dance, group and private lessons are available in Somerville and Jamaica Plain (although sadly Sindhoor will not be teaching them). Interested readers should go to or call 617-776-7939.

In addition to enjoying dance of a variety of styles, festival-goers can look forward to seeing the displays of vendors such as Mudflat Pottery, Malabar Glass and Julia Ledoux Jewelry. This year’s ArtBeat Festival will feature over a dozen bands, dance troupes, 75 craft vendors, food and red-themed activities.

ArtBeat will be presented Friday, July 15, 6:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m. (Rain date: July 16, same times). Location: Seven Hills Park, behind Somerville Theatre, 55 Davis Square. ArtBeat will also be held Saturday, July 16 11 a.m.-6 p.m. (Rain date July 17, same times) Location: Throughout the square, including Seven Hills Park, Elm Street, Holland Street (Streets closed to traffic).

Contact information:, phone number 617-625-6600 x2985, or Sarah Champion at A donation of $3 is suggested.


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