About This Artist

Devendra Sharma is a performer, writer, and director of Nautanki, Raaslila, Bhagat, and Rasiya, the traditional musical theatre genres of northern India. He was trained in the famous Swami-Khera Gharana by renowned folk guru Pundit Ram Dayal Sharma. He has given more than five hundred performances to date and directed many films illustrating Indian folk traditions. At present, he is an Assistant Professor of Communication at California State University, Fresno. Sharma’s artistic mission is to use the indigenous performing arts to bring critical attention to contemporary global issues and empower marginalized people. His current Nautanki piece examines the phenomenon of Indian men who come to America from India to study or work and have two romantic partners, one in India and another in America.


“Mission Suhani”
Nautanki, a traditional folk musical theater from rural north India, is marked by lively dancing, pulsating drumbeats, and full-throated singing. Mission Suhani follows a confident young Indian bride, and her Non-Resident Indian groom, who has taken her dowry and left her in India. Against familial and societal pressure, Suhani travels to the U.S. where she finds her husband, recovers the dowry…and more! Working with his father Pundit Ram Dayal Sharma, a prominent Nautanki master, Sharma crafts a brilliantly entertaining, thought-provoking and moving musical that examines women’s empowerment.

Upcoming Events

tiny little get down

tinypistol + little seismic dance company
Fri, Jan 25, 7:30pm-9pm

UNEARTHED stories at Block Fest

Titania Kumeh / Sharmi Basu / Semaj Peltier / Silvi Peligras / Catalina Xavlena / Karl Gomez / Chi Chi Castillo/ Kelvin Pittman / Jillian Crochet / Drought Spa / Jesse Austin / Angie Holiday
Fri, Feb 1, 3-6pm

UNEARTHED

Titania Kumeh / Sharmi Basu / Semaj Peltier / Silvi Peligras / Catalina Xavlena / Karl Gomez / Chi Chi Castillo/ Kelvin Pittman / Jillian Crochet / Drought Spa / Jesse Austin / Angie Holiday
Sat, Feb 2, 7pm

Galatea: A New Rock Musical

Words by Katie Tandy // Direction by Lauren Rosenfield // Music by Geoff Cotter
Thu-Sun, Feb 21-24, Thu-Sat at 8pm, Sun 2pm matinee

Archived Events

Open Stage at CounterPulse

Wed, Jan 23, 6pm-8pm

Queer as a Tuesday Night: Ms. Carol

ABD Productions/Skywatchers
Tue, Dec 11, 7pm

Tenderloin Women’s Holiday Party

CounterPulse & Central City SRO Collaborative
Mon, Dec 10, 12pm-3pm

I dreamed Bruce Lee was my father and Lost Chinatowns

Melissa Lewis and Cynthia Ling Lee
Thu-Sat, Dec 6-8 & 13-15

Blog Roll

  • UNEARTHED: Interview with the Artists

    UNEARTHED is a night of video installations and performances by Bay Area emerging artists exploring ancestry and diaspora, trauma and healing, vulnerability and sexuality, and questions about our past and future. Co-curator Claire Staples interviews three of the artists: Titania Kumeh Claire Staples: You have been exploring the bathtub birth story in your performance work for […]

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  • Spring 2019 at CounterPulse

    In Spring 2019, CounterPulse threads through time in the twilight between performance and uprising. Our only question is, will you join us?   Spring 2019 Performance Calendar tiny little get down tinypistol + little seismic dance company Jan 25, Fri, 7:30pm-9pm Need to let off a little steam? tinypistol’s Maurya Kerr and little seismic dance […]

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  • I dreamed Bruce Lee was my father

    Performing Diaspora 2018 artists Cynthia Ling Lee and Melissa Lewis in conversation. Cynthia Ling Lee: I’m excited to chat about your work today! Tell me a little about the initial inspiration for your work.  Where did it come from? Melissa Lewis: I had this wild and weird dream some time ago. Bruce Lee (or some version […]

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  • Dear Bruce Lee: A Photo Essay

                      I dreamed Bruce Lee was my father by Melissa Lewis (顾眉) runs Thu-Sat, Dec 6-8 and 13-15 as part of a double-billed performance with Cynthia Ling Lee. Get tickets to Performing Diaspora 2018 at counterpulse.org/performing-diaspora-2018

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  • Access Oriented Fellowship: Redirecting the Arts Pipeline

    Throughout the month of November, I hosted a birthday fundraiser in service of the CounterPulse Fellowship for Arts Workers. I want to extend deepest gratitude for all who contributed. Your efforts will support two bright and aspiring young professionals, Maya Nixon and Samantha Kuykendall, through the first full expression of the program–a paid learn-work opportunity, […]

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