Ragamala Dance Company

Project Details by Fiscal Year
2021 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Fund Source
Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund
Ragamala Dance Company
Recipient Type
Non-Profit Business/Entity
In Progress
Start Date
January 2021
End Date
December 2021
Activity Type
Counties Affected
Project Overview

Ragamala Dance Company will develop a new, limited-series podcast entitled Subcontinuity: Voices from the South Asian-American Diaspora. Curated by Aparna and Ashwini Ramaswamy and developed with Public Radio Exchange (PRX), Subcontinuity will explore the significance of South Asian-Americans within the cultural landscape of Minnesota and the U.S. Subcontinuity will feature cross-disciplinary conversations between visionary South Asian-Americans doing vital work that speaks to the current moment.

Competitive Grant Making Body
Advisory Group Members and Qualifications

Asneth Omare (Brooklyn Park, MN). Asneth is a Kenyan Immigrant who works in the non-profit and social service fields working on public health initiatives.

Al Lun (Rochester, MN) is a Chinese immigrant, former IT professional for IBM and currently is a board member of the Diversity Council and YMCA in Rochester.

Kieran Myles Andres Tverbakk (Minneapolis, MN) is a first-generation Mexican-Norwegian-American artist focused on visibility of BIPOC queer and trans individuals as well as creating space for Chicanx queerness

Conflict of Interest Disclosed
Conflict of Interest Contact

Laura Benson

Minnesota Humanities Center



Legal Citation / Subdivision
Minn. State Legislature Article 4, Section 2, Subdivision 8, (d)
Appropriation Language

$850,000 the first year and $850,000 the second year are for a competitive grants program to provide grants to preserve and promote the cultural heritage of Minnesota.
The Minnesota Humanities Center must operate a competitive grants program to provide grants to programs that preserve and honor the cultural heritage of Minnesota or that provide education and student outreach on cultural diversity or to programs that empower communities to build their identity and culture. Priority must be given to grants for individuals and organizations working to create, celebrate, and teach indigenous arts and cultural activities and arts organizations and programs preserving, sharing, and educating on the arts and cultural heritage of immigrant communities in Minnesota.

2021 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Number of full time equivalents funded
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)


  1. Ragamala will produce 8 episodes of the podcast, Subcontinuity: Voices from the South Asian-American Diaspora
  2. Ragamala will partner with 8-10 Humanities advisors in the creation of the project
  3. Ragamala will foster a new institutional partnership with PRX
  4. Subcontinuity will feature at least 16 South Asian-American visionaries representing a broad array of genres and disciplines
  5. Subcontinuity will reach a substantial audience in Minnesota and nationally*
  6. Ragamala will find new audiences and constituencies for our work
  7. Subcontinuity guests will build new constituencies for their work

* In developing this proposal, Ragamala reached out to our project partner, Jason Saldanha—Director of Content at PRX—about the possibility of projecting an estimated audience number for Subcontinuity. In his expert view, given that Subcontinuity is a new project, we are too early in the process to quantify accurate audience metrics.



  1. Diverse Minnesotans will be exposed to individuals, ideas, cultures, histories, and perspectives with which they were previously unfamiliar
  2. South Asian-American listeners will feel as though their own stories, perspectives, and experiences are an important part of Minnesota’s—and the U.S.’s—history and culture
  3. Multi-hyphenate American youth will be inspired to envision new and often unconventional ways of constructing a South Asian-American identity
  4. South Asian-American youth will learn about—and find their own place within—their rich cultural heritage
  5. Broad audiences will be exposed to vital role artists and immigrants play in the work of cultural and societal transformation
  6. Listeners will feel empowered to think creatively around root causes and solutions to pressing societal issues.
  7. Listeners will be inspired to think differently about their neighbors and their communities
  8. National/international audiences will perceive Minnesota as a vibrant creative hub that nurtures South Asian-American leaders
Measurable Outcome(s)

In progress

Proposed Outcomes Achieved
outcomes data not yet available
Recipient Board Members
Dr. Krishnan Subrahmanian, Neal Cuthbert, Dheenu Sivalingam, John Riske, Marguerite Ahmann, Nithya Balakrishnan Mathad, Cyrus Hanson, Sumit Kumar, Aparna Ramaswamy
Project Manager
First Name
Last Name
Organization Name
Ragamala Dance Company
Street Address
711 West Lake Street, Suite 305
Zip Code
Administered By
Administered by

987 Ivy Avenue East
St. Paul, MN 55106

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