Funded! This project was successfully funded on April 18, 2012.


Festival of the Silk Road - 2012: An amazing event bringing together dancers, musicians, poets and the community in celebration.

Help us pay the theater rent for the 4th Annual Festival of the Silk Road, on May 6th 2012!

The Silk Road, the ancient trade routes extending from the China Sea through the heart of Asia, to Asia Minor and the Mediterranean, is home to many interconnected rich and vibrant cultures, each telling their own story of humanity through music and dance.  These stories are what have inspired us to create the Festival of the Silk Road here in the San Francisco Bay Area. With the help of the artists and families from many cultures who now call the USA their home, we take our inspiration from this age-old tradition of cross-cultural exchange.

Who are we?
The Festival of the Silk Road is produced each year by an artist run Bay Area nonprofit group, Afsaneh Art & Culture Society and Ballet Afsaneh the critically acclaimed Silk Road performance ensemble. A full evening concert of dance, music and poetry from the Silk Road performed by many great performance ensembles representing the cultural arts of Iran, Turkey, China, India, Mongolia, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kurdistan, Azerbaijan, Indonesia, Armenia and more....

What is the Festival about?
The festival is an exploration and celebration, an event for the whole family, filled with both day and nighttime activities for all to enjoy. The 2012 festival date is on Sunday, May 6th in a beautiful theater and garden space in San Jose California - the Mexican Heritage Plaza. Pre-performance fun starts at 3:00pm with folk dancing, cultural exhibits, and a Silk Road Bazaar including traditional clothing and textiles, crafts, books, ceramics and visual arts. This year a spectacular Chinese dragon will also be making a grand appearance in the evening concert, to honor the Chinese year of the dragon.

Here is a list of some of the ensembles and performing artists who have performed at the festivals (we couldn't quite fit everyone's names or video in the Kickstarter project video! and they deserve so much more thanks and recognition, so here goes): Chinese Performing Arts of America, Niosha Dance Academy, Yore Turkish Folkdance Ensemble, Wan-Chao Dance, Shahrzad Dance Company, Khukh Tenger Mongolian Folk Ensemble, Miriam Peretz, Neema Hekmat & Zaryab Ensemble, Tameem & Ziya Afzali, Anuradha Nag & Tarangini School of Kathak Dance, Sounds and Rhythms of Afghanistan (S.A.R.A.) with Salar Nader and Homayun Sakhi, Abhinaya - South Indian Dance Company, Antonia Minnecola, Tara Pandeya, Rosa Rojas, Pourya Khademi, Moses Sedler, Pezhham Akhavaas, Salokhiddin Fakhriev, Rachel Valfer, Sonja Drakulich, Dan Fries, Shadi Vaezzadeh, Bon Singer, Fares & Kaveh Hedayati, Pedram Heydari, Paul Ohanesian, Jeannette Ferber, Helene Eriksen, The Ebrahimi Brothers, Farideh Louie, The Iranian Musicians of Silicon Valley, Ballet Afsaneh and the Afsaneh Dance Academy.

Why Now?
This will be our 4th festival, and despite the challenges of these times for all of the hard working artists who make this happen we have even more fun planned for this year. We are extending the festival into the afternoon hours and at the same time trying to keep ticket prices low so that everyone can come. Its just really an important time for our communities to reach out to everyone, to share our heritage with the world in celebration with each other. Make sure the world has a chance to get to know the people behind the headlines.
With creativity as our link, we all come together to help make a positive change in the world.

What will this support be used for?
We do have support mustered for the festival from a few generous individuals, a lot of volunteers and a few beloved, loyal foundations, but this year we are falling short by about $5,000. That's the amount that we spend each year to rent the theater and festival space, the venue.

So if we make the goal of $5,000 it will be used to cover the rental for the venue, and then if we manage to raise more funds we can add to the support for the artists and hard working production crew, produce more videos of the performances, and even expand the performances and other parts of the festival in 2013.

What if I can't come to the Festival?
If your reward involves a ticket to the festival, invite a Bay Area friend of your choice, or you can contribute that ticket and we will use it to invite a senior or other person in need.

What does the festival do for the rest of the world?
We are sending a message as artists and world citizens - "we can work together". And by posting images and videos on the Internet of the artwork performed at the festival we expand the reach of that message. Videos of the performances have found their way to viewers in places around the world, to cities and even small villages in Central Asia, Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and India, as well as to communities throughout the USA.

The Silk Road has been described as "the internet of antiquity", so putting the festival performances out there online is just keeping up with a tradition!

So check out the fun rewards and support Festival of the Silk Road - 2012!

Mexican Heritage Plaza Theater - 1700 Alum Rock Rd, San Jose CA 95116


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    6 backers

    Our heartfelt gratitude... Plus thank you Facebook and email messages, including a downloadable PDF of the festival program notes.

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    18 backers

    All of the above + Special mention in the program notes.

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    4 backers

    All of the above + a gorgeous color poster for the Festival signed by the director and artists.

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    All of the above + 2 Tickets to the Festival (transferable to an SF Bay Area friend) and be listed in our Annual Report among funders for the organization.

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    All of the above + 4 VIP Tickets to the Festival on Sunday May 6th 2012 (transferable to an SF Bay Area friend)

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    All of the above + 1 dance or music class with a master artist from the festival (travel cost not included).

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    All of the above + backstage reception with the Festival artists at the concert May 6th 2012. Plus an extra pair of VIP tickets for a classical Persian music concert in the Bay Area featuring masters of Persian music, with a special backstage pass, courtesy of Akhavass Productions.

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    All of the above + Ballet Afsaneh, award winning Persian/Central Asian dance ensemble will come dance at your wedding or other event! (travel costs not included)

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- (30 days)