Past Dates

Thursday, April 18th, 2019

My Body, My Country - 7:00-8:00pm
1 River Road
South Putney, VT
Price: FREE


*Free Event.*

In every era, there are some bodies that are more policed or “owned” than others. This is what perhaps makes defining our internal and external geographies so challenging. We often undertake an exploratory journey attempting to separate our identity and sense of becoming from social, cultural, and other pressures. Often, these explorations shift throughout our lives. We ultimately are our own countries, and we carry our geography within us.

What are the lines of distinction in terms of who has the freedom or choice of their body? How do we begin to explore the self as topography? My Body, My Country introduces the following artists who will be exploring these topics in a live performance of their written work. This is a National Poetry Month event sponsored and hosted by Landmark College’s Education Department, Student Affairs, and Centers for Diversity and Inclusion.


U-Meleni Mhlaba-Adebo is a Leominister, MA born Zimbabwean American grown poet, author, actress, singer and educator who has performed nationally and internationally in Zimbabwe, South Africa, Nigeria, Portugal and Ireland. She was featured on “WGBH Suitcase Stories.” Her poetry collection “Soul Psalms” (She Writes Press) was described by David Updike as “written in a fearless female voice tempered with optimism and healing possibilities of love.”

Shanta Lee Gander is an artist and multi-faceted professional. As an artist, her endeavors include writing prose, poetry, investigative journalism, and photography. Her poetry, prose, and personal essays have been featured in Rebelle Society, on the Ms. Magazine Blog, The Commons weekly newspaper. Shanta Lee is the co-author of ‘Ghosts of Cuba: An Interracial Couple’s Exploration of Cuba in the Age of Trump—Told in Images & Words’ (Green Writers Press, September 2019).

Desmond Peeples’ fiction, poetry, and nonfiction have appeared in Five [Quarterly], Big Bridge, Goreyesque, Hunger Mountain, and elsewhere, and their original music is released independently. They were the founding editor of the literary arts magazine, Mount Island, and currently consult for Green Writers Press.

*Details about location at Landmark College: This event will be located in the East Academic Building in the auditorium (marked EAB-Auditorium). For directions and a map of the Landmark College campus, please visit:

Wednesday, April 17th, 2019

U-Meleni's Book Signing - 7:00-8:00pm
30 West Street
Leominister, MA 01453
United States
Price: FREE

Thursday, February 7th, 2019

Salem State University Center for the Arts
Panel Discussion On Relationship Between Trauma, Art and Resilience - 4:00- 5:30pm
352 Lafayette Street
Salem, Massachusetts 01970
Price: FREE


Panel Discussion –  The Relationship Between Trauma, Art & Resiliencepanel discussion featuring Angela Counts, Umeleni Mhlaba-Adebo and Allison Maria Rodriguez, moderated by Dell Marie Hamilton will take place at the Ellison Campus Center at Salem State University. Panelists will speak to how their art practice, working in community, mission and purpose has enabled them to integrate all the parts of who they are. They will discuss the relationship between art and trauma and how artists channel and learn from their experiences so that they are more than victims or survivors. This event is held in conjunction with Hamilton’s solo exhibition “All Languages Welcomed HERE“.
Thursday, February 7th from 4pm – 5:30pm

Saturday, October 13th, 2018

Boston Book Festival 2018/BPL Exchange
BFF Uubound: A Home Is A Poem - 12:00- 1:00PM
700 Boylston Street
Boston, Massachusetts 02116
Participants in this generative workshop craft collaborative poems in the shape of Dorchester’s most iconic architecture. Like its namesake, a Triple Decker Poem builds community through collaboration. All participants will have the chance to write and reflect together on what it means to share space—in a neighborhood and in a creative work. This session is facilitated by U-Meleni Mhlaba-AdeboAnna RossCandelaria Silva-CollinsAaron Devine, and Daniel Elfanbaum, members of Write on the DOT, a reading series and literary platform that supports and promotes local writing in Dorchester.


Saturday, September 29th, 2018

Milford Readers & Writers Festival
Poetry As Storytelling - 12:30-1:45pm
401 Broad Street
MIlford, PA 18337
United States
Price: FREE

Location: Under the Tent behind Hotel Fauchere

Host: Natasha Herring

Poetry often relays a story, fable or folktale through its stylized wordplay and rhythms. In this panel discussion, we look into the beginnings and endings of the tales told and, sometimes, lessons learned through the art of poetry. Some poems tell us fantastic adventures, others daily drudgery. Each poet has a distinct narrative and each story has its own flavor.

I am excited to be on this  panel to share my work with other invited poets: GENNAROSE NETHERCOTT (The Lumberjack’s Dove),  and, VERONICA COYNE (Meet Me).

The audience should be prepared for dialogue and discussion afterward.

Thursday, June 21st, 2018

The Roxbury International Film Festival Opening Night Performance and LIYANA Film - 7:00-9:30pm
465 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA 02115
Price: $12

 Hello Beautiful People,

I will be story telling in Shona and English " African Made, American Grown" with a live band ( Zepeng) BEFORE the premiere of the show!



Wednesday, May 30th, 2018

Middlesex Community College
15th Annual Refugee Conference: The Refugee Experience Past, Present & Future - 10:00-10"45
33 Kearney Square
Lowell, MA 01852

 I WAS ONE OF THE KEYNOTE a room of 200 people committed to supporting immigrants and it was indeed an honor.

Keynote speakers include Distinguished Professor of History, Robert Forrant, and U-Meleni Mhlaba-Adebo M.Ed. B.A… 

My speech was based on my experience as an educator for the past 18 years in diverse settings, being first generation, native and immigrant, end my educational pedagogy!

The day will also include Suitcase Stories and informative sessions from statewide and local entities such as MIRA: Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition, and others.



Wednesday, February 21st, 2018

Unearthed Poetry & Song
Unearthed Poetry And Song - 7:30-9:30pm
1448 Dorchester Ave
Dorchester, MA 02124
Price: $4

Featured Poet for the event debuting my newest poem" A Love Letter to Boston/Dorchester" or " My Street"


Saturday, November 4th, 2017

The Soul Of Latin Jazz - 8:00-10:00pm
184 Dudley street
Roxbury, MA 02119
Price: $15

Wednesday, June 21st, 2017

Juneteenth Celebration - 6:00
465 Huntington Avenue
Boston, MA 02115
Price: FREE

Come together to celebrate creativity, community, and freedom at the MFA’s fifth annual Juneteenth event—presented in partnership with Epicenter Community.

Juneteenth is the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States. This commemoration dates back to June 19, 1865, when news of the end of the Civil War and the Emancipation Proclamation’s declaration “that all persons held as slaves are, and henceforward shall be free” reached Galveston, Texas—nearly two-and-a-half years after Lincoln issued the proclamation. Today, this holiday is observed around the country with celebrations including parades, cook-outs, performances, community engagement, and more.


I will be performing a 20 minute set at 6:30pm with a full band singing songs from the Diaspora, Songs of empowerment, revolution, and revelation!

Saturday, April 29th, 2017

Hibernia Hall
MASSQ BALL - 6:30pm-10:00pm
184 Dudley Street
Boston, Ma 02119
Price: $10-$20

An intergenerational experience of art, live massqing, dance, song, music and dance party with ethnic food

I am performing my piece " AFRICAN MADE AMERICAN GROWN"

Wednesday, April 26th, 2017

Museum of Fine Arts
The CIty Talks Refuge/Refugee - 7:00-8:30pm
465 Huntington Ave
Boston, Ma 02115
Price: Free with Museum Admission

 I am one of the panelists talking about How Boston is responding to the  current global Refugee Crisis.

Saturday, April 8th, 2017

Shea Theatre
Immigrant Voices-A Celebration of the Arts - 7:30pm-
71 Avenue A
Turner Falls, MA 01376
Price: $5-$15

 November 2016 for my birthday month I asked folks to help me raise money for this amazing organization that supports recently arrived immigrants. I wrote 30 poems in 3o days and then they asked if I would like to be involved in this event. I was thrilled to be sharing the stage with graduates of their programs.



Monday, March 20th, 2017

Bethel AME Church
Welcome to Boston Event - 7:30pm- 9:30pm
40 Walkhill
Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts 02130
United States
Price: FREE

In the spirit of Elma lewis I was one of the Artists who performed for the cast of PARABLE OF THE SOWER..Toshi Reagon and Beverly-Johnson-Reagon

I was also performing as part of DANZA ORGANICA

Sunday, March 12th, 2017

Featured Artist
1667 Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA 02138
(617) 547-0759

I am the featured poet for the evening. I will be sharing pieces from  my book " Soul Psalms" and experimental pieces inspired by recent travels to Nigeria , South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Ireland

Saturday, December 3rd, 2016

World Premier "Running in Stillness " - 8:00 PM
184 Dudley Street
Boston, Massachusetts 02119
United States
Price: $15-$25




A dance theater suite wibased on the impact of mass incarceration on women, their families, and our community 

A dance theater suitsed on the impact of mass incarceration on women, their families, and our community.




Friday, December 2nd, 2016

World Premier "Running in Stillness " - 8:00 PM
184 Dudley Street
Boston, Massachusetts 02119
United States
Price: $15-$25

 I am Resident Poet in Danza Organica and will be performing poetry words curated from letters between children of formally incarcerated parents. This is part of the dance theatre suite





Thursday, December 1st, 2016

Day Without Art/world Aids Day - 24 hours but I will be on at 11:00AM
539 Tremont Street
Boston, MA 02116
Price: Free





I will be performing a song and poem in the morning as part of a 24 hour Art experience remembering those touched by Aids , fighting AIds and working towards accessibility of information, medication for all

Thursday, November 17th, 2016

Running in Stillness - TBD
Boston, MA 02108

We will be performing excerpts of the Dance Theatre performance during the 4oth Gala for the School of Public Health.

Tuesday, November 15th, 2016

Poetry Reading Series - 7:00- 9:00 PM
330 Homer Street
Newton, MA 02111
Price: Free

I will be reading from my new book ' Soul Psalms" along with Dennis Daly and Tom Lyons moderated by Doug Holder.

Sunday, October 9th, 2016

Poetry Jam Featured Poet - 7:30Pm
1667 Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge, MA 02138
(617) 547-0759
Price: $7

 I will be the featured poet for this wonderful event with the amazing Jeff Robinson Trio.I will be performing from my new book " Soul Psalms" as well new works from my upcoming project " Hyphen-nation" and "African Made: American Grown". 

Saturday, October 1st, 2016

Franklin Park
Franklin Park Art Grove Festival - TBD
Dorchester, Massachusetts
Price: FREE

This is a site specific excerpt of RUNNING IN STILLNESS, a dance theatre piece about incarceration and its effect on family relationships and community. This is produced by DANZA ORGANICA of which I am member  as Resident Poet. 

Wednesday, September 14th, 2016

Book Signing & reading - BOOK LAUNCH PARTY : Soul Psalms
338 Newbury St,
Boston, Massachusetts 02115
Price: FREE



Trident is excited towelcome U-Meleni Mhlaba-Abedo for the launch of her new book, Soul Psalms.She will be joined by Anna Ross reading from her new book Figuring and Jessica Bozek  author of The Tales. There will also be special guest  poets!



Saturday, September 10th, 2016

Harvard University
Running in Stillness - TBD
Cambridge, MA 02138

A dance theater suite based on the impact of mass incarceration on women and our community.A dance theater suite baIIiiiiiiheater suiAdance theater suite based on the impact of mass incarceration on women and our community.e based on the impact of mcarceration on women I

Sunday, August 7th, 2016

105 Brattle Street
Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138
617 876-4491
Price: FREE

 A reading of poetry emerging from the Caribbean space. Join Boston Poet Laureate Danielle Legros Georges, poets Patrick Sylvain and U-Meleni Mhlaba-Adebo, and percussionist Cornell Coley for a program of texts and sound created within the geographic and political boundaries of the Caribbean and in its diaspora.

Danielle Legros Georges, the current Poet Laureate of the City of Boston, is a professor in the Creative Arts in Learning Division of Lesley University. She also teaches in the Joiner Institute for the Study of War and Social Consequences summer Writer’s Workshop, University of Massachusetts, Boston. Her poems have been widely anthologized, and recent essays of hers have appeared in Others Will Enter the Gates: Immigrant Poets on Poetry, Influences and Writing in America (ed. Abayomi Animashaun) and Anywhere But Here: Black Intellectuals in the Atlantic World and Beyond (eds. Kendahl Radcliffe and Jennifer Scott). She is the author of two volumes of poems Maroon (Curbstone Press, 2001) and The Dear Remote Nearness of You (Barrow Street Books, 2016).

Patrick Sylvain is a Haitian-American writer, essayist and poet, and instructor of Haitian language and culture at Brown University’s Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies. He is the author of four books of poems including the bilingual Haitian/English volume Love, Lust & Loss/ Lanmou, anvi, pedans, (Memoire d'Encrier, 2005) and the Haitian-language Masuife (Trilingual Press, 2013). His poems and essays have appeared in numerous anthologies, magazines and reviews, including African American Review, Agni, American Poetry Review, Callaloo, Crab Orchard Review, Haitian Times, Ploughshares, and The Boston Haitian Reporter for which he serves as an opinion editor.

U-Meleni Mhlaba-Adebo is a spoken-word artist, poet, actor, singer, and an adjunct professor of English at Endicott College. She has been recognized for her work by organizations including the Roxbury Community College Teaching and Learning Center, the Boston Public Health Commission Adolescent Wellness Program, and American Idol Underground. Mhlaba-Adebo has performed internationally and at venues including the Boston Opera House, the Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston, Scullers Jazz Club, the Book Cafe in Zimbabwe, the Horror Cafe in South Africa and Bogobiri in Nigeria. Her most recent work is a volume of poems, Soul Psalms (She Writes Press, 2016).

Cornell Coley is a drummer, dancer and teaching artist whose work draws upon the traditions of West and Central Africa, Cuba and Brazil. He directs the Afro-Latin jazz band Afrika Gente. Coley has a background in arts administration, arts education and arts therapy with long-term clients including the Hyde Square Task Force, Boston Public Schools and Lesley University, where he teaches as an adjunct professor. Coley’s work has been recognized with numerous local and national grants and awards. His solo interactive program A Fascinating Rhythm is popular throughout New England.   



Saturday, June 11th, 2016

Dance For World Community Festival - Running in Stillness
166 Ashmont Street, Apt 6
Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138
Price: FREE

 Danza Organica is a dance company that I am affiliated with as their Resident Poet. I performed with them an excerpt of the larger piece that was choreographed by Marsha Parilla at this event. I curated and performed word written by a young person whose had a family member who is incarcerated. The piece " Running in Stillness" is about incarceration and its effect on the children and the community.

Thursday, April 7th, 2016

We Create! Celebrating Women In The Arts - 7:00pm
184 Dudley St,
Boston, Massachusetts 02119
Price: $20


Marsha Parrilla/Danza Orgánica presents the 3rd Annual

We Create! Celebrating Women in the Arts


We Create is a community-based and process-oriented festival in Boston that features the works of a selected group of the most talented women artists in Massachusetts. Works are created around an annual theme.

2016 Theme: Acculturation

Featuring: Allyson Esposito, Andrea Rios, Chienhwe, Danza Orgánica, Karen Klein, Katerine Gagnon, Jenifer Sarver, Jesse Epstein, Neige Torrey Christenson, Paradise Lost, Sarah Mae Gibbons, U-Meleni Mhlaba-Adebo, Yi-Li Chang, Yosi Karahashi

* I performed a choreo-poem " AFRICAN MADE/american grown about " living in between 2 worlds, 3 tribes, 2 continents: belonging and not belonging.."

( see LIVE performance in my videos section)

Friday show: Boston Arts Academy Opening Act

Saturday show: Q&A and Reception with the Artists

Dance workshop with Sheryl Thomas

Friday, April 18th, 2014

BLACK PERSPECTIVES NOW - A Conversation with U-Meleni Mhlaba-Adebo: Marathoner and Fitness Advocate
Boston, MA 02101