Bhangra – Dance of Punjab
Bhangra is the folk-dance of Punjab. Before Britishers made India their colony, Punjab was an independent Sikh country with its capital in Lahore under the king Majaraja Ranjit Singh. In 1849, Punjab became a part of India and it was the last territory to fall under the British rule. The dance is pure reflection of Sikh and Punjabi culture and traditions for centuries. Due to this culture’s strong connections with agriculture life, so this dance has roots in farms, crops, and villages. After harvesting their crops, after all their hard work, after they were done with everything, people in Punjab used to dance this (to show) a sense of accomplishment and happiness. So, for hundreds of years, due to hard-working farming life of that time, this dance had been developed as a hard-core tough dance to showcase strength and immense joy. Due to this element, nowadays a lot of people dance bhangra for high-energy workouts and rigorous physical exercises. Originally it was a purely men’s dance, however with the time women also started embracing it and nowadays men and women both dance it. It is heavily present in the Sikh and Punjabi culture, weddings, parties, and all kinds of celebrations. With passing of time, bhangra has evolved from farming life and villages and reached everywhere to big cities and modern metro life. Nowadays, bhangra music and dance is also seen predominantly in Bollywood movies and other kinds of big musical fusions. Many people go to bhangra sessions just to stay healthy, fit and as the best alternative to gym. Despite the evolution with time, bhangra succeeded maintaining the core elements of the dance of joy, the dance of happiness, dance of good health, and the dance of productivity.
6:30 PM – 7:00: Before Concert Bhangra Music by Yukon Arts Centre sound tech team
7:00 PM – Show Starts with Inauguration by MC Daniel Ashley
with his invitation to Hon. Jeanie Dendys, Minister of Tourism and Culture, to make a two-minute show-opening speech.
7:03 PM – MC Daniel Ashley
with his invitation to Gurdeep Pandher to say a few words
Gurdeep will say a few words in just one-minute by acknowledging that we are on the traditional territory of Kwanlin Dün First Nation and the Ta’an Kwäch’än Council and say very briefly about the bhangra dance form/brief history and will thank to sponsors and volunteers- New Canadian Event Fund, Yukon Government and volunteers.
7:04 PM – MC Daniel Ashley (SONG: Vanjhali Vaja)
(The opening song is based on a branch of bhangra, which is known as Jhoomar (Informally known as slow bhangra). Bhangra dance from Punjab has many branches, which allow for the expression of every kind of feeling. So, Bhangra in the Jhoomar style is danced in order to express the intensity of emotions and often love feelings. In this song, there is a reunion of lovers which takes place in the beginning of the song. Later on, the dance evolves to reflect pure joy. Jhoomar, originally from Sandalbar, Punjab, comprises an important part of Punjab folk heritage. It is a graceful dance, based on a specific Jhoomar rhythm. Dancers circle around a drum player while singing a soft chorus. In this song, Gurdeep and students are going to dance jhoomar on a popular Punjabi song Vanjhali Vaja. This song was sung by famous Punjabi singer Amrinder Gill. Along with Gurdeep Pandher, students from his school of bhangra dance group Monique Chatterton, Amanda Fraser, Krisandra Reid, Geny Mangilog, Lianne Cranfield, Gurdeep Pandher will perform in the group dance.
7:04 PM – Group Bhangra Dance on song Vanjhali Vaja [Van-jh-lee Vaja] (Monique Chatterton, Amanda Fraser, Krisandra Reid, Geny Mangilog, Lianne Cranfield, and Gurdeep Pandher).
Only Sound Crew Should Read This Line: Song # 01-Vanjhali Vaja
7:07 PM – MC Daniel Ashley (Crooked Folk/ SONG: butterfly, traditional)
The idea of creating fusion of Bhangra with Irish/Scottish music was born at a downtown Whitehorse kitchen. When some musicians were playing the Irish/Scottish music, Gurdeep spontaneously started dancing bhangra to those tunes. Some other friends joined him too. That whole setup/combination looked so great and well synchronized that all of them decided to carry that on. Now that newly born baby in that kitchen in the late fall of 2015 is two-year old and has grown up as Scottish/Irish – Punjabi Bhangra fusion. They also thought that this cool blending of two sides of the world would also connect east and west together. The traditional Irish and Scottish set Music will be played by the band Crooked Folk with members with members Keitha Clark with fiddle, Jerome McIntyre with bodhran/cajon, and Bj MacLean with guitar. Gurdeep Pandher and his dance partner Krisandra Reid will do bhangra dance to the tunes.
(Note: Some other bhangra students may also join)
7:09 PM – Bhangra on Irish/Scottish Music with band Crooked folk on song butterfly (traditional)
7:13 PM – MC Daniel Ashley (Bhangra on the song Pagg by EMYS)
Bhangra connection with Extremely Moving Youth Society originated during Clare Ness’s wedding in 2916, when the dance teacher Michelle FisherMayr invited Gurdeep Pandher to teach bhangra to her young students at Leaping Feats. After just one class, the connection became solid enough to continue this journey for longer terms. Then Gurdeep trained them to for the Go Nuts 2017 show, where they performed awesome bhangra at Yukon Arts Centre stage. Now bhangra at this bhangra show is second round of this great awesome Gurdeep-Extremely Moving Youth Society connection.
7:15 PM – Bhangra by Extremely Moving Youth Society on the song Pagg
Only Sound Crew Should Read This Line: Song # 02-Pagg
7:19 PM – Bhangra with Fiddleheads by Keitha Clark (SONG: Skittles at Buckley Bay with highland dancers)
Connection between Keitha Clark’s fiddleheads and Gurdeep’s bhangra started at the same time when the connection between Irish/Scottish music and bhangra started in the Whitehorse kitchen. Keitha Clark was one of the Irish/Scottish musicians when bhangra got connected with those awesome musicians. After the first of show in 2016 at Old Fire Hall, when Irish/Scottish musicians from Crooked Folk played for bhangra show, the conversation between Keitha and Gurdeep continued for more collaborations, which resulted in building an awesome connection between the two. This summer they decided to not only one, but three collaborations, first is the making of awesome bhangra-fiddleheads video, seconds is performing together at this bhangra concert, and third is doing bhangra-barn dance together on January 20 at Old Fire Hall.
Annie Avery will be on piano.
Then Keitha Clark will be requested to say a few words on this collaboration.
Then Daniel Ashley will announce the first bhangra-fiddleheads collaboration:-
7:21 PM – Song name Skittles at Buckley Bay (with highland dancers) and Gurdeep Pandher and Monique Chatterton will join from bhangra side.
First Video: Stephanie Dixon and Gurdeep Pandher
Only Sound Crew Should Read This Line: Video # 01-Stephanie Dixon and Gurdeep Pandher
7:25 PM PM – MC Daniel Ashley (SONG: Maahi Mera by bhangra dance students)
Next song is a pure love song, set in traditional Punjabi folklore. A loving husband dreams about his beautiful wife and tells her when she would wear ankle jewelry, even when she would walk, it will look as she is dancing in the village. The name of the song is Maahi Mera, which means ‘my loving partner’. Gurdeep and students from his bhangra dance school Monique Chatterton, Amanda Fraser, Krisandra Reid, Geny Mangilog, and Gurdeep Pandher will do a group dance on this song.
7:27 PM – Group Bhangra Dance on song Maahi Mera [Maahi Mera] (Monique Chatterton, Amanda Fraser, Krisandra Reid, Geny Mangilog, and Gurdeep Pandher)
Only Sound Crew Should Read This Line: Song # 03-Maahi Mera
7:31 PM – MC Daniel Ashley (Bhangra and Blues-Fusion Mix Dance, SONG: Bottom of the River)
The idea of combining bhangra dance with Blues-Fusion dance is a Yukon novelty, never happened anywhere else in the world so far. The whole process of blending these two forms of dances started when friendship between two dancing Yukon souls Gurdeep Pandher and Emily Payne became friends. Emily hosts monthly Blues-Fusion sessions at her place which provided fertile ground to grow the seed of this idea.
7:33 PM – Bhangra and Blues-Fusion Mix Dance, SONG: Bottom of the River (Performed by Emily Payne, Monique Chatterton, Gurdeep Pandher, and Jennifer Redvers)
Only Sound Crew Should Read This Line: Song # 07-Bottom-Of-River-PunjabiMix
7:38 PM – MC Daniel Ashley (Crooked Folk/ Traditional Irish and Scottish: Jim Wards/Merrily Kiss the Quaker with Matt King on Bass)
Gurdeep Pandher and Monique Chatterton with Bhangra dance and Crooked Folk musicians with the Traditional Irish and Scottish Set music will charm you again with their great blend on the song Jim Wards/Merrily Kiss the Quaker (w Matt King on Bass) by Keitha Clark with fiddle, Jerome McIntyre with bodhran/cajon, and Bj MacLean with guitar.
Gurdeep Pandher and Krisandra Reid will do bhangra dance to the tunes.
7:40 PM – Bhangra on Irish/Scottish Music with band Crooked folk on song Jim Wards/Merrily Kiss the Quaker (w Matt King on Bass).
7:45 PM – MC Daniel Ashley (SONG: Pagg, Bhangra Students and EMYS will dance together)
Next song is a golden song. Everyone loves the song due to its nice dancing uplifting beat. The dance of absolute joy and pure happiness. The name of the song is Pagg [Pag] which means ‘turban’ in English. Along with its beautiful beat, this song also offers a great message to men from Sikh and Punjabi culture by reminding them that the turban is their precious treasure and they should not forget wearing it. Also, the song explores other traditions of richness in Punjabi culture in a unique musical way. This song was made on two beautiful Punjabi musical instruments Sarangi and Dhol, which produce joyous beat, perfect for bhangra dancing. Famous Punjabi singer Ravinder Grewal sang this song.
The bhangra dance is part of his Sikh and Punjabi culture, and he was born into it, so on and off, Gurdeep has been dancing bhangra for his whole life. Daniel Ashley and Gurdeep will have some brief and funny discussion on stage before the beginning of the song.
7:46 PM – Group Bhangra Dance on song Pagg (All EMYS Students/ All Bhangra Students: Monique Chatterton, Amanda Fraser, Krisandra Reid, Geny Mangilog, and Gurdeep Pandher).
Only Sound Crew Should Read This Line: Song # 02-Pagg
7:49 PM – MC Daniel Ashley will announce intermission which will start at 7:50 PM
INTERMISSION for 20 minutes (from 7:50 PM to 8:10 PM).
(Second Video: Bhangra-Fiddleheads)
Only Sound Crew Should Read This Line: Video #02-Gurdeep-Fiddleheads
8:10 PM – MC Daniel Ashley will come on the start invite everyone to rejoin.
8:11 PM – Bhangra with Fiddleheads by Keitha Clark on King George the IV Strathspey (with Brianna Heal doing highland dance and Gurdeep Pandher doing bhangra dance)
Next performance is Bhangra with Fiddleheads by Keitha Clark on King George the IV Strathspey in which Brianna Heal will do highland dance and Gurdeep Pandher will do bhangra dance.
8:12 PM – Group Bhangra Dance on song King George the IV Strathspey (with Brianna Heal doing highland dance and Gurdeep Pandher doing bhangra dance)
8:16 PM – MC Daniel Ashley (SONG: Antenna, Yukon College Bhangra)
In January 2017, Yukon College decided to host Gurdeep Pandher’s bhangra classes during lunch hours, which continued until now. Those classes allowed Yukon College students to have some wonderful understanding of the world of bhangra dancing. When Yukon College students learning bhangra dance, when why not they should not perform at the stage? So, all this started the exploration of idea of the College participants performing at the stage. And here they are. Please welcome to the stage, Janna van Kessel, Nisa Falkiner, MaryAnn Ferguson, and their teacher Gurdeep Pandher.
8:18 PM – Bhangra by Yukon College Students on song Antenna by Janna van Kessel, Nisa Falkiner, MaryAnn Ferguson, and Gurdeep Pandher.
Only Sound Crew Should Read This Line: Song # 06-Antenna
8:22 PM – MC Daniel Ashley (Crooked Folk, SONG: Gravelwalk)
The traditional Irish and Scottish set Music will be played by the band Crooked Folk with members with members Keitha Clark with fiddle, Jerome McIntyre with bodhran/cajon, and Bj MacLean with guitar and they will play the tunes called “Gravelwalk”. Gurdeep Pandher and his dance students (Monique Chatterton, Amanda Fraser, Krisandra Reid, Geny Mangilog, and Gurdeep Pandher) will do bhangra dance to the tunes.
8:24 PM – Bhangra on Irish/Scottish Music with band Crooked folk on song Gravelwalk
(Third Video: Air North Bhangra Video)
Only Sound Crew Should Read This Line: Video #03-Air-North-Bhangra
8:28 PM – MC Daniel Ashley (SONG: Bhangra Meets Irish Dance)
The idea behind creating this piece originated out of conversations between Gurdeep Pandher and Melanie Hackett who is a famous Irish dancer. She even participated in world Irish Dancing Championships. During the late spring of 2017, when the news of creating divisions by some political leaders were everywhere, Melanie and Gurdeep decided to combine this dance to bring two forms of dance together to spread the message of unity and togetherness. Gurdeep Pandher wrote the song, famous Yukon singer Sarah MacDougall became Gurdeep’s co-signer and then Melanie and Gurdeep danced to the tunes and made a video, which is known as “Bhangra Meets Irish Dance”.
8:30 PM – Group dance on “Bhangra Meets Irish Dance” by Monique Chatterton, Amanda Fraser, Krisandra Reid, Geny Mangilog, and Gurdeep Pandher
Only Sound Crew Should Read This Line: Song # 05-Bhangra-Meets-Irish-Dance
8:34 PM – MC Daniel Ashley (Fiddleheads, SONG: Swallow Tail Jig)
Kietha Clark will be back on the stage with her group’s tune Swallow Tail Jig.
Gurdeep Pandher and Krisandra Reid will do bhangra dance to the tunes.
8:36 PM – Bhangra to Fiddleheads tune called Swallow Tail Jig
8:40 PM – MC Daniel Ashley (Bhangra and Blues-Fusion Mix Dance, SONG: None of us are Free)
Mix bhangra dance and blues-fusion dance, the collaboration between Emily Payne and Gurdeep Pandher, performed by Emily Payne, Monique Chatterton, Gurdeep Pandher, and Jennifer Redvers)
8:42 PM – Bhangra and Blues-Fusion Mix Dance, SONG: None of us are Free (Performed by Emily Payne, Monique Chatterton, Gurdeep Pandher, and Jennifer Redvers)
Only Sound Crew Should Read This Line: Song # 08-None-of-us-are-free-PunjabiMix
(Fourth Video: Mayoral Turban Fitting Goes Viral)
Only Sound Crew Should Read This Line: Video #04-Gurdeep-Pandher-Dan-Curtis
8:50 PM – MC Daniel Ashley (Bhangra by Mayor Dan Curtis)
The video made by Dan Curits and Gurdeep Pandher in January 2017 went viral and viewed by over a million people in just one day. Next day, the video was published by BBC News where 12 million people watched it. The video was also re-broadcasted by CBC News, The Globe and Mail, USA Today, Canadian Press and many other international media in Australia, India, etc. Even Russia’s state media published the video on their network. Dan Curtis happily agreed to recreate viral turban and bhangra dance video on the stage during bhangra concert on December 14, 2017.
8:52 PM – Recreation of viral video with Mayor Dan Curits
9:00 PM – MC Daniel Ashley will invite all the performers to the stage. Photographer Matt Jacques will take group photos.
Closing thank you to all!
9:05 PM – Closing thanks by Gurdeep Pandher and the people will be requested to join the dance party in the Arts Centre lobby.
9:10 PM – 💃🤸♂️💃 DANCE PARTY 💃🤸♂️🕺
(With DJ Daniel Ashley)
There will be dance party immediately after the bhangra show in the Arts Centre lobby. DJ Daniel Ashley will play dance music for you 💃🤸♂️🕺💃
The item is what everyone is expecting, free-style big bhangra jam. Everyone is going to join for the free style BIG GROUP Bhangra or any dance form of dance you know. Gurdeep Pandher, All Students, All Musicians, MC on two non-stop bhangra songs. These both songs has powerful dhol beat, which will make everyone to dance.
- Keitha Clark with fiddle
- Jerome McIntyre with bodhran/cajon
- Bj MacLean with guitar
- Monique Chatterton
- Amanda Fraser
- Veronique Lachance
- Geny Mangilog
- Gurdeep Pandher
- Léa Roy Bernatchez
- Lianne Cranfield
- Krisandra Reid
Extremely Moving Youth Society (EMYS) Lineup:-
- Balsillie, Keltie
- Clennett, Destiny
- Cooper, Yovana
- Daniels, Natalie
- Dieckmann, Taylor
- Fahr, Jordan
- Harries, Adele
- Hill, Jenny
- Kaszycki, Charlotte
- Lam, Jessica
- Mcmanus, Maeve
- Ohlin, Kaydence
- Poulter, Ryann
- Quaile, Teighan
- Toews, Ada
- Wilks, Lydia
- Arsenault, Monica
- Bartsch, Jessie
- Birss, Aura-Leigh
- Gordon, Kaylee
- Johnston, Qiarrah
- Meurer-Mills, Lucia
- Organ, Chelsie
- Perreault, Emilie
- Riske, Gwen
- Stilwell, Noelle
- Anderson, Nataley
- Balderas, Alycia
- McKone, Caileigh
- Munro, Charlotte
- Rost van Tonningen, Julianne
- Twigge, Isabella
- Underhill, Zoe
Teacher/Founder: Keitha Clark
Piano: Annie Avery
Bass: Matt King
Student Fiddle Players:-
- Owen K.
- Owen H
- Janna van Kessel
- Nisa Falkiner
- MaryAnn Ferguson
Bhangra and Blues-Fusion Mix Dance
- Emily Payne
- Monique Chatterton
- Jennifer Redvers
Master of Ceremonies
Mayor Dan Curtis
Photography: Matt Jacques
Video: Jake Paleczny/ Lee Carruthers
Sound: Mike Wilson
Sound/ Event Coordinator: Josh Jansen
Lights: Jess McNabb
Yukon Arts Centre Contacts: Matt Poushinsky, Shana Ermatinger