Our Tradition

Bhangra/Gidha - Bhangra began as a part of harvest and vaisakhi festival celebrations, and found its way to the performance stage after the division of the Punjab in 1947. The Punjabi dance performed at this time in ecstasy with the beat of Dhol came to be known as Bhangra.

The tradition spread slowly to other parts of the region and developed into a unique folk dance form. Bhangra has come of age and is now performed at every major celebration and in clubs etc.

Bhangra has developed as a combination of dances from different parts of the Punjab region. The term "Bhangra" now refers to several kinds of dances and arts, including Jhumar, Luddi, Giddha, Julli, Daankara, Dhamal, Saami, Kikli, and Gatka. Jhumar, originally from Sandalbar, Punjab, comprises an important part of Punjab folk heritage. It is a graceful dance, based on a specific Jhumar rhythm.

Dancers circle around a drum player while singing a soft chorus. A person performing the Luddi dance places one hand behind his head and the other in front of his face, while swaying his head and arms. He typically wears a plain loose shirt and sways in a snake-like manner. Like a Jhumar dancer, the Luddi dancer moves around a dhol player. Women have a different but equally exuberant dance called Giddha. The dancers enact verses called bolis, representing a wide variety of subjects - everything from arguments with a sister-in-law to political affairs. The rhythm of the dance depends not only the drums, but also on the handclaps of the dancers. Julli is a dance associated with Muslim holy men called pirs and is generally performed in their hermitages. Typically the dancers dress all in black, and perform Julli in a sitting posture, but it is sometimes also done around the grave of a preceptor. Julli is unique in that one person, alone, can perform the dance if he so desires.Daankara is a dance of celebration, typically performed at weddings. Two men, each holding colorful staves, dance around each other in a circle while tapping their sticks together in rhythm with the drums. Dancers also form a circle while performing Dhamal. They also hold their arms high, shake their shoulders and heads, and yell and scream. Dhamal is a true folk-dance, representing the heart of Bhangra.

Women of the Sandalbar region traditionally are known for the Saami. The dancers dress in brightly colored kurtas and full flowing skirts called lehengas. Like Daankara, Kikli features pairs of dancers, this time women. The dancers cross their arms, hold each other's hands, and whirl around singing folk songs. Occasionally four girls join hands to perform this dance. Gatka is a Sikh martial art in which people use swords, sticks, or daggers. Historians believe that the Sixth Sikh Guru started the art of Gatka after the martyrdom of Fifth Guru - Shri Guru Arjan Dev Ji. Wherever there is a large Khalsa Sikh population, there will be Gatka participants, often including small children and adults. These participants usually perform Gatka on special Punjabi holidays. In addition to these different dances, a Bhangra performance typically contains many energetic stunts. The most popular stunt is called the moor, or peacock, in which a dancer sits on someone's shoulders, while another person hangs from his torso by his legs. Two-person towers, pyramids, and various spinning stunts are also popular.

KFAC TEAM

Inderjit Aulakh (Jicky)

Inderjit Aulakh (Jicky)

Inderjit Aulakh (Jicky)

Teaching Bhnagra & Dhol Player
Ranbir Sangha

Ranbir Sangha

Ranbir Sangha

Teaching Bhnagra & Musician
Sarbjit Shahkoti

Sarbjit Shahkoti

Sarbjit Shahkoti

Singer & Teaching Bhnagra

KFAC Sponsors


Copyright © 2007-2021, KFAC Canada. All rights reserved.

Designed & Developed By ActiveIdeas.Net