What comes to mind when you hear the words Bhangra Love? My initial thought was “it’s just a person’s passion for music and dance.” However, as a VIBC volunteer, I quickly learned it’s much more than just that. Last year’s 10th anniversary for VIBC’s City of Bhangra Festival proved the widespread popularity of the now well-known #BhangraLove campaign. The significance of these two words is truly remarkable; they have the power to capture both the vision and mission of VIBC in the simplest form.
Bhangra is not that easy to describe. It’s much more than a dance that can be defined with mere words. Bhangra awakens emotions; it is powerful enough to connect individuals from completely different backgrounds and versatile enough to collaborate with many cultures. It is the elevation of art rather than a display of entertainment. One of my favourite definitions of bhangra comes from a member of Cornell University’s Bhangra team, which participated in Season 9 of America’s Got Talent. To quote his exact words, “Bhangra means to be intoxicated with joy.” Many would agree that this intoxication is a burst of energy that takes over the body and mind. You just can’t help but get into the dancing spirit and on your feet at the beat of the dhol!
The love for bhangra, the love that bhangra spreads… it can all be tied into the message of #BhangraLove. This love helps us remain attached to our heritage but also allows us to break barriers and bridge gaps to create an all-inclusive community. This is the vision of VIBC, which #BhangraLove perfectly expresses.
We encourage everyone of all ages to participate in the joy and celebration of bhangra at our City of Bhangra Festival this spring! From May 28–June 6, be sure to check out all 10 days worth of events and experience the intoxication of #BhangraLove!
Blog by Suman Lally, Volunteer, City of Bhangra Festival 2015
#BhangraLove logo by Roberto Cruz