In many cultures around the world it is believed that man has been dancing since the dawn of time. Dance is an expression of ones inner soul and can represent a multitude of emotions.
Bhangra is a traditional ‘Lawk Naach’ (Folk Dance) of the Punjab. Also known as the ‘land of five rivers’, Punjab is a large region in the north of India and is rich in its culture and tradition. Post partition of 1947 Punjab was divided in two – West Punjab, which now falls in Pakistan and East Punjab, which is still in North India. The two parts of Punjab are referred to locally as ‘Charda Punjab’ (Rising Punjab – with reference to the sun rising the East) and ‘Lendha Punjab’ (Falling Punjab – with reference to the sun setting in the West). Dance has always been an integral part of Punjabi life and is used to celebrate many happy occasions.
There are many forms of Lawk Naach that come from the Punjab but Bhangra is amongst the most popular. Bhangra is closely associated with the farmers of the Punjab, who performed it to celebrate the harvest festival of Vaisakhi. Some of the choreography within the dance reflects the daily activities of the farmers at work, while other movements use varying tempo to demonstrate the skill and agility of the dancers. Traditional movements from other Lawk Naach such as the ‘Jhumar’, ‘Luddi’, ‘Dankara’, ‘Dhamaal’, ‘Sami’ and ‘Giddha’ have over the centuries been used to enhance Bhangra. As these other traditional forms of Lawk Naach have slowly lost popularity, many of their original movements only exist as an element of what is known and enjoyed today as Traditional Bhangra dance.
As the Punjabi culture of Bhangra has spread throughout the world, influences from various forms of dance have meant that the traditional art form has evolved further. Dance Sansaar is committed to keeping the tradition of Lawk Naach alive through the Punjabi Folk Art of Bhangra.