Panj

When I look through all of my photos from this past weekend’s 7th annual Coast Capital Bhangra Competition, I can’t help thinking back to the colourful dancers, their smiling gestures, and the crowd going wild during each group’s performance.

UBC Girlz and Shan-E-Punjab Little Stars
[UBC Girlz and Shan-E-Punjab Little Stars]

Panj
[Panj Bhangra]

Bhangra music is very celebratory and I’ve experienced it through the years at the Vancouver Art Gallery’s Downtown Bhangra events. Eight Bhangra groups competed on Saturday night for $10,000 in prizes. Performances by UK’s Tigerstyle, the 2006 and 2007 winning group UBC Girlz (along with the adorable Shan-E-Punjab Little Stars, who also performed with Mayor Gregor Robertson at the Museum of Vancouver’s Bhangra.me opening), and Shin, were just a few of the evening’s highlights.

UBC Girlz and Shan-E-Punjab Little Stars
[UBC Girlz and Shan-E-Punjab Little Stars]

Both the UBC Girlz Bhangra Team and the Little Stars performed during the 2010 Olympics BC Victory ceremonies.

Surrey Celebration Dance Team
[Surrey Celebration Dance Team]

Surrey Celebration Dance Team
[Surrey Celebration Dance Team]

Leading up to the competition was an impromptu dance jam in the Queen Elizabeth Theatre lobby. Surrey Celebration Dance Team are a young, talented, and highly energetic group of focused dancers. My husband and I enjoyed watching both their pre-show performance as well as their entertaining show inside the theatre towards the end of the evening.

Shava
[Shava]

Shava
[Shava]

Shava
[Shava]

First of its kind anywhere, Finnish Bhangra group Shava kicked off the evening with their blend of Bollywood-Bhangra beats. The five piece group from Helsinki find a lot of similarities between Finnish and Punjabi traditional music. Their CD won the 2010 Folk Music record of the year in Finland. Apparently, Finnjabi is alive and well in their native country!

Tigerstyle
[Tigerstyle]

Tigerstyle hail from Scotland and consist of two Sikh brothers, Raj and Pops. Their sound marries hip-hop, electronic, R&B and Bhangra.

3rd place winners Bhangra Republik
[3rd place winners Bhangra Republik]

2nd place winners Panj Bhangra
[2nd place winners Panj Bhangra]

The highlight of the evening was watching the winning teams react when they were announced. So much joy and energy!

1st place winners Shan-E-Punjab Arts Club
[1st place winners Shan-E-Punjab Arts Club]

1st place winners Shan-E-Punjab Arts Club
[1st place winners Shan-E-Punjab Arts Club]

1st place winners Shan-E-Punjab Arts Club
[1st place winners Shan-E-Punjab Arts Club]

It was hard for me to narrow down my photos to include for this post that would best capture the Bhangra spirit during Saturday’s well-attended show, but here are a few more.

JCC Dancers
[JCC Dancers]

JCC and SIAC
[JCC and SIAC]

Nachda Punjab
[Nachda Punjab]

Bhangra Republik
[Bhangra Republik]

NSM2
[NSM2]

Panj
[Panj Bhangra]

UBC Girlz and Shan-E-Punjab Little Stars
[UBC Girlz and Shan-E-Punjab Little Stars]

Bhangra Competition finale with Shin
[Bhangra Competition finale with Shin]

The rest of my Flickr photos can be found here.

The Coast Capital Bhangra Competition is organized yearly by the Vancouver International Bhangra Society, a non-profit organization aiming to both educate and entertain all communities about Bhangra. Its vision is to embrace the spirit of celebration, generosity, and community that is Bhangra.

4 Comments

  • Comment by Steve H. — May 19, 2011 @ 12:13 pm

    Very cool pics ๐Ÿ™‚

    I like the way you captured the dancers in all different expressions!

  • Comment by Gloria — May 21, 2011 @ 5:02 pm

    What gorgeous photos! Looks like you had a great time. I’m definitely keeping this one in mind for next year (had to miss it due to being out of town on business)…

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