One might expect to find students at Oyama Traditional School well versed in the heritage and courtesies common in Canada but last week they had an afternoon of fun learning about the traditions of a far away culture in India as well.
South Asian Arts dance group stopped by the school to teach a whirlwind introduction to Bhangra, the official folk dance of the Punjab state in India. The dance has a 600 year history on the farmlands of Punjab. Its movements are based on the movements of farm animals and various tasks that farmers carried out in their work.
Raakhi Sinha and Munish Sharma have been dancing since they were the same age as many of the younger students. It’s a passion they pursued as they grew up and now, for the past four years, they’ve be touring and teaching together all across North America.
“We performed at the Olympics in Vancouver and we’ve performed in New York. Traveling is the best part of what we do and I’m really grateful we get to see all these cool places,” says Sinha. “I couldn’t believe it when we got her and saw all the people ice fishing out on the lake, it’s so amazing!.”