ENCOURAGING CROSS-CULTURAL CONNECTIONS

August, 2019

We were chosen to present at the International YMCA175 Conference in London about the Power of Movement in Healing, Connection, and Empowerment worldwide. Between the two workshops we held there, we taught dance to around 200 people from various cities throughout the United States, Germany, France, Kosovo, Colombia, Canada, Spain, Peru, Ghana, Hong Kong, UK, Brazil, Holland, Germany, Russia, Portugal, Switzerland, Spain, Thailand, Sweden, Scotland, South Korea, and the Netherlands. There were participants who couldn't speak English but we could still communicate with them through the shared language of movement and dance.

After teaching just the basics of Bhangra dance to everyone, we asked them to create their own dances to Bhangra music we played. This was music they had never heard before and this was a dance style they had just learned the basics of. However, that's what movement is about: stepping outside your comfort zone, and embracing your vulnerabilities. The dances they created incorporated Bhangra and other dance moves that they brought from their environments back home to share with us. Everyone cheered each other on as each group performed and it was a community atmosphere of support and friendship. 

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