The South Asian Showdown (otherwise known as SAS) was the place to be on Saturday, February 12th, 2011 and, of course, we at Urban Asian were right there to catch all the action! This was the second year of this national dance competition and, like last year, it was a sold out event! The competition was held at the John Hancock Tower in Boston, MA.
SAS is the only competition of it’s kind in the US as it showcases 4 different styles of Indian dance – bhangra, garba-raas, fusion, and bollywood – all in one fantastic night. In case you’re not famillar with the 4 types of dance forms, here is a brief description of each:
- Bhangra began as a folk dance that Sikh farmers would do to welcome the harvest season and originated in the Punjab region of India. The teams can be all male, male and female, or all female (performing a gidda).
- Garba/Raas is a traditional folk dance originating from the Gujarat region of India. Most traditional garba’s are done in a circular motion around a central idol (typically Durga/Amba) or a fire. Raas is the same garba dance but with sticks. Typically garba is performed during the Navratri season in Gujarat, India.
- Fusion, as the name implies, is a more modern dance form that is the conglomeration of all South Asian dance styles merged with other non-South Asian dance forms.
- Hindi-Film/Bollywood is the dance form originating from the Bollywood film industry in Mumbai and typically incorporates a thematic storyline.
The teams were all extremely talented, very strong, and creative. If you saw the dances, you’d think you were watching mini-movies as each dance had a theme / storyline and showcased the personalities of their team to the fullest. Of course Boston was there to represent, but some teams came from as far away as California! Other teams, besides CA and MA, were from Illinois, Michigan, Maryland, Washington DC, Delaware, Pennsylvania, and Ohio. The show has 3 teams per category and one group winner is selected. From those 4 chosen teams, one grand winner is selected.
- Bhangra: Michigan Bhangra
- Fusion: Broad Street Baadshahz
- Garba/Raas: University of Maryland
- Hindi-Film/Bollywood: USC Zeher
- OVERALL WINNER: Broad Street Baadshahz
After the main performances, the show featured a dance team in a showcase performance to entertain the crowd while the judges calculated the winners. This year, MIT Collaboration dance troupe blew viewers away with their 34 talented dancers showcasing dance forms like hip hop, Bollywood, etc.
The show was also captured on video by Sahara One, which will air the show nationally on television within the next few months. During intermission, attendees had a chance to buy some food goodies from Bollywood Grill (based in Worcester, MA).
Each year of SAS gets better and better. Stay locked to Urban Asian for details regarding next year’s show and make sure you check out a future show if you missed it this year.
To learn more about the competition visit: www.southasianshowdown.com