The original exhibition profiled diverse stories that emerged from original interviews, archival video footage,personal photo albums, community consultation and support from Vancouver’s Bhangra community. The focus of the project was to not only share the history but to use this platform as a way of understanding, dissecting and thinking about multiculturalism and diversity while in the same framework understanding the dynamics of community, belonging and identity. In Vancouver, bhangra has grown to reflect a diverse immigrant community and with that produces a distinct West Coast sound unique to the city.
Vancouver International Bhangra Celebration is a not for profit organization with a mandate to create an inclusive community through celebration and the joy of bhangra. Starting in 2004 this organization was a volunteer driven organization until 2014 when a general manager was brought on to deal with the day to day operations. This new role was responsible to the board of directors who moved from a working board to a model of oversight and governance of the organization. Contract staff is brought on throughout the year to assist with different projects.
The purpose of the organization is to produce cultural works that explore South Asian identity in the diaspora through community-building initiatives. This is reflected in the organization’s expanded definition of the term “bhangra” to include the celebration of community, in addition to music and dance.