Express. Engage. Empower.

Raniyaan di Raunaq, the first competition of its kind, is by and for women and underrepresented members of the bhangra community. Raunaq aims to recognize and elevate our dancers’ work as leaders, creators, artists, and competitors — to embrace the grit, vigor, power, and grace that goes into dancing in a male-dominated space.

August 10, 2019

Rachel M. Schlesinger Concert Hall & Arts Center

4915 East Campus Drive, Alexandria, VA 22311

Show Order:

Sherniyan Di Sarkar

VSB Nishani

First Class Bhangra

Da Real Punjabiz

Bruin Mutiyaaran

NPBA Senior Girls



NJ Jhalak Punjab Di



Our thoughts and feelings are expressed through the conduit of dance, in the structure of competition. That's why we are changing the structure, from an institution that has historically treated women, nonbinary, and trans folks differently than the mainstream male dancer. A structure that acknowledges the system and seeks to actively highlight the often underrepresented dancers is a way for us to change the game, to exhibit our bite, and to elevate our cause.



Though it might not always seem like it, dance is just one part of our world. Systems and institutions from dance to the workplace shape how we perform on a daily basis. They shape the opportunities we can act on and the way we use our voices. That's why we're partnering with Asha For Women, a local organization near and dear to our hearts, which acknowledges and serves members of the South Asian community facing domestic violence.



We, members of D.C.'s first all-women's dance team, came together for this competition in the name of a larger sisterhood. It's on us to do our part, to help shift the landscape and start the conversations, especially considering how lucky we have been to follow in the footsteps of a decade's worth of work. There's always more to do.

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*Note: While this is the first all-women’s bhangra competition in the U.S., we are dedicated to an inclusive environment. We welcome any and all dancers identifying as women, trans, nonbinary, or who are from similarly marginalized communities.