A photo of Gurdeep Pandher with the rabble rouser to watch logo across the bottom of the photo.
Meet Gurdeep Pandher, a rabble rouser to watch. Credit: Gurdeep Pandher Credit: Gurdeep Pandher

Each year, we here at rabble ask our readers: “What are the organizations that inspire you? Who are the activists leading progressive change? Who are the rabble rousers to watch?” And every year, your responses introduce us to a new group of inspiring change-makers. This is our ‘rabble rousers to watch’ series. Over the next few months, we’ll be sharing features about the people and organizations you nominated. Follow our rabble rousers to watch here

To wrap up our ‘rabble rousers to watch’ series of 2022, we’re taking a trip to Canada’s Great White North. 

Meet Gurdeep Pandher: a Bhangra dancer, artist, writer and social media personality. 

Born in Siahar, Punjab, Pandher moved to Whitehorse, Yukon in 2006. During the pandemic, Pandher recorded videos of himself joyfully Bhangra dancing in the wilderness of the Yukon Territory. And at a time when the world needed a bit of extra positivity and healing, his videos went viral. 

We spoke with Gurdeep Pandher to talk about his work and what he hopes people take away from his videos.

A conversation with Gurdeep Pandher of the Yukon 

rabble.ca: Can you tell us about the work that you’re doing and the message you’re trying to share with the world?

Gurdeep Pandher: I spread joy, hope and positivity for healing through my uplifting messages and Bhangra dancing. I create videos in the beautiful nature of the Yukon, and it helps others to connect with the outdoor environment. I also use dance as a mechanism to build cross-cultural bridges across the country.

rabble.ca: How did you first get involved in this form of activism?

GP: I saw that there was a lot of darkness in the world, and a growing division between different communities, which was creating fear and hate. I decided to send positivity into the universe with the hope that this would remind people of the importance of being together and putting humanity first. 

rabble.ca: How do you take care of yourself and find the drive to keep going?

GP: I take care of myself by connecting with the pristine wilderness of the Yukon and being with precious elements of nature. Taking the time to breathe in the fresh, natural air revitalizes my spirit and keeps me motivated. I also receive many handwritten letters from Canadians coast to coast to coast, the love and warmth in those letters boost my energy to be on this path. 

rabble.ca: What is one goal you have in the next year?

GP: I like to flow with nature, and I usually do not make big plans, but I hope to write a book collecting my experiences from the Yukon and the arctic environment. 

rabble.ca: What do you wish people knew about the work/organizing you do?

GP: I want people to know that my work is not about creating viral videos. It is about creating healing, fostering togetherness, and reminding people of the importance of joy, hope and positivity. My work also focuses on bridging cultural gaps and racial divides in Canada. 

Gurdeep Pandher on YouTube | Used with permission