From hipsters to Indians, we all speak the same language of dance.

Queen Harish / Photo: Monica Bhatnagar

I laughed as the San Francisco hipster ceremoniously handed his hat over to the drag queen performer from India.

Only in San Fran, I thought, could a literal dancing queen, Queen Harish, force seven guys on stage to dance with her, the men a mix of younger and older Indians, punk/goth white boys, and of course my favorite, the hipster.

They even enjoyed themselves.

Before Harish had taken over the stage, I got to watch the ladies of Clandestine, my favorite belly-dancing troupe, perform.

I marveled at not only how fun they are to watch, but the beauty of the different shapes and sizes of the women, which seems hard to come by in the media these days.

Dance has always been a connecting experience for me, joining me to all of the other people in the room, regardless of their background or beliefs, what they look like, whether they are dancing or simply taking in the scene.

Clandestine / Photo: SharonaGott

But then I began to think, is this happening everywhere, not just San Francisco? Is our world sneakily coming together by way of the vehicle of dance?

Carnevale hosts multicultural dancers in cities throughout the world, African Tribal Dance classes are offered at just about every high-end gym, and people are eating up tango tours in South America.

The continued popularity of Matt Harding’s traveling-dance video, Where the Hell is Matt, also makes me think dance is a force to be reckoned with.

This is what Matt had to say about his experience:

A lot of people wanted to dance along with me, so I started inviting them to join in everywhere I went, from Toronto to Tokyo to Timbuktu…here’s what I can report back: People want to feel connected to each other. They want to be heard and seen, and they’re curious to hear and see others from places far away.

Ah yes, connection. What could be better than that?

Have you experienced dance bridging people of different cultures and backgrounds? Share your thoughts below!

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