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"Aao Nachiye!"

Winner of the 2019 Richard Rodgers Award and premiering at the La Jolla Playhouse in 2022, Bhangin' It is an exhilarating new musical set in the high stakes world of intercollegiate competitive bhangra: a Panjabi folk dance morphed into a good old fashioned dance-off.

Brash, intoxicating and joyous, Bhangin' It is a musical about dancing to your own beat and a celebration of what America looks like today.


Mary, a college student with a white American father and an Indian mother, thinks she’s got all the right moves on the East Lansing University T.I.G.R.E.S. Bhangra team – but when she introduces new elements into the traditional dance, not everyone is a fan.  As a result, Mary is abruptly booted off the team and she decides to put together an eclectic, multicultural team whose only criteria for joining is a desire to dance. But will a math whiz, a GoPro-wearing chemistry major, a fashionista and a Baby Boomer professor stand a chance against the defending champions? 


Featuring music, lyrics, and co-dance and vocal arrangements by Sam, the creative team includes:

  • award-winning playwrights Rehana Lew Mirza and Mike Lew,

  • acclaimed Bollywood, Bhangra and Kathak choreographer Rujuta Vaidya,

  • director Stafford Arima (Allegiance, Altar Boyz),

  • additional music, co-arrangements and co-orchestrations by Grammy-nomimated multi-instrumentalist Deep Singh,

  • music direction by Madeline Benson (We Live in Cairo, Waitress),

  • co-orchestrations by Justin Goldner,

  • musical staging by Lisa Shriver,

  • Bhangra Specialist Anushka Pushpala (Artistic Director of Bhangra Empire)

  • sets by Robert Brill (Cabaret at Studio 54)

  • costumes by Linda Cho (Anastasia)

  • sound by Jonathan Deans (Cirque du Soleil)

  • lighting by Amith Chandrashaker (Fairview)

  • projections by David Bengali (1776)

  • Ableton by Scott Wasserman (Hamilton)

  • and Keyboard Programming by Taylor Williams (Hamilton)


Bhangin' It's generous developmental homes have included La Jolla Playhouse, the Jerome Robbins Foundation's Project Springboard: Developing Dance Musicals, Rhinebeck Writers Retreat's Triple R Program for two readings and a residency and Rhinebeck's summertime Writers Retreat, as well as the Johnny Mercer Colony at Goodspeed Musicals, Running Deer Musical Theatre Lab and The Orchard Project.

Check out this sneak peak vid!