Living with a “border-less heart” in the world of “man-made borders”…
born in a village called Siahar in Punjab in a simple and ordinary farming family, lives in Whitehorse (Yukon) Canada, Gurdeep is into diverse kinds of creative leanings since his early childhood during his days in the village. His family used to grow most of crops, vegetables and beans at their farm and get milk from the cows and buffaloes at raised the home, so luckily he grew up eating all home-grown and organic. Farming life also brought the elements of being close to the land and waters in him. It also embedded in him to respect “Air (as Guru), Waters (as Father), and Earth (as Mother)”!
Gurdeep was in 9th grade when he came to know from a friend from the village that there was a “thing” existed in the world, which the friend with his sweet childish-innocence called a “Dishnary” (he meant “Dictionary”), which had English translation of almost all the Punjabi words. Being jolly with the new discovery, he bicycled all the way from his village to a nearby town to buy that “thing”! It opened the gates for him to learn the language to communicate with the rest of the world, word-by-word, all from the dictionary.
Gurdeep was in grade 6 when he wrote his first poem. By grade 10, he had written lots of poetry, prose, a full novel, hundreds of stories, a play and other forms of literature. By the age 23, he ended up being a published author of two books.
Names of his books are Mitti De Ghar in Punjabi and Among the Stars in English.
His book Among the Stars already got third reprint!
Now in his thirties, he does the same! It’s his lifetime craft. No day is perfect for him without weaving some threads of ideas into the written form of words.
He moved to Canada in 2006 and lived in great Canadian cities and towns like Squamish, Vancouver, Abbotsford, Saskatoon, Edmonton, North Battleford, Turtleford, Lloydminster, Yellowknife, Whitehorse and traveled Canada extensively via road.
In 2011, he became the citizen of Canada, which motivated him to learn more his new and beautiful country, the land, and its people.
From BC to Ontario, he has been to almost every city and town, plus majority of villages. Being himself from a village, he loves to see villages and small communities everywhere. He was especially captivated by wheat farms of Saskatchewan. He would sit by roadside to watch farmers of Saskatchewan harvesting wheat crop for hours. It would also emotionally connect him with his family’s farm in Punjab.
As a part of Punjabi-Sikh culture he was born into it, however at the prime of youth, at the age of 17, he started taking professional Bhangra classes in Ludhiana, Punjab, which opened a wide door for him to adopt the dance from his heart and soul. So ever since, his love for the dance is growing with every new morning.
When I Dance bhangra today, I feel I am the same 17-year old now with freely-flowing young energy
Since he moved to the Yukon in 2012, he has been dancing and providing bhangra lessons at many locations in the Yukon.
His Yukon made bhangra dance videos went viral and his work has been featured on CBC Yukon, CBC National, CTV National News, Buzzfeed, The Huffington Post, SBS Australia, and many other platforms. Even Canadian embassies abroad shared his works to showcase ever thriving Canadian melting-pot and the wonderful side of multiculturalism.
Although he lived in and traveled to many corners of the world, however the Yukon is the place where he lived most of his time after his village in Punjab. So, he pretty much considers himself a proud Yukoner. When he is not doing anything, he enjoys sharing giggles with his fellow Yukoners in the streets, corners, or at coffee-shops of different Yukon communities.
“The whole Yukon seems like a village of friends”, he often contemplates the notion seriously and enjoys the feeling!
Gurdeep thinks that life is an art and he is pretty much into it!
“When you take every day like a new day, you just carry on doing many interesting things in life”, he often ponders.
“Sometimes saline and sometimes saccharine, life is like a fruit-shake with a distinctive diversity of flavors”, he has many self-created quotes.
“Monetary richness without happiness is real poverty and monetary poverty with true happiness is real richness”, another quote from him.
He has other passions too including photography, video-editing, web-art, digital-designs, languages, and music, however wordography and bhangra remains his first two loves.
The vast land, air, wide-open mountains, smiling sun and sometimes beautiful drizzles taught him to be free-spirited and celebrate the life with charming hearts seeded by the supreme nature!
You are such an amazing addition to our community, thank you for making Whitehorse home!
~ Dan Curtis, The Mayor of City of Whitehorse
“Keep your eyes on the stars and your feet on the ground.” ~ Theodore Roosevelt
Sometimes saline and sometimes saccharine, life is like a fruit-shake with a distinctive diversity of flavors. ~ Gurdeep Pandher