Baraat Procession | Indian Wedding Tradition
Let the Baraat Assassins explain this awesome
What is a Baraat?
The Baraat has a history of being a tradition in Indian, Hindu, Sikh and even some South Indian weddings where the groom and his side of the family join him in a small procession towards the altar. It's a mini-parade.
In most modern Indian weddings in America, it's customary just like in Western weddings for the groom to be waiting at the altar (a canopy in Indian weddings is the mandap) and then the bride has her nice glamorous entrance.
Well, in our culture we celebrate the guy's entrance too!
A Baraat is a dancing entrance that can last an hour or longer. The entire groom's side of the family joins him as he makes his way to the Hindu wedding ceremony area to music along with a drummer (called a Dhol player, which we also provide).
Once the groom's reaches the altar area, the bride's mother greets him and the wedding can officially begin!
Let's explain more.
Baraat FAQ for Indian Weddings in America
It's a portable party with non-stop music (Bollywood, Hindi, Punjabi and even Hip hop) and cheering.
All the tradition you can check in Wikipedia, but for your Indian-Fusion wedding I'm sure you're attending in the US, basically just:
show up when it says,
dance and get a turban tied (pagdi)
swag out with your boys until your buddy gets to his fate!
1. Do I have to Join the baraat? Can I skip it?
If you're invited from the groom's side, hell yes you should attend!
If you're from the brides side, but not that close to her where they'd need you during her prep work, you should definitely join the baraat.
These days since the girl enters after hours of makeup, most of both sides (minus her immediate family) will join the baraat or be a part of the baraat welcoming party (e.g. the girls side who is already sitting in the wedding ceremony area).
2. Do I have to Dance?
Not at all, but since everyone around you will be, you probably will do a little!
3. Is this the Elephant or Horse Thing?
You got it. Without over complicating it, you know when you see pictures of an Indian wedding groom on an elephant, a white horse, a mercedes, a tuk-tuk, being held up by his 10 groomsmen, or sometimes even in a helicopter or a boat?
That's the Baraat!
Basically it's your WWF/James Bond/Celebrity moment for the groom to enter.
4. What do I wear?
Whatever you would wear to the wedding ceremony, as you're going to finish the Baraat and sit right down for a one hour ceremony! Basically a kurta since you'll be dancing, or a sherwani if you're very close to the groom.
5. What not to do at a Baraat?
Alcohol: As the groom is about to enter a religious function, he generally isn't supposed to consume alcohol. You might see college friends and others drinking out of flasks, but alcohol is not a "out-in-the-open" sort of thing at a Baraat so you should try not to drink publicly if you can avoid it. If everyone else is doing ready mixes however, by all means.
6. What is the Bride Doing during this time?
As mentioned above, the BRIDE is the one person who should NOT be at the Baraat. Her and her close family are getting ready, hanging out, preparing the wedding ceremony area to receive the boy and his side, from well...the BARAAT!
7. What kind of Music is there?
All kinds! Hindi, English, Bollywood, Bhangra, I've even seen Baraat's have reggaeton and salsa. Anything that will liven up the party, even EDM, you'll see these days. Ask us about our special mixes which we are famous for!
8. HEY, there's no elephant?!?!
These days, a lot of hotels and places in America won't have an elephant or a horse handy or allowed on property. As a result, most modern baraat's have grooms coming in on fancy cars, tuk-tuks, boats, helicopters, skydiving in and much more!
TIPS FOR A GOOD BARAAT:
Show up in your wedding attire whenever the invite says the Baraat is meeting.
Don't be too late, otherwise they'll leave without you!
Basically all you do is dance with the wedding party, have fun, pose for pictures, and then take your seat once you all reach the Altar!
If you're able to (e.g. your hotel room is near by) - dress lighter, as you will sweat a ton! (I wore a different outfit for my Baraat and then got ready in a hotel room above the wedding grounds).
Get a DHOL player and a portable sound system. You will need it as your baraat moves through the hotel or golf course or wherever.
DRINKS LOTS OF WATER!
Once the groom reaches his mother-in-law and hugs it out, the Baraat is basically over as she's "accepted him into the family." AWW. (That's me in the pink vest at my brother's baraat happy he's out of our hands)
ABOUT SPECIAL OCCASIONS
In 2009 we started the tradition of bringing mobile sound sytems to Indian weddings in California, because a Dhol player (drummer) was sometimes getting too tired (understandably).
Since then SODJLA is proud to be the leader in the Indian Wedding Industry South Asian entertainment.
We were even asked in Feb 2019 to do a Baraat in Bangkok also!
And thankfully so...because the existing setup was just an iPod and a couple of same tracks!
While we prefer to stay in our hemisphere, do ask us and we can travel worldwide!
ROCK YOUR BARAAT?
Get a quote today, and even if you don't need us, please do check out our videos and tips to rock your Baraat music! Our blog is very active these days!
Don't have a BORING BARAAT!
It sets the tone for the rest of your Big Fat Indian Wedding!