Cinema-goers and shoppers got more than they bargained for outside the new Odeon as Bollywood flair came to Orpington on Saturday (March 12).

A group of 60 Hindu dancers appeared from the midst of the crowds to stage a flash mob in advance of the Holi Festival next week.

News Shopper:

Tasneem Singhal, 43, of Tregony Road, Orpington, was instrumental in organising the surprise and has been holding 6 to 8 practice sessions a week in subgroups as they couldn’t find anywhere big enough for the whole group to practise at once.

“Most of us are young professionals working in IT, banking – I’m a doctor. We’re not dancers.”

News Shopper:

“I think it’s the first flash mob in Bromley – when I called the council to get a permit for it they didn’t know who to give the application to.”

The group performed a Gujurati garba, a Punjabi Bhangra and danced to a traditional Holi song.

“When people think of Hinduism, it’s always Diwali, Diwali, Diwali – but I don’t think people know a lot about Holi.

“I just hope people feel involved. This is just a brief glimpse into what Holi is all about.”

Also known as the festival of colours, it is primarily observed in India, Nepal, and other regions of the world with significant populations of Hindus.

The Holi Festival is on March 19 and celebrates spring and the victory of good over evil in Hindu folklore.