November 1, 2019
Hello from Dharmsala.
It is so much fun to be back here in Dharamsala, India to celebrates the 60th anniversary of Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts (TIPA), where i studied my art. His Holiness the Dalai Lama attended the celebration and inspired all of us to keep alive and share our music and art all over the world.
Also filled with joy to reunite with few of our elder artists, few from my generation and lots of younger generations. Fortunate also to attend the International Tibetan Performing Arts conference and meet the scholars who are here to support the art through their academic research. Thank you all!
Enjoy these photos
In early March, 2019, I assisted my wife on a journey to Far East of Russia, also known as Chukotka, to research about the nomads there. We had been preparing for this trip for several months. The project was funded by her own money and we had to be very frugal. The nomads in this region are known as Chukchis and they have survived very harsh weather and political conditions. Life is tough there under very extreme cold temperature - it dips to minus 30 degree celsius, but these nomads are keeping it real and maintaining their culture and art with resilience. We were so blessed to hangout and be near their culture.
We finished our research trip in Far East and landed in Moscow. Our Tibetan host, Karma Tenzin-la who works at the Tibetan culture office with Telo Rinpoche, Representative of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, was of immense help. We enjoyed our few days there and then flew to Delhi and then to Dharamsala.
In Dharamsala, I paid a special visit to our prime minister, Dr. Lobsang Sangye and Mr. Ngawang Yonten, the newly appointed director of the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts (TIPA). I shared a few comments and concerns to them about Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts’ future as a former member of the institute. I made a point that they should consider a small group of former TIPA artists who are scattered around the world and consult with them in major TIPA decisions, and gather ideas for improvements of TIPA’s future. For so long we have repeated the same format of training artists mainly to perform on stage while in TIPA but nothing further than that. I think it is time to figure out how we can improve the standard of artists and their role at international level.
While spending as much time with my mother, I embarked on a music video shoot of one of my traditional songs from my Tibetan Music Preservation Project. This song is the famous poem written by the Sixth Dalai Lama. Check out some photos from the shoot here. I hope to get this video done in soon.
Summer is here and weddings are all on.
While in Dharamsala in April, I performed traditional and my own compositions at very close family friends Kelsang Dolma and Pasang’s wedding in Gangchen Kyisong. Kelsang’s family are all in Tibet and because of the travel bans for Tibetans, her family members were unable to attend the wedding. However, my mom is very close to her and we all made this wedding a very special one.
I was also very energized to do a concert in my hometown and was discussing with few friends and then suddenly His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s health wasn’t good and we postponed it. Then on April 29, a few days before leaving Dharamsala, my friend, poet and activist Tenzin Tsundue, and his friends organized the concert titled Remembering Homeland or Phayul Dhenlu in Tibetan. We did it at the small open space next to Bhagsu hotel and I must say, I was so happy to perform traditional and some of my original songs that I had recorded before but performed for the first time in India. Here are a few photos from the concert.
On June 1, my band Techung and the Windhorses got a special invitation from Phuni Meston and Edward J. Eames to perform at their wedding in Newton, Massachusetts. Phuni Meston is a kind and tough woman who had been through many challenges in her life but she is an amazing person. Read more about her life and her stories. Press release here. Phuni and her marriage to Eames was full of joy gathering of loved ones. A few months before the wedding, while in Moscow, I wrote a song for them. We performed the song “Phuni and Eddie” for them at the ceremony and it was an instant hit!
Wishing you all a gorgeous summer!