Dancing lamas of the Kingdom of Bhutan
The Buddhist teacher’s dreams became the source of the lama dances. For the first time in Russia « Tibet House Moscow» showintroduces lama dances of the Kingdom of Bhutan on October, 26th and 28th, 2010 in «Open World» center in Moscow.
Sacred dances performed by monks-lamas appeared from the dreams of Pema Lingpa - one of great teachers of Tibetan Buddhism. Pema Lingpa, who lived in the 15th century, managed to describe and stage these dances in details. The present Royal family of Bhutan is considered to be his descendants, as well as the VIth Dalai Lama Tsanjan Dzhamtso (17th century). The Moscow spectator will see dances with masks traditionally performed in Buddhist monasteries during annual religious holidays, and also national dances of the Kingdom of Bhutan.
For the first time sacred dances with masks of mystery of Cham were staged by Indian Saint Padmasambhava, who brought Buddhism to Bhutan and Tibet in the 8th century. Later they were improved by Pema Lingpa, and in this form have reached up to now. Dances tell us about the feats of unearthly heroes and heroines, about the conquest of evil ghosts, give biographies of the Buddhist saints. Bhutanese people believe that a simple contemplation of these dances provides spiritual liberation. Dancers are dressed in costumes of silk and brocade and wear the multi-colored masks representing wise men, deities-protectors, heroes of legends and just animals. Sounds of cymbals, drums, forges and hand bells accompany this choreographic and meditative action.
National dances of the Kingdom of Bhutan are divided into three categories: Jungdra (the classical form), Boedra (the court form) and Rigsa (the modern form). Performance includes the combination of all three forms. In spite of the fact that the choreography of forms differs, all of them are about the best national features of Bhutanese people: understanding of the shortness and value of human life, aspiration to universal harmony, respect to nature as to the source of everything alive and comprehension of interdependence of all beings, subjects and phenomena.
Monks-lamas come to Moscow from a Gangteng monastery - one of the most significant historical, religious and cultural centers of Bhutan. Till the 80ies of the last century it was possible to reach this monastery only by foot or on horse. For about 400 years this "secret" place remained almost isolated from the external world, serving as a repository for teachings and traditions of Pema Lingpa transmitted from generation to generation. In the end of the last century the monument of history of the world value, Ganteng monastery was under the threat of disappearing - its walls started to collapse because of time. Then the Abbot of the monastery - Ganteng Tulku Rinpoche undertook the international campaign for the monastery rescue. He founded the troupe of dancers from among the monks which continues to go worldwide with «Sacred dances of Pema Lingma», simultaneously collecting means for reconstruction of the monastery and acquainting the spectators with a cultural heritage of the Kingdom of Bhutan.
«Sacred dances of Bhutanese lamas is a magnificent feast for eyes and at the same time a sublime experience for the soul» (Newspaper «The Bangkok Post»)
October, 26th and 28th, 20:00 – «Dances of lamas of the Kingdom of Bhutan»
«Open World» centre, address:
Tickets cost: 350 rubles.