Saturday, November 6, 2010

Bhutan - Dancers/ Masked Dances 1964

0.02 Chetrums - Dancers
0.03 Chetrums - Dancers
0.05 Chetrums - Dancers
0.20 Chetrums - Dancers
0.33 Chetrums - Dancers
0.70 Chetrums - Dancers
1.00 Ngultrum - Dancers
1.30 Ngultrum - Dancers
2.00 Ngultrum - Dancers

Masked Dance:
Sights from the Masked dance during the Tsechu festival in Bhutan, the lively dance that employs dancers wearing masks and colorful costumes, associated with a few sectors of Buddism.
Tsechu is the annual religious festival conducted in the monastery every year. Villagers from the surrounding district come for several days of religious observances and socializing while contributing auspicious offerings to the lama or monastery. There will be lots of shops setup, selling all kinds of ice creams, drinks and all sorts of Tibetian food including momos, choumins and more.

The focal point of the Tsechus are the sacred Masked dances, typically are moral vignettes, or based on incidents from the life of the 9th century Nyingmapa teacher Padmasambhava or The Guru Rinpoche. The Masked Dance is also known as cham, is said to bring blessings to onlookers. The origins of the mask dances dates back to the 8th century.

During the dance they hide their faces wearing the heavy masks representing various forms, and dance to rhythm of the music Wourung.. wourungg… wourunng …Excellent for meditation being played by the monk using the traditional Tibetan instruments. The dancers warp their head with cloth strips to protect themselves from the weight of the heavy mud / wood masks. Even thought masked dances are practiced all southeast and Himalayan countries, Bhutan is the ideal location, where you can see these masked dance in its full form.

After the mask dance there was another dance by the local school kids too. That was pretty interesting and they were slowly moving to the tune of a soft Bhutanese music.

The Lama dances are essentially religious in nature. The Lamas enact these masked dances in grand style. People decked in holiday attire flock in from the countryside and delight in these pageants with their dramatic display in colourful costumes. Every Dzong has its annual festival days on which the dances are performed. The performance is held al fresco in the courtyard of the temple to the accompaniment of the orchestra of trumpets, pipes, gongs, cymbals and drums. The dances have for their theme the triumph of good over evil. Yama, the Death-King and his minions form a most attractive feature of the play and the lay spectators get a very realistic idea of the dreadful devils and demons who are supposed to beset the path along which the disembodied soul must pass to paradise. These dances are depicted in the commemorative set of 9 stamps over 5 designs. The dances depicted in the five designs are called Tumngam, Pachham, Dametsheyi Nagchham, Shacham and Danan

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