Thursday, 4 September 2008

Bhutan Ritual Dances (Cham) in NYC

Photograph Tewfic El-Sawy-All Rights Reserved

In elaborate dress and masks, monks from Bhutan will perform Cham dances in public plazas and parks around New York City from Saturday, September 13 through Sunday, September 21, 2008. The monks-dancers will appear several times a day, in celebration of the opening on September 19 of The Dragon’s Gift: The Sacred Arts of Bhutan at the Rubin Museum of Art.

These dances are timely since they'll provide me with perfect warm-up venues before I leave for my Land of the Durk Yul photo expedition which starts on October 3. This photo-expedition is specifically scheduled to photograph similar Cham ritualistic dances in central Bhutan.

Although the dances in New York will be visually stunning, they can't compete with those performed amongst the ancient monasteries, and on the age-old cobblestones of Bhutan's villages, encircled by an audience of villagers and farmers.

The schedule of the New York City dances:

Monday, September 15:

12:30pm performance, Foley Square (intersection of Duane Street, Lafayette Street, Centre Street and Pearl Street)

Thursday, September 18:

1:00pm performance, Columbus Park (Chinatown- Baxter and Bayard)

Friday, September 19:

12:30pm performance, Battery Gardens Plaza

3:00pm performance, In front of Castle Clinton

5:00pm performance, Battery Place sidewalk (Greenwich and Battery Pl)

Saturday, September 20:

1:00 pm performance, Central Merchant’s Gate (59th and Broadway)