Dharamshala: A Tibetan play called ‘PAH-LAK’ by the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts (TIPA) and the Tibet Theatre was premiered at the auditorium of TIPA on the 1st of October 2022.
The premiere was attended by the Chief Guest Deputy Speaker Dolma Tsering Teykhang of the Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile, special guests Kalon Gyari Dolma of the Department of Security (CTA), Shri Ajit Nehria (President of Dharamshala Indo-Tibetan Friendship Association), and parliamentarians of the Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile.
The theatrical play written by Abhishek Majumdar and jointly directed by Lhakpa Tsering and Harry Fuhrmann started with TIPA’s director Dhondup Tsering giving introductory remarks on the play while apprising the gathering about theatrical performance being an important facet of the institute besides traditional Tibetan dance and music.
Lauding the dedicated efforts of every involved contributor of the project, the Deputy Speaker stressed the need of telling the story of Tibet to the world, Tibetan in exile being a free spokesperson for the Tibetans inside of Tibet have the responsibility of fulfilling their aspirations and wishes. She added, “I have come to terms with the fact that despite the inhuman brutality and atrocity perpetrated by the authoritarian Chinese communist regime, Tibetans inside Tibet have retained compassion, tolerance, and non-violence”.
While commending Abhishek Majumdar for having clearly depicted the essence of the Tibetan way of living and Tibetan culture, the Deputy Speaker reiterated the significance of theatrical art in displaying the hardships and suffocation experienced by the Tibetans inside Tibet in the most effective way.
Witnessing the sacrifices done by the Tibetans in Tibet, the Deputy Speaker asked Tibetans in exile to retrospect on what they can do as Tibetans and advised them not to get entangled in petty regionalism and politics.
The writer and director of the play were also conferred with mementos as a mark of appreciation for presenting the reverberated incidents happening inside Tibet to the world audience followed by a vote of thanks from the Lhakpa Tsering.
The play depicting a story of a Tibetan nun opting for self-immolation as a non-violent means to fight for her freedom under the Chinese Communist Party’s repressive policy of re-educating Tibetan dissidents was performed multiple times at Royal Court Theatre in London by non-Tibetan artists in its original English version. At the behest of writer Abhishek Majumdar, the play was later translated into Tibetan for casting Tibetan artists by the director of Tibetan theatre Lhakpa Tsering’s tireless effort and German theatre artist Harry Fuhrmann’s voluntary support.
The team consisting of directors, artists, and crew members will present the play at various Tibetan settlements in India with its 50 percent expenditure contributions from the Central Tibetan Administration. The production was also funded by Tibet Initiative Deutschland, Schwetzinger Tibethilfe E. V, International Campaign for Tibet, Deutsche Tibethilfe e. V. German Aid to Tibetans, and Save Tibet for the materialization of this project.