The vet­eran singers awarded Druk Norbu

Bhutan Times - - Front Page - Lhakpa Tsh­er­ing

Ap Karma Rinchen, 77, from Namshong in Zhem­gang re­ceived Druk Norbu award at the Liv­ing Trea­sure for Cul­ture Award, Druk Norbu, or­gan­ised by Mu­sic of Bhutan Re­search Cen­tre (MBRC) on 28 Oc­to­ber.

Ap Karma Rinchen served as a mem­ber of Bhutan’s mil­i­tary band for seven years un­der the guid­ance of Dasho Aku Trongmi.

The third Druk Gyalpo com­manded him to join Royal Body Guard (RBG) as a court dancer af­ter per­form­ing in the wed­ding of Ashi Deki and Dasho Katu in Paro.

Ap Karma then served in RBG for ad­di­tional 17 years. “I was made to learn and prac­tice from my se­nior dancers,” he said, adding that he was also com­manded to teach Baz­er­wala (mil­i­tary drill) in Trashigang School.

Aum Tshomo, 88 from Trongsa was also awarded Druk Norbu award. She made her name as a singer dur­ing the reign of the third Druk Gyalpo.

She also served as the lead dancer in Trongsa for more than six years to guide dzongkhag dancers in tra­di­tional Bhutanese songs and dances. She said, “I per­formed solo to Yum Phuntsho Cho­den, Ashi Choki, and Ashi Pem Dechen at Tri­pang Palace on many oc­ca­sions.”

She also per­formed to the third King at the same palace where she was awarded coins, in­clud­ing be­tam (sil­ver coins), dayang, food stuff, and out­fits.

The skilled per­form­ers from Bji in Trongsa pre­sented rare dances and songs of Mangdi called Tam­bay Lekso, Beem and Zhewa Mezhu.

Druk Norbu award was in­sti­tuted in the year 2010 to honor life­time achieve­ments in tra­di­tional mu­sic. Since then, MBRC has hon­ored spe­cial el­ders for their life­time achieve­ment in tra­di­tional mu­sic.

Some of the re­cip­i­ents of the award in­clude Aum Thin­lem in 2010, Ap Tsheten Dorji and Aum Tshe­wang Lham in 2011, and Drim­pon Sonam Dorji and Aum Ny­im­chu Pem in 2012.

The Bhutanese cul­ture is marked by unique ar­ti­sanal tra­di­tional mu­sic and folk dance of which is a cen­tury’s old and com­plex art from that car­ries themes, val­ues and anes­thetic sen­si­bil­i­ties cen­tral to Bhutanese iden­tity un­like other tra­di­tions.

The found­ing Di­rec­tor of MBRC, Kheng Sonam Dorji, said, “The award is as a part of ap­pre­ci­a­tion and re­or­ga­ni­za­tion from the pub­lic,” he said. He added that it is also to pre­serve and pro­mote the di­min­ish­ing tra­di­tional songs and dances.

The award is be­stowed upon elder artists who have demon­strated out­stand­ing life­long com­mit- ment, ded­i­ca­tion, prop­a­ga­tion and achieve­ment on the mu­sic and who have had a sig­nif­i­cant im­pact on the cul­tural life of the na­tion.

The event was in­au­gu­rated by Home Min­is­ter Ly­onpo Dawa Gyalt­shen. More than 40 par­tic­i­pants, in­clud­ing the vet- eran singers from across the coun­try, at­tended the event.

Bhutan’s Liv­ing Trea­sure for Cul­ture Award was con­ducted an­nu­ally by the Mu­sic Bhutan Re­search Cen­tre, a civil so­ci­ety or­ga­ni­za­tion ini­ti­ated by Kheng Sonam Dorji.

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