DHARAMSHALA: The 20th Shoton festival, which celebrates the unique Tibetan artistic heritage of opera, came to a grand conclusion yesterday at the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts (TIPA) with a final performance on the life of Lord Buddha. The festival began on 27 March.
The chief guest at the concluding function of the festival was Mr. Pema Chhinjor who is the Kalon for the Department of Religion and Culture of the Central Tibetan Administration.
In his address, Kalon Pema Chinjor lauded the various Lhamo (opera) Associations, particularly the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts, for their efforts towards preserving the ancient Tibetan cultural art of opera and theatre.
He also explained the Central Tibetan Administration’s commitment towards restoring Tibet’s culture and tradition, which continues to face severe suppression inside Tibet under Chinese occupation. He apprised the gathering about the grants provided to the opera associations, which were proposed by the Kashag and approved by the Tibetan Parliament during its budget session, to revive the tradition of opera in exile.
The final day of the festival was attended by over three thousand Tibetans and foreigners who came to watch the final performance ‘Life of Buddha’, which was being performed by the artists of the Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts.
The ten-day festival was inaugurated by His Holiness the Dalai Lama on 27 March.