Dharamshala — The Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts (TIPA), the premiere institute for Tibet’s cultural dance, theater and opera, yesterday organised a grand dinner reception and cultural show for Archbishop Desmond Tutu.
The Archbishop is currently on a visit to Dharamshala to collaborate on a book titled ‘Book of Joy’ with His Holiness the Dalai Lama, the Tibetan administration media reported.
The Archbishop and his ‘Team Joy’ which include his daughter Mpho, was welcomed to the institute by Sikyong Dr. Lobsang Sangay, who is also the Chairman of TIPA’s governing Board of Directors.
Artistes from TIPA presented numerous Tibetan folk songs and cultural dances including the famed Tibetan acrobatic dance, popularly known as Rolpa. The cultural show concluded with a special group song written in honour of the Archbishop’s second visit to Dharamshala.
Visibly moved after Sikyong Dr. Sangay translated the meaning of the lyrics to him, the Archbishop went on stage to greet each one of the artistes and hugged them tightly.
Wearing a traditional Tibetan hat and glowing with excitement and enthusiasm, the Archbishop also shook a leg on stage to demonstrate his love for dancing, drawing cheerful applauses from Sikyong Dr. Lobsang Sangay and others on the stage.
Delighted by the performances, the Archbishop remarked, “it’s important to preserve your culture and tradition, and I am glad to see that you have preserved your culture so well. It’s a moment of great pride.”
Sikyong Dr. Lobsang Sangay, exclaimed his pleasure at being able to host Archbishop Desmond Tutu at TIPA and present Tibet’s unique artistic heritage of songs and dances to him.
“It’s a moment of great pride for us to welcome His Holiness the Dalai Lama‘s close friend and ardent Tibet supporter Archbishop Desmond Tutu to TIPA. We are glad that he enjoyed the traditional Tibetan performances. We hope he enjoys the remaining days of his visit to Dharamshala,” Sikyong said.
As the Archbishop’s car left TIPA’s premise, the atmosphere of joy and merriment came to a close with a smile on everyone’s face. However, a piece of the joy-filled moment is forever etched in TIPA’s history in the form of the words written by the Archbishop in TIPA’s visitors diary.
“What a wonderful experience, beautiful singing, dancing and delicious food. Super, Thank you,” he wrote.