Zhabdrung Zednam, Punakha Tsechu: Day One [Wide shot]Additional title: Coming of the Zhabdrung: Scene 4 - Dranyen Zhey
NamesCore of Culture (Organization) (Producer)Core of Culture (Organization) (Donor)
Bhutan Dance Project, Core of Culture
Dates / OriginDate Created: 2005
Library locationsJerome Robbins Dance DivisionShelf locator: *MGZIDF 777A
TopicsDance -- BhutanFolk dancing -- BhutanDance -- Religious aspects -- BuddhismRites & ceremonies -- BhutanDzongs -- Punakha (District)Punakha (Bhutan : District)Festivals -- BhutanRitual and ceremonial dancing -- Bhutan
GenresFilmed danceFilmed performances
NotesBiographical/historical: The Punakha Tsechu (as opposed to the Punakha Drubchen) is of recent origin, having been first performed in 2005. Dasho Thinley Gyamtsho, the Principal of RAPA, was asked to create a new dance spectacle to help inaugurate the Tsechu, and he devised a new piece, taking three days to perform, The Coming of the Zhabdrung which recounts the history of Zhabdrung, Nagawang Namgyal particularly as it relates to his arrival in Punakha and the building of the Punakha Dzong, Pungthang Dechen Phodrang.Content: Programme for the Punakha Tsechu, Day One: Feb. 18, 2005: Thongdrel Jyekha - Viewing of the Thongdrel of Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal ; Shazam - Dance of the Four Stags ; Zhabdrung Zednam - The Coming of the Zhabadrung (Dance Drama) ; Tsechu Zhanag (Nyer Chig) Cham - Dance of the Black Hats (21 Forms) ; Nyulemai Cham - The Dance of the Evil Spirit ; Peling Jug Ging - The Dance of the Ging with sticks ; Peling Dri Ging - The Dance of the Ging with swords ; Peling Nga Ging - The Dance of the Ging with Drums.Additional physical form: For close shot version, see: *MGZIDF 777B.Venue: Videotaped in performance at the main courtyard, Punakha Dzong, in Punakha, Bhutan (camera on 1st floor balcony), on Feb. 18, 2005.Acquisition: Gift; Core of Culture. NN-PDBiographical/historical: Pungthang Dechen Phodrang Dzong (The Palace of Great Bliss) in Punakha was constructed by Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyel in 1637-38 and is of great historical significance. Located on a stretch of land where two rivers, the Phochu and Mochu, coverage, the Dzong appears as great anchored ship. It was here that the Zhabdrung died in 1651. Again, it was here that the first hereditary Monarch of Bhutan, King Ugyen Wangchuck, was enthroned just over one hundred years ago, on 17th December 1907. Punakha served as the winter capital of the Kingdom until 1955, (after which the capital moved to Thimphu) and Punakha Dzong continues to be the winter residence of the Central Monastic Authority (CMA) the main monk body of the Drukpa Kagyu School.
Physical DescriptionBorn digitalExtent: 1 video file (ca. 9 min.) : sound, color
DescriptionFirst performance of the new Coming of the Zhabdrung dance/drama choreographed by Ramjam Thinley Gyamtso, Principal of RAPA, to commemorate the inauguration of the first Punakha Tsechu in 2005. The choreography includes highlights from specific regional folk-dances, such as the Goen Zhey (from Gasa) which was said to be a dance with which the Zhabdrung was first welcomed to Bhutan, after first crossing over from Tibet. The word Zhey is a Tibetan term which refers to both song and dance together. The story is told of the Founder of the Drukpa Kagyu sect, Tshangpa Jarey who wanted to build a Drukpa temple, but discovered a demon (in the form of a tortoise) who was frustrating and destroying the work. He created a song/dance - known as Choe Zhey, in which he claimed to be the son of Pelden Drukpa - and therefore unbeatable - and the performance of this song vanquished the demon tortoise, allowing the temple to be properly completed. Historically this is the first example of a Zhey. In Bhutan the first recorded example of Zhey is linked to the arrival in 1616, of the Zhabdrung, Ngawang Namgyel, as he escaped from Tibet and moved south to set up his own Drukpa school there. Arriving in the northern region of Gasa (adjoining Tibet) he was met and welcomed by the local people, who performed Zhey as a tribute song to the exalted lama. This first performance in Gasa, known as Goen Zhey (after a region called Goen) stands as the origin of all other regional variations in Bhutan. Other places where particular variants are performed include Wang Zhey (Thimphu); Wachupi Zhey (Paro); Nubi Zhey (Trongsa)
Type of ResourceMoving image
IdentifiersNYPL catalog ID (B-number): b19876376Universal Unique Identifier (UUID): 339fa600-e50f-0130-1446-3c075448cc4b
Copyright NoticeCore of Culture
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