Nyulemai Cham (Part II), Korphu Drup: Day Two [Close shot]Additional title: Dance of the Evil Spirit (Call a doctor!)
NamesCore of Culture (Organization) (Producer)Core of Culture (Organization) (Donor)
Bhutan Dance Project, Core of Culture
Dates / OriginDate Created: 2007
Library locationsJerome Robbins Dance DivisionShelf locator: *MGZIDF 995B
TopicsDance -- BhutanFolk dancing -- BhutanDance -- Religious aspects -- BuddhismRites & ceremonies -- BhutanMasks -- BhutanSpirits (Buddhism)Buddhist demonology -- BhutanDzongs -- Bhutan -- Trongsa (District)Trongsa (Bhutan : District)Festivals -- BhutanRitual and ceremonial dancing -- BhutanMask dances -- Bhutan
GenresFilmed danceFilmed performances
NotesAdditional physical form: For wide shot version, see: *MGZIDF 995A.Content: Program of the Korphu Drup: Day Two (Jan. 4, 2007): Atsara Cham - Dance of the Atsaras ; Zheng Zhi Pem - Ritual for Longevity ; Shinjey Yab Yum - Dance of the Lord of Death and his Consort ; Sangay Lingpai Nga Cham - The Drum Dance of Sangay Lingpa ; Nyulemai Cham - The Dance of the Evil Spirit ; Chungzhi (Chung Zam) - Dance of the Four Garudas ; Nyulemai Cham (Part II) - The Dance of the Evil Spirit ; Peling Chagtshel - The Line Dance of the Peling Tradition ; Zhanag Nga Cham - Dance of the Black Hats with Drums.Venue: Videotaped in performance at the Korphu Lakhang, in Trongsa, Bhutan (courtyard level in front of the Lhakang looking along the left diagonal), on Jan. 4, 2007.Acquisition: Gift; Core of Culture. NN-PD
Physical DescriptionBorn digitalExtent: 1 video file (ca. 11 min.) : sound, color
DescriptionHaving become sick after being caught by the Four Garudas the nyulema here undergoes a ritual healing. The atsaras find a pawo - a traditional doctor who treats spiritual malaise with specific rituals. There follows a wonderful travesty of a ritual healing ceremony - with much of the humour coming from the fact that the pawo doesn t speak the local language - so the atsaras have to translate. The Nyulema is an Evil spirit and this extended dance dramatises both his methods of creating mischief and his ultimate discovery and capture by the Ging (who are avenging spirits sent to punish those who transgress). Nyulemai Cham is generally performed prior to the Peling Ging Sum - the three dances of the Ging revealed by Terton Pema Lingpa. At first the nyulema dances together with the atsaras, who act as willing accomplices, and interpret his actions to the crowd. His chief goal is to win the spectators over to his evil ways. The nyulema represents something present in every human being: the three poisons (Doksum (dok = poison) and (sum = three)) of Anger, Greed and Ignorance. He plays to the crowd of spectators on each of the four sides of the arena, promising to give them whatever they want - and feigning to give them food and drink in order to win them over. Eventually, he builds a fence around them to fence them in, since he wishes to make them all part of his retinue. Finally he lies down in the middle of the ground - happy at all the mischief he has done and all the souls he has won over to help him. At this point the Peling Ging-Sum begins, comprising three dances: Ju-ging, Dri-ging and Nga-ging which show the forces of good in direct combat with the evil spirit. Ju means baton or wand and the Ju-ging are spirits tasked to search out the roots of evil (using their wands as sensitive instruments to find out the direction in which evil lies). The Dri-ging - who carry swords - subjugate evil with their weapons before punishing and slaying (with compassion) any evil spirits found. The Nga-ging - who each carry a drum - perform a victory dance at having overcome the evil spirit, and also ensure that even those conquered evil spirits are still prayed for and ultimately liberated from their evil ways. The Nyulema is pursued by the fearsome gings, until he is eventually captured. The evil spirit can only escape from the encircling ging by breaking out between the champon and chamjug. The chief atsara in these scenes is named Ap Dawa Drakpa - and he is a very fine performer, amusing the crowds with his sharp wits. He claims that he was given this name in a dream in which he was told that he needed a name in order to be better known for his performances - the name given in the dream became the only one he uses. In real life he is a quiet and unassuming fellow - but all that changes when he dons the atsara mask and holds forth on stage.Korphu Drup begins the evening of Jan. 3, 2007 with a religious ceremony held in front of the Lhakhang followed by a Mewang, the burning of a large gate that everyone is invited to pass beneath whilst it's still burning. Various ging dances are also performed during the mewang.
Type of ResourceMoving image
IdentifiersNYPL catalog ID (B-number): b19944620Universal Unique Identifier (UUID): b3746a90-0821-0131-7d41-3c075448cc4b
Copyright NoticeCore of Culture
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