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Tibetan musicians coming to SUNY Plattsburgh

Tibetan muscian Techung will be playing traditional Tibetan music at SUNY Plattsburgh March 7 at the E. Glenn Glitz Auditorium.

Tibetan muscian Techung will be playing traditional Tibetan music at SUNY Plattsburgh March 7 at the E. Glenn Glitz Auditorium.

— On the Himalayan Mountains, the sound from a Dranyen, a traditional Himalayan lute, fills the air as it’s strummed by a Tibetan folk singer and songwriter known as Techung.

“What’s unique about Tibetan music is that we are a sound that is very close to the mountains,” Techung said. “Our songs are always in tune with the natural world.”

Techung, also known as Tashi Dhondup Sharzur, will be sharing his knowledge of Tibetan music by visiting multiple classes, teaching a workshop and performing a concert at SUNY Plattsburgh early this March before going to New York City to finish his New York tour.

Originally, Techung didn’t plan to stop at SUNY Plattsburgh during his tour until Tenzin and Yangchen Dorjee, owners of the Himalayan restaurant in Plattsburgh, asked Techung to stop by.

“Since he was coming all the way to New York City, I said ‘why not take a chance to invite him to the university,” Yangchen Dorjee said. “We’ve been doing all of these Tibetan things, bringing Tibetan culture, traditions, music into the community and here in Plattsburgh, and I thought, ‘okay, now this time we’ll bring the music’.”

Techung, who will be staying at the Himalayan restaurant for his visit, will be on campus from March 4 to March 7. The highlight of this campus tour is the concert March 7 in the E. Glenn Giltz Auditorium in Hawkins Hall at 7:30 p.m., which is sponsored by the SUNY Plattsburgh Departments of Music, Anthropology and Education, along with Club Asia, Anthropology Club, Asian Studies Committee, the Student Association through the Campus Arts Council and the College Auxiliary Services.

The concert will feature him and band members, Kito Rodriguez, Sherap Wangmo, Rinzing Wangyal and a substitute for Michel Tyabji, playing traditional pieces, freedom songs and songs about gratitude.

“Part of the reason he performs is to promote traditional Tibetan music, which he feels is in danger,” said Amy Mountcastle, associate professor of Anthropology. “He is trying to inspire a revitalized interest in Tibetan music and also bring it to the rest of the world.”

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