UNC Asheville will present Sacred Music, Sacred Dance for World Healing, a performance by monks of the Atlanta-based Drepung Loseling Monastery, at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 22 in Lipinsky Auditorium. The performance is part of “The Mystical Arts of Tibet” tour, endorsed by the Dalai Lama to promote world peace and healing by sharing Tibet’s sacred arts with modern audiences across the globe.
During their weeklong residency at UNC Asheville, the monks will offer public lectures on Tibetan culture and religion, and create a mandala sand painting. They will also train students to work with members of the campus and the public to create a community mandala sand painting designed by UNC Asheville students.
In their Oct. 22 performance, the Drepung Loseling monks, garbed in magnificent traditional clothing, will perform ancient temple music and dance using traditional Tibetan instruments and vocal techniques. The monks are particularly renowned for their multiphonic chanting known as zokkay, or overtone singing. Each of the main chantmasters simultaneously intones three notes, individually creating a complete chord.
Tickets for Sacred Music, Sacred Dance for World Healing are $22; $13 for UNC Asheville faculty, staff and alumni; $8 for Asheville-area students; $6 for UNC Asheville students, and are available at uncatickets.com or in the box office, Lipinsky 205.
The following events are free and open to the public:
- Mandala Sand Painting Opening Ceremony: Construction of the mandala sand painting begins with a ceremony of chanting and music before drawing the design begins. 1 p.m. Monday, Oct. 20 in UNC Asheville’s Highsmith Union, lower level.
- Mandala Sand Painting Live Exhibition: Throughout the residency, the monks will pour millions of grains of colored sand in place over many hours and days. After the opening ceremony, this work begins Monday, Oct. 20, at 2 p.m. and will start at 10 a.m. daily and until completion on Friday, Oct. 24, in UNC Asheville’s Highsmith University Union, lower level.
- Community Mandala Sand Painting: UNC Asheville students and interested members of the community will work alongside the monks to construct their own mandala sand painting, designed by UNC Asheville students. This begins Monday, Oct. 20, at 2 p.m. and continues from 12 p.m.-5 p.m. daily until completion on Friday, Oct. 24, in UNC Asheville’s Highsmith University Union, lower level.
- “Death and Dying: The Tibetan Tradition,” lecture at 11:25 a.m. Monday, Oct. 20 in UNC Asheville’s Lipinsky Auditorium.
- “Meditation: A Tool for Conscious Living,” lecture at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 21 in UNC Asheville’s Humanities Lecture Hall.
- “Symbolism of the Sand Mandala,” lecture at 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 23 in UNC Asheville’s Humanities Lecture Hall.
- Mandala Sand Painting Closing Ceremony and Procession: As a metaphor for the impermanence of life, sand mandalas are traditionally deconstructed shortly after completion. Some of the sand will be distributed to the audience, and some will be ceremonially dispersed in Reed Creek as part of a healing blessing. 1 p.m. Friday, Oct. 24 in Highsmith Union, lower level, through Mullen Park to Reed Creek. Accessibility shuttles will be available.
The performance and residency is sponsored by UNC Asheville’s Cultural Events and Special Academic Programs and the UNC Asheville Humanities Program, and is funded in part by a grant from South Arts in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the North Carolina Arts Council. For more information, visit the Cultural Events and Special Academic Programs website or call 828.251.6674.