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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - A theatre and dance tour revives cultural identity

A theatre and dance tour revives cultural identity

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Over 100 performers from community-based arts organisation Phare Ponleu

Selpak and the Royal University of Fine Arts hit the road for a dance

spectacle

Photo by: Anne-laure poree

Performers rehearse a routine before the tour hits the road.

Dance & theatre

Tour schedule

  • Battambang province

    *Samlot district, In Tasanh commune: Friday

  • Battambang province

    *Thmorkol district (Chrey commune): Sunday

  • Poipet Municipality

    Poipet commune (Goutte d’eau organisation): Tuesday

  • Banteay Meanchey

    *Thmor Puok district (Thmor Puok pagoda): October 17

    *Banteay Chhmar commune (Banteay Chhmar pagoda): October 19

  • Oddar Meanchey province

    October 21

PERFORMERS from Phare Ponleu Selpak, an artistic, community-based organisation located in Battambang, and the Royal University of Fine Arts will hit the road this Friday for a dance and theatre show tour of the western provinces.

A procession of caravans - four trucks and four minibuses - will cross the western Cambodian provinces in order to "give people a chance to see classical dance they may have long forgotten", said Khuon Chanreaksmey, manager of Phare's awareness theatre.

"One hundred people will be on the road to help revive their cultural identity. With the Apsara dancers and the great performance of lakhaon khol, this Cambodian traditional masked theatre will appear to the public as a jewel. The people of these provinces probably have never seen such a show. Looking at the TV is quite different than living classical art almost "face to face".

The audience will also be treated to more surprises in the modern part of the show.

"It's your choice" is a short play using symbolistic style, hip-hop and acrobatics to describe the process of drug addiction, explain its social consequences and encourage people not experiment with them.

A second play, "Samnang's choice" is a spoken drama focusing on similar social themes. Local Battambang residents who were able to see the general rehearsal earlier this week enjoyed the style of the two pieces and reacted favourably.

Combining humour, legends, social messages, the present and the past, this will be a tour to watch out for.

Phare Ponleu Selpak is a community-based organisation that runs a circus school providing vocational training to disadvantaged youth. The participants receive a certified state diploma at the end of their training.

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