Celebrating 25 years, the Angkor Dance Troupe presents the premiere of Apsara Dancing Stones, a contemporary dance drama that embodies the beauty and culture of Cambodia. With Eastern and Western influences, this visual narrative combines an unparalleled performance of dance and music from modern and classical Cambodian styles.
Celebrating 25 Years
Angkor Dance Troupe is celebrating 25 years in 2012 and we’re doing it in grand fashion; by putting on our biggest show yet! Apsara Dancing Stones will premiere at the historic Lowell Memorial Auditorium on October 27, 2012.
Apsara Dancing Stones is a never before seen world premiere production created by Angkor Dance Troupe's artistic director, Master Phousita Huy, an internationally recognized performer and instructor of Cambodian classical dance.
Through the eyes of the Khmer deity Apsara, the story unfolds with the birth of Cambodia's golden era of Gods and Goddesses and then moves into the dark age of war and destruction. The story concludes with the rebirth of Khmer culture and the reaffirmation of the Apsara's power as a symbol of peace, reverence and unity.
Between 1975 and 1979, when Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge controlled Cambodia, 90% of the country's artists perished or fled. More than 2 million people were killed during that time period. Survivors fled to refugee camps in Thailand, Vietnam, and other neighboring countries. One of those survivors was Tim Chan Thou. Tim learned traditional Cambodian dance while in a refugee camp. From there, Tim made his way to the United States in 1980.
Tim settled in Lowell, Massachusetts along with tens of thousands of other Cambodians. Lowell became a sanctuary to a people searching for a new home, escaping the horrors of the Khmer Rouge. He brought with him to the United States a strong desire to practice and perform Cambodian dance, a passion to teach others, and preserve a culture that was almost completely destroyed.
In 1986, Tim founded the Angkor Dance Troupe. The focus of the Troupe was to preserve Cambodian culture in Lowell, and provide opportunity for young people to learn about their culture and history.
Now, 25 years later, there are 30,000 Cambodians living in Lowell, and the Troupe is registered 501 (c) 3 nonprofit that provides an essential service to the community. The Troupe is the only nonprofit cultural group in the City whose sole mission is to preserve the traditions of Cambodian performing arts. The Angkor Dance Troupe develops and teaches Cambodian dance, promotes an understanding and appreciation of Cambodian culture, and provides a positive social and educational outlet for Cambodian youth.
Why we need your help
The Angkor Dance Troupe needs your help to complete production of this ambitious world premiere show. As a small nonprofit organization, we rely on the generous support of our backers to help create and stage performances like Apsara Dancing Stones. Funding would go towards production costs to stage the performance at the Lowell Memorial Auditorium, including support for dancers, teachers, music, outreach, and other associated costs.
As with every Kickstarter project, Angkor Dance Troupe must be fully funded before its time expires or no money changes hands. To be clear, if the Troupe doesn't meet their funding goal, your account will not be charged.
Risks and challenges
Apsara Dancing Stones has never been staged before, and every world premiere production is a risk. The scale of the show is larger than previous Angkor Dance Troupe performances. Most of the work towards this effort has been conducted by a dedicated staff of volunteers and as a small nonprofit organization there is never a lot of room for error. However, after 25 years of preserving and enriching Cambodian classical arts and traditions in the United States, the Angkor Dance Troupe is confident that, with your help, we can produce this world premiere show to help continue our mission and ensure future generations are as inspired by the power of Cambodian dance.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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