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These last weeks - and still now - at Vatt Buddhikarama, the Cambodian Buddhist temple of Washington DC area in Silver Spring, Maryland, artists (dancers, musicians) have been busier than ever. The Cambodian New Year festivities of mid-April are always a big time for the Cambodian Buddhist Society Culture Group.
But this year, an extra project is bringing the whole troupe a bigger challenge: a fundraising performance to help fund new teachers and art programs at the temple is planned at the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center of University of Maryland College Park on June 27. The performance – titled “Agangamasor” - will tell the prelude to the “Reamker”, the Cambodian adaptation of the Ramayana, the famous Indian epic tale about the gods and struggles between good and evil.
Renowned Masters of Dance or Music, skilled adults or teenagers who have learned and practiced for many years, and children who are at the early stage of their practice, they all come every Sunday (sometime doubling on the Saturday as well) to rehearse, get better week after week, and most of all be ready for the New Years festivities or for their big performance of June 27.