LUNANA: A YAK IN THE CLASSROOM
Director: Pawo Choyning Dorji
A young teacher in modern Bhutan, Ugyen, shirks his duties while planning to go to Australia to become a singer. As a reprimand, his superiors send him to the most remote school in the world, a glacial Himalayan village called Lunana, to complete his service. He finds himself exiled from his Westernized comforts after an arduous 8-day trek just to get there. There he finds no electricity, no textbooks, not even a blackboard. Though poor, the villagers extend a warm welcome to their new teacher, but he faces the daunting task of teaching the village children without any supplies. At first, he wants to quit and go home, but he begins to learn of the hardship in the lives of the beautiful children he teaches, and begins to be transformed through the amazing spiritual strength of the villagers. During this unexpected trip, Ugyen ends up finding much more than he expected. The film is scheduled to be presented at the BFI London Film Festival 2019.
Pawo Choyning Dorji is a photographer from Bhutan. He has published a book of photography “Seeing Sacred: Lights & Shadows Along the Path”. He has been working for the Khyentse Labrang Foundation, a nonprofit organization aimed to support all traditions of Buddhist study and practice, since 2006. He is known for his work as the director’s assistant for “Vara: A Blessing” (2013) and producer for “Hema Hema: Sing Me a Song While I Wait” (2016).
Tuesday 5th November