Passang Dolma

Passang Dolma

Passang Dolma was adjudged the Best Female Singer in the first-ever Tibetan music awards held in October 2003 in Dharamsala.

Passang's school record shows that she was born in 1968 to parents whom she has never seen. From her childhood, she was raised in Tibetan Children's Village School in Dharamsala.

She wonders whether her passion for singing was an accident or just plain natural karmic instinct.

At the age of three, polio struck her and she lost her left leg. Yet her love for music and song grew even stronger in her and she nurtured this passion to take up as a life time profession.

"For me, I wonder whether this was an escape route, an expression or a way out from the daily agony of my crippled state, but I have this longing to sing", she says.

At the age of eight, Passang sang before an audience for the first time at her school. Appreciating Passang's talent, Mrs. Jetsun Pema La, the Director of the TCV School patted on her back; a gesture which gave Passang strength, confidence and somewhat restored the lost pride in her.

"In 1980, Mr. Jamyang Norbu la, the then Director of TIPA offered me to join the institute. I jumped at the offer and joined the institute." Passang thus began her formal singing career, polishing her skills and etiquettes along the way.

At TIPA, Passang was trained under various master including the late master Luitse la, who revived the classical Nang-ma and Nang-ma Toeshay in the exile Tibetan community.

Her most memorable performance was in 1992 when she sang before His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

She has been with TIPA for the last 14 years. She specialises in the classical Tibetan songs Nang-ma and Nang-ma Toeshay. She believes that these songs are the reflection of an ancient culture and represent the true musical spirit and ingenuity of the Tibetan people.

Her songs are featured in five albums produced by TIPA over the years. Amiata Media, a record company from Italy, offered to produce a special album for her.