Arts for Cambodian Children & Orphans at Champey

 
$25,040
$19,960
Raised
Remaining

Champey 2015 – more new beginnings

The tourist season in Cambodia is in full force and we are so proud that Champey Academy recently seems to have been “ discovered” by tourists.   Visiting tourists have the opportunity to watch classes and learn about the history and process of learning classic Cambodian dance at Champey.

Additionally, we are currently in discussion with some of the smaller local hotels near the school  about the idea of hosting “ mini – performances” where a small group of senior students would perform a late afternoon short series featuring 2 or 3 dances  , lasting for about  30 minutes total,  to tourists staying at the hotels. Stay tuned for updates!

Other big news… We are pleased to announce the arrival of  a new director at Champey.  Beginning  mid - March, Mr. Meth Van Thy will be  replacing our outgoing director Mr. Wan Sithen who is leaving to pursue other opportunities. Sithen has been with Kasumisou Foundation for many years and we wish him the very best! Our new director,  Mr. Meth Van Thy, a graduate of the Royal University of Fine Arts,  is an established professional with more than 20 years of experience in the non-profit arena developing and supervising  performing arts programs for disadvantaged women and children.

As always, we are deeply grateful to our wonderful donors . None of this would be possible without you!

With our warmest regards,

Barbara & Mark Rosasco

Coconur Dance
Coconur Dance

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Update at Champey:

On October 12, 2014, Champey dancers were honored to perform as  part of  Peace Boat's  Cambodia- Japan Peace & Friendship Festival.

After 105 days at sea, Peace Boat's 84th Global Voyage returned yesterday to the port of Yokohama, Japan. Peace Boat’s navigators and participants in the Peace Boat’s Special University Programme ( Autumn 2014) visited 24 ports  including Sihanoukville, Cambodia near the end of the voyage.

While the ship was docked in Sihanoukville, a Cambodia - Japan Peace & Friendship Festival was organised by Peace Boat, the Royal University of Phnom Penh and the Cambodia Mine Action Centre (CMAC). Participants also enjoyed the rich culture of Cambodia while also learning about landmine issues as Peace Boat's ship visited the country for the first time in 16 years.

During the Peace Boat’s visit to Cambodia, and as a part of the festival, the Champey Academy of Arts danders were honored to be invited to perform, on Sunday, October 12, at the Japanese Cultural Center at the Royal University of Arts in Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s capital city.  More than 20 of Champey’s dancers performed, demonstrating 3 traditional folk dances , including the “ Blessing Dance”, the “ Coconut Dance” and the "Fishing Dance"  before an audience of  approximately 200 Japanese students and teachers and an additional 100 Cambodian students.

This was a great opportunity for our  Champey students to gain international exposure and to have a personal  opportunity to meet and share Cambodian culture with Japanese students. Our hope is that this will be the first of many such opportunities.

Please note: The pictures attached  depict the two of the  dances, but these photos  were not taken at the  performance on October 12.

Blessing Dance
Blessing Dance
Friends in the Forest, graduation performance
Friends in the Forest, graduation performance

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Mark arrived home in late September from Cambodia, so it’s a great time to provide an update on Champey.

The summer weeks were filled with the activities of the Summer Arts Camp program which hosted about 100 children for a 6 week program of music, art, dance and fun which combined with our usual roster of students. ( see more photos below)

This year we shortened the program from 8 weeks to six week as a way to conserve funds. Despite this change, it was an exciting time filled with growth as   the regular dance students and campers focused on a new project: producing a new and somewhat version of an original work that we commissioned in 2000 “ Our Friends in the Forest”. This story has been performed many times in past years by our students in our former Apsara Arts Program, the historic platform from which Champey has evolved.

Students and campers  drew and painted entirely new canvas backdrops for staging the new performance ahile dance  roles were modified to be able to include our campers, some of whom are experiencing traditional Cambodian dance for the first time, as you  can see these in the photos attached to this report.

“Our Friends in the Forest” is presented in a traditional format called "Mohori Theater.” All of the characters in our story are animals and every version of “Our Friends in the Forest” seeks to convey some sort of socially significant theme. This year’s version focused on the wide impact of corruption in society.  

This years Camp project remains underfunded , with the deficit temporarily ( we hope) made up from general purpose funds. It is our hope that we can complete the remaining funding as it is the only way that we can continue to offer this wonderful program to these children. When you break down the costs, we have been able to provide 100 children a program 6 weeks long that provides fun and education for the astonishingly low cost of just $ 46.70 per child for all 6 weeks and which equals just $ 1.31 per day! Or put differently , one 'latte' can send 3 kids to camp for a day !

We are deeply grateful for the support that has come from our donors and hope that you will tell your friends about our projects.

Thank you again for helping to make a wonderful summer experience for our 100 Campers and regular students. Some photos are included, and more to follow soon!

 

Barbara & Mark Rosasco

Friends in the Forest, Scene 2
Friends in the Forest, Scene 2
Coconut Dance- Graduation performance
Coconut Dance- Graduation performance
The whole gang-campers,students,teachers,artists
The whole gang-campers,students,teachers,artists
young campers dance at  graduation performance
young campers dance at graduation performance
young campers enjoy the " cast party"
young campers enjoy the " cast party"
More Coconuts !
More Coconuts !
At the cast party- students & campers
At the cast party- students & campers
Blessing the dance before the performance
Blessing the dance before the performance

 

Summer Arts Camp at Champey 2014 starts Monday !

Monday, August 4, marks the start of the Summer Arts Camp 2014 at Champey Academy. This is the second year that we will be offering a Summer Arts Camp.  A combination of increased attendance from local children combines with 20 children from the national Orphanage in Phnom Penh ranging in age from 7 to 17. Champey’s Summer Arts Camp program will in two sessions from 7:30 am to 11:00 am Monday through Saturday and 1:30 pm to 5:00 pm six days a week. The children from the National Orphanage are medically challenged and many of them have AIDS. It was determined in discussions with staff at the National Orphanage that attending 6 days per week could be too much activity for many of them to sustain, so their attendance will be limited to 5 daily sessions per week.

Children will enjoy a half day session learning traditional Cambodian dance and music and learning their stories. Added to this will be classes in painting and drawing and music.

In recent weeks our roster of daily students has increased to as many as 100 students per day  as many local children come to participate.  Our art and music classes are over subscribed and we are pleased to be seeing enrollment of both boys and girls into our programs.  Our goal of building community and becoming known as a safe place for kids  to engage in age appropriate activities is gaining ground among  the local street vendors who have  found that  the summer program can be a  great way to safely occupy their children during the 8 week school break.

We are still looking for funding for all of our arts  programs.  We are reminding all of our donors to as if their company might have a matching gifts program. If  so,  please  let us know, we will be happy to assist in  filling out  any paperwork .

Thank you again for all of your generous support to give these children the opportunity to spend a happy 8 weeks of summer holiday while having  the opportunity to learn more about Cambodia's rich cultural heritage.

 

Barbara & Mark Rosasco

Champey music class
Champey music class

Music ! Music ! Music !

We continue to see increased attendance at Champay Academy of Arts. Particularly popular is the recent addition of music classes, giving children an opportunity to learn to play traditional Cambodian musical instrumets. Demand has been strong, particularly among the boys. A recent day say 5  children in the morning session and 13 in the afternoon group. Children learn about the instruments that are part of the tranditional Cambodian ensemble called the " pinpeat".

There are 5 kinds of musical instruments being used in the class:

  • Roneat Ek - a big xylophone like instrument of which there are three general types, varied in size
  • Roneat Thoong - one of the three types
  • Kong Thom - a bell type instruments which is composed of various metal canister type bells arranged in a circle on a stand
  • Skor thom or Big Drum
  • Skor Samphor - another type of drum that is similar to the big drum

On Friday's we also have the loan of  stringed instruments to introduce to the students, which is very popular.

With more students than instruments, students watch the instruction of others while waiting their turn.

This introduction and access to traditional Cambodian music is just one of several things that we are doing to bring education and inspiration to Cambodian children while teaching them about their rich cultural heritage.

None of this is possible without the continued  generous support of you our donors. Thank you.1

Barbara & Mark Rosasco

Student and teacher
Student and teacher
Kong Thom - Teacher & Student
Kong Thom - Teacher & Student

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Organization

Kasumisou Foundation

Menlo Park, California, United States
http://www.kasumisou.org

Project Leader

Barbara Rosasco

Secretary/Treasurer
Menlo Park, Ca. United States

Where is this project located?

Map of Arts for Cambodian Children & Orphans at Champey