Stirred by the city of Dunhuang and its ancient caves, Tan Dun created a powerful score that weaves chants, stories and sounds into a breathtaking vocal masterpiece, capturing the Buddha’s teachings and timeless concepts of love, forgiveness, sacrifice and salvation.

Buddha Passion unfolds over six acts. It begins with a mural alluding to Buddha’s moment of nirvana. A little prince learns all lives are equal while a man reaps the fruits of karma after betraying the Deer of Nine Colours. Princess Miaoshan’s sacrifice transmutes into the ultimate symbol of compassion, while a Zen Master and lowly woodcutter debate on the true meaning of Zen. In a chance encounter on the Silk Road, a minstrel monk finds himself inexorably drawn to the fate of a dying woman. Shimmering with mythic grace, Buddha Passion incarnates the timeless message of peace, compassion and gentleness and is a thrilling musical achievement not to be missed.

Lei Xu Sopano & Vocals

Megan Moore Mezzo-soprano

Yi Li Tenor

Elliot Madore Baritone

Batubagen Vocals

Chen Yining Pipa (Chinese Luth)

Orchestra Filarmonica Del teatro Comunale di Modena

Tan Dun Conductor

Presented by Abu Dhabi Festival 
Middle East Premiere
Emirates Palace
18 March 2023

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