Tadjik Teahouse and Boulder Bouzouki Band 1987

The Dushanbe Teahouse was created as a gift to the city of Boulder, Colorado, from its sister city Dushanbe, the capital of Tajikistan, in 1987 when it was part of the USSR. This gift was presented at a banquet which…

Tadjik Teahouse and Boulder Bouzouki Band 1987

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The Dushanbe Teahouse was created as a gift to the city of Boulder, Colorado, from its sister city
Dushanbe, the capital of Tajikistan, in 1987 when it was part of the USSR.
This gift was presented at a banquet which honored the first delegation to arrive in Boulder from Tajikstan.
The Boulder Boulzouki Band had been selected to play music for the occasion.
Cameron Powers, co-founder of Musical Ambassadors of Peace was singer and guitar player;
Dave Morton played accordion; Kathleen McLellan played drums and Eva Cernik was the featured dancer.
The mayor of Dushanbe, Maksud Ikramov, had arrived with other Tadjik officials from the USSR including a 14-year-old boy named Fardin who changed everything with an enthusiastic gesture of appreciation!
Boulder Mayor Linda Jorgenson can be seen dancing happily with Mayor Ikramov as they both surrender to smiles and fun. This was a big change after all the formal speeches during what had been a rather stiff occasion.
Then an American teenager decided to join in…
Before long others who were local Boulder fans joined in…
The band was starting to feel like their musical spell was working.
The band played another Tadjik song and another Tadjik gentleman took his turn dancing in the center while the hand gestures of the Tadjiks came alive.
The two mayors found each other again and Mayor Ikramov showed Mayor Jorgenson some Tadjik shoulder moves.
Fardin hugged the band members.
“No no no! We don’t want to stop insisted the crowd.
Finally an American song was played… a country western waltz.
Fardin danced again with Eva.
Three Tadjik folk melodies had been learned by the Boulder Bouzouki Band for the occasion and when those tunes were played the Tadjik guests became especially more animated.
Here is the power of live music to create bonds of love across forbidden cultural boundaries as the banquet moves from stiff formal words to happy smiles and ecstatically moving bodies.
Perhaps the creation of genuine peace on earth rests in the hands of the worlds’ musicians and dancers.People remember each other very fondly after dancing or singing or drumming together!

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