Venue: Tendrelthang grounds inside the historic Thimphu Dzong (Fortress) Total Duration: 12 days
Other places: Paro, Punakha, Wangduephodrang
Thimphu Tsechu is a blend of the modern and the medieval with the dances involving those initiated in 1867, by the fourth Desi, Gyalse Tenzin Rabgay, and those introduced in the 1950s, by the third King Jigme Dorji Wangchuck.
During the Desis time, dances were strictly performed by monks and the numbers of dances were few. However, with the introduction of numerous Boed chhams (mask dances performed by lay monks), there has been an addition of color and variety to the festival.
One of the highlights though is the Thimphu Dromchoe, celebrated three days before the Thimphu Tsechu. It is dedicated to Palden Lhamo, Bhutan’s chief protective deity.
The Drubchen was introduced by Kuenga Gyeltshen in 1710. Legend has it, that the deity Pelden Lhamo appeared before Kuenga Gyeltshen and performed the dances while he was in meditation. Based on these dances, Kuenga Gyaltshen initiated the Dromchoe.