Monks studying at theater academy

Shanghai Daily
Web Editor: Qian Ruisha

Monks from the Jade Buddha Temple yesterday enrolled at the Shanghai Theater Academy, in order to improve the quality of their musical performances for visitors.

Ten monks signed up as full-time students to study music and performance — the first monks from the Anyuan Road temple to study full time.

The 10, who are members of the temple’s Buddhist orchestra, started the first semester with classes on singing, reciting lines, performing and building up their physiques.

After graduation from the three-year course, they will primarily perform Buddhist music to believers and visitors at the temple, said Abbot Jue Xing.

Established in 2000, the orchestra sings sutras in Sanskrit.

“Visitors now demand higher quality performances, so the temple decided to send performing monks to receive professional training,” a Jade Buddha Temple press officer told Shanghai Daily yesterday.

Previously, the temple only invited musicians to give short-term training to monks, with limited impact, he said.

The Shanghai Theater Academy has set up classes tailored to the monk students requirements, its president Han Sheng said.

The temple has previously sent monks to study for MBAs and on language courses at city universities.

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