Phare Ponleu Selpak (PPS), translated: Brightness of Art, is a Cambodian cultural organization in Battambang that uses the creative arts as a means to promote and nurture Khmer culture among young people.
Phare Ponleu Selpak offers multidisciplinary schooling to young people, which gives them a perspective to make a living in art. Those taught typically come from poorbackgrounds. The education is focused on self-realization and durability. Classes are given in subjects like theatre, acrobatics, music and a variety of art disciplines. PPS works was founded by Cambodians that had learned in refugee camps that art can be a means to forget trauma.
Click this link to an introduction.
Here are some of the talented young Cambodian artists that I worked with this year at Phare Ponleu Selpak (Brightness of the Arts) in this former refugee camp in Battambang, Cambodia. PPS is such a gem of an institution that fosters and nurtures Khmer culture in what was once one of the last strongholds of the Pol Pot regime. They have a visual arts school, Theater, Music, Dance, and an impressive Acrobatic troupe [Video]. Inspiring!
GLOCAP has supported Phare Ponleu Selpak since 2010. We also sponsored a “Meet the Artist” assembly with Cambodian artist and Phare Ponleu Selpak art teacher Srey Bandaul at The IDEAL School of Manhattan in New York City. It was a wonderful opportunity of cultural exchange. The students at IDEAL in New York learned first-hand about life and culture in Cambodia as well as the inspiring story of Mr. Bandaul who grew up during, and survived, the Pol Pot regime of genocide.