English | Dzongkha Monday, July 16, 2018

It's all about making a living

Jun 17, 2010

Increasing number of young women and men earn their living by working in Drayangs. Some are compelled by circumstances to work in Drayangs. But for those with singing and dancing talent and wanting to make it their profession, Drayangs provide them a platform to do so. For them working in Drayang is all about pursuing their dream.

Chuki Lhamo, 26, has always dreamt of being a singer. Determined to fulfil her dream, Chuki left her village about four years ago. Chuki’s journey took her to a Drayang in Paro, where she worked for 2 years as a singer. And now she works at one of the Drayangs in Phuentsholing.

“I am happy I got an opportunity to live my dream,” said Chuki Lhamo.

Like her, 18 years old Tandin Om works at the same Drayang. Tandin never went to school. But she had a dream too. She wanted to become a dancer and this is exactly what she is doing at the Drayang.“People do talk bad about us but I am not bothered because I know we are not what they think we are,” said Tandin.

Tshewang Minjur, 19, and Tshewang Seday, 18, a couple, also work at the Drayang. Tshewang Minjur sings and also dances while Tshering Seday is a dancer.

All of them said they like their job. The only thing they hate about working in Drayang is people look down on them. “People say girls working in Drayangs are cheap. This is not fair because we are doing nothing wrong. We are earning our bread by doing what we are good at,” said Tshewang Minjur.

They also admitted that the job is not easy especially for girls. They said some men behave indecently after drinking.

“After drinking, some men try to fondle and touch our body. But we just ignore them,” said Tandim Om.

They said all they can do is ignore because they can’t afford to offend their customers.

Their work begins from 7 pm and goes on till 11 pm every day.

Their monthly salary is Nu. 4,000 except for Chuki Lhamo who gets paid Nu. 5,000 because she is the lead singer and the senior most.

Every evening they entertain the crowd at the Drayang, mostly men, by singing, dancing, serving drinks and making them request for songs and dances.

Customers have to pay Nu. 100 for a song or a dance. The girl who manages to get the maximum number of requests gets Nu. 2,000 as an incentive per month. The one with 2nd highest gets an incentive of Nu. 1,000 per month.

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