2500 years in the making, What the Buddha Never Taught: A Rock Opera is a musical comedy loosely based on the cult-classic account of life in a Thai Buddhist monastery by Tim Ward. The play follows the misadventures of Tim—a young Canadian on a spiritual quest—together with other Westerners who put on the robes of another culture and seek to follow the ways of the Buddha. This light-hearted romp along the Buddhist path takes a dramatic turn when an illicit romance leads Tim to evidence of a hidden crime that could upend the entire monastery!
Join us for an evening of fun, dance, and some serious rock-'n’-roll — and perhaps a dollop of enlightenment as well. Could this be the Buddhist response to The Book of Mormon? Lights, Action, Karma!
The show will be performed at the Jericho Arts Center in Vancouver from June 10-July 10, 2022, with online steaming tickets available worldwide.
There is a place in the jungles of northeastern Thailand where Westerners can live according to the monastic rules laid down over 2,500 years ago by the Buddha. Author and journalist Tim Ward sought enlightenment and spent a season in this unique Buddhist monastery-one of the strictest in Southeast Asia. His affectionate "behind the robes" book about the rigors and foibles of monastic life at Wat Pah Nanchat has become a modern Buddhist classic.
How does a monk handle coming face to face with a cobra coiled behind a toilet door? Can Mr. Chicago - a former real estate tycoon - really find liberation in a 10" X 10" wooden hut? How does a would-be-monk manage to meditate with the incessant clouds of mosquitoes hovering overhead, when the precepts prohibit killing all sentient beings? And how do Tim and the others react when Thai villagers put a Mars Bar in their begging bowls?
By turns humorous, iconoclastic and inspiring, What the Buddha Never Taught was a best seller in Canada, a Book of the month selection in the US, and has been translated into five languages, and used as a university text for classes in Asian and Religious studies.