The band “Bhutanese Flamingo” was formed in 1998 in a refugee camp in Nepal, where its blend of traditional Bhutanese and Nepali music with Western influences like Metallica was one of the only sources of entertainment available.
“There was nothing to do in the camp,” said Worcester State senior Ganesh Gurung, the band’s manager and lead guitarist. “Other guys used to do sports, but we used to do music. We were the only band in the camp so that’s what we did.”
The band continues to enjoy a loyal following within the Bhutanese refugee community in the U.S., but since band members have all resettled in different parts of the country they are only able to perform together a few times a year.
One of those rare performances took place right here at Worcester State University earlier this week.
The band played in the “Lancer Loft” on the third floor of the student center on Monday, Nov. 6 at 6:30 p.m. as part of the “Live at the Loft” event sponsored by the New Worcester Spy and the Worcester State English Department. The event also featured free pizza and a haiku speed writing competition.
Gurung saw this performance as a good opportunity to get recognized at Worcester State and around the Worcester community.
“We haven’t had this chance for a long time and we didn’t want to miss it,” he said.
Nicholas Cooper, 18, a Business major at Worcester State, was particularly struck by the band’s sense of style.
“One spectacular thing about them is they are all well dressed, and they project themselves well,” said Cooper.
Nicole Clark, a junior at Worcester State, really appreciated the integration of a different language into the set.
“I really liked it -- it was cool to hear a song in a different language and the audience seemed to be really enjoying it as well,” said Clark.