ISSN 2768-4261 (Online)

A Journal of Tibetan Literature, Arts and Humanities

The Dream

Menlakyap (སྨན་བླ་སྐྱབས།)

(Translated from Tibetan by Tsering Samdrup [ཚེ་རིང་བསམ་གྲུབ།])


Performed by Menlakyap and Pakmo Tashi(ཕག་མོ་བཀྲ་ཤིས།)


Introductory notes on translation and transliteration:


Menlakyap is renowned for his unique abilities to play with traditional Amdo Tibetan language practices innovatively. He uses lots of techniques including word play and inversion, alliteration, assonance, oath swearing, rhyming, parody of traditional genres and more. In this performance, he uses many honorific and humilific expressions, swearing and cursing words and phrases. This crosstalk includes many honorific and humilific expressions, which are critical for readers to understand the text in-depth. Therefore, I use styles such as lookHON or hatHUM in this translation to mark honorifics and humilifics respectively. Humilifics is a linguistic register that people use for addressing themselves and their belongings to lower their status, and it is commonly found in Amdo Tibetan. For a discussion on the use of humilifics in the speech of Amdo pastoralists, see Tsering Samdrup and Suzuki (2019). In addition, I have used uppercase to render common epithets for making vows in this crosstalk. The author of this crosstalk takes different types of expressions as one genre; for instance, he equates humilific expressions with scolding terms and mixes expressions for oaths with swear words. I have chosen to mark these differences with different techniques for clarity in the translation. As mentioned before, humilifics are marked with subscripts (i.e., wordHUM), and all the expressions for oaths are capitalised with a preposition BY added in front of the phrase (i.e., BY+WORD/PHRASE) while swearing words are in uppercase followed by an exclamation mark (i.e., WORD/PHRASE!).

For detailed studies of crosstalk as a genre and specific case studies of this oral performance in Amdo, how Tibetan intellectuals argue for an unprecedented singular identity from different regions and carving out a form of modernity for the Tibetans in post-Mao China in their artistic and literary works, see Thurston (2013; 2018). For the Tibetan terms appearing in this translation, I use approximate transcriptional renderings based on the pronunciation of the Amdo dialect and the Tibetan scripts of the words in brackets when necessary. I have also provided Sanskrit for terms and concepts with obvious Indian origin.




Menlakyap (M): Dear audience, first, you all look at my face.

Pakmo Tashi (P): You do not look that beautiful.

M: In particular, look at my eyes.

P: [Your] eyes probably are of different sizes.

M: Then, um, lookHON at my ear!

P: Oh, the nose is very long, indeed.

M: What nose? Ear! Ear! Ear! People with congested noses are concerned with the nose.

P: Oh! There is nothing special about both your ears and eyes. What do [we have] to see in them?

M: Why would the Three Ancestral Kings (མེས་དབོན་རྣམ་གསུམ།)[ii] award me a Nobel Prize if my eyes and ears are not unique?

P: Ah, you pathetic dog! When did you meet the Three Ancestral Kings of Tibet?

M: In the night when I flew into the sky……

P: In the night, you flew into the sky?

M: Yeah, the night I took some time off and flew into the sky.

P: When was that night?

M: Aw, you do not understand a thing, do you? On the auspicious New Year’s Eve, after asking permission from the chief of the household, Namtsokyi (གནམ་མཚོ་སྐྱིད།),[iii] to drink the nectar-liquor, I went to the sky for sightseeing. After my wife fed me a bowl of noodles, I spilt a bowl of noodles.

P: Ew, you vomited?

M: At the time, the earth and sky were turning in my eyes, and after a while, I flew into the sky.

P: Oh? How did you fly?

M: I was caring for my son in bed by holding my legs tight, and suddenly, wings grew on me, and I flew.

P: Haha, that is fascinating!

M: Chased by the wind, slashed by the rain, dust swirling, hit with the heat, I suffered tremendously before reaching the sky.

P: Of course, ah, if you say so.

M: In any case, it was my dream since as a child, who did not even know how to eat tsampa (barley flour)[iv], to view the mat of the eight-petaled-lotus-earth from the eight-spoked-wheel-sky.[v]

P: It is believable.

M: I cannot let go of my wife and son, but since I have already grown wings, flying into the sky, and overcome all the sufferings, so, I shall have a look at the external container world,[vi] right?

P: Utter bullshit! What is the shape of this world?

M: Have you ever been to Tsongonpo (Kokonor མཚོ་སྔོན་པོ།) Lake?

P: Yes, I have.

M: It is like that.

P: Ah?

M: As the Tsonyang Mahadeva elevated in the Tsongonpo Lake,[vii] Mount Sumeru (རིའི་རྒྱལ་པོ་རི་རབ།) is also erected in the ocean like a millrind of a hand mill.[viii]

P: What an ugly metaphor.

M: Hey boy, do not look down on Mount Sumeru!

P: Shut your mouth. Why should I look down on Mount Sumeru?

M: Then I looked carefully [and saw that] in the east of Mount Sumeru, the continent of Pūrvavideha (ལུས་འཕགས་གླིང་།), with its two minor continents, shaped like a scythe.

P: What scythe, say [it is] in the shape of a semicircle.

M: It is okay. In the south, the continent of Jambudvīpa (ལྷོ་འཛམ་བུ་གླིང་།),[ix] with its two minor continents, is shaped like the teeth of a pakshel (པགས་ཤད།).[x]

P: Say [it is] in the shape of the teeth of a saw. 

M: In the west, the continent of Aparagodānīya (ནུབ་བ་ལང་སྤྱོད།), with its two minor continents, round-shaped like bread cooked in ash.

P: Ew!

M: In the north, the continent of Uttarakuru (བྱང་སྒྲ་མི་སྙན།), with its two minor continents, is square-shaped like a napkin.

P: Okay, enough, enough. You are going to destroy it by applying [all those] metaphors. Leave it aside and give [us] an account of our snowy Tibetan regions, please.

M: Oh, this snowy Tibetan pure-land of ours is surrounded by towers of white snowy mountains; [it is] where the river with eight qualities runs melodiously; [it is] where the silk-like grassland glitters; [it is] where there is speedy prosperity of three types of livestock, white, black, and the multi-coloured.[xi]

P: [So you are] going to do a thorough praise.

M: Yes. [It is] where all the people are religious

where even lice receive life-release [practices]

where both young and the old are with great perseverance

where even if you jumped over [their] head, [they] would not have any complaints

where even a one-year-old is with compassion

are many honorifics in the speech.

Oh! [It is where] archaic terms are not changed in the written texts

where old black yak hair tents are kept

where the syllable Om is always kept in one’s mind.

That is our snowy Tibetan land.

P: Lakso! Lakso! (ལགས་སོ།།)[xii] This is what probably should be said.

M: While [I was] fascinated by the beautiful mountains and river and lovely folk culture, a robust swirling wind came, and I was turned like a spindle whorl.

P: Then you fell back on the earth, right?

M: At some point, everything in my sight disappeared. There was something on my head. I touched it, and it was something velvety; it was like a cloud, like a khatak (ཁ་བཏགས།), and probably was my quilt. I was utterly baffled.

P: You were probably lost.

M: I gave it some thought, and it was entirely wrong. [If] I had left my wife [at home], lost my son, and wandered off, everything was finished.

P: Oh, what should you do?

M: At that point, suddenly, a star fell in front of me.

P: You are going to tell lies.

M: Oh, it was a UFO, so [he] came to pick me up.

P: Who [came to pick you up]?

M: Uncle Tongtsen.

P: Who is Uncle Tongtsen?

M: You do not know Gar Tongtsen (མགར་སྟོང་བཙན།), the chief minister of the Tibetan king Songtsen Gampo?

P: You are going to lie again.

M: Yes. Oh no, I am not. Gar Tongtsen went to receive the ladies of China and Nepal and escorted sacred statues in the past,[xiii] and King Songtsen Gampo was very fond of him. So, he was, again, sent to collect me.

P: What did he say?

M: Oh, he immediately recognised me and said, “Hello, buddy!”

P: Buddy?

M: Let me talk briefly about what sort of things Gar Tongtsen and I talked about, how the Tibetan ancestors welcomed me, how the three ancestral religious kings offered me a beer and all the things I heard and saw on this trip……

P: Oh no, you will come up with a bunch of lies again.

M: We are sleeping here, but our Tibetan ancestors are already in a science world.

P: How do you know?

M: They have computers, and the internet is widely available.

P: What?

M: Motorcycles are their rides; they live in skyscrapers, gates are electronic and automatic, doors have electronic bells, and they watch television and listen to symphonies. At home, there are electric beds, electric food storage, electric stoves, electric pots, and electric food.

P: What did you say? Electric food?

M: No, no, no! Except for food, everything is electric.

P: You are telling some interesting lies.

M: Then the three ancestral kings threw a banquet for me. All the Tibetan ancestors danced, Thonmi Sambotha performed a poetry recitation,[xiv] Sakya Pandita Kunga Gyeltsen played the piano,[xv] and Uncle Thangdong Gyalpo performed a disco dance.[xvi]

P: If you say so……

M: The Derkha[xvii] in front of me is also fabulous.

P: Derkha?

M: Yeah.

P: What was there to be eaten?

M: There was meat, butter, and cakes. There was churned tea and sweet tea. There was barley liquor and wine. There was modern beer, candies and sunflower seeds.

P: Those are the things you prefer.

M: I found out this time that our ancestors are not only great but are probably boasters as well.

P: Why?

M: They all told me how they had ruled Tibet, learned from the good qualities of others, built temples for subduing the border and further borders, invited foreign translators and translated, edited, established, and finalised gal code, and many more.

P: You have read the historical records, and those are true.

M: It is not that. They were talking about these only to blame me. They said that we are not going beyond what they have done, and we have been left behind in the current era.

P: That is also for our good.

M: The seven wise men also told me an entire valley of things.

P: What did they tell you?

M: Oh, they said the gold, silver, copper, and iron they have found are still rusted away from our time.

P: They are correct.

M: They said our yaks still drag the plough from their time.

P: Isn’t it correct?

M: They said they have made nomadic lives sedentary, but people are returning to the mountains again now.

P: Of course, they are right.

M: King Songtsen Gampo has more than three hundred ministers. My poor ears would suffer if I let them say whatever they wanted.

P: When someone points out our shortcomings, if what they said is true, then one should be able to acknowledge it.

M: They said, “nowadays, between the peace and wrathfulness, it is the internal conflicts that are severer for Tibetans; peaceful anger and envy are making them less united, wrathful fights and internal killings are taking place due to conflicts over caterpillar fungus and winter pastures,” after saying so many things, they conveyed that they were disturbed.

P: What did they say?

M: They said, “Old minds are many, and new concepts are rare. Lamas and leaders are many, but very few are passionate about Tibet. Many wear yellow and red robes, but genuine monks are rare. Moton Phakgo “The Pigs-head Soothsayer”[xviii] is rich and superstitious people are poor. You guys degraded the true dharma we have brought by superstitiously believing in it.”

P: What a truth it is.

M: However, the three ancestral kings were praising me gracefully.

P: How did they sayHON it?

M: You, the son of nobles, your right eye sees the positivity; your left eye sees the negativity; your right ear hears the positivity; your left ear hears the negativity. In addition, that mouth of yours is perfect for performing crosstalk, pay attention to your left on the way back, and you will gain some insights. Here you go!

P: What did they give you?

M: The Nobel Prize.

P: What did the Nobel Prize look like?

M: Oh, there was the eight-spoked wheel on the top edge, eight-auspicious symbols in the middle, and eight-petaled lotus at the bottom.

P: Sounds like it was a porcelain bowl.

M: There was refreshing nectar inside……

P: What?

M: No, no, no. There was nothing inside it; there was nothing inside it.

P: You don’t even know how to tell lies properly.

M: Then the three ancestral kings sent a message to young Tibetan boys and girls in the form of a dunglen song.[xix]

P: You, please sing it.

M: Yeh, [the following lines are sung to the tune of Akhu Pema] the lady with the feminine body and boy’s hair

When you walk away, it is a let-down

When you come back, [you] disgust people

Everyone is relieved when you are gone

Yeh, the young man with a liquor bottle in his hands

When you walk away, it is shameful

When you come back, you cause fights

Neighbours are relieved when you are gone[xx]

P: Okay, it is something believable.

M: Then I took the prophecy of three ancestral kings in mind and paid attention to the negativity on the way back and……

P: Did you have any insights?

M: Yes, there was a lot. I came from the Headless-Tailless Village (མགོ་མེད་གཞུག་རྡུམ་སྡེ་བ།) to the Tell-Everything Village (མི་བཤད་དགུ་བཤད་སྡེ་བ།) and heard some appalling things.

P: What things did you hear?

M: When they speak, my stomach aches; when they swear, my ears burn; when they scold, my legs tremble.

P: So, you are saying those are some scary words?

M: Yes, talking about these words gives me a stomach-ache; all the words from their mouths are dirty.

P: How do they speak?

M: For example, when I arrived at the Headless-Tailless Village and went to Uncle Complaint-mouth’s household, the words from this guy disgusted me.

P: What did this Uncle Complaint-mouth say?

M: There was not one good word from his mouth. He said, “the karmically wicked one, you cameHUM. Let’s go inside our tentHUM and drinkHUM some teaHUM. The unlucky one, when did you come? Hey, demon dog, ghost dog, sorcery dog, one whose head should be tied to the ground. Hey, bad dog, the one [its] mouth should be directed to (its) father and mother, consuming all the dead and long-dead. [I guess this dog] saw all the dead and disappeared.”

P: What was that?

M: Wasn’t it their family dog [for] barking at me?

P: Bah, [he] truly speaks many disgusting words.

M: Although that was a wealthy family, possessions were decent too. All the names [of the things] were worn-out and broken.

P: Oh, what does it mean?

M: Ah, when [we] talk about utensils, [they were] broken cabinet, broken cauldron, broken pot, broken porcelain bowl, broken ladle, torn mat, bad mat, and torn and ripped stove.

P: So, everything was broken and torn?

M: Ah, they were not; [but it was] their local speech. There were even more when using ornamental [language]: things which should be added to a corpse, things should be laid on the road, something which should hit one’s heart with, things which should be used for a dog bowl, …, items should be thrown in the gto [ritual],[xxi] [there were just too] many.

P: Bah! My goodness!

M: For the clothing too, torn and ripped coat, torn pants, torn and ripped lambskin robe, torn sheepskin robe, bad hat, torn sash, torn shoes, gto clothing, and dog clothing. In terms of food and cuisine too, [there are] corpse-food, gto food, dog-food, ghost-food… [one would] not dare to eat [when heard these names].

P: [They are some] filthy speech.

M: Then I arrived at the Horse-Herder Village (རྟ་རྫི་སྡེ་བ།). [People] were scolding horses, and it was appalling too.

P: Yes?

M: The one that should be skinned, [the one that] should be made into a corpse; the one should be driven away by bandits; the one should be made into an inflated skin [for river crossing]; the one whose tail should be cut; the one whose mane should be shorn; that should carry corpses; I don’t even understand what it means. When I arrived at the Yak-Herder Village (ནོར་རྫི་སྡེ་བ།), and they were cursing yaks, don (གདོན།)-yaks,[xxii] ghost-yaks, sorcery-yak, disappearing-yaks, ones should contract rinderpest, ones should be dead from sakyon (ས་སྐྱོན།) disease,[xxiii] ones whose tendons should be cut; there were so many.

P: Probably it was so bad that they had to have milk and yoghurt from them.

M: When I arrived Goat-Sheep-Herder Village (ར་མ་ལུག་རྫིའི་སྡེ་བ།), and there were more. Ones should contract Za (གཟའ།) disease,[xxiv] the ones that contract head-worms, ones that catch diarrhoea, ones that should be hit with a broom after [them], ones [those] should be handed to a butcher.

P: They were butchers themselves.

M: Then I arrived at the Primitive Village (ཡ་ཐོག་སྡེ་བ།), and [people were] using some strange oaths.

P: What were those?


P: It is utterly terrible.

M: Don’t rush; even worse things are coming after this.

P: Are there even worse than that?

M: Of course, from Black-nose Black-Tongue Village (སྣ་ནག་ལྕེ་ནག་སྡེ་བ།) to the Tell-Everything Village was [all] about cursing

P: How do they curse people?

M: They will express their wish that everything goes wrong for you.

P: Eh?

M: The one whose endeavours go wrong, the one whose works should be carried away by the Dgu-chu river,[xxvi] the one who should never have any prosperity, the one whose merits should be tied to a dog’s neck, the one who should never see happiness, the one whose mouth should be smeared with ash, the one whose head should be put a bag over, the one who should be widowed for nine times, so on and so on, so many stuff.

P: Bah.

M: Then [they] will express [their] wish for you to have an unhealthy bodyHON. The one who should get measles, the one who would lose [his] speech, the one who would have locked jaws, the one who would have blind eyes, the ones who lose tongues, at the same time, [things like] voracious, big-belly, ever-hungry should be used at convenience. You know, right?

P: Yes, I know. What a terrible thing.

M: Finally [they] will tell you to leave this world.

P: Oh?

M: The one whose face should never be seen, the one from whom should never hear anything, the one whose name should never be called, the one whose happiness should be diminished abruptly, the one whose life should follow the setting sun, the one whose head should be buried under a rock, the one who should be dumped into a well, and the one over his head dust should be shovelled. I can only list some of them here.

P: Ah, who wants to hear those?


P: Those are disgusting words that need to be changed.

M: I have never heard of this type of speech before. I bet these are some of the gains mentioned in the three ancestral kings’ prophecies.

P: These may be the gains.

M: They said those are not [the gains in the prophecy].

P: Who said that?

M: Some nomads came and said I misunderstood them, and they did not have such ways of taking oaths and scolding people.

P: What did you tell them?

M: I told them, “I am telling all this for your benefit, BY YOUR FLESH, there is this way [of speaking and taking oaths].” They said, “there is not”. I said, “there is”. And they said, “there is not”. So, I was angry and pushed [them], and there was a “bang” sound.

P: What was it?

M: I had kicked my son sleeping with me and pushed him down [from the bed].

P: After all, it was your dream. Your son was all right, right?

M: He said, “FATHER AND MOTHER! BY ALL THE DHARMA ON THE EARTH. Who pushed me down here?”



The UKRI Future Leaders Fellowship supported this work as part of the Tibetan Sustainable Heritage Initiative. I am grateful to Timothy Thurston for his comments and suggestions on this translation at various stages and to the anonymous reviewer of Yeshe for insightful comments. All remaining errors are, of course, my own.


Works cited

Donyol Dondup and Charlene Makley. “‘The Body Hair that Grows on the Head’: Menla-Kyap’s ‘Views on Hair and Hairstyles’ (2009).” Ateliers d’anthropologie, no. 45, 2018, DOI:

Thurston, Timothy. “Careful Village’s Grassland Dispute: An A mdo Dialect Tibetan Crosstalk Performance by Sman bla skyabs.” CHINOPERL: Journal of Chinese Oral and Performing Literature, vol. 32, no. 2, 2013, pp. 156-181.

Thurston, Timothy. “A Careful Village: Comedy and Linguistic Modernity in China’s Tibet, ca. 1996.” Journal of Asian Studies, vol. 77, no. 2, 2018, pp. 453-474.

Tsering Samdrup and Hiroyuki Suzuki. “Humilifics in Mabzhi pastoralist speech of Amdo Tibetan.” Linguistics of the Tibeto-Burman Area, vol. 42, no. 2, 2019, pp. 222-259.

Shakya Tsering. “Wither the Tsampa Eaters?” Himal, vol. 6, no. 5, 1993, accessed June 12, 2023,      



[i] An audio version of this crosstalk can be accessed here at (accessed on 13th February 2023). It is the third track on the list, titled རྨི་ལམ.

[ii] Three Ancestral Kings are Songtsen Gampo (སྲོང་བཙན་སྒམ་པོ།), Tri Songdetse (ཁྲི་སྲོང་ལྡེ་བཙན།), Tri Tsukdetsen (ཁྲི་གཙུག་ལྡེ་བཙན།) from the imperial period. They are mainly known as the three kings behind bringing Buddhism to Tibet.

[iii] Name of his wife in the performance.

[iv] Tsampa (རྩམ་པ།) is considered by many as the staple of Tibetans. The usual way to prepare it was by mixing it with hot tea, butter, and cheese. In recent decades, Tibetans have connected their ethnic identity to tsampa by calling themselves the Tsampa-eaters, which goes beyond the linguistic, regional, and religious boundaries of different groups of Tibetans. For a detailed discussion, see Shakya Tsering (1993).

[v] These are two epithets commonly used for the earth and sky in Tibetan oral literature, eight-spoked-wheel-sky (གནམ་འཁོར་ལོ་རྩིབས་བརྒྱད།) and the eight-petaled-lotus-earth (ས་པདྨ་འདབ་བརྒྱད།), very likely originating from India/Buddhism.

[vi] There is a Tibetan categorisation of the world that divides the universe into ཕྱི་སྣོད་ཀྱི་འཇིག་རྟེན ‘the world of the external vessel’ and ནང་བཅུད་ཀྱི་སེམས་ཅན ‘the inner contents of sentient beings’; here, it is talking about the former.

[vii] Tsonyang Mahadewa (མཚོ་སྙིང་མ་ཧྰ་དེ་ཝ) is an island in the heart of Tsongonpo Lake.

[viii] Unlike the commonly found four-armed iron support, Tibetans use a wooden peg in the centre of the bed-stone of the hand mill, which is usually known as the te (ལྟེ།) ‘navel’.

[ix] Due to the dominance of Buddhism in the Tibetan cultural sphere, references are commonly made to Buddhist cosmology, even in secular ceremonial speeches, and this is an example.

[x] A wooden tool with teeth used for softening sheepskin in Amdo.

[xi] Amdo herders often use this as a categorisation of livestock in oral literature; this typology supposedly includes all their livestock.  

[xii] This is a common affirmation phrase that the orator receives from the audience while delivering a speech in Amdo.

[xiii] Later Tibetan historical accounts mention the critical role Gar Tongtsen played in the events of King Songtsen Gampo receiving Gyaza Kongcho (རྒྱ་བཟའ་ཀོང་ཇོ།) and Balza Tritsun (བལ་བཟའ་ཁྲི་བཙུན།), two princesses as wives from China and Nepal in the 7th century. Histories also account that these two princesses brought two statues of the Buddha, and people believe they are housed in Jokhang and Ramoche temples in Lhasa to this day, attracting thousands of pilgrims annually.

[xiv] Thonmi Sambhota is accredited for creating the Tibetan script in the 7th century during the reign of Songtsen Gampo by Tibetans.

[xv] Sakya Pandita Kunga Gyeltsen (1182 – 1251) is a famous Buddhist scholar known for his writings on philosophy, music, and poetry.

[xvi] Thangdong Gyalpo is a 14th century architect and artist known for founding Tibetan opera performances and iron suspension bridges.

[xvii] Derkha (སྡེར་ཁ།) is food such as meat, fruits, candies, bread, sunflower seeds, and peanuts in display put into plates and bowels during the festivals such as New Year and weddings in Amdo.

[xviii] He is a well-known folktale character who pretends to be a fortune-teller and comes up with prophecies by using a pig head as the prop, hence the name Mo ston phag mgo “pig-head fortune-teller”.

[xix] Dunglen (རྡུང་ལེན།) is a popular form of music in Amdo since the 1980s accompanied either by mandolin or Tibetan lute known as Dranyen (སྒྲ་སྙན།).

[xx] Lyrics and the tune follow a popular Amdo dunglen known as Akhu Padma (ཨ་ཁུ་པདྨ།). It was a song made popular by Palgon, a dunglen singer from Machu in Amdo.

[xxi] It is a rite of ransom.

[xxii] Gdon is a type of harmful spirit.

[xxiii] This disease occurs in yaks and cattle; once contacted, the animal would die in less than a few hours after groaning loudly.

[xxiv] This is a common disease occurring in sheep where the contacted animal would have balance issues.

[xxv] Yum or “the Great Mother” is a common Tibetan name used for the Prajñāpāramitā ‘the Perfection of Wisdom’ sutra.

[xxvi] This is the name of the main river in Rebgong, a tributary of the Yellow River (རྨ་ཆུ།).


Menlakyap (སྨན་བླ་སྐྱབས།) wears many hats, including artist, poet, essayist, and lyricist. Educated in his native land of Amdo and Shanghai, he has made a name in the Tibetan language media since the 1990s and is still active as a lyricist. He released dozens of cassettes of compositional and traditional performances, including Khashak (ཁ་ཤགས།) ‘crosstalk’, Shepa (བཤད་པ།) ‘ceremonial speeches’, and Natam (གནའ་གཏམ།) ‘stories.’ He has also published widely in Tibetan language literature journals from the 1980s and published poems and essays. Some of his works were translated into English and other languages.[xxvi]

Pakmo Tashi, also known as Nyizhön (ཉི་གཞོན།), ‘the rising sun’, initially made a name by performing alongside Menlakyap. He was later famous as a public intellectual writing critical essays on Tibetan cultural and social issues. 

Tsering Samdrup (ཚེ་རིང་བསམ་གྲུབ།) is a post-doctoral research fellow at the University of Leeds, and his research covers old Tibetan texts, oral traditions, and the sociolinguistics of Tibetan regions. He translates academic and literary texts between English, Tibetan and Chinese languages.