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"When I first left my husband to go to the Himalayas, it was painful, too. But because I saw that the whole world had more pain than I did, that made my pain very small in comparison to the whole world's suffering. So I continued to walk my way.
Since childhood, I observed the great agonies of life. I went to temples and churches. However, the knot in my heart remained untied. I had great sympathy for the sufferings in the world, but I didn't know what to do. And then my husband kept chasing after me and insisted on marrying me. He had courted me for so long and he was so sincere, so I just married him. Before getting married, I had often wanted to be a renunciate and search for the enlightened Masters. But he said, ‘It is not necessary. You have a Buddhist altar at home.’ He set up an altar for me. Every day he brought flowers for me to make offerings.
Watching the TV and the world, pain was everywhere. My heart really could not settle down peacefully. I also talked to my husband, and he also understood. At that time, I happened to meet many people who told me there were certain masters or spiritual practitioners in India; perhaps it would be better to search for them there. That was why I went there. So that is the purpose of my leaving my beloved, beautiful, adorable, kindhearted, generous, intelligent, handsome husband.
I went all over places, together with the bears, and snakes, and scorpions and all these. I was walking all by myself with a stick and with a sleeping bag on the stick. That’s all I had, with a pair of punjab clothes in there. That’s it. Many people died on the road because of the landslides, snowstorms and road damage.
It was maybe my destiny that I should be in the Himalayas for a while. But you don't have the same destiny like me. So you can sit anywhere, at your home, at your office, on the train, on the bus, if you want to get in touch with your inner greatest power... And if we reach that oneness, that greatness within us, then there is nothing we cannot do. We will have peace within our heart, and then the peace will radiate outside and help more to make peace on Earth.”
—Supreme Master Ching Hai World-renowned spiritual teacher, humanitarian, poet
(excerpts from interviews and discourses)
“Sold out tribute...world premiere of the musical The Real Love”
BWW News Desk, Broadway World
“It’s a phenomenal creative company put together.”
PJ Ochlan, K-Mozart 1260AM
“Supreme Master TV has made an impact on the Hollywood scene.”
Carl Kozlowski, Pasadena Weekly
“An Oscar-winning composer has given life now to a brand new musical.”
David Gonzales, KCAL Ch. 9
Bringing together Broadway and Hollywood, The Real Love is an original musical inspired by the extraordinary, true story of world-renowned spiritual teacher, humanitarian and artist Supreme Master Ching Hai.
In the 1970s, a lovely, young Aulacese (Vietnamese) woman named Thanh (West End actress Joanna Ampil) is working at the Munich Red Cross with her materialistic German friend Elsa (Tony winner Cady Huffman). Frequently accompanying refugees to the hospital, Thanh is deeply moved by the world’s suffering. She is admired by many doctors, including the hilarious Klaus (Tony nominee Robert Torti). But it is Rolf (Tony nominee Adam Pascal), a gentle physician-and-dentist, who wins her heart. Encouraged by the artist Greta (Tony winner Daisy Eagan) to follow an inner calling, Thanh is forced to make a difficult decision – to stay blissfully wed to Rolf or make a perilous journey to the Himalayas in search of a lasting happiness for all humanity.
With lyrics based on Supreme Master Ching Hai’s eloquent poems, and music by Academy and five-time Emmy Award winner Bill Conti, two-time Academy Award winner Al Kasha, Emmy Award nominee Doug Katsaros, Tony and Emmy Award winner Don Pippin and Academy and two-time Grammy Award winner David Shire, this uplifting musical renews the courage and compassion in us all.
“It is always exciting when a new musical can be produced. Supreme Master TV has done exactly that with The Real Love. The cast is most impressive and bravo for the poems of Supreme Master Ching Hai set to music by Bill Conti, David Shire, Don Pippin and Al Kasha. This is unique musical theatre.”
Jerry Herman Three-time Tony & Grammy Award-winning composer(Hello, Dolly!, La Cage aux Folles, Mame)
Over 3,000 guests were taken on an extraordinary journey during the world premiere of The Real Love at the prestigious Pasadena Civic Auditorium in California, USA on August 27, 2011 for Supreme Master Television’s 5th Anniversary.
It was a musical unlike any before seen: a beautiful love story that broadens our own spirit of courage and sacrifice. The Real Love was based on just a part of the amazing true experiences of the world-renowned spiritual teacher, humanitarian, poet and artist Supreme Master Ching Hai. The eminent American composer Al Kasha recognized in Supreme Master Ching Hai’s life and legacy a musical waiting to be shared with the world, and soon it was magically brought to life through some of the best talents of both Broadway and Hollywood.
Making this musical exceptionally unique, selections from Supreme Master Ching Hai’s exquisite poetry were set to music by five distinguished composers – Academy and five-time Emmy Award winner Bill Conti, two-time Academy Award winner Al Kasha, Emmy Award nominee Doug Katsaros, Tony and Emmy Award winner Don Pippin and Academy and two-time Grammy Award winner David Shire. A dream cast with West End actress Joanna Ampil, Tony Award winners Daisy Eagan and Cady Huffman, and Tony Award nominees Adam Pascal and Robert Torti was joined by an outstanding 24-member ensemble. Guest stars featured were Tony Award-winning singer Betty Buckley, Italian classical vocalist Filippa Giordano, legendary Academy Award-winning actress Shirley Jones, Tony Award winners Trent Kowalik and Kiril Kulish, Emmy Award-winning singer-songwriter Faith Rivera, noted actor Tom Schmid, screen veteran Dick Van Patten and soprano Lynne Wintersteller. This exciting collaboration also included a top-notch creative team and dedicated crew, as well as a world-class 21-piece orchestra.
In this volume, readers can enjoy the complete book, lyrics, sheet music and full- color photos of The Real Love – a musical commemorating one of the most fascinating journeys and greatest love stories the world may ever know.
“Such an incredible musical. It was in a short time, but I have to tell you, we had the best possible people. It was poetry set to music, and when I heard it, I realized, ‘Wow, this is something very, very special.’ It was gorgeous. I was overwhelmed by it.”
— Shirley Jones Academy Award-winning actress