Noam Galai / Getty Images for Tibet House US

The 36th Annual Tibet House US Benefit Concert at Carnegie Hall / March 1, 2023

Contemporary classical composer Philip Glass curated yet another benefit concert for Tibet House US at Carnegie Hall on March 1. This year, Allison Russell, Arooj Aftab, boygenius, Gogol Bordello, Marc Anthony Thompson with Zsela, Bernard Sumner and Tom Chapman of New Order, Saori Tsukada, Tenzin Choegyal, the Patti Smith Band (who performed without Smith this year), the Scorchio Quartet, and the Philip Glass Ensemble accepted Glass’ invitation to perform. 

Proceeds from the concert supported the work of Tibet House US, a non-profit educational institution founded in 1987 at the request of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to present Tibet’s ancient traditions of art and culture, preserve and restore Tibet’s cultural and spiritual heritage, and share Tibet’s systems of spiritual philosophy and mind sciences.

All photographs are by Noam Galai/Getty Images except where noted.

The program began with a line of six monks from the Drepung Gomang Monastery chanting blessings for the new year — the Year of the Water Rabbit, according to the Tibetan calendar.

Robert Thurman, who serves as the president of the Board of Trustees at Tibet House US, offered introductory remarks. He then turned the program to Glass, who is the vice president of Tibet House US’ Board of Trustees. Thurman and Glass are among the founders of Tibet House US.

Laurie Anderson started her set by leading the audience through a “Sonic Meditation” before Arooj Aftab spoke spontaneously with the audience at length while sound technicians resolved a technical issue.

No explanation was given as to why the Patti Smith Band (left to right, bassist Tony Shanahan, drummer Jay Dee Daugherty, and guitarist Lenny Kaye) performed without Smith; guitarist Glen Burtnik (right) guested. After the concert, Kaye told The Manhattan Beat, “Patti was in Paris closing her art show at the Pompidou Centre, and so had other commitments. I always think of us not as the Patti Smith Band at this event, but the Tibet House Band. Beautiful concert, by the way.”

Allison Russell performed with the accompaniment of her musicians plus the Patti Smith Band. Then, Tenzin Choegyal returned to the stage. Marc Anthony Thompson of Chocolate Genius, Inc. performed two songs then was joined by his daughter Zsela for two songs. boygenius (Phoebe Bridgers, Julien Baker and Lucy Dacus) previewed two songs from the trio’s forthcoming debut album. The Philip Glass Ensemble performed a portion of Glass’ Einstein on the Beach. Gogol Bordello correlated the cause of Tibet to the “senseless war” in Ukraine, then rocked the house until all the performers returned to the stage for the finale of Patti Smith’s “People Got the Power.”

Photo by Noam Galai / Getty Images for Tibet House US


Philip Glass

  1. Be the Sky (with Alex Grey, Saori Tsukada, Tenzin Choegyal)

Laurie Anderson

  1. Sonic Meditation
  2. Lullabies (with Martha Mooke)

Arooj Aftab

  1. Saans Lo

The Patti Smith Band

  1. Bolero (Maurice Ravel cover) > White Rabbit (Jefferson Airplane cover, with the Jeff Beck Group’s “Beck’s Bolero” riff)

Allison Russell

  1. 4th Day Prayer > Larissa’s Overture
  2. Nightflyer

Tenzin Choegyal

  1. Snow Lion (with the Scorchio Quartet)

Marc Anthony Thompson

  1. Like a Nurse
  2. Letter to Hermione
  3. She Smiles (with Zsela)
  4. Place (with Zsela)


  1. Not Strong Enough
  2. Cool About It (Meghan Patrick cover)

The Philip Glass Ensemble

  1. Spaceship (from Einstein on the Beach: Act IV, Scene III)

New Order

  1. Bizarre Love Triangle (with Zsela)
  2. Sex Object (Kraftwerk cover, with Laurie Anderson)
  3. Shadowplay (Joy Division cover)

Gogol Bordello

  1. The Era of the End of Eras
  2. When Universes Collide
  3. Forces of Victory
  4. People Have the Power (Patti Smith cover, finale with all the performers)
Photo by Noam Galai / Getty Images for Tibet House US