Laureate Tsegaye Gebre-medihin Cultural Studies and Research Center

Laureate Tsegaye G/Medihn Cultural Studies and Research Center

Laureate Tsegaye Gabre-Medhin, is a famous and leading Ethiopian poet and playwright who unreservedly contributed to the development of literary during his lifetime. He was born in a village known as Bodda, which is located at a distance of not more than 30 Km from Ambo town where he attended his elementary education and planted the seed of literary work writing his first play in English in his fifteen years old about ‘King Dionysus and the Two brothers’ which was staged at Ambo in the presence, among others Haile Selassie I. He had an exceptional quality and talent and had been continuously fruitful for a half a century as ‘a poet, playwright, essayist, social critic, philologist, historiographer, dramatist, synthesis, peace activist, and artistic director’ (Gdlie, 2019; Negussay, 2000).  He wrote many poets and more than 30 plays most of them in Amharic and translated a number of plays of others including Shakespeare’s and Moliere’s into Amharic (Gdlie, 2019; Negussay, 2000). More precisely, to mention some of the works of Shakespeare translated  by Laureate Tsegaye Gabre-Medhin, MacbethHamletOthello and so on. In addition, he also translated Molière‘s Tartuffe and Le Médecin malgré lui, as well as Bertolt Brecht‘s Mother Courage works.

 He also wrote in Afan Oromo and was conversant in French as well (Gdlie, 2019). His work convincingly takes the development of literary in general and Ethiopian art in particular, one step ahead, which makes him ‘a living legend and literary figure’ even after his death on February 25, 2006. In his wide variety of creative works, he has been promoted about Ethiopia and its peoples’ history, culture, freedom, and heritage (Blecher, 1998). All of this has an immensely long-lasting contribution to the social, cultural, and political development of the country.

Laureate Tsegaye received many international and national awards for its contribution but it is often claimed that he didn’t receive enough appreciation and honor in his own land as much as his contribution to his country. Even some argue that Tsegaye was much appreciated and highly respected in aboard than in his own country (Negussay, 2000). In response to this, several commemorative activities have been taking palace by different institutions, individuals and fellow groups in less organized and more intermittent ways. For instance, in collaboration with Ethiopian Postal Service Enterprise, the Ethiopian writer association prepared a commemorative stamp in 2002 to honored Laureate Tsegaye. Different radio stations also allocated time to aired Tsegayes’ works and celebrated him; the poem nights (የግጥም ምሽቶች) have been organized exclusively to honor Laureate Tsegaye. However, all of these are temporary and not long-lasting.  Thus, in recognition of all mentioned and to honor Tsegaye forever, Ambo University has decided to establish Laurate Tesgaye Gabre-Medhin’s Cultural Studies and Research centre at his birthplace and geneses of his first work, Ambo.

The fundamental concern of this project proposal is to construct the cultural studies and research centre in Ambo. The centre is meant on the one hand, to honor Tsegaye forever for its contribution to the Art in general and Ethiopian art and culture in particular through presenting his creative works from which youngsters can learn more, on the other hand, it is an entertainment and research centre where young generation entertain, learn with and from Tsegays’ and others artistic figures’ work. More over, researches having valuable contribution to learn and develop the culture, art, and history of the local community and beyond will be conducted.

Major activities Laureate Tsegaye G/Medihn Cultural Studies and Research Center

  1. Training in 2022

    No. Art Genres Number of trainees Age of the trainees Duration of the training Remark
    1 Theater and Acting 160 10-16 3 months
    2 Painting and Sculpture 102 10-15 3 months
    3 Music (vocal) 50 10-16 3 months
    4 Music (piano) 50 10-16 3 months
    5 Literature 56 10-16 3 months
    6 Modeling and Design 78 10-16 3 months
    7 Dance 89 10-16 3 months


2. National Training in collaboration with ministry of Culture and Sport and National Theater in 2023

No. Art Genres Number of trainees Age of the trainees Duration of the training Remark
1 Theater and Acting 24 36-60 2 months
3 Music (vocal) 4 36-60 2 months
4 Music (piano) 6 36-60 2 months

3. Income generation in 2022

No. In kind In Cush Year Remark
1 3,000,000 300,000 2022

4. National conference

  • Indigenous research conference in collaboration with ministry of culture and Sport

5. Launch theater

  • Launch a theater entitled with “Ilmoo waaqaa” at national theater

6. Promote culture

  • Perform traditional music called “Shinooyyee” in Ambo Town
  • Organize Irreecha forum in collaboration with Ambo town culture and tourism office
  • Perform “Goobee” traditional Meskel song in Ambo town
  • Organize an event during Irreecha and meskel festives.

7. Partnership

  • Signed MoU with Fana Broadcasting Corporate
  • Signed MoU with Oromo research Institute

Responsible Staff: Samuel Leykun (Ass.Prof.)