Thursday, March 27, 2008

The U-Theatre itinerary 2008

The U-Theatre traveled on foot through 25 western Taiwan townships in 1996 and through 35 mountain districts in eastern Taiwan in 1997. To celebrate its 20th anniversary, the U-Theatre is embarking on a round trip throughout Taiwan on foot this year to share its glories to people who live on the same land through the sound of their heavenly drums.

The trip is divided into 3 routes; starting at 6:00 every morning, 100 townships will be visited in 50 days. The first route started in Taipei on March 23rd, stopping by Yilan, Hualien, and will be ended in Taitung on April 13th. The journey continues on April 14th in Pingtung stopping by Kaohsiung, Tainan, Chiayi and stops in Yunlin on April 28th. The 3rd route starts in Changhua on April 29th, stopping by Nantou, Taichung, Miaoli, Hsinchu, Taoyuan and back to Taipei on May 11th. It is still possbile to join the 2nd and the 3th routes by registering before March 31 and April 15 respectively. Contact 02-2938-8188 for detail.

30 performances will be given for free in this 1200km journey except for shows performed on March 23 and May 1. Performances mostly start at 19:00 and locations are labeled on the google map below. The masterpiece, the sound of ocean, will be performed in Kaohsiung on April 19th.

U-Theatre’s performance of “The Sound of Ocean” earned the Best of Show award at the Festival d’Avignon in 1998 and, in 2000, U-Theatre accepted the “Audience Choice” award at the Biennale de la Danse in Lyon. Performances at the Berlin Art Festival Amphitheatre of “The Sound of Ocean” during August 2003 overwhelmed Berlin theatre-goers. One article proclaimed “The Sound of Ocean” the “preeminent performance of the week in Berlin theatre.”U-Theatre’s 2002 work, “Meeting with Vajrasattva,” earned first prize in the performing arts category in the first annual “Taishin Art Awards”. In naming U-Theatre as their top choice, the judges noted that the group, “beautifully expressed tranquility within movement and movement within tranquility in the confines of a performance stage.” U-Theatre has achieved a unique melding of visual, audio, and performance into one outstanding form of performance art.

Monday, March 03, 2008

The Orange House

I got an email inviting me to exhibit my photos in a restaurant in Kaohsiung, so I stopped by the restaurant and talked to the owner, Marcus, about the exhibition.

According to Marcus, he started his first restaurant years ago in a basement of a hostel in Kaohsiung. The color of the walls were orange and why he named the restaurant the orange house. A few months ago, he relocated the restaurant to its current address, 121 Shihcyuan 2nd Rd, and painted the walls orange. Knowing his family originated from Holland, it makes perfect sense to me all the sudden that the appeal of orange to Marcus, even though he is a Canadian.

Not only a restaurant, the orange house is also an interesting combination of a hostel and a Dojo for Aikido, Yoga and Kung-Fu. The ambitious man blends his interest in Aikido into his businesses; a strategy of attracting people who have different interests to the same place.

The lighting and setting in the room makes the orange house a cozy restaurant. A fireplace DVD playing in one corner creates an illusion of warmth in the room. Black paper bands running across the center of the glass doors add a degree of mystery to the atmosphere by partially obstructing views; allowing those inside to be somewhat isolated from pedestrian distractions as only legs and feet are visible and conversly drawing the eye of passersby from the outside, a curiously inviting sense.

One thing I like the most about the restaurant is that the atmosphere changes everytime the theme of art exhibition changes. Currently, photos of my Mysterious and Mighty Street Dancer series are exhibited (photos below).

For more information, check on the restaurant website.