23 Feb - 15 Apr

Brillant Ten! Perfect Ten!

2018 Taiwan International Festival Of Arts

While celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2017, National Theater & Concert Hall (NTCH) also heralds a new era, seeking deeper partnership with artists at home and abroad. NTCH’s first challenge is the 2018 Taiwan International Festival of Arts (TIFA), which is to celebrate its 10th anniversary.

Officially launched in 2009, TIFA is still relatively young in comparison with many other international arts festivals. However, during the past 10 years, TIFA has not only become an important springboard for domestic artists to step onto the international stage, but also an indispensable platform in Asia, highly acclaimed by many foreign performing arts groups. Young as it may be, TIFA is important enough to garner coverage from media in Hong Kong, Beijing, Singapore and Tokyo. Over the years, TIFA has received such high appraisals and affirmations as “heavy-weight productions coming one after another”, “an art feast to feel the pulses of the international performing arts circle”, and “a festival that challenges the audience-oriented market” to name but a few. They are also the objectives that NTCH aims for while planning TIFA.

The 2018 TIFA will usher in a brand new start in celebrating the Brilliant Ten! Perfect Ten!. NTCH is ready to meet future challenges together with its partners – to share memories and prospection with old partners as well as to try experiences and challenges with new partners. Let’s gather strength from all to build NTCH as a cradle for cultivating talents.

Photo credit: Oliver Look

Looking back, when Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch’s Nelken fascinated Taiwanese audiences with its unusual physical performances, barking dogs and thousands of carnations forming a thorny stage in 1997, it broke the stereotype of the ordinary perception about dancing and astonished the whole society. The programme left a beautiful impression in the audiences’ minds, bearing testimony to the outcome of NTCH’s efforts in cultivating dance theatre in Taiwan. 20 years later, Nelken is to return to the stage of the National Theater.

In addition, major playwrights and directors from Taiwan will present their distinguished vocabularies of creativity in their latest productions, Dear Life, directed by Wang Chia-ming. Extracted plots, structures and styles from various stories of Munro and then rewrite them in accordance with different performers and theatric styles to put the stories into the comprehensible context of life in Taiwan. Isle of Dreams by Lee Yi-Hsiu represents the beautiful mythic world: reflecting the love, hate, anger and resentment among gods. The first Time I Walked on the Moon presented by Riverbed Theatre is a performance that explores the desire for the magical and the miraculous, this desire to escape from the monotony of everyday life and step into the unknown.

Isle Of Dreams

Meanwhile, Ping Heng, the laureate of National Awards of Art, and NTCH Artist-in-Residence Su Wen-chi – two artists from different generations yet both showcasing creative power and strong international connections – will demonstrate new energies of dancing. Becoming is a new international collaboration between Dance Forum Taipei and choreographer Iván Pérez, who leads the audiences to touch upon questions of identity. Infinity Minus One by Su Wen-chi continues the research between science and dance. She invites artists from Indonesia and Japan to jointly stretch all sorts of imagination about the transformation between traditional gestures and modern artistic concept.

Becoming by Iván Pérez. Photo credit: Alwin Poiana

The 2018 TIFA features not only the integration of different generations, but also the invaluable tradition inherited and passing on from generation to generation, such as the collaboration between ARA Kimbo, father of the folk songs in Taiwan, and Wu Hao-en, creative singer of the new generation from  the Puyuma tribe. 3peoplemusic, founded by three musicians, is a creative music group focusing on Chinese traditional chamber music. Their concert will integrate palette of composers and performers to infuse new life to traditional music instruments.


The 2018 TIFA also provides a rich international programme: Richard III by Thomas Jolly, The Object Lesson by Geoff Sobelle, Jekyll & Hyde & So on by Koki Mitani, Dark Circus by Stereoptik, Betroffenheit by Christal Pite and Jonathon Young, Giovanni’s Club by Claudio Bernardo, Nufonia Must Fall by Kid Koala, World Music Ensemble E-Do, Soprano Danielle de Niese, and more. The 2018 TIFA organised by the NTCH will kick off a two-month long artistic feast with 20 brilliant programmes.

2018 Taiwan International Festival of Arts will start from 23 Feb to 15 Apr. Click here for more information.