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June 5, 2010

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A celebration of Taipei's splendid culture

TAIPEI and Shanghai are both international, inclusive and diverse cities with open spirits and over the years they have communicated and cooperated with each other in many fields.

Last year the Shanghai Culture Celebration was held in Taipei City and this month the Taipei Culture Celebration unfolds here, lasting nearly a month.

It features a broad display of arts, including theater, opera, music, dance, painting, film and other creative expressions.

The high point will be June 16, Taipei Day at World Expo 2010, featuring a gala by the Taipei Symphony Orchestra, Taipei Chinese Orchestra, and Utheatre at the UBPA Square of the Expo site.

It is also the day of the traditional Chinese Dragon Boat Festival on the lunar calendar.

That night Ming Hwa Yuan troupe will present the spectacular Taiwan Opera, "Legend of White Snake," in Hongkou Football Stadium. It breaks the forms of traditional stage plays and extends the performance space from the ground to the sky. (See more about the opera on Expo Daily, June 3).

In addition, the Taiwan Guoguang Opera Troupe will present their Peking Opera "The Golden Cangue," adopted from the novel of the same name by Eileen Chang.

Utheatre's drum play "Listen to the Heart of the Sea" has been described by the London Times as a "heartshaking" performance combining stage with drumming, kung fu and meditation.

The comedy "The Mogli" by the Pingfeng Troupe will feature three actors playing 30 characters -- an extraordinary theatrical feat.

The Peking Opera "Country of Desires" by the Modern Legend Troupe is a version of Shakespeare's "Macbeth."

Musicians from Taipei Symphony Orchestra and Taipei Chinese Orchestra will perform famous classical works and compositions.

Presenting traditional culture through modern artistic means is the defining characteristic of the Taipei Culture Celebration.

From "Legend of White Snake" to "The Golden Cangue," most performances can be considered as traditional art performances, conveyed with modern innovation. The combination of tradition and modernity also describes the spirit of Taipei City today.

In ddition to performance, the Taiwan Film Unit will cooperate with the Shanghai International Film Festival during the Taipei Culture Celebration.

From June 14 to 19, around 10 Taiwan films will be screened and noted directors, actors and producers will discuss the future of the Chinese film industry in a forum with film makers from the Chinese mainland.

In visual arts, the Taiwan Art Gallery will exhibit its best works by Taiwan art masters, such as Guo Baichuan and Liao Jichun, many depicting the island's beautiful landscapes.


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