Gardenia by the Belgian company Les Ballets C de la B is a dance/theater production that calls into question the existing idea of gender identity. The nine middle-aged male performers are in real life transgender, transvestite or homosexual.
■ National Theater, Taipei City
■ Tomorrow and Saturday at 7:30pm, Sunday at 2:30pm
■ Tickets are NT$500 to NT$2,000, available through NTCH ticketing and online at www.artsticket.com.tw
The Taiwan Women Theatre Festival 2012 (第五屆女節) starts this weekend with three theatrical productions, including Ho Hsien-ku’s Fantasies (何仙姑的幻想), which deals with a lone woman’s struggle to make ends meet in Taipei. Led by a team of four local programmers, including Betsy Lan (藍貝芝) and Tu Hsih-hue (杜思慧), the festival is composed of 10 productions by female artists from Taiwan, China, Hong Kong and Malaysia and runs through June 3. For more information, go to www.facebook.com/TaiwanWTF.
■ Guling Street Avant-Garde Theatre (牯嶺街小劇場), 2, Ln 5, Guling St, Taipei City (台北市牯嶺街5巷2號)
■ Tomorrow at 7:30pm, Saturday and Sunday at 2:30pm and 7:30pm
■ Tickets are NT$660, available through NTCH ticketing and online at www.artsticket.com.tw
Tea House Theatre of Taipei (台北大碗茶) presents a series of works of folk performance arts including crosstalk (相聲), a once-popular style of Chinese comedy, and bamboo allegro (竹板快書), a form of entertainment in which performers tell stories by reciting lines that are short and rhythmic.
■ The Red House Theater (西門紅樓), 10 Chengdu Rd, Taipei City (台北市成都路10號)
■ Tomorrow at 7:30pm, Saturday at 2:30pm and 7:30pm and Sunday at 2:30pm
■ Tickets are NT$400 to NT$1,200, available through NTCH ticketing and online at www.artsticket.com.tw
Directed by Liao Chin-wang (廖金旺) from Dark Eyes Performance Lab (黑眼睛跨劇團), The Bald Soprano (禿頭女高音的不標準時間) is a localized production of Eugene Ionesco’s 1948 play The Bald Soprano.
■ Wansha Music Salon, Yonghua Branch (涴莎古典音樂沙龍永華館), 75 Yonghua 1st St, Greater Tainan (台南市永華一街75號)
■ Tomorrow at 7:30pm, Saturday at 2:30pm and 7:30pm
■ Tickets are NT$350, available through NTCH ticketing and online at www.artsticket.com.tw
Ping-Fong Acting Troupe (屏風表演班) is reviving Wedding Memories (女兒紅), a semi-biographical play based on the life story of artistic director Hugh Lee’s (李國修) mother that premiered in 2003. The tale centers on an obedient girl in China who, in an attempt to prevent a family scandal, volunteers to marry the man who impregnated her younger sister.
■ Kaohsiung Cultural Center’s Chihteh Hall (高雄市文化中心至德堂), 67 Wufu 1st Rd, Greater Kaohsiung (高雄市五福一路67號)
■ Saturday at 2:30pm and 7:30pm
■ Tickets are NT$600 to NT$3,000, available through NTCH ticketing and online at www.artsticket.com.tw
Les Petits Chanteurs de Saint-Marc (法國聖馬克兒童合唱團) presents the highly popular children’s choir from France. The children, aged 10 to 15, have won the hearts of audiences around the world. The group acquired a huge fan base in Taiwan after the success of Christophe Barratier’s film Les Choristes, and has been a regular visitor since then. The French answer to the Vienna Boys Choir (though this choir has both boys and girls), the Petits Chanteurs will perform a program that includes many sacred music favorites and selections of film and pop music.
■ Saturday at 7:30pm (Hsinchu), Monday at 7:30pm (Tainan), Wednesday at 7:30pm (Taipei) and May 17 at 7:30pm (Yuanlin)
■ Performance Hall of Bureau of Cultural Affairs Hsinchu City (新竹市文化局演藝廳), 17 Dongda Rd Sec 2, Hsinchu City (新竹市東大路二段17號); Tainan Municipal Cultural Center Performance Hall (台南市立文化中心演藝廳), 332, Jhonghua E Rd Sec 3, Greater Tainan (台南市中華東路三段332號); National Concert Hall, Taipei City and Yuanlin Performance Hall (員林演藝廳), 99, Ln 2, Chungcheng Rd, Yuanlin Township, Changhua County (彰化縣員林鎮中正路二巷99號)
■ Tickets are NT$400 to NT$1,500 for Hsinchu, Tainan and Yuanlin, and NT$400 to NT$2,000 for Taipei, available through NTCH ticketing or online at www.artsticket.com.tw
A Night of Romantic Russia (浪漫俄羅斯之夜) sees the National Symphony Orchestra (國家交響樂團) performing together with concert pianist Chen Shi-wei (陳世偉) and violin soloist Huang Yi-jung (黃薏蓉) under the baton of conductor Gunther Herbig. The program will include Beethoven’s Egmont Overture, Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 2 in G Minor, Op. 16 and Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto in D Major, Op. 35 and March Slave, Op. 31.
■ Saturday at 7:30pm
■ Jhongli Arts Center (中壢藝術館), 16 Jhongmei Rd, Jhongli City, Taoyuan County (桃園縣中壢市中美路16號)
■ Tickets are NT$400 to NT$1,000, available through NTCH ticketing or online at www.artsticket.com.tw
Legacy Taipei, located in a former warehouse at Huashan 1914 Creative Park (華山1914), hosts top Taiwanese pop performers and international acts. Tomorrow night’s show by popular late 1990s disco rock band Sticky Rice (糯米糰) is sold out. Mando-pop star and Aboriginal diva Landy Wen (溫嵐) takes to the stage on Saturday. On Wednesday, it’s Mando-pop singer Cyndi Shaw (趙詠華).
■ Huashan 1914 Creative Park (華山1914), Center Five Hall (中五館), 1, Bade Rd Sec 1, Taipei City (台北市八德路一段1號)
■ Shows start at 8pm tomorrow and Saturday, and 8:30pm on Wednesday
■ Sold out tomorrow, NT$1,000 Saturday (NT$800 in advance) and NT1,800 Wednesday (NT$1,500). Tickets for the venue’s concerts can be purchased at ERA ticketing outlets, online through www.ticket.com.tw, www.legacy.com.tw and at 7-Eleven ibon kiosks
No shows are scheduled for tonight or tomorrow at The Wall (這牆), Taipei’s most prominent venue for indie rock artists. On Saturday, post-rock group 8mm Sky (八厘米天空) and indie-electronica veterans KbN (凱比鳥) take to the stage. Later on, Japanese underground hip-hop MC Shing02 and DJ A-1 headline a late-night show that also includes local hip-hop group Tripoets (參劈). On Sunday, it’s indie rock trio Fuguko (河豚子), indie-electronica outfit The Shine and Shine and Shine and Shine (閃閃閃閃) and Paper Girl (紙片女孩).
■ B1, 200, Roosevelt Rd Sec 4, Taipei City (台北市羅斯福路四段200號B1), tel: (02) 2930-0162. On the Net: www.thewall.com.tw
■ Shows start at 8pm (Saturday’s hip-hop show begins at 11:30pm)
■ NT$500 Saturday, NT$800 for late-night show (NT$600 in advance) and NT$400 on Sunday (NT$300 in advance). Tickets for all shows can be purchased online through www.thewall.com.tw and tickets.books.com.tw
Tonight Witch House (女巫店), an intimate coffeehouse-style venue in the National Taiwan University area, hosts cutesy indie folk group Four Pens (四枝筆樂團). Mrs Apple (李蘋果), a solo acoustic female performer, follows with her own happy-go-lucky set. Guitar heavy indie rock group Pink Haze takes to the stage tomorrow, and on Saturday, it’s spacey-indie rock band Microcosmos (小宇宙) and acoustic female pop duo The Freshman (插班生).
■ 7, Ln 56, Xinsheng S Rd Sec 3, Taipei City (台北市新生南路三段56巷7號), tel: (02) 2362-5494. On the Net: www.witchhouse.org
■ Shows start at 9:30pm. Restaurant/bar with queer/feminist bookstore and large collection of board games, open 11am to midnight Sundays through Wednesdays, 11am to 1am Thursdays through Saturdays
■ Entrance for music shows is NT$300
Expat indie rock band The Okay Cars and goth-punks Qi Lai Observatory (奇萊山觀測站) play tomorrow at Underworld (地下社會), a small basement club in Taipei. On Saturday,
indie rock trio Fuguko (河豚子) and ambient electronica artist Empty Space on a Chessboard (棋盤上的空格) take to the stage. Pop singer Kiki Ding (丁文琪) and her band Kiki and Friends play on Wednesday, sharing the bill with eclectic guitar rock band Mass Man.
■ B1, 45 Shida Rd, Taipei City (台北市師大路45號B1), tel: (02) 2369-0103. On the Net: www.upsaid.com/underworld
■ Shows run from 9pm to 11pm on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Underworld is open daily from 9pm, closed on Mondays. Happy hour on Tuesdays and Thursdays before midnight
■ Entrance is NT$300 on Friday and Saturday (includes one drink). Entrance for Wednesday shows is NT$100
Tonight indie rock club Revolver hosts acoustic solo acts. On Friday, hip-hop artist Leo37 takes to the stage, along with DJs Charles, Zo, @llenblow, Katrina, and Sylvain. On Saturday, it’s a drum ‘n’ bass party with DJs Robi Roka, Robin Lai, Subtle, Rich, Bombthreats and Syko and MCs Stoppa and Insatiable.
■ 1-2, Roosevelt Rd Sec 1, Taipei City (台北市羅斯福路一段1-2號), tel: (02) 3393-1678
■ Shows start at 9:30pm
■ Entrance is free tonight. Admission is NT$250 tomorrow and NT$350 on Saturday (free entrance for women), which includes a drink
Pop singer T-Work (陳零九) and Edison M of the pop band 100 Zhongshan Rd (中山路100號) appear tonight at Riverside Cafe (河岸留言). Tomorrow, drummer Chang Wen-kuang (張文光) performs jazz fusion and rock with his quartet. Pop group AltQQDog (中離狗) and hard rock band Mercy Falls take to the stage on Saturday.
■ B1, 2, Ln 244, Roosevelt Rd Sec 3, Taipei City (台北市羅斯福路三段244巷2號B1), next to Taipower Building (台電大樓), tel: (02) 2368-7310. On the Net: www.riverside.com.tw
■ Shows start at 9pm
■ NT$350 tonight and Sunday, NT$400 tomorrow and Saturday. Tickets can be purchased online through www.riverside.com.tw and tickets.books.com.tw
Pop rock bands Wildflower (野花), Soundboss and Channel 8 appear tomorrow at Riverside Live House (河岸留言西門紅樓展演館). On Saturday, it’s indie electronica group The Girl and the Robots (女孩與機器人) and artsy indie folk group My 8 Day Weekend (週休八日).
■ 177 Xining S Rd, Taipei City (台北市西寧南路177號), tel: (02) 2370-8805. On the Net: www.riverside.com.tw
■ Shows start at 8:30pm
■ NT$400 tomorrow and Saturday. Tickets can be purchased online through www.riverside.com.tw/livehouse or tickets.books.com.tw
Local ska group Skaraoke performs tomorrow at Sappho de Base, a late-night lounge bar that mostly hosts live jazz performers. On Saturday, Ash and Friends play modern jazz standards. On Tuesday, it’s drums/bass/guitar trio Billy the Kid (比利小孩), and on Wednesday, rock jazz trio Electrik Force takes to the stage.
■ B1, 1, Ln 102, Anhe Rd Sec 1, Taipei City (台北市安和路一段102巷1號B1), tel: (02) 2700-5411. On the Net: www.sappho102.biz
■ Shows start at 10pm. The venue is closed on Sundays and Mondays
■ Entrance is NT$200 tomorrow and Saturday, free all other nights
On Saturday, Bobwundaye, a small neighborhood pub on Taipei’s Heping East Road (和平東路), hosts Japanese blues guitarist Shun Kikuta, formerly a member of blues legend Koko Taylor’s band. The venue holds an open mic every Wednesday.
■ 77, Heping E Rd Sec 3, Taipei City (台北市和平東路三段77號)
■ Shows start at 9:30pm
■ NT$200 on Saturday
Acclaimed Aboriginal singer Samingad (紀曉君) performs every Thursday at EZ5 Live House, which hosts Mando-pop singers backed by a live band every night. Highlights for the week ahead include male crooner Shin Lung (辛龍), who performs every Saturday, and Tiger Huang (黃小琥), who performs on Wednesdays.
■ 211, Anhe Rd Sec 2, Taipei City (台北市安和路二段211號), tel: (02) 2738-3995. On the Net: visit www.ez5.com.tw
■ Shows run from 9:45pm to 12:30am
■ Entrance fee (includes two drinks) ranges from NT$600 to NT$850, depending on the performer
Guitar duo Blurrs Bros perform American songbook tunes tonight at Italian restaurant Capone’s. On Fridays, Taipei Swing holds dance socials with live music from electric blues band Taipei blues band Bopomofo (ㄅㄆㄇㄈ). On Saturday, drummer Abe Nbugu Kenyatta leads a band playing music from his hometown of New Orleans. Iris sings “romantic chansons” Sunday nights and on Wednesdays, it’s Latin music from guitarist Roberto Zayas.
■ 312, Zhongxiao E Rd Sec 4, Taipei City (台北市忠孝東路四段312號), tel: (02) 2773-3782
■ Live music from 9pm to 11:30pm on Fridays, 8pm to 11:30pm on Saturdays
■ On Fridays, minimum charge of one drink. On Saturdays, minimum charge is NT$300
The Wall (這牆) programs regular live rock shows at Kaohsiung’s Pier 2 Arts Center (高雄駁二藝術特區). Veteran pop performer Tiger Huang (黃小琥) takes to the stage on Saturday.
■ 1 Dayong Rd, Yancheng Dist, Greater Kaohsiung (高雄市鹽埕區大勇路1號). On the Net: pier-2.khcc.gov.tw, www.thewall.com.tw
■ Show starts at 7pm Saturday
■ NT$1,200 on Saturday
The Mercury (水星酒館), an indie rock club in Kaohsiung, hosts live music every Saturday. This weekend, it’s grunge rock band KoOk (庫克) and melodic indie rockers Killjoy.
■ 46 Liwen Rd, Zuoying Dist, Greater Kaohsiung (高雄市左營區立文路46號), tel: (07) 550-8617. On the Net: mercurybar.blogspot.com
■ Starts at 9pm
■ Entrance is NT$200