Olivia Ong brings her sultry melange of pop and jazz tomorrow night to Legacy Taipei. Listeners can expect a protracted embrace by Singapore’s most popular musical export featuring some of pop music’s most covered songs, such as Sinatra’s Fly Me to the Moon.
Ong, 24, has been hailed as the next Seiko Matsuda after breaking into Japan’s exclusive music scene at the age of 15 when she won a Japanese singing contest and landed a record deal. She’s performed as a member of the Japanese pop group Mirai and is known in Singapore for her vocals on the theme song to the TV show Little Nyonya. Her voice has been described by one critic as “soulful, pristine and innocent.”
A Girl Meets Bossa Nova, Ong’s debut album, became a best seller across Asia while she was only 19. She is now signed to Taiwanese record company HIM and is currently promoting her self-titled album, Olivia, a loose, languid listen that will dominate much of tomorrow’s set list.
■Olivia Ong at Legacy Taipei, located at Huashan 1914 Creative Park (華山1914) 1, Bade Rd Sec 1, Taipei City (台北市八德路一段1號)
■Doors open tomorrow at 7pm, concert starts at 8 pm
■NT$1,000 at the door or NT$800 in advance, available through ERA ticketing or online at www.ticket.com.tw
A kindergarten teacher and an insurance salesman fall in and out of love with each other again and again as they struggle for a way out in The Dying Fish (魚) by Flyinggroup Theatre (飛人集社劇團). The play features actors and shadow puppets designed by theater veteran Shih Pei-yu (石佩玉).
■ 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)
■ Tonight at 7:30pm, tomorrow at 2:30pm, 7:30pm and Sunday at 2:30pm
■ Tickets are NT$400, available through NTCH ticketing or online at www.artsticket.com.tw
China’s celebrated comedian Zhao Benshan (趙本山) leads a group of renowned errenzhuan (二人轉) artists including Xiao Shenyang (小沈陽) for a night featuring a performance style that is all the rage in China. Errenzhuan is a folk art from northeast China that involves storytelling, singing, dancing and clowning about.
■ Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall (國父紀念館), 505, Renai Rd Sec 4, Taipei City (台北市仁愛路四段505號)
■ Tomorrow at 7:30pm
■ Tickets are NT$900 to NT$8,800,
available through ERA ticketing or online at
The eight-member Stand-up Gang
(站立幫) is staging stand-up comedy gigs inspired by otaku subculture at the newly relocated Comedy Club for four consecutive nights.
■ Comedy Club, 20, Ln 553, Zhongxiao E Rd Sec 4, Taipei City (台北市忠孝東路四段553巷20號). Tel: (02) 2369-3730
■ Tonight and tomorrow at 8pm, Sunday
■ Tickets are NT$300, and NT$270 in advance (includes one drink), available at the door or through tickets.books.com.tw
In Firefly Theatre’s (螢火蟲劇團) The Judgment (2012末日大審判), a civil servant is taken to court after he is accused of being mad. In the courtroom, he meets a hotdog-licking woman, a neurotic homosexual and an old woman who is addicted to sex. The only thing missing is the judge. This play is not suitable for children under the age of 12.
■ Chiayi Performing Arts Center (嘉義縣表演藝術中心演藝廳), 265, Jianguo Rd Sec 2, Minsyong Township, Chiayi County (嘉義縣民雄鄉建國路二段265號)
■ Tomorrow at 7:30pm, Sunday at 2:3pm
■ Tickets are NT$200, available
through NTCH ticketing or online at
International Chopin Festival (20X10蕭邦CHOPIN國際音樂節) presents Grammy-winning American pianist Garrick Ohlsson performing a selection of impromptus, ballades and mazurkas by Chopin. Ohlsson will perform a second concert on Thursday as part of the TSMC “Xin Zhu” Art Festival — Wang Yujua Piano Recital (台積”心築”藝術季 — 王羽佳鋼琴獨奏會).
■ Wednesday at 7:30pm (Taipei) and Thursday at 7:30pm (Tainan)
■ National Concert Hall, Taipei City and Tainan Municipal Cultural Center Performance Hall (台南市立文化中心演藝廳), 332, Jhonghua E Rd Sec 3, Tainan City (台南市中華東路三段332號)
■ Tickets are NT$600 to NT$4,500 (Taipei) and NT$600 to NT$2,400 (Tainan), available through ERA ticketing or online at www.ticket.com.tw. Also available before the day of the performance through 7-Eleven ibon, Family Mart (全家) FamiPort and Hi-Life
(萊爾富) Life-ET kiosks
Lost in Wonderland (兒童樂園) is part of an ongoing series of concerts designed especially for children organized by the Taipei Philharmonic Orchestra chamber group (台北愛樂室內樂坊). The concert presents Chen Yi-chun (陳奕君) on piano.
■ Sunday at 4:30pm
■ Taipei Philharmonic Orchestra and Maestro Henry Mazer Music and Culture
(台北愛樂暨梅哲音樂文化館), B1, 7 Jinan Rd Sec 1, Taipei City 濟南路一段7號B1)
■ Tickets are NT$250, available
through NTCH ticketing or online at
La Peintre, Yu-Lin (畫魂), an opera about legendary female painter Pan Yu-liang (潘玉良), who broke away from the constraints of traditional Chinese society to establish herself as a artist in Paris, was written and scored by National Award for Arts winners Wang An-chi (王安祈) and Chian Nan-chang (錢南章). The opera is directed by Juliette Deschamps and conducted by Yip Wing-sie (葉詠詩). It will be performed by the National Symphony Orchestra (國家交響樂團) and Taipei Philharmonic Chorus (台北愛樂合唱團) and boasts some of Taiwan’s top operatic talent on the bill.
■ Thursday at 7:30pm, July 8 and July 9 at 7:30pm, July 10 at 2:30pm
■ National Theater, Taipei City
■ Tickets are NT$500 to NT$3,000,
available through NTCH ticketing or online at www.artsticket.com.tw
The Taipei International Jazz Festival kicks off this weekend with a pair of outdoor performances at Taipei Water Park (台北自來水園區) near Gongguan MRT Station (公館捷運站). Taipei-based combo Afternoon Tree (午後之樹) takes the stage tonight. Tomorrow features the Dan Whieldon Quartet, an up-and-coming group
from the UK with a female vocalist. For
more information on the festival visit
■ Taipei Water Park (台北自來水園區), 1 Siyuan St, Taipei City (台北市思源街1號)
■ Shows start at 7pm tonight and tomorrow
■ No admission fee
Legacy Taipei, located in a former warehouse at Huashan 1914 Creative Park
(華山1914), hosts top Taiwanese pop performers and international acts. Singaporean star Olivia Ong (王儷婷), who sings pop standards a la Carol King, appears tomorrow night [see Highlight]. Anthony Wong (黃耀明) headlines a group of performers representing Hong Kong pop label People Mountain People Sea on Sunday. On Wednesday catch Taiwan’s king of rock, Wu Bai (伍佰), and China Blue in concert to promote their new DVD.
■ 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, 7pm on Sunday, 8pm on Wednesday
■ Entrance fee is from NT$700 to NT$1,000 tomorrow (section seating), NT$1,500 on Sunday and NT$1,200 on Wednesday (NT$900 in advance). Tickets available through ERA ticketing outlets, online at www.ticket.com.tw or www.legacy.com.tw and at 7-Eleven ibon kiosks
Tonight The Wall (這牆) hosts singer Dennis Sun (孫自佑), a past winner from the One Million Star (超級星光大道) pop idol show. Tomorrow night it’s baroque indie-pop band The Tic Tac and 13 (拾參樂團). Indie-electro pop group Soft Ears (軟耳朵) plays on Sunday. Tuesday’s program features two post-rock groups from abroad: Lymbyc Sytym of the US and Lite of Japan.
■ B1, 200, Roosevelt Rd Sec 4, Taipei City
Tel: (02) 2930-0162. On the Net:
■ 8pm tonight, 7pm tomorrow, 8pm
on Sunday and Tuesday
■ Entrance fee is NT$500 tonight, NT$400 tomorrow, NT$300 Sunday and NT$1,100 (NT$800 in advance) on Tuesday. Tickets can be purchased online at www.thewall.com.tw or tickets.books.com.tw
Indie-folk singer Huang Jie (黃玠) takes the stage tonight at Witch House (女巫店).
■ 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
■ Performances 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 fee for music shows is NT$300
Riverside Cafe (河岸留言) tonight hosts Tango Negro (黑探戈), which brings an Argentinean mood to the house. Tomorrow it’s a pair of pop-minded singer-songwriters: Iris Lin (林綾) and Europa Huang (黃建為). Sunday features pop-rap outfit Cool Silly (傻酷樂團) and rock band Havens (黑凡斯). Monday is the venue’s weekly open jam. On Thursday Oli Band opens for
alt-rock group Neon.
■ 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 9:30pm tonight and 9pm all other nights. For a list of standard songs and ground rules for the open jam, visit the venue’s Web site
■ Entrance fee is NT$400 tonight and tomorrow, NT$350 on Sunday and Wednesday, NT$150 on Monday and NT$350 on Thursday
Indie-rock band Miss Stocking (絲襪小姐) plays tonight at Riverside Live House
(西門紅樓展演館) in Ximending’s historic Red House Theater (西門紅樓). Tomorrow it’s the turn of actress and singer Wan Fang (萬芳), who has just released her new album Let’s Not Grieve Anymore [see story on Page 13 of tomorrow’s Taipei Times]. TV show host and pop singer Ado (阿洛) appears on Sunday.
■ 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 tonight, 9pm tomorrow, 8:30pm on Sunday
■ Entrance fee is NT$400 tonight, NT$600 tomorrow (NT$500 in advance) and NT$400 on Sunday. Tickets can be purchased online at www.riverside.com.tw/livehouse or tickets.books.com.tw
No shows are scheduled tonight or Sunday at Underworld (地下社會), when the venue will be showing World Cup games. Metal bands Blair Witch and Emerging From the Cocoon appear tomorrow. On Wednesday shoegazer bands Liquid Punch and Nuin 8 (扭音八) take the stage.
■ 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
■ Music shows run from 9:30pm to 11:30pm on Fridays and Saturdays and 9pm to 11pm on Wednesdays. Underworld is open daily from 9pm, closed on Mondays. Happy hour on Tuesdays and Thursdays before midnight
■ Entrance is NT$300 on Fridays and Saturdays, which includes one drink, and NT$100 on Wednesdays
The Jason Hayashi Quartet appears tonight at Sappho de Base. Tomorrow is blues and surf rock from the Blues Vibrations. Roger’s Jazz Trio plays on Tuesday. Eclectic free jazz and world music outfit Flaneur Daguerre appears on Wednesday. On Thursday the venue hosts Belgian musician and Sinophile Pierre Hujoel (胡月), who sings in Chinese and plays piano compositions that span classical, electronica and pop.
■ 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
■ Music shows begin at 10pm
■ Entrance is NT$100 tonight, free tomorrow, NT$150 on Wednesday and NT$100 on Thursday
EZ5 Live House hosts Mando-pop singers backed by a live band every night. Highlights for the week ahead include Aboriginal chanteuse Samingad (紀曉君) on Tuesday and male crooner Shin Lung (辛隆), who performs every Saturday.
■ 211, Anhe Rd Sec 2, Taipei City (台北市安和路二段211號). Tel: (02) 2738-3995. On the Net: www.ez5.com.tw
■ Music shows run from 9:45pm to 12:30am
■ Entrance fee (includes two drinks) ranges from NT$600 to NT$850, depending on
Roxy Roots hosts viewing parties tonight and tomorrow for the World Cup quarterfinals. Tomorrow night expat hip-hop group Dr Reniculous Lipz and The Skallyunz and funk rockers Coach (教練) get the crowd warmed up for the match.
■ 90 Songren Rd, Taipei City (台北市松仁路90號). Tel: (02) 2725-3932. On the Net:
■ Shows start at 10pm
■ Entrance is NT$300 on Fridays and Saturdays (NT$200 credited toward food and drink)
The Wall (這牆) programs regular live rock shows at Kaohsiung’s Pier 2 Arts Center
(高雄駁二藝術特區). Tonight features Shy Kick Apple (害羞踢蘋果). The ska punk group is playing its final show, for now, as several members are about to start military service. A new local band, The Lawns (草地人), opens the show. Tomorrow Suming
(姜聖明) of the Aboriginal indie-rock band Totem (圖騰) puts on a concert to launch his new solo album. On Sunday it’s American post-rock group Lymbyc Sytym and Japanese post-rock group Lite.
■ 1 Dayong Rd, Yanjheng Dist, Kaohsiung City (高雄市鹽埕區大勇路1號). On the Net: pier-2.khcc.gov.tw or go to www.thewall.com.tw for full schedule
■ Shows start at 7:30pm
■ Entrance fee is NT$300 tonight, NT$400 tomorrow and NT$600 on Sunday (NT$400 in advance)
The Mercury (水星酒館), a small club that hosts indie bands in Kaohsiung, is holding a Canada Day party tomorrow with expat acoustic duo T-Bone and Yasu.
■ 46 Liwen Rd, Zuoying Dist, Kaohsiung City (高雄市左營區立文路46號). Tel: (07) 550-8617. On the Net: mercurybar.blogspot.com
■ Show starts at 9:30pm
■ No admission fee
With around 10,000 descendants packing the ancestral shrine every Tomb Sweeping Day, the Yeh family’s grand affair made a bid for the Guiness Book of World Records in 2016. They won’t be coming even close on Saturday. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, less than 30 people will be attending and conducting the rituals. “We hope that our ancestors don’t take offense,” branch association head Yeh Lun-tsai (葉倫在) tells the Liberty Times (sister paper of the Taipei Times). Tomb Sweeping Day activities can potentially aggravate the spread of the virus as large groups congregate in cemeteries and columbariums at the same
In terms of life expectancy for its citizens, in recent decades Taiwan has caught up with and overtaken a number of Western countries. According to the most recent edition of the CIA’s World Factbook, Taiwanese now live longer than Americans, Czechs and Poles. Of course, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic may shake up the rankings. Taiwan’s single-payer healthcare system, set up in 1995, is one reason why people here can stay healthy for a long time. Before the postwar Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) regime introduced the piecemeal health-insurance schemes (covering government employees, farmers, and others) that preceded the universal system, sick people
Nowhere are the effects of the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) postwar Sinification campaign more visible than in the toponymic revisions that the regime undertook after assuming power. Taipei’s streets were renamed after Chinese cities or quintessentially Chinese values, and with the kind of self-aggrandizing flourish to which the party was partial, the process even referenced itself, Guangfu (光復) — which translates as “retrocession” — becoming a mainstay of urban nomenclature. Above all, the KMT’s top brass was memorialized: the given names of Sun Yat-sen (孫中山) and Chiang Kai-shek (蔣中正) — Zhongshan (中山) and Zhongzheng (中正) — were conferred on locations
April 6 to April 12 Han Chinese settlers from Zhangzhou and Quanzhou were such fierce rivals that simple activities such as buying supplies for festivals would often result in armed violence. It’s said that this was especially severe just before Tomb Sweeping Festival, and to prevent bloodshed Qing Dynasty officials ordered them to conduct their rituals on different days. This is not unlike the government urging people to visit their ancestors’ graves on days other than yesterday’s official Tomb Sweeping Day, also known as the Qingming Festival, to curb the spreading of the COVID-19 pandemic. While the Chinese Nationalist Party