Thu, Nov 07, 2019 - Page 14 News List

Instant encores prove a winner

Five award-winning shows from this year’s Taipei Fringe Festival are getting a second chance to impress audiences this weekend, but three are already sold out

By Diane Baker  /  Staff reporter

Chuang Po-hsiang’s 40-minute We are not human at all won a Taipei Fringe Festival Genuinely Fringe award and a slot in the “Instant Fringe Encores” program.

Photo courtesy of the Taipei Fringe Festival

For a second year, the organizers of the Taipei Fringe Festival (台北藝穗節) are offering a second chance to see some of the works that earned top scores from audiences.

With 128 programs and more than 530 performances or events, it would have required superhuman abilities to see everything that was on offer at the non-curated festival that ran from Aug. 24 to Sept. 8.

The organizer, the Taipei Performing Arts Center (TPAC), knows that some of the shows are worth a second look, but until last year, that was always an improbability, which is why it launched the “Instant Fringe Encores” (即刻重演) program featuring five shows that win the festival’s awards.

The winning shows will each be performed one more time, either at the Bopiliao Historic Block (剝皮寮歷史街區) in Wanhua District (萬華) or at the Taipei City Shuiyuan (Wellspring) Theater (台北市水源劇場) in the Gongguan area (公館), from tonight through Sunday.

The encore schedule gets underway with two dance productions at the Wellspring tonight and tomorrow: We are not human at all is a 40-minute piece choreographed by 24-year-old Chuang Po-hsiang (莊博翔) that won a Genuinely Fringe award for originality; and Su Pin-wen’s (蘇品文) Girl’s Notes II (少女須知 [中]), which won the Most Creative Award.

However, both shows were sold out as of Tuesday.

There are still seats for Saturday’s shows: There are just a few for Bent-Tai(www) (臺彎) by choreographer and performer Me-Nay (迷內), which also won a Genuinely Fringe award, but lots more for a theater piece about domestic violence, Play Games, by the Emma Stone (艾瑪聖石) group, which won the Yong Zhen Future Star Award.

Bent-Tai(www) will be performed at 2:30pm at the Bopiliao site and tickets are NT$400, while Play Games will be at Wellspring at 8pm and tickets are NT$600.

Chocolate & Rose Studio’s (巧克力與玫瑰工作室) theater piece about impact of infrastructure construction on a local community, Railway Underground Project in Tainan won the festival’s grand prize, the Yong Zhen Fringe Award. It will be performed at Bopiliao on Sunday afternoon, but it is also sold out.

TPAC Director Austin Wang (王孟超) told a news conference on Tuesday the encore program was designed to draw attention to winners’ talent and creativity.

If Wang is serious about giving these young artists more of a chance to shine, the encore programs need to be held in a bigger venue than the Bopiliao site and for more than just one show, as this year’s ticket sales so clearly demonstrate.

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