A large number of people from the world of dance and the expatriate community in Taiwan have paid tribute to Diane Baker (貝黛安), 65, deputy chief copy editor of the Taipei Times and doyenne of dance, who passed away at home on Wednesday.
A veteran journalist, Baker worked for International Community Radio Taipei (ICRT) and then the Taipei Times, where she was known among her colleagues for her professionalism and broad knowledge of Taiwan.
To Baker, dance criticism was “a tribulation of love” and she fought for her place, Cloud Gate Dance Theatre founder and Baker’s friend Lin Hwai-min (林懷民) wrote in a statement on Cloud Gate’s Web site yesterday.
Photo: Amber Chang, Taipei Times
“As Taiwanese broadsheets abandon dance criticism, it is astonishing that a US reporter became the most prolific and widely published commentator of dance,” Lin wrote.
“Diane went to see dance almost every week and sometimes attended three performances in one week,” he said, adding that Baker was a constant presence in the nation’s theater circles, despite health issues that increasingly troubled her in recent years.
“Diane showed deep caring to Taiwan’s dance scene and frequently attended performances, especially those of students, to show her support and encouragement,” Zhang Xiao-xiong (張曉雄), associate professor at Taipei National University of the Arts, was quoted as saying.
Photo: Amber Chang, Taipei Times
The Taipei-based Community Service Center in a statement on Friday described Baker as “a loyal friend and supporter of the center and a dedicated member of the center’s steering committee,” adding that she was held in high esteem within the international and local communities.
ICRT said in a statement on Friday: “[Baker’s] love of Taiwan was only matched by her memory for historical details and trivia, which she could recall and detail to those of us that needed help and asked for it.”
“Taiwan has lost one of its greatest fans and champions in Diane Baker,” it added.
Baker is survived by two sisters and a brother in the US.
Taipei Times deputy chief copy editor Diane Baker passed away this week. Diane worked with the Taipei Times since its launch in 1999. She was an immensely valued member of the newspaper’s editorial staff who made an incalculable contribution to our efforts through her impressive breadth of knowledge and understanding about not only Taiwan, its history, its politics and its people, but also about the world in general. She was always ready to step in and do a thorough, professional job in even the toughest circumstances.
Her presence, skills, experience, charm, wit and sense of humor will be — are already — missed.
— Taipei Times
‘LOCAL TRANSMISSION’: The nation reported 11 new cases, including seven local infections in the north, the highest daily number of cases since the pandemic began The COVD-19 situation has entered the “local transmission” stage and enhanced disease prevention measures have been implemented until June 8, the Central Epidemic Command Center announced yesterday as it reported six locally transmitted cases with unclear infection sources. The center reported 11 new cases yesterday: four imported cases from India, and seven local infections in northern Taiwan, the highest daily number of cases since the COVID-19 pandemic began. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said that one of the local infections — case No. 1,201 — is a woman who is a family member living with
SIXTEEN LOCAL: Three COVID-19 infections are linked to a cluster at a gambling house in Yilan County, 10 to a case in New Taipei City and three had unclear sources The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday urged people to increase vigilance and thoroughly practice preventive measures against COVID-19 as it reported 16 locally transmitted cases of the disease. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said that 21 cases were confirmed in Taiwan yesterday: 16 local cases, four imported cases and one case undetermined. The locally transmitted cases are three linked to a cluster of infections at a gambling house in Yilan County, 10 associated with a previous case in New Taipei City and three with unclear sources of infection. The CECC on Tuesday reported a cluster
TRACING TROUBLE: An infected man who had said that all his children were abroad was found to have a daughter in Kaohsiung who tested positive, the center said The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday reported a new daily record of 29 local COVID-19 cases, including seven cases with unknown sources of infection. Of the 29 cases, 16 are linked to tea houses in Taipei’s Wanhua District (萬華), Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, told a news briefing in Taipei. The 16 are tea house workers or visitors, or their contacts, the CECC said. Workers and visitors to the establishments have frequent interpersonal contact, but few protective measures against the COVID-19 pandemic are in place, Chen said, urging those who have been exposed or have
GRID PROBLEM: A Taipower spokesman said that the blackouts were not due to usage exceeding supply, nor were they because of a problem at the Singda plant There were rolling blackouts across Taiwan yesterday due to a grid malfunction at the Singda Power Plant (興達電廠) in Kaohsiung’s Yongan District (永安), while Taiwan Power Co (Taipower, 台電) said that it was working “as hard as possible to resolve the issue as soon as possible.” At 2:37pm, a malfunction at an ultra-high-voltage substation in Kaohsiung’s Lujhu District (路竹) triggered four generators at the Singda plant to go offline, cutting power output by 2.2 million kilowatts and prompting Taipower to initiate rolling blackouts nationwide as it worked on the problem. Taipower spokesman Chang Ting-shu (張廷抒) told a news conference in Taipei that