Music Notes from Taiwan - Autumn

Friday, 3 October 2014

Our programme this Autumn features traditional folk songs, popular campus tunes as well as European classics, reflecting the mix of occidental and oriental that has always been an intriguing characteristic of Taiwan.


Before Taiwan's renown in the Asia Pacific region as an exporter of Mandopop (Mandarin pop music), it was a place of convergence of disparate cultural and political factors as the result of successive foreign settlements and sovereign disputes.


From this history arose Taiwanese folk music, a lyrical expression of daily life in Taiwan during the 1940s and 50s. As Taiwan shrugged off the remnants of control from foreign powers whilst maintaining the unique marriage of cultures that had formed as a result, folk music emerged as an expression of national identity to support communities as they rebuilt and shaped their country. Much less well known outside of the island than their contemporary music counterpart, Taiwan folk songs are dearly treasured by the people of the nation for their sentimental values and insight into a bygone age. 


Also on our programme tonight are popular campus folk songs of the 1970s and 80s. This genre of music was born in universities across Taiwan and propelled by students who used poetry and music to relate to their country and document her changing landscape. They represented a significant exercise in democracy where the youths of a nation could sway public sentiments with their artistic outputs, and the movement invited people from all walks of life of different talents. 


The seven musicians you will see perform tonight are similarly diverse in their abilities and passions. They are among Taiwan's brightest and finest, all of whom have studied and/or performed in Taiwan and abroad, each with a dexterity of hand or vocal chord that will bring tonight's selection of music to life.


Push Hands, the organiser of tonight's concert, aims to help charities in the UK by promoting Taiwanese music and culture. Our philosophy of harmonising seemingly opposing forces encourages greater cultural integration and community empowerment. For more information about Push Hands and to stay in touch, please visit our website at:


Proceeds from tonight's ticket sales will go to support Hammersmith Community Gardens Association, a charity focused on environmental conservation and education. For more information about HCGA, please visit their website at:

""Every push and every hand counts""

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