Taiwan exhibition showcases 2019 Hong Kong pro-democracy protests | AFP

An exhibition marking the first anniversary of the Hong Kong pro-democracy protests is held at Taiwan Comic Base in Taipei. It features more than 100 artworks ranging from hand drawings, posters and multi-media projects from artists in Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea and Australia. The recent imposition of a sweeping new national security law on Hong Kong has sent chills through Taiwan, deepening fears that Beijing focus next on seizing the democratic self-ruled island.

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Masks off: Taiwan kickstarts domestic tourism after virus victory | AFP

Taiwan’s transportation and health ministers remove a face mask from a sand sculpture at a ceremony in Taipei to kickstart a domestic tourism initiative.

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Taiwan students pray to Confucius as examination season begins | AFP

Students in Taipei pray at the Confucius temple for good luck and blessing as Taiwan enters examination season. Taiwanese schools were re-opened in late February following an extended Lunar New Year holiday due to the coronavirus outbreak. Despite its proximity and trade links with China, Taiwan has so far managed to keep a lid on the pandemic now sweeping the globe.

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Taipei 101 Tower lights up for Earth Day | AFP

“Protect the earth together,” “Bring your own utensils and straws,” “Switch off un-needed lights and conserve energy” – some of the slogans lit up on the facade of the Taipei 101 building as Taiwan celebrates the 50th anniversary of Earth Day.

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New COVID-19 test kit unveiled in Taiwan | AFP

A Taiwanese-Danish joint venture company unveils a portable 12-minutes coronavirus testing kit in Taipei as countries worldwide race to test its citizens for infections.

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Coronavirus: Food delivery service eases Taiwan night market’s woes | AFP

The coronavirus pandemic is threatening to close one of Taiwan’s most famous cultural scenes — the night market, as foreign tourists stay home and locals avoid crowded areas. One night market in west Taipei is trying to buck the trend. Some hawker stalls at Ningxia Night Market, which boasts four Michelin street foods recommendations, have teamed up with a food delivery service.

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Taiwan military shows off furry new members of narcotics squad | AFP

Taiwan’s military police shows off the latest recruits to its narcotics squad — three dogs named Zander, Enoch and Hardy — at a drug-finding demonstration in Taipei on Wednesday. The dogs are the military’s first canine narcotics squad, and 15 more sniffer dogs are set to join their ranks over the next two years.

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Taiwan revels in first pride since legalising gay marriage | AFP

Nearly two hundred thousand revellers march through Taipei in a riot of rainbow colours and celebration as Taiwan holds its first pride parade since making history in Asia by legalising gay marriage.

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Hong Kong popstar Denise Ho doused with red paint by masked man at Taiwan rally | AFP

Hong Kong popstar Denise Ho, a staunch democracy advocate, had red paint thrown at her by an unidentified assailant as she spoke to local media, while thousands rallied in Taipei to support Hong Kong democracy protesters. IMAGES

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Hong Kong’s Joshua Wong meet with Taiwan politicians | AFP

Prominent Hong Kong activist Joshua Wong visit Taipei with fellow pro-democracy politicians to meet with Taiwanese political figures. Wong, along with other activists and lawmakers, was arrested on August 30 in Hong Kong in a sweep that rights groups said was taken directly from Beijing’s playbook, but released later in the day.

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Taiwan opens island’s largest comic exhibition | AFP

The Taiwan Comic Exhibition opens in Taipei – its largest show to date, with 1200 booths from more than 130 companies. The five-day exhibition, showcasing the latest in comics, anime, gaming, streaming and e-publishing, is expected to draw more than 550,000 visitors and rake in 6.43 million USD in sales.

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Attack of the clones as Star Wars fan designs own lightsabers

Frustrated by the lack of quality lightsabers in toy shops, Makoto Tsai did what any self-respecting hardcore Star Wars fan would do — he studied engineering at college and then spent years perfecting a replica. The 36-year-old is part of a small group of artisans around the world who have forged successful careers hand-crafting remarkably realistic models of the movie saga’s famous energy swords. As fans gather globally on May 4th for what has become the unofficial Star Wars Day — this year mourning the death of towering Chewbacca actor Peter Mayhew — some may be clutching one of Tsai’s lightsabers, made in his workshop near Taipei.

Once Upon A Dream (360 Video)

The Peony Pavilion is a 1998 production by Peter Sellars, in a mix of Chinese and English translation, of the Ming Dynasty play The Peony Pavilion.

Part One is an avant-garde staging of the traditional Kunqu form of Chinese opera’s staging of the play, which is how the play is usually performed in China. Part Two is a specially-composed two-hour opera by Tan Dun, mixing Chinese and western forms and instruments.

Kun opera or Kunqu Opera, is one of the oldest extant forms of Chinese opera. It evolved from the Kunshan melody, and dominated Chinese theatre from the 16th to the 18th centuries. The style originated in the Wu cultural area. It is listed as one of the Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO since 2001.

Kunqu singing techniques are said to have been developed during the Ming Dynasty by Wei Liangfu in the port of Taicang, but linked to the songs of nearby Kunshan. Kunqu performance is closely inter-related with the performance of many other styles of Chinese musical theatre, including Peking opera, which contains much Kunqu repertoire. The emergence of chuanqi plays, commonly sung to Kunqu, is said to have ushered in a “second Golden Era of Chinese drama”. Kunqu troupes experienced a commercial decline in the late 19th century. However, in the early 20th century, Kunqu was re-established by philanthropists as a theatrical genre that was subsequently subsidised by the Communist state. Like all traditional forms, Kunqu suffered setbacks both during the Cultural Revolution and again under the influx of Western culture during the Reform and Opening Up policies, only to experience an even greater revival in the new millennium. Today, Kunqu is performed professionally in seven Mainland Chinese major cities: Beijing (Northern Kunqu Theatre), Shanghai (Shanghai Kunqu Theatre), Suzhou (Suzhou Kunqu Theatre), Nanjing (Jiangsu Province Kunqu Theatre), Chenzhou (Hunan Kunqu Theatre), Yongjia County/Wenzhou (Yongjia Kunqu Theatre) and Hangzhou (Zhejiang Province Kunqu Theatre), as well as in Taipei. Non-professional opera societies are active in many other cities in China and abroad, and opera companies occasionally tour.

There are many plays that continue to be famous today, including The Peony Pavilion and The Peach Blossom Fan, which were originally written for the Kunqu stage. In addition, many classical Chinese novels and stories, such as Romance of the Three Kingdoms, Water Margin and Journey to the West were adapted very early into dramatic pieces.

Its melody or tune is one of the Four Great Characteristic Melodies in Chinese opera.

In 2006, Zhou Bing acted as Producer and Art Director for KunQu (Kun Opera) of Sexcentenary. It won Outstanding Documentary Award of 24th China TV Golden Eagle Awards; It won Award of TV Art Features of 21st Starlight Award for 2006.

Filmed by Sichuan radio and television (SRT) as part of a joint project launched by RT360 and Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU).

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Taipei’s goes dark for Earth Hour

Taiwan’s tallest building joined cities around the world to mark Earth Hour by turning off its lights on Saturday in a call for global action on climate change. (March 30)

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Asia Markets Decline After Big Wall Street Drop

Asian markets were rattled on Tuesday following the steep drop on Wall Street. Markets in Tokyo, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Taipei all recorded sharp losses on Tuesday. (Feb. 6)

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Taiwan’s foodie cred given Michelin boost

From streetside stalls dishing out one dollar bowls of braised pork rice to upscale eateries tucked away in quiet alleyways, Michelin inspectors are scouring the Taiwanese capital selecting restaurants for its first ever guide. The island’s reputation among in-the-know travellers as a foodie paradise will be further burnished when Taipei becomes the latest Asian city to have its own Michelin guide in the first quarter of 2018.