Spotlight

Date: 2017/6/23

Duo Recital Delivers Echoes of Traditional Tea Harvest Chants

The organizers of the course "Music Design and Innovative Application" offered at the Stanley Wang D-School@NTU teamed up with the Dixon Foundation for Arts and Culture to put on the concert, "Sio-Po-Kua: Music from Taiwan's Lush Tea Gardens," on May 28.

Held at KHS Hall in Luzhou, the duo recital featured Taiwanese flutist Chia-Fen Tsai (蔡佳芬), a graduate of the Yale School of Music, and virtuoso Cuban classical guitarist Rene Izquierdo.

Unique to Taiwan, sio-po-kua are traditional mountain songs that were chanted among the tea farmers of Pinglin, a mountainous area in southeastern New Taipei City famous for its pouchong tea, while they picked tea leaves during the harvest season. Although the melodies of sio-po-kua are composed of simple three-note scales, they are still rich in expression.

The songs presented in Tsai and Izquierdo's performance were the work of composer Chun-Da Huang (黃俊達), who reinterpreted the traditional songs compiled by ethnomusicologist Chin-Cheng Lin (林金城) in his book, Pinglin's Sio-Po-Kua. Huang's fresh reinterpretations merge a bygone soundscape of Taiwan with Western musical instruments, enabling a fading echo from the past to reach the ears of contemporary listeners.

  • “Sio-Po-Kua: Music from Taiwan's Lush Tea Gardens” concert.

    “Sio-Po-Kua: Music from Taiwan's Lush Tea Gardens” concert.

  • Performers and guests of the concert.

    Performers and guests of the concert.

  • Promotional brochures of the concert.

    Promotional brochures of the concert.

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