With the support from Taiwan’s Ministry of Culture, Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles will participate in the Western Arts Alliance (WAA) Annual Conference for the fourth consecutive year from October 6th to 9th, 2020. Due to the pandemic, this year marks the first virtual conference in collaboration with Arts Midwest. The WAA 2020 Conference continuously takes place in the Western United States as one of the few largest annual conferences. This year, Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles will present the “Taiwan Showcase” website (http://www.paap.org.tw/twshowcase/
) in the virtual exhibition hall of the conference. There will be 8 Taiwanese indigenous performing arts groups introduced to professional attendees to create American tour opportunities in the future.
The “Taiwan Showcase” website titled, “Life and Vitality of Indigenous Taiwan,” aims to display how community life nurtures creativity, while fieldwork and the reading of literature and history lay the groundwork for artistic creation. Rooted confidence stemming from the understanding of their own culture through the life and vitality of Taiwan, indigenous artists create works that are not limited by any signs and spaces. Furthermore, these artists are adept at collaborative projects with their lifestyles. The website includes a curatorial background, an introduction and video highlights of each group, and 1 short compilation video. Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles recommends these 8 groups not only for their boundless dance or music works but for the promotion of some ongoing American tour projects as well. These 8 groups include 4 songwriters and singers (Sangpuy, Anu.kaliting.sadipangan, Chalaw pasiwali, and O-KAI Singers), and 4 contemporary dance troupes (Tjimur Dance Theatre, Kuo-Shin Chuang Pangcah Dance Theatre, TAI Body Theatre, and Bulareyaung Dance Company). They guide global viewers through the past and present, traversing the worlds of traditional songs and contemporary performances, and share with them how they work with cultural elements and contemporary issues as they reconstruct the relationship between humans and nature. This website debuts on October 6th and remains available throughout November.
Additionally, the conference will hold a workshop titled, “Re-Opening & Getting to Work - A Look Forward,” on October 9th at 10:00 AM PDT. As Taiwan’s success in fighting COVID-19 has received global recognition, WAA invites Liu Yi-ruu, the General and Artistic Director of National Theater & Concert Hall (NTCH), to be one of the workshop speakers. Liu Yi-ruu will share NTCH’s experience in preparing the venue’s reopening with moderator Matthew Kowal (Co-founder of Majestic Collaboration) and three other speakers including Cole Huling (The Handsome Little Devils), Anna Glass (Executive Director of Dance Theatre of Harlem), and John Zirkle (Executive Director of Warren Miller Performing Arts Center).
WAA was established in 1967 and the majority of its members are performing arts professionals such as artists, managers, agents, and presenters from throughout the Western United States. Each year, the WAA annual conference takes place in August, and since 2017, Taiwan Academy in Los Angeles has been a part of these conferences to promote Taiwanese performing arts groups. This year, Arts Midwest + Western Arts Alliance 2020 On-line Conference includes various activities, such as a virtual exhibition hall, forums, showcases, and workshops.