“People were there not only for the music, but also just to gather together and enjoy themselves for that precious feeling of happiness.”
In the summer of 1997, I had the pleasure of attending the Reading Festival in the UK. This world music festival, launched in 1989, planted the seeds of a dream inside me.
Several hundred tents covered the grassy expanse where crowds of people got together, set up camp, and enjoyed the three-day event to the fullest.
The grounds were full of people of all ages sitting on the grass, leisurely enjoying the music while soaking in the scent of summer. The music served as a catalyst that moved people, breaking through barriers of age, language and nationality.
People were there not only for the music, but to gather and enjoy themselves for that precious feeling of happiness together.
Having been in the music industry for ten years, wondered: When will we in Taiwan be able to hold an event like this?
“During the early stages of planning last year’s festival, our team agreed on the joint objective of creating a music festival that, quite simply, would bring people happiness. And on October 23, we accomplished our mission. ”
October 23 of 2016 was a day I’ll never forget. It was the last day of the 2016 World Music Festival @ Taiwan, and I was crying my eyes out on the PA stage, dancing and singing with the thousands of other people there. It was truly moving.
During the early stages of planning last year’s festival, our team agreed on the joint objective of creating a music festival that, quite simply, would bring people happiness. And on October 23, we accomplished our mission. We saw family members young and old, hand in hand, enjoying picnics and having a good time on the artificial turf. We saw couples leaning on each other watching the shows. We saw groups of friends meeting up and checking out the vendor stalls together. We saw those in the music world listening hard to informative lectures given by music festival curators. Seeing such things charged me with great happiness and love from in the bottom of my heart.
I know it may sound overly sentimental to speak of “love” in talking about a music festival, but that is really what I felt. Without the open-hearted, enthusiastic participation of the workers and attendees, the three-day festival would not have been such a success. Still feeling grateful for all that happened a year ago, I’ve been planning the 2017 World Music Festival @ Taiwan in the hope that it will offer even more to those who come.
The festival is not just about listening to music; it’s something for the mind and body, and people should go away from it with an overwhelming feeling of joy. So, we hope to get people more involved this year. We won’t be satisfied with just having them listen to music and watch the shows: we want everyone to dance, move with the rhythm, and completely engage their five senses.
Hence this year’s event theme of “Move your body. Music your life!” For example, dancers of the Irish group Téata will teach step dancing so people may learn firsthand more about the grace involved in this Irish art, and Dizu Plaatjies from South Africa will share music and dance from the expansive African continent. Thus, a prominent feature of this year’s event is dance instruction at workshops during the daytime so you can sing and dance along with the shows at night!
Rhythm pervades every part of our lives, including our bodies. There will be two Drum Circle events each day during which attendees may work at developing their improvisation and tempo-keeping skills in synch with all kinds of rhythmic instruments. The sound of over a hundred people creating such rhythm together is sure to be climactic and turn up the heat at the festival.
Five groups from Ireland, Korea, South Africa, the UK, and Spain, along with ten local groups, are to be the most brilliant aspect of the 2017 World Music Festival @ Taiwan. We invite you to come and enjoy a wonderful experience and make great memories for yourself as well as with your friends, family, and co-workers.
The 2017 World Music Festival @ Taiwan: Move your body. Music your life!