On Sunday, October 2 at 1:30 PM, two phenomenal Taiwanese Choral Music groups will join forces for one afternoon only. Taipei Harmonic Chorus (led by Shao-Dong Liu) and Hai Tien Chorus of New York (led by Pi-Chu Hsiao) will perform a variety of contemporary art songs, folk melodies, enchanting movie themes, and some unforgettable Taiwan campus folk songs.
The Chinese American Arts Council held a press conference on Wednesday, September 21 to discuss the event. Tickets are $16 apiece, and special box seating for six is $300. You can purchase tickets here.
“It has always been Flushing Town Hall’s mission to reflect New York’s diversity and the cultural treasures of the world,” said Executive and Artistic Director of Flushing Town Hall Ellen Kodadek. “Songs of Music symbolizes our respect for the local community here in New York, as well as prestigious artists from abroad,” she continued.
Curated by Dr. Hsing-Lih Chou and Chinese American Arts Council, this concert will immerse the audience with beautiful harmonies from across the world. The Taipei Harmonic Chorus believes in singing for society; the group spreads its melodies around the world by performing for good causes: the benefit of charitable organizations. The award winning Hai Tien Chorus of New York has performed in various prestigious venues including Avery Fischer Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Merkin Concert Hall, etc., and is the longest running Chinese chorus in New York.
One of the “must-hears” in the concert is Teasing at the Ferry (Miss Peach Blossom Wants to Cross the River.) This very famous Taiwan folk song was possibly taken from one of the local operas in China. But for some reason it sounds much better to sing it in Taiwanese dialect. Its melody is similar to the Taiwan folk music, Che-Goo-Diaw (Vehicle and Drum melody).
Many people especially like to sing this happy song in the lunar New Year and believe it will bring good luck. The Taiwanese local opera Teasing at Ferry contains two roles: Miss Peach Blossom and Ferryman. The story is about the beautiful Miss Peach Blossom, who wants to take a ferry. The ferryman intends to take advantage of her and starts to give her a hard time. They come out with an agreement, which is to compete by singing. If Miss Peach Blossom wins, the ferryman has to take her across the river free.
If the ferryman wins, Miss Peach Blossom has to marry him. Obviously this is not fair, but Miss Peach Blossom takes the challenge and of course she wins the competition. Somehow the ferryman still doesn’t want to take her across the river. He keeps on giving her a hard time, and they have to keep singing and singing.