A local English theater production is pushing for a new lobby in Taiwan

Taipei Shorts 台北戲劇表演
Mar 22, 23 at 8 PM, March 24 at 1:30 PM

Download pdf of full program here

or Read online here

Comedy Shows are a rarity in Taiwan. Whether you are looking for classical Standup Comedy or English theater productions in general, the range of offers is quite limited.

Especially in Taipei – the place to be for most expats settling in Taiwan – the demand for English language performances arises more and more. On the other side, trained actors, writers and directors, both Taiwanese and local expats, lack the opportunity to present their talent. Although there is certainly enough capability and interest, showcases in Taiwan have remained very little in the past few years.

Foreign actors do not only have to deal with legal issues and unstable incomes, but also the whole set up for foreign theater productions is aggravated by governmental barriers. In addition, English Theater is often less accessible for the local community since most actors and directors are of foreign residency.

John Brownlie has experienced this huge gap in Taiwan at first hand. He is an actor himself and was involved in several English theater productions at the LAB space, produced and directed by Brook Hall. Taipei Shorts is his first own production and will take place at the Red Room venue three days in the row, from 22nd – 24th March. Given the challenging circumstances, John has dedicated his work to push for a new lobby for local English language theater.

‘Your Country Needs You’ finds a politician, secret service agent and a person of an impossible age, wrestling with the question, “Who are you?” – Your Country Needs You, written and directed by Shashwati Talukdar

Taipei Shorts consists of six different short plays covering a variety of themes and genres from comedic mystery “Why is John Klug here” to pensive female assassin in “The Love Drug”. John’s main purpose on choosing this format was to engage as many talents as possible. In total, 15 actors, 7 writers and 7 directors have worked on this production. All parties are either local expats or Taiwanese, willing to reach out to foreign and local communities likewise. Being involved in Taipei Shorts “gives both actors and directors a real chance to breathe life into English Theater in Taiwan”, says John.

TAIPEI SHORTS – Six Plays One Pass only at Red Room, Taipei

Entry passes can be purchased online on https://www.accupass.com/go/taipeishorts for $300NTD (students) or $400NTD (standard).

The short plays will be performed on
3/22 (Fri) 8pm, 3/23 (Sat) 8pm and 3/24 (Sun) 1:30pm
at Red Room Taipei, Jianguo S. Rd. Sec. 1 #177 (1st building on the left, 2F).

Reflections on RED 糸工

糸工 ]藝術對畫 閉幕趴Red – VD XXVI , Closing Party
展期 Date|Saturday, 2018.10.06 – 3PM – 5PM
地點 Venue|Red Room 紅坊國際村
新藝術對畫藝廊 The New Red Room Visual Dialogues Gallery

Running from September 2nd to October 6th, Red Room’s Visual Dialogues is in full swing with its inaugural exhibition, RED, in their new location. The show, a group exhibition, invited artists from across all mediums to submit works that contemplate and address Red Room’s eponymously named exhibition. Ushering in a new chapter in the history of Red Room and Visual Dialogues, the show brings together works from Red Room veterans and newcomers. Of note amongst the latter, are the Photowalkers, a group of photographers and photography enthusiasts based in Taiwan.

To those familiar with Red Room’s original location, the issues of space and presentation may linger in the imagination, especially for those tasked with curating the large and open multipurpose room. There was undoubtedly a certain charm in having a mixed performance space, gallery, community center. After all, the focus and mission of Red Room emphasizes community first above all else. Nonetheless, from this writer’s personal conversations with previous curators, the large open room and its high walls always posed a challenge. In a sense, the works were swallowed by the walls. A space with that kind of appetite could potentially become a challenge for the artists working to fill it with work.

With this in mind, the new gallery and location mitigates these issues in one easy master stroke. The gallery has its own space now. What is for now called the Visual Dialogues Gallery exists separate from Red Rooms performance area. The compartmentalization means the gallery is now more forgiving, more accommodating to the works on display. RED, a group exhibition composed of 27 different visual artists, 13 photographers, and over 40 different works, becomes the perfect exercise in space and presentation for the new location. Walls are full, works are not competing for recognition, and walls are not hungry.

Red Visual Dialogues 26 from Red Room on Vimeo.

The works themselves, in paint, in glass, in digital print, in book, in wall, in poster, in woven swing, tackle what “red” means, in all the permutations the mind can imagine. Playful works, loving works, and works that ask us to stretch our conception of this all to human color, hang democratically, side-by-side. It is no wonder such a topic can elicit such varied interpretations. One gets the sense that red is the oldest colors. A color that flows from the inside.

The closing of the show will be on October 6th, and will take the form of a take-down and party. If you did not make it to the opening, I highly recommend making time and paying Red Room a visit and checking out RED. The work, the artists, and the new space may surprise you.

Download the pdf for Visual Dialogues Artist profiles here.

Download the pdf for Photowalkers bios here.


Sean Gaffney
[email protected]

Red Room Reflections, September 2018

Aside 16, A Feast for the Senses 第16場 一場感官的盛宴

Aside 16 June 2018

Aside 16

A Feast for the Senses

The June Aside at the Red Room was a feast for the senses in more ways than one.

The evening was an educational journey through the many tastes and flavors of this island. From Hakka Chinese to indigenous cuisine and traditional bandoh style banquets, our knowledge of Taiwan’s rich and diverse food culture was enriched and enjoyed by all who attended.

Katy Hui-Wen Hung 洪惠文 is an avid collector of recipes and culinary stories as well as a passionate advocate of Taiwanese cuisine. Her frequent travels have become a journey through Taipei’s food culture, past and present. She spoke about her discoveries while writing her soon to be released book on A Culinary History of Taipei: Beyond Pork and Ponlai, co-authored by Steven Crook.

Chef Lin Ming-Tsan 林明燦 shared his knowledge and experiences as a 總舖師 Bando master chef, a tradition handed down from his father and grandfather. His display of knives dating back from his grandfather’s time and the must-have items a good bandoh chef requires was a rare treat to witness. He is known as A Master Who Recreates Old Favors. ~ “I carry the torch to continue my father’s legacy

Chuan Chun-Yi 全俊逸 is from the mountain Bunun tribes of Xinyi in Nantou County. A shepherd by trade, he spoke about the abundant life force brought out by the earth and the sustainable management of land, life, and food by the Bunun tribe. Chuan also prepared a feast for all to share with his classic mutton tomato stew and fresh wild vegetables. Accompanied by Mochi and rice wine freshly prepared by his mother.

Special thanks to each of the presenters for their time and sharing. Thank you to Chun-Yi for the delicious feast and to our generous partners Canmeng Aveda and Granola House for sponsoring the gifts. Thanks to Romona Guan for on the spot translations.


第16場 旁白在紅坊
一場感官的盛宴

六月場的旁白在紅坊真是一場多方元的感官盛宴。活動的步伐讓我們跟著講師們串流於台灣島的各種口感和風味;從客家到布農到辦桌宴席,每一位參與者對台灣豐富的飲食文化都感受到了更深層的了解與欣賞。
洪惠文(Katy Hui-Wen Hung)是一位食譜與故事的收藏者,也同時是台灣飲食文化的倡導者。她在台灣的各種旅遊經驗讓她能更充分了解到台北食物歷史的過去與現在。洪老師為各位觀眾述說了她與Steven Crook一起合寫的新書:「A Culinary History of Taipei: Beyond Pork and Ponlai」,而我們都很期待這本書的出版。

林明燦(Chef Lin Ming-Tsan)跟著祖父與父親的腳步貫上辦桌總舖師頭銜,當晚與紅坊大方分享了他的各種知識與經驗。 林老師更特別帶來了祖父與父親傳承下來的各種刀具與現場分享它們悠久的歷史與各種用途。就如號稱「傳承古早味大師」的林師傅說道:「我在延續我父親的事蹟。」

全俊逸(Chuan Chun-Yi)是南投信義鄉布農族的人。正職是牧羊人的全老師非常注重與土地的關係,述說了布農族透過可持續農業培養出來的生命力與食物。全老師更與母親用心的烹煮了一頓豐盛的大餐,菜單上有令人垂涎三尺的番茄羊肉湯、新鮮的蔬菜、手工麻糬與自己釀造的小米酒。

非常感謝各位講師為我們貢獻這麼多的時間與愛心。特別謝謝全老師與母親為我們帶來每個人都吃不停的一餐。更要感謝我們的夥伴們AVEDA肯夢與Granola House贊助的禮品。

想看到活動當晚更多照片的話可以點擊此連結.

希望大家能跟我們一起參加下一場旁白在紅坊。敬請期待其他消息喔!


Photos of the evening can be viewed here.

We hope to see you at the next Aside. Stay tuned for updates. Sign up for our monthly e-news so you never miss out on a great opportunity to visit the Red Room!

The Red Room. June 2018