top of page


"Fokus Taiwan," a series of dance performances by Taiwanese groups, takes place from February 9 to 11, 2023, at the Darmstadt State Theatre (Staatstheater Darmstadt) in Germany, showcasing the exquisite and elegant artistic connotations of Taiwan's contemporary dance.

Six dance pieces that reflect Taiwanese artists' personal and social explorations were included in "Fokus Taiwan":

FreeSteps - NiNi   ⾃由步.⼀盞燈的景⾝

by Horse Dance Theater   驫舞劇場

Beings   撇捺

by Shimmering Production   微光製造



by B.DANCE   丞舞製作

Voyage   旅程

a collaboration work by Europe-based dancers Chen Guang-Xuan   陳廣軒 and Lu Mei-Yun   盧美云

en forme 

by Sunny Yang   楊乃璇

and Les Petites Choses Production   小事製作

Deerland Tea is invited to design and work on three accompanying events alongside these contemporary dance performances to showcase different aspects of Taiwanese culture through diversified forms.

​photo credit / Sinah Osner

Screenshot 2024-05-06 at 01.08.02.png

en forme

Artistic director Sunny Yang of Les Petites Choses Production extends a special invitation to tea sommelier Angie Chen from Deerland Tea to join the stage as one of the performers in her dance piece en forme.


en forme is a captivating dance piece that explores the intricate relationship between individuals and the objects that surround them. It delves into the question of whether people consciously choose objects that hold special significance for them, or if these objects enter their lives to fill a void.


As an active tea sommelier, Angie Chen has been passionately serving and introducing Taiwanese tea in over 25 cities across Europe under various circumstances. Intrigued by Angie's profound connection with her tea, Sunny Yang observes and tries to draw inspiration from the unique bond between Angie and her tea, thus incorporating it into the stage performance.

Screenshot 2024-05-07 at 00.24_edited.jpg

tea dance pairing

Five teas that ecos to Taiwan's history to pair with five dance pieces that reflect Taiwanese artists' personal and social explorations. These teas are served during breaks between dances, elevating the concept of the performance to another level by engaging the guests' senses of smell and taste.

black oolong.jpg


Freesteps - NiNi

Taiwanese PiLuoChun green tea is brewed by scattering tea leaves onto the surface of water heated to 85°C then allowing it to be refrigerated.


As the least processed type of tea, green tea possesses abundant natural ingredients in their unoxidized forms, exhibiting lively fragrances and a structured mouthfeel. Resembling unfettered dance moves under a spotlight, tea leaves spiral down with capricious movements as they steep.


Taiwanese PiLoChun is known for its vigor and crispness, akin to a deft dancer executing adroit moves.




Roasted DongDing Oolong preheated with charcoal.

DongDing oolong tea is renowned for its complexity and dynamism. Flavorwise, it offers delicate notes of ripe fruit that culminate with a woody hint. In terms of mouthfeel, it initially presents a noticeable roughness that swiftly transforms into a smooth and mellow aftertaste. Before brewing, tea leaves are further developed by preheating them with charcoal through a sheet of paper. The resulting multidimensionality of the tea reflects the uncertainty of human essence characterized by Beings.


Similar to the way two dancers gauge and interact with each other, the relationship between tea and heated charcoal is intriguing. As a self-contained artwork, the flavor of tea can be further refined through additional layers of heat mediated by a paper sheet. Simultaneously, the process of charcoal burning to ashes is reminiscent of how individuals contribute to a relationship. Ultimately, while it remains unclear whether any participant is better off, one thing is certain: nothing remains unchanged.




Roasted PauTsiong Tea is served with a variety of fairness cups, available in different shapes and sizes.


Undergoing rigorous bruising, rolling, and roasting processes, roasted PauTsiong tea leaves are anything but tender and fresh. Elegant, strong, bitter, and serene—a reminder of the challenges faced by women in earlier time periods.


In the 1870s, PauTsiong tea production was the most crucial industry in northern Taiwan. Tens of thousands of women chose jobs over marriage, whether willingly or unwillingly, and experienced the bittersweetness of free love and economic independence. Skilled women could earn much more than their male counterparts, empowering them against the prevalent practice of arranged marriage. However, they were not free from harassment and had to navigate life in an unfamiliar big city.


After hours of roasting, the refreshing taste of PauTsiong tea becomes heavier and more complex, while the flavor and quality of the tea become robust against various storage conditions. Serving the tea with various fairness cups ensures that the flavor in each drinking cup remains unadulterated. Just like the women in "Timeless," they share common traits but also possess their individualities.

_DSC1571 copy.jpg



Jasmine Scented PauTsiong Tea is brewed with 90°C hot water and then chilled.


Voyage is an intimate journey between two people. Carefully carried by their partner, a dancer maneuvers without ever stepping on the ground throughout the whole journey. The delicate balance between the two dancers resembles how a well-crafted scented tea should be.


Scented teas are not ordinary flavored teas or teas blended with floral aroma. Layered only with freshly harvested blossoms, dry tea leaves desiccate the petals, absorbing the floral fragrance. The desiccated petals will eventually be removed and not added to the teapot; however, the leaves will carry the exquisite floral aroma.


During the scenting process, the condition of the tea leaf and flower must be carefully monitored so that they both play active roles in the duet. Balancing the two is essential, as marginalizing either party will eventually undermine both. The process blurs the boundary between the self and the other: part of the individualities disappear as the two become a new homogeneous entity.




Light oxidized JinXuan Oolong from LuYe, roasted at high temperature, undergoes a 90-minute extraction at room temperature with Johnny Walker Black Label.


Crafted from tropical lowland JinXuan, this Oolong is renowned for its strength. Roasted at exceptionally high temperatures with Lichi charcoal, its robustness is further intensified. However, when immersed in lukewarm Scotch, the curled tea leaves stubbornly retain their corkscrewed shape even after prolonged infusion.


The warm, sugary flavor remains trapped within the twisted tea leaves, while the vanilla note in the liquor becomes indiscernible. Parallel to the smoke and peat in the Scotch, the tea leaves impart traces of intense aroma from Lichi charcoal, a heavy mouthfeel from the tropical lowland tea, and a hue of dark Madder red to the infusion.


Similar to how the strong tea and liquor imprison each other's flavor, society and individuals overshadow each other's virtues. As individuals act apathetically for self-preservation, the society constituted by detached individuals becomes hostile and selfish. While the societal atmosphere may be tense and unbalanced, let us raise our glasses alone and celebrate together.

thanks to

As "Fokus Taiwan" is jointly organized by Staatstheater Darmstadt and Hessischen Staatsballetts, with support from Taiwan's Ministry of Culture and the Cultural Division of the Taipei Representative Office in Germany, we would like to extend our thanks not only to our guests but also to our hosts for this opportunity.

All on-site photo credits go to Sinah Osner.

bottom of page