ROMSHING HAKKA TEA PICKING OPERA TROUPE & MIAOLI CHEN FAMILY PEIKUAN PAYIN GROUP
2023 EUROPEAN TOUR
THE SONG AND TEA OF THE EARTH DRAGON demonstrates in berlin germany, and telšiai lithuania
tour dates and
Conference Room in DDR Museum
open door 19:00 MAY 17 2023
st. wolfgang-straße 2, 10178 berlin
Stage in Samogitian Museum ALKA
open door 16:00 MAY 20 2023
muziejaus g. 31, 87357 telšiai, lithuania
sipping tea, eating sunflower seeds, and watching cheerful drama on a brightly painted stage in front of a temple—— this scene of Chou-Shen Drama 酬神戲 is a fond memory of many Taiwaners. Chou-Shen Drama is hosted in appreciation of the divine's blessing, and it is among the most cherished memories for kids born before the 80s.
Hakka Tea-Picking Opera narratives with PA YIN music were once the most popular kind of Chou-Shen Dramas that circulated the tea regions of northwestern Taiwan.
photo credit / Qiu, Hai-Ming
tea, music, and theater culture of taiwanese hakkas
Tea, music, theatrical entertainment, and the vibrant culture of Taiwanese Hakkas are beautifully intertwined, creating a rich tapestry of tradition and artistry.
For generations, the Hakka community in northwestern Taiwan's MiaoLi and HsinChu counties has been deeply involved in the cultivation and craftsmanship of tea. When one envisions Taiwanese Hakka culture, the imagery of tea pickers meandering through rows of tea trees, their melodious voices carrying across neighboring hills, often comes to mind.
Over the past two centuries, these tea-picking songs have been cherished and preserved. They have evolved into stage musicals, developed into the Hakka Tea-Picking Opera 客家採茶戲, and ultimately transformed into the grandeur of the Hakka Grand Opera 客家大戲.
At the heart of this remarkable tradition stands the esteemed Rom Shing Hakka Opera Troupe, the epitome of Hakka theatrical excellence in Taiwan. Founded in 1987 by the renowned Hakka musician Prof. Cheng, Rom-Shing, this troupe perpetuates the authentic Hakka Tea-Picking Opera legacy. Accompanied by the enchanting melodies of Hakka PA YIN music 客家八音, the actors skillfully weave together the tea-picking songs using the intricate and evocative traditional technique known as the "nine tones and eighteen tunes" 九腔十八調.
In the performances of Rom Shing Hakka Opera Troupe, one can witness the harmonious fusion of tea, music, and theater as they bring to life the cultural essence and profound heritage of the Taiwanese Hakka community.
meet the touring team
eight musicians, one female lead actress, one male lead actor, and one grand master
a team to bring taiwanese hakka PA YIN music and traditional hakka drama to the next level
Cheng, Rom Shing
Wu, Dai Chen
Hu, Yu Sheng
Chung, Chi Yi
Ku, Yu Hsuan
Chien, I Chun
Sung, Pei Rong
pang hu, bang gu
Chuang, Ya Jan
Chuang, Chun Fu
Teng, Yin Ko
yang qin, bang gu
“ pa yin “
music of the opera
PA YIN means "eight musical instruments materials" in ancient Chinese, referring to "Metal, Stone, Silk, Bamboo, Gourd, Soil, Leather, and Wood."
In Taiwan, the soul of Hakka PA YIN is a double-reeded instrument, suo-na 嗩吶, and percussion instruments such as bang-gu 板鼓, accompanied by wind instrument zhi-xiao 直簫 and two-stringed bowed instruments er-xian 二弦, pang-hu 胖胡, and er-hu 二胡.
Intertwined with the life of the Taiwanese Hakkas, PA YIN has been famous in the northwestern and southern Hakkas communities for over 200 years. Taiwanese Hakkas invite the PA YIN band or troupe to perform on important occasions, such as religious festivals, weddings, seasonal celebrations, and memorials to their ancestors.
The origin of Taiwanese Hakka PA YIN is still being determined. Some researchers suggested that early Chinese immigrants brought PA YIN's original form to Taiwan in imperial China's late Ming or early Qing period (around the late 16th century). Fused with diverse local music cultures in Taiwan, it developed into its current form.
for this tour, a 30-minute performance of 4 Taiwanese Hakka Tea-Picking Opera segments will be shown:
• Hakka PA YIN "Ｗind and Percussion music 吹打樂"
• Tea-Picking mixed Luan-Tan opera "Blessing of the Earth Dragon 採茶亂彈戲：土龍神下凡"
• Hakka PA YIN "Silk String music: Winemaking 弦索樂：糶酒"
• Single section of the Tea-Picking opera "serving tea 採茶戲：扛茶"
“ taiwan's treasure “
prof. cheng, rom shing
This is a rare opportunity to experience the award-winning, authentic Taiwanese Hakka Tea-Picking Opera Troupe led by one of the best Hakka Musicians in Taiwan, Prof. Cheng, Rom Shing 鄭榮興教授.
Over the years, Prof. Cheng, Rom Shing has won the Folk Art Heritage Award, the Award for Successfully Promoting Social Education in Art and Culture, and many other recolonizations offered by the Ministry of Culture and Ministry of Education of Taiwan. In addition, for six consecutive years from 2014 to 2020, the Troupe won Golden Melody Awards for Best Performance, Best Audio, and Video Production in Traditional Musical Performing Arts category. In 2022, to honor his lifelong contribution to preserving and promoting Taiwanese Hakka PA YIN, Prof. Cheng, Rom Shing has been accorded the highest craftsmanship status in Taiwan, "Taiwan's Treasure 人間國寶."
the event in berlin
Tickets or reservations are not required.
Hakka Citrus-Stuffed Tea 酸柑茶 and Hakka Mochi 客家麻糬 are served for free, but the offer is subject to availability.
Opening speech by the Ambassador of Taiwan in Germany,
Dr. Shieh, Jhy Wey 台灣駐德大使謝志偉博士
Performance from Rom-Shing Hakka Opera Troupe and Miaoli Chen Family Pei Kuan Pa Yin Group
Taking fan-photo with the Troupe. Farewell and until next time.
MAY 17 2023
17:45 - 18:00
18:05 - 18:20
18:25 - 18:40
Oriental Beauty Oolong 東方美人茶 is a type of Taiwanese specialty tea originating in the Hakka community of MiaoLi and HsinChu counties. To celebrate the showcasing of Taiwanese Hakka culture in Berlin, we invite you to join us in a short tea ceremony served by a Tea Art practitioner from Deerland Tea. Every ceremony lasts for 15 min and is limited to 8 seats. Please book in advance via firstname.lastname@example.org
19:00 - 19:30
19:20 - 19:30
19:30 - 20:00
20:00 - 20:30
the earth dragon
The "Earth Dragon 土龍神" is a revered deity in Taiwanese Hakka culture. It represents the nurturing essence of the land and is believed to bring abundant harvests to farmers. The Hakka community highly esteems the Earth Dragon as a sacred creature.
When Hakka people find a new home, they celebrate with a grand fiesta to honor the local Earth Dragon and seek its protection. This deep belief in the Dragon's power safeguards the Hakka way of life; Hakka people maintain their worship of the Dragon beneath the Gong-Ting Table 公廳桌, a sacred space in their homes where they pay homage to their ancestors.