• Date: January 20,2010 (Wednesday) 18:00 - 20:00
  • Place: Taipei International Convention Center, 4F VIP Room

Chai Found Music Workshop


Since 1991 Chai Found Music Workshop is active on the national and international music scene. From its early days on, the group has been performing contemporary classical music as well as traditional Chinese and Taiwanese music in countless concerts in Taiwan, all of Asia, Europe, and the Americas. This has gained Chai Found Music Workshop the reputation of being one of the foremost Sizhu (Chinese chamber music) ensembles in the world.

The idea behind all of Chai Found Music Workshop’s musical and cultural activities is the advancement of traditional Taiwanese music, both inside and outside of the confines of Taiwan. Chai Found Music Workshop adheres to their traditional foundation and complements it with contemporary extensions. The Council of Cultural Affairs of Taiwan has been supporting and endorsing the group’s activities, and has granted them several awards for excellence.

The group’s mainly acts in three realms:
Chai Found Music Workshop is keeping up and enriching the ample tradition of Taiwanese music on national and international stages, be it in a chamber music or an orchestral setting.

The instruments of Chai Found Music Workshop are the six most representative of the Sizhu tradition: the erhu (two-stringed Chinese violin), the di (Chinese bamboo flute), the pipa (Chinese lute), the guzheng (Chinese zither), the yangqin (Chinese dulcimer), and the ruanxian (Chinese banjo or guitar). Chai Found Music Workshop has commissioned many Taiwanese composers to write arrangements of traditional music for the Sizhu instrumentation.

The Chai Found Traditional Orchestra, a large symphony orchestra with Chinese and Western instruments, gathers on special occasions and presents programs of traditional music.

Chai Found Music Workshop’s musicians have spent a substantial amount of time touring the villages, towns, and cities of Taiwan playing countless concerts in local culture centers, schools, and outdoor venues. As a cultural envoy for Taiwan the group has been invited to international stages, and has conducted workshops on Chinese music and instruments.

Chai Found Music Workshop is staging popular music productions including choreography and drama elements.

Chai Found’s first large-scale stage show was an entertaining trip into the world of Sizhu music and theater: Shichitaro and the Crazy Girl (2003), a musical for children.

In 2005, Chai Found staged its first Eastern Instrumental Theater production Ambush!, an instrumental musical with 27 musicians, choreography and drama elements. Ambush! recounts legendary episodes from early Chinese history: The cruel war between Liu Bang and Xiang Yu, which led to the dramatic suicide of Xiang Yu and his wife Yu Ji, and the institution of the Han Dynasty under Liu Bang. Ambush! was performed in every major city throughout Taiwan with enthusiastic responses from audiences and media.

Eastern Legends is a program of classics of Taiwanese and Chinese Music and original compositions by Chen-Ming Huang rendered in rock and techno style, featuring splendid lighting design and minutely choreographed movements of the musicians. For its premiere in April 2007 a world record was challenged: over 1000 erhu players of all ages gathered in Taipei to perform jointly with the musicians of Chai Found. Successively, Eastern Legends has been staged in every major city of Taiwan and went on an extended tour of the United States in fall of 2008.

The Journey of the Monkey King (2009) is Chai Found’s latest stage production and the second in its series of Eastern Instrumental Theater. It is based on the classical Chinese novel ‘Journey to the West’ and shows the spiritual experiences of Sūn Wùkōng, the monkey king, and his journey to the West with the monk Táng Sānzàng.

Chai Found Music Workshop is adding their Chinese timbres to contemporary classical music by commissioning, performing and recording original music and teaming up with contemporary music ensembles from the West.

The unique character of Sizhu music and its instruments has attracted no small number of composers from all over the world who have written new pieces either for Chai Found alone or for combinations of Chinese and Western instruments.

Chai Found Music Workshop’s invitations to international music festivals (with both contemporary and traditional music) include: Barcelona Arts Festival, Spain (1992), Warsaw Autumn, Poland (1992/1999), Hörgänge, Vienna, Austria (2000), Cologne Music Festival, Germany (2001), Music Biennale Zagreb, Croatia (2001), Gaida Contemporary Music Festival, Lithuania (2002), Berliner Festspiele, Germany (2004), Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival, England (2004). Festival Dimension, Seoul, Korea (2009).

Chai Found Music Workshop has toured the following countries: Austria, Costa Rica, Croatia, England, France, Germany, Holland, Japan, Korea, Lithuania, the Philippines, Poland, Spain, plus several times in the United States.

Chai Found’s collaborations with contemporary music ensembles include: Nieuw Ensemble Amsterdam, Holland (2002), Klangforum Vienna, Austria (2004), EXXJ - Ensemble of the 20th Century, Vienna / Austria (2006), NDR Symphony Orchestra, Hamburg / Germany (2008), Ensemble 2e2m Paris / France (2008).