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Culture in the Alley: first-rate acts in local venues

Taipei City's Department of Cultural Affairs has organized a record-high 120 free cultural performances year around at municipal parks, schools and other locations around the city to make art and culture more accessible for residents.

This series of events is dubbed “Culture in the Alley” and is aimed at promoting arts and culture to local communities by bringing the performances straight to them, said Lee Yong-ping, the Deputy Mayor of Taipei City, during a press conference to announce the opening of the events in February.

Lee said the series was a great opportunity for residents and foreign visitors to enjoy free yet high-quality performances at various locations around the city.

The series of events features top cultural and performing arts groups from around the country, including Ming Hua Yuan, the Lanyang Taiwanese Opera Company, the Taipei Symphony Orchestra and the Taipei Chinese Orchestra.

Rather than playing in professional theaters and music halls, though, the performances will be held in schools such as Nangang Vocational High School, temples in Wanhua District (萬華) and various municipal parks.

For instance, on the day before Mother’s Day, Saturday, May 8, TSO will hold a brass quintet performance at the Taiwan Ornamental Plant Cooperative on Xing Long road and a percussion group performance at Neihu. There will also be performances on special holidays at the Youth Park in Wanhua.

There will be at least three performances in each of the 12 districts during the period, and the public can enjoy various performances almost every weekend.

The “Culture in the Alley” event was initiated in 1997 and has attracted more than 230,000 participants over the past 13 years, according to the department.