Jump to the content zone at the center

2020 Taipei Jazz Festival—“Jazz Decade”

Main Stage in Da'an Forest Park, 23–25 October
Settin’ October a-Swingin’ with the Feeling Jazz Live Series

Organized by the Taipei Department of Cultural Affairs, the Taipei Jazz Festival has entered its 14th year with the theme of “Jazz Decade.” Lectures, workshops, and other events have been held since September, and jazz music promotion and live performances have showcased the unique development of Taiwanese jazz over the past ten years.

The month of October saw three highly anticipated live concerts, with two new venues added this year in Dahu Park and Linsen Park. The festival drew to a close with the annual Taipei jazz event on the main stage in Da'an Forest Park. With amazing live performances from October 23 to 25, jazz fans came from all around to set October a-swingin’ with the Taipei Jazz Festival.

The Feeling Jazz Live performances now have two new stages. In addition to Zhongcheng Park in Tianmu, Neihu’s Dahu Park and Zhongshan District’s Linsen Park formed the backdrops to a total of 12 performances specially designed and themed for each park setting. Listeners enjoyed an all-new musical experience.

In recent years, the festival has also held jazz band competitions to encourage new talent, and the winning groups also performed at the festival. The first round of online selections in September resulted in a shortlist of 8 groups, all of which gave passionate performances. Festival curator Geddy Lin and the rest of the panel selected three outstanding new groups to perform on the main stage in Da'an Forest Park for the Feeling Jazz Live concert.

Oct 1 & 2: Feeling Jazz Live at Dahu and Linsen Parks—A Mellow Start to the Mid-Autumn Festival

The Dahu Park performance took place on October 1 on a stage set up on the grass next to the Dahu Park metro station. The concert celebrated the 100th anniversary of Charlie Parker’s birth with three bands playing: one new band and two jazz big bands. Chill Trio is a lively threepiece who won this year’s ferocious competition. The NTU Riot Jazz Orchestra has been in force for more than ten years. And the Taipei Youth Jazz Orchestra, with famous jazz musician Uno Kaoru as music director, performed Charlie Parker classics to commemorate the jazz giant’s immeasurable contribution to the development of jazz. It was an experience not to be missed for all fans of big band jazz.

Linsen Park is an urban park surrounded by numerous offices and department stores and located in the busy Nanjing West Road commercial area in Zhongshan District. On October 2, the Urban Jazz concert debuted jazz bands with more contemporary and avant-garde styles to reflect Taipei’s diverse, deep-rooted, bustling, and pleasant urban scene.

The performance featured: U18, a new band selected from this year’s competition whose members average less than 18 years old; the WeiSheng Lin Trio led by Lin Weisheng, who has lived in New York for 15 years and played all over the East Coast; and Ye Hepu’s trio. Ye Hepu has returned to Taiwan after studying in Belgium, and his trio teamed up with Sam Su. The keynote was an urban style, but with a variety of delectable performance styles. Fans of avant-garde or urban jazz, or just people out shopping—all took a musical turn through the urban center of Taipei with Urban Jazz.

October 16–18: Taipei turns out, lays out, and chills out in Zhongcheng Park in Tianmu with a variety of jazz styles

The popular Feeling Jazz Live night concert that was held for the last two years in Zhongcheng Park continued for the third time this year, with an extended run from October 16 to 18. The focus was on fusion jazz, and six jazz groups that blend styles from all over the world played in a family-friendly style. This was the most important event of the music festival before the main concert at Da'an Forest Park kicked off.

Playing at the Zhongcheng Park concert were the Li Fangxu Quartet, set up in 2006; Groove Station, who excel at interpreting Latin styles; Sticks To the Ground quartet led by Li Shijun, a jazz guitar virtuoso; Riverside Jazz Collective, led by Riverside Jazz Collective founder Geddy Lin; Taiwan’s first jazz big band Kupa Orchestra, which was set up more than sixty years ago; and Skyline Jazz Fusion Orchestra, which just won Best Live Performance Album at the 18th American Independent Music Awards.

The performances included a variety of styles, including Latin, electronic, and rock. Jazz fans and people from the Tianmu area brought their families to picnic in the park and enjoy the unique flavors of jazz from all over the world.

Feeling Jazz Live concerts use a small stage to create an intimate experience for both musicians and audience. This year, the Zhongcheng Park performance in Tianmu was also promoted in cooperation with Tianmu Commercial District and department stores Sogo, Daye Takashimaya, and Shinkong Mitsukoshi, with the first limited edition picnic mat produced specially for the event.

Concerts in the three parks were open to all. Audiences enjoyed the breezy autumn weather and experienced a new musical extravaganza. The special finale took place on the main stage at Da'an Forest Park from October 23 to 25. The performances were wonderful, one after the other. For more details, visit our Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/taipeidesign) and the official website of the Taipei Jazz Festival (https://www.taipeijazzfestival.info/).

Feeling Jazz Live Concert Info

Dahu Park, Neihu: Thursday 1 October, 3 pm–6 pm
Taipei Jazz Festival brings together Chill Trio, a lively, up-and-coming threepiece, NTU Riot Jazz Orchestra, and Taipei Youth Jazz Orchestra

Linsen Park, Zhongshan District: Friday 2 October, 3 pm–6 pm
Taipei Jazz Festival brings together newcomers U18, the WeiSheng Lin Trio, and the Ye Hepu Trio feat. Sam Su

Zhongcheng Park, Tianmu: Friday 16–Sunday 18 October
Li Fangxu Quartet, Groove Station, Li Shijun’s Sticks To the Ground Quartet, Riverside Jazz Collective, Kupa Orchestra, and Skyline Skyline Jazz Fusion Orchestra


NTU Riot Jazz Orchestra

Founded at National Taiwan University (NTU) in 2009, the Riot Jazz Orchestra has a wide-ranging repertoire. Conductor Yang Xiao'en built the band to act as a platform for developing and training outstanding jazz players, and it has cultivated many Taiwanese jazz talents.

Taipei Youth Jazz Orchestra
The big band orchestra was founded by Li Chengyu from a group of students and amateur jazz enthusiasts. Current music director Uno Kaoru has shaped the orchestra into something more mature and refined.

WeiSheng Lin Trio
Lin Weisheng is a jazz double bassist with an MA in music from SUNY. Lin began his professional jazz career in New York and has worked with many well-known jazz musicians and played in major jazz clubs on the East Coast of the US. In 2007, international jazz gateway All About Jazz wrote up Lin as one of the musicians worth listening to (“Listen Up!”). Having lived in New York for 15 years, Lin is now pursuing a career in Taipei.

Ye Hepu Trio feat. Sam Su
Ye Hepu earned an MA in jazz guitar performance from the Royal Conservatory of Brussels in Belgium. On returning to Taiwan, he collaborated with many well-known jazz musicians and orchestras, before forming the group Juewang and recording an album by the same name. In 2013, he published How Not to Get Stuck On Guitar to share what he has learned.

Li Fangxu Quartet
Li Fangxu started playing guitar in independent bands in 2006. In 2010, he went to Los Angeles College of Music to study guitar, where he became a professional guitarist and engaged in both performance and teaching.

Groove Station
Led by Colombian lead singer and founder of the group Norma Medina and Brazilian guitarist and composer Fabio Moreira, Groove Station excels at Latin fusion, Latin jazz, and traditional Latin styles.

Li Shijun’s Sticks To the Ground Quartet
Li Shijun studied jazz guitar performance at the University of North Texas, and has performed with Bernard Wright, a pianist who contributed to Tutu, a 1986 album by American musician and composer Miles Davis.

Riverside Jazz Collective
The collective was founded with the mission of returning to jazz harmony and looking for new techniques within the tradition. Founder of Riverside Geddy Lin personally leads the show, and every performance charts a different course and produces its own sparks.

Kupa Orchestra
Set up by Eric Hsieh in 1953, Kupa Orchestra is over sixty years old and was the first jazz big band in Taiwan. This cradle of Taiwanese jazz has an outstanding record and has trained many conductors who went on to work in television.

Skyline Jazz Fusion Orchestra
Founded in 2003, Skyline won Best Live Performance Album at the 18th American Independent Music Awards in 2020 with the album Symphojazz. Skyline is one of the few creative orchestras in Taiwan that continues to fuse jazz styles. They perform at many large jazz festivals and live venues, and integrate Taiwanese culture to create a unique fusion jazz style.