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NSYSU organizes a series of night art performances: “Don't Sleep in Yancheng: The ZOO”

Thanks to the support of the Radiant Education Foundation, the students and teachers of NSYSU organized “Don't Sleep in Yancheng: The ZOO” – a series of six street performances in evening hours in the Yancheng District of Kaohsiung, to connect with local businesses, such as Chateau de Chine Hotel Kaohsiung, teams and spaces, and to let arts blend in with ordinary street life. The event attracted nearly 5,000 visitors to the streets of the Yancheng District. The team of the NSYSU USR-C Project “City as a Commuseum - Socially Embedded Community Engagement” collaborated with related departments and institutes of the University, hoping to start inter-disciplinary courses and discover the voices of the local people and the charm of the Yancheng District through artistic performance, art installations, and events, letting the people notice the uniqueness of this area to make the local culture and festivals continue to thrive.

Assistant Professor Shih-Hsiang Sung of the Program in Interdisciplinary Studies at NSYSU (PIS) and a professional of the industry Wen-Ting Liu said that the concept for “The ZOO” came from the proximity of the Kaohsiung City Shoushan Zoo and the Yancheng District. They hope that the close relationship between humans and animals will make the connection between the local community and “Don't Sleep in Yancheng” grow and increase participation. “The ZOO” is a reflection of life. When something does not happen as one desires, one can dismiss it with a laugh, adjust the pace, and rediscover the meaning of life. The intention of “The ZOO” is to encourage people to take some time to reflect on life and not to live lifelessly like animals kept in a ZOO.

During the “Don't Sleep in Yancheng” event, 6 plays were shown, including “Clap Clap”, “Breakthrough”, “Animal World”, “Life of Good Fortune”. “Breakthrough” depicts a world where fish beat their wings and birds swim with their fins. It stimulates viewers’ imagination and reminds them that one will always see the light at the end of the tunnel and overcome difficulties if he/she beats their wings hard enough or tries to think from a different perspective. In “Life of Good Fortune”, the bat symbolizes happiness, the deer antler - fortune, and the ocean beast - life. The whole space presents the ocean, the land, and the sky, to show the destruction of the ecosystem brought by humans. The team of students and teachers hopes that through this work they can advocate animal rights for all creatures on Earth to live in symbiosis.

The performance “Walking Ma Talking Ma” involved the participation of the owners of 7 clothing shops in the Jue-Jiang Traditional Market; the NSYSU students selected clothes, rearranged them to suit their style, and organized a fashion show, reinterpreting the fashion of the Market. The performance attracted a large group of passers-by. The team of students and teachers of NSYSU performed “Let’s Make a Shadow Play in Taiwanese” - a charming shadow play in Taiwanese Hokkien, which stands for the preservation of the core values of the traditional culture and languages of Taiwan. Tequila Dance Team performed a gymnastics show - “Animal Gathering”, engaging the public in an enthusiastic dialogue.

In addition, during the event, there was also the food stall of the Chateau de Chine Hotel Kaohsiung, which offered such limited edition foods as “Caterpillar Ice Cream” and “Eggs in a Nest” and conducted a lecture on entrepreneurship in collaboration with NSYSU to let the students of different fields experience managing a food stall and enjoy the excitement of it. This year, the duration of the “Don't Sleep in Yancheng: The ZOO” festival was extended to two weekends. The NSYSU team injected fresh energy into the streets of the Yancheng District, hoping to let the visitors experience the creative spirit of Yancheng at night.
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