Tiehua Music Village gives emerging artists a chance to unveil their talents

TAIPEI (The China Post) — A haven where local artists and musicians come together, as evening falls, the sounds of pop, rock and folk fill an outdoor space next to the decommissioned railway station in Taitung City.

Tiehua Music Village is one of the most unique cultural centers and live music venues in the country and delights all those who have ventured to this sleepy seaside town in southeastern Taiwan. 

Overlooking the old station, the site includes buildings that once served as dormitories for rail workers.

It hosts concerts by emerging and established artists as well as markets showcasing arts and crafts and local agricultural products Taitung, a city known for its award-winning musicians, such as A-mei, Suming, Kimbo, to name a few, never existed a performance platform for musicians, until the establishment of Tiehua Music Village.

Music aside, Tiehua hosts the Slow Bazaar from Friday to Sunday each week. The fair, which reflects the laid-back mood of the region, offers visitors an opportunity to sample locally grown produce and admire traditional handicrafts such as woven goods. (Shutterstock)
Music aside, Tiehua hosts the Slow Bazaar from Friday to Sunday each week. The fair, which reflects the laid-back mood of the region, offers visitors an opportunity to sample locally grown produce and admire traditional handicrafts such as woven goods. (Shutterstock)

The venue gives emerging artists a chance to unveil their talents, and for successful artists to return to their hometown to perform and exchange ideas. Seventy percent of the performances at the Tiehua Music Village are local Taitung artists.

Each month, different artists from across Taiwan are invited to perform there. Its exciting agenda brings audiences a different experience in their every visit and a venue where indigenous talent comes together. 

Local and overseas musicians perform at the village every Wednesday to Sunday night. Occasionally major acts, in particular, musicians from indigenous groups, are among the lineup including pop star A-mei from the Pinuyumayan tribe and Amis musician Suming Rupi.

Every Wednesday is open mic night. According to Tiehua Music Village Executive Director Hilo Wang, the aim is to give newcomers a chance to perform to the public in a professional setting. 

Operated by Taipei City-based Lovely Taiwan Foundation and opened in July 2010, the village was set up with support from the Tourism Bureau under the Ministry of Transportation and Communications.

Music aside, Tiehua hosts the Slow Bazaar from Friday to Sunday each week. The fair, which reflects the laid-back mood of the region, offers visitors an opportunity to sample locally grown produce and admire traditional handicrafts such as woven goods. 

Revitalization work has been extended to neighboring structures. The county government converted the station building, platform, warehouses and adjacent tracks into Taitung Railway Art Village, where visitors can cycle or stroll along a wooden walkway, take photos of the renovated facilities and view art installations.

The Discover Taiwan came to Tiehua Village this time as well. The host, Julian who’s from German, fell in love with Taiwan indigenous music in Tiehua Village.
The Discover Taiwan came to Tiehua Village this time as well. The host, Julian who’s from German, fell in love with Taiwan indigenous music in Tiehua Village.

The Discover Taiwan came to Tiehua Village this time as well. The host, Julian who’s from German, fell in love with Taiwan indigenous music in Tiehua Village.

Consisted of youth from Paiwan, Amis and Puyuma, the band “Chih Tsu”  (赤足) definitely impressed Julian with their music which they said it’s a mixture of rap, reggae and pop. “I came in here, the moment I heard you guys sing, I wanted to dance,” Julian said.

Julian and the band member had a passionate talk after the performance. The band member told Julian that they are from different tribes and explained “It’s a different kind of Taiwanese, you know, different locals coming together making music.

This is really what this village is all about.” What they want to tell Julian is that there are differences between different ethnic groups in Taiwan, yet the island is inclusive to embrace all these different cultures. Tiehua Village is not simply a music venue. It’s a cross-culture platform for any local performers from different cultural backgrounds.

Music Performances Wednesdays – Saturdays | 20:00 – 22:00 Sundays | 16:00 – 18:00 Arts & Crafts Fair Tuesdays – Sundays | 14:00 – 22:00 Weekend Market Tuesdays – Fridays | 14:00 – 22:00 Saturdays – Sundays | 15:30 – 22:00 Tiehua Music Village 鐵花村 Add: No. 26, Lane 135, Sinsheng Road, Taitung City | 台東市新生路 135 26 Tel: +(886) 89-343393