Hakka end-of-winter opera performed across Taiwan

In Taiwan’s Hakka villages, the “end-of-winter opera (
收冬戲)” has always been an important event. Every year, after autumn harvests are complete in the 10th lunar month, such an opera will be staged to celebrate the coming of winter. In spring, farmers pray for abundant rain and a rich harvest from the gods of earth and sky while in autumn alongside the open-air end-of-winter opera, worships are held and sacrifices are dedicated to deities.

The opera is a type of performing art that touts Hakka folk culture and religious beliefs. Traditionally, it is also a major entertainment and social occasion. Listed as one of the 12 Hakka festivals by the Hakka Affairs Council, the end-of-winter opera is performed by ten Hakka troupes in nine counties and cities throughout Taiwan from Oct. 6 to Dec. 22, 2019. All members of the public are cordially invited to watch the shows! Detailed information can be founded at https://festival.hakka.gov.tw/WinterTheatre2019/.

Information about troupes and show times

Xinyue’er Opera Troupe (

Xinyue’er was founded by Fan Jiang Xin-yao (范姜新堯), and its current leader is Liu Ya-ju (劉雅如), who, as a youth, has passion for Hakka opera. She hopes that, under her leadership, all members of the troupe will achieve higher levels of exquisite performance, and that the troupe will fulfill the goal of sustainability.

Show time and location:

18:30, Sunday, Oct. 6 at Ren’ai Park (near Chen’an Temple), Puli Township, Nantou County

Chinlong Opera Troupe (金龍戲劇團)

Formerly known as “Cheng Hsin Hsing Opera Troupe (正新興歌劇團),” the reorganized group named “Chinlong Opera Troupe” is led by the second-generation leaders Cheng Yu-ming (鄭宥明) and Cheng Yu-hui (鄭玉慧), transforming itself into a diversified troupe. Performing in each year’s cultural events supported by local governments, Chinlong keeps promoting the spirit of loyalty, integrity, frugality, hard work and perseverance on stage through ancient stories in hope to pass down traditional values.

Show time and location:

18:30, Sunday, Oct. 20 at Nantian Taizi Temple, Guanglin Village, Meinong District, Kaohsiung City

Jingsheng Opera Troupe (

The troupe's founder Lin Pao-mu (林保木) and director Chiang Yu-ling (江玉玲) are just creative and energetic as any young people. They aspire to spread Hakka culture through Hakka opera. Other than passing down traditions, they seek changes and breakthroughs in writing, directing, and performing plays, as well as in stage design. They also try to draw as much attention from younger generations to deepen cultural roots in the new era.

Show time and location:

18:30, Saturday, Oct. 26 at Zhaolin Temple, Wucuo Village, Xihu Township, Changhua County

Songxing Opera Troupe (

Folk theatre is Songxing Opera Troupe's main focus. Director Lin Hsing-sung (林興松) and his team of young, middle-aged and senior actors are all devoted to promoting and passing down Hakka opera. Daring to make changes and always seeking perfection, Songxing is widely acclaimed by local audience. All of the opera programs it produced for Hakka TV are highly praised. Songxing has been selected for the Hsinchu County’s Outstanding Arts and Cultural Groups for several times. Having launched a number of popular opera shows, Songxing is determined to bring Hakka opera to a bigger stage.

Show time and location:

18:30, Saturday, Nov. 2 at Tzuyun Temple, Zhongli District, Taoyuan City

18:30, Saturday, Nov. 9 at Chungsheng Temple, Nanzhuang Township, Miaoli County

Longfengyuan Opera Troupe (

Longfengyuan was founded in October 1978 by Li Yong-qian (李永乾), who was dedicated to improving the troupe’s performances, playwriting, design of stage settings, lights, and props as well as training of young actors. The troupe’s captivating stories and visual and sound effects on stage display its creative energy, attracting much attention from a variety of fields.

Show time and location:

15:00, Sunday, Nov. 3 at Yimin Temple, Fuli Township, Hualien County

Rongying Hakka Opera Troupe (

Passionate about Hakka opera, Rongying is devoted to passing down the traditional performing art through its performances, trying to attract as many young viewers as possible to watch the shows. While people may think that the Hakka opera is outdated, Rongying injects modern energy into this Hakka heritage. Its goal is to make Hakka opera sustain in changing times.

Show time and location:

18:30, Sunday, Nov. 10 at Fulong Temple, Tongxiao Township, Miaoli County

Detai Opera Troupe (德泰戲劇團)

Detai is a family troupe. The members are all passionate about Hakka opera and their shows are unique. Former director Li Cheng-kuang (李正光) mixes tradition with innovation together, leading the troupe to win quite a few awards at Hakka opera contests while seeking changes. The troupe's large-scale productions are also widely commended since audiences are often touched by the shows. The fact that the third-generation members are ready to achieve more in their future performances has aroused spectators’ expectation.

Show time and location:

18:30, Saturday, Nov. 9 at Yunghsing Temple, Guanyin District, Taoyuan City

18:30, Sunday, Dec. 22 at Fude Temple, Zhongpu Township, Chiayi County

Guifeng Opera Troupe (

Guifeng Opera Troupe has a long history in traditional theatre. It was formerly the prestigious Xinshengyuan Opera Troupe (新勝園歌劇團), led by current director Chen Feng-hui's (陳鳳慧) father. The director's grandfather Chen Chin-hai (陳錦海) was a professional opera actor. Guifeng's actors can all perform with graceful stage movements and incredible vocal techniques. The troupe is also known for its beautiful stage designs and enticing stories. Cultivating young talents, inventing new stage settings, and writing new stories are the director's three main goals. The widely acclaimed troupe gives performances across the country annually.

Show time and location:

18:30, Sunday, Nov. 10 at Chaofeng Temple, Linluo Township, Pingtung County

National Taiwan College of Performing Arts (

The Department of Hakka Opera, National Taiwan College of Performing Arts is the only department of its kind in Taiwan. It shoulders the crucial responsibility of training young talents in addition to promoting traditional Hakka performing art. Every year, outstanding professionals are invited to help teachers and students revise plays and hold rehearsals. All of the department's members are devoted to passing down Hakka theatrical art, with the innovative productions they launch. Substantial results have been gained in cultivating artists who shine bright in the field of Hakka opera.

Show time and location:

18:30, Thursday, Nov. 21 at Shuntian Temple, Lunbei Township, Yunlin County

Jinmanyuan Opera Troupe (金滿圓戲劇團)

To promote Hakka opera, the troupe's director Kuan Chien-chung (管健仲) gathered up both the senior artists and young talents of Miaoli to establish Jinmanyuan in 1999. Since 2001, for 15 years in a row, it has been listed as Miaoli County's Outstanding Performing Arts Team. In 2013, supported by the Hakka Affairs Council, it staged shows at Kallang Theatre in Singapore. In 2014, it held a tour in Indonesia's Solo, Semarang, and Pekalongan. In 2015, invited by the Hakka Association of Queensland, Australia, Jinmanyuan held a public show in Brisbane.

Show time and location:

18:30, Saturday, Nov. 23 at Biyun Temple, Guoxing Township, Nantou County