Maritime Glow: A Spectacular Fusion of Art, Culture, and Technology

Reviving Kaohsiung's History through an Immersive Taiwanese Opera

Maritime Glow, a captivating exhibition event designed by the Kaohsiung City Government, has breathed life into the 2022 Taiwan Lantern Festival. This grand spectacle, staged on the iconic Love River, narrates the city's rich history and cultural evolution through a blend of traditional and modern performance arts, backed by cutting-edge projection technology.

The design team drew inspiration from the Love River, a symbol of Kaohsiung's cultural heritage, to create a stage that reflects the city's maritime history. The performance, a fusion of local opera, Taiwanese rock, Hakka, Yu opera, indigenous ancient songs, a go-go, Taiwanese opera, musical theatre, traditional kung fu, and pop dance, presents a century-long narrative of the city's prosperity, cultural conflicts, and industrial development. The recurring melody, transformed and integrated into various performance forms, leaves a lasting impression on the audience.

Maritime Glow's uniqueness lies in its ambitious scale and immersive approach. The design team used projection technology to transform the stage into a boat, creating the largest performing arts scale in Taiwan and combining it with Kaohsiung traditional opera. With the sky as the curtain and the world-class Weiwuying Theater as the backdrop, the performance breaks boundaries, offering a fully immersive experience to the audience.

The performance's technical specifications are equally impressive. The design team employed 20 sets of 30,000 lumens and 70,000 sets of 20,000 lumens projection equipment, linked with 400 dazzling lights, to present 381 meters of visual images. The spirit of the play, Cihou Lighthouse, is a replica of the original building, with identical lighting frequency. The live streaming was filmed with four camera drones, and the total number of YouTube video views has exceeded one million as of March 2022.

The design team faced numerous challenges during the realization of Maritime Glow. Coordinating rehearsals for over 600 performers from 11 groups and 2 schools, especially during the epidemic and the Lunar New Year holiday, was a daunting task. However, the team's dedication to promoting Taiwanese opera culture and the city's history overcame these hurdles, resulting in a successful and memorable event.

Maritime Glow is not just a performance; it is a testament to Kaohsiung's cultural heritage and the potential of Taiwanese opera. The performance narrates the city's journey from the maritime trade era four hundred years ago to the present, symbolizing the city's resilience and evolution. This design has earned the Golden A' Performing Arts, Stage, Style and Scenery Design Award in 2023, a testament to its extraordinary excellence and significant impact on the world of performing arts.

Project Details and Credits

Project Designers: Kaohsiung City Government
Image Credits: Bureau of Cultural Affairs, Kaohsiung City Government
Project Team Members: Shih Che, Dennis Che, Yichun Hsu, Hui Chen, Yi-Chien Chou
Project Name: Maritime Glow
Project Client: Kaohsiung City Government

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