The 2015 Taiwan International Festival of Hakka Culture took place from the 14 through to 25 October 2015 in Hsinchu County. For the first time, the festival drawn industry, government and academia. Organised around three major events: the International Folk Drums Arts Festival, the World Hakka Conference and the Hakka Expo, the festival aims to not only propel Hsinchu into the international spotlight, but also showcase the richness of Taiwan’s Hakka culture to the world.
The festival was organised around one focal point, two highlights, three main events, and four themes. The focal point will be the World Hakka Night, around which tens of thousands are invited to assemble. The two highlights are two illumination events that will light up the city and welcome visitors. The three major events are the International Folk Drums Arts Festival, the World Hakka Conference, and the Hakka Expo. The four themes around which the exhibitions were presented include Hakka history and culture, Hakka landscapes and sights, activities for children, and the Hakka folk drums.
The two illuminations were staged at the Northern and Southern gates of the exhibition venue to brighten Hsinchu’s night sky with an ocean of light. The Northern Gate featured a sacred painted pig to welcome the Chinese year of the Pig and a persimmon alley, as a token of good fortune. The Southern Gate was a feast of lights and nature, as a bamboo installation will be lit up amid an ocean of flowers.
From 14 October, the Hakka Expo opened its doors for visitors to come and discover Hakka culture in all its richness and diversity. The exhibition included Hakka history and famous figures, music, crafts and products, Hakka festivities, green lifestyle and anime and interactive animation. On the opening night, performances by drum artists from Shanxi Taiwan, New Zealand, and Japan, while famous pop artists including HEBE, Cyndi Wang, and Magic Power took to the stage for a rousing night of music and celebration. On 17 October, Hakka folk drums took over the streets in a show full of cheerfulness and creativity.
Hsinchu County has developed its tourism resources alongside mountains, coast, and lakes, combining the charms of the railroad, anime, and Hakka culture, culminating into the world-famous nine-station Neiwan railway track, a “Top Ten Taiwan Tour” of the Lion’s Head Mountain track, and making itself the “dream factory” of Taiwan’s animation industry.