國家戲劇院 國家音樂廳 (National Theater and Concert Hall) are two of the nicest facilities in Asia. The National Symphony Orchestra, National Chorus, and also the National Chinese Orchestra hold administrative duties for the facilities.
Orchestras from around the globe have performed in front of large Taiwanese audiences here. The San Francisco Symphony Orchestra and Shanghai Symphony Orchestra, are just two of many famous orchestras to have held concerts in the picturesque venue. Also, international figures such as Mikhail Gorbachev and Margret Thatcher have attended as guests.
Here are some photos that I took of the two epic structures. Originally, I took some day shots but went back the next weekend to change settings and try again at night. As cliche’ as it sounds, these images do not do justice to the size and beauty of these national monuments.
National Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall was built for the former Chinese leader in Taipei. Two sets of 89 stairs, which represent Chiang’s age at the time of his death, lead to the main entrance of the memorial. Written inside above a large statue of Chiang are the Chinese characters for Ethics, Democracy, and Science. Writing on the side walls read The purpose of life is to improve the general life of humanity.
Representatives of the military guard the main area of the monument. We saw the changing of the guards which takes place every hour or so. This was an elaborate ceremony, that took about ten minutes, in temperatures reaching 100f.
The ground level houses a library and museum documenting Chiang Kai-shek’s life, as well as many exhibits related to Taiwan’s history. It has pictures of CKS with U.S. leaders from FDR to Ronald Reagan and humanitarians such as Ghandi. Probably one of the most fascinating things (besides being air conditioned) in the museum are both of his massive bullet/bomb proof Cadillacs.