Hope Talk
Barefoot and High Heels
Hope Talk
Barefoot and High Heels

About the Program

Dance artist Lian Ho went to Spain to learn dance, and brought flamenco back to Taiwan. Today, she continues to cultivate and teach a flamenco dance original to Taiwan. Her daughter Yu-Hsien Hsueh and son Hank Hsueh followed the dance troupe from the mountains to the sea, and thus, a Spanish dance artist and a ballet dancer of Taiwan were born.

Lian Ho grew up in a time when the cultures of soldiers from the mainland and the rural girls of Taiwan began to merge. She once gave up the dream of learning dance in Spain in order to raise her children, and in another time, temporarily left her children for this dream. Her daughter Yu-Hsien Hsueh achieved outstanding performance for dance in Spain, but returned to Taiwan to bring arts education to the remote communities within the mountains. Then, upon winning the first place award in the Spanish international dance competition, Certamen de Coreografía de Danza Española y Flamenco, she returned to the Ballet Nacional de España. Hank Hsueh went from hating dance to becoming a professional dancer with the American Ballet Theatre, breaking stereotypes about ballet dancers' insteps along the way. Although each member of the family all embarked on the journey of dance, they each experienced different winding paths in life.

For dance, they put on high heels and travelled to Spain to show off their charm as dance artists; to soothe the hearts of the Indigenous people after devastating natural disasters and to give the children the courage to pursue their dreams, they brought flamenco to rural villages and danced barefoot on the land.

Three dance artists, Lian Ho, Yu-Hsien Hsueh, and Hank Hsueh, will dialogue on the same stage at TAIWANfest, sharing the ever-changing rhythms of their life stories. Discover their courage and be inspired by their confidence as they fiercely and effortlessly command the spotlight in their solo dance on the stage of life.

Hsueh Yu-Hsien
Member of Ballet Nacional de España/ Flamenco Choreographer

Hsueh Yu-Hsien started learning dance from her mother when she was three. At the age of twelve, she was the first trainee of Chinese descent to enter the Real Conservatorio Profesional de Danza Mariemma to study Spanish classical dance. Yu-Hsien once represented the school in a solo dance competition and reached the finals, receiving the affirmation and recognition of local Spanish dancers. In 2014, she graduated from the Dept. of Spanish Classical Dance as the top student. 

In 2016, Yu-Hsien chose to return to her hometown to share with children in Taiwan what she’d learned and cultivated in Spain. Yu-Hsien became Genio Dance’s director in 2018, and she started to serve as a dance teacher in Kaohsiung Municipal Taoyuan Junior High School and the artist-in-residence in Nan’ao Wuta elementary school. From dancing in the city to dancing in the mountains, Yu-Hsien brought art resources and arts education to rural villages, providing the opportunity to learn professional dance. In addition, Yu-Hsien established a dancer training class in Genio Dance, drawing from the professional lessons of her alma mater to teach Taiwanese children, building blueprints of aspiration for Taiwanese young dancers.

Lian Ho
Flamenco Choreographer

On the radiant stage, you can see love in its purest and warmest form.

Lian Ho is one of the few dancers in Taiwan who can dance with the spirit of flamenco. She is a master of incorporating flamenco elements into contemporary dance choreography. Lian Ho’s works have a strong and rich emotional projection of life. Her early works always portrays women, love, beauty, and ugliness in a profound way, bringing infinite longing and heartwarming emotions to the audience.

Having walked through the turbulent winds of time, Lian Ho dances with her life and spreads love with her dance. In recent years, her works have been centered around the land of Taiwan, integrating into the dance the cry of the valley, the dignity of culture, the concept of love and unloved, the feeling of becoming more complete after having been broken and more cherished due to loss.

Some people say that watching Lian Ho’s works is like looking through the scenery of life. It brings back memories, picks up the broken pieces, and reorganizes them into a whole!

Since Typhoon Morakot in 2009, she and her dance troupe Genio Dance began travelling from the mountain to the sea, through remote areas and devastated places. They visited the Indigenous tribes and rural villages, and through dancing, helped to bring courage and healing from the trauma of the natural disasters, encouraging children to chase their dreams. In addition to bringing performance art into these villages, Lian Ho also launched the Taiwan Veteran’s House Touring Show Project. Every year they dance through sixteen veterans’ houses in Taiwan, paying respect to the former soldiers by dancing, embracing them with warmness and care.

From the Curating Team

2024 Hope Talks explore how people absorb, transform, and recreate culture between the migration process. Speak of the past in order to move forward!

About the Program

Dance artist Lian Ho went to Spain to learn dance, and brought flamenco back to Taiwan. Today, she continues to cultivate and teach a flamenco dance original to Taiwan. Her daughter Yu-Hsien Hsueh and son Hank Hsueh followed the dance troupe from the mountains to the sea, and thus, a Spanish dance artist and a ballet dancer of Taiwan were born.

Lian Ho grew up in a time when the cultures of soldiers from the mainland and the rural girls of Taiwan began to merge. She once gave up the dream of learning dance in Spain in order to raise her children, and in another time, temporarily left her children for this dream. Her daughter Yu-Hsien Hsueh achieved outstanding performance for dance in Spain, but returned to Taiwan to bring arts education to the remote communities within the mountains. Then, upon winning the first place award in the Spanish international dance competition, Certamen de Coreografía de Danza Española y Flamenco, she returned to the Ballet Nacional de España. Hank Hsueh went from hating dance to becoming a professional dancer with the American Ballet Theatre, breaking stereotypes about ballet dancers' insteps along the way. Although each member of the family all embarked on the journey of dance, they each experienced different winding paths in life.

For dance, they put on high heels and travelled to Spain to show off their charm as dance artists; to soothe the hearts of the Indigenous people after devastating natural disasters and to give the children the courage to pursue their dreams, they brought flamenco to rural villages and danced barefoot on the land.

Three dance artists, Lian Ho, Yu-Hsien Hsueh, and Hank Hsueh, will dialogue on the same stage at TAIWANfest, sharing the ever-changing rhythms of their life stories. Discover their courage and be inspired by their confidence as they fiercely and effortlessly command the spotlight in their solo dance on the stage of life.

Hsueh Yu-Hsien
Member of Ballet Nacional de España/ Flamenco Choreographer

Hsueh Yu-Hsien started learning dance from her mother when she was three. At the age of twelve, she was the first trainee of Chinese descent to enter the Real Conservatorio Profesional de Danza Mariemma to study Spanish classical dance. Yu-Hsien once represented the school in a solo dance competition and reached the finals, receiving the affirmation and recognition of local Spanish dancers. In 2014, she graduated from the Dept. of Spanish Classical Dance as the top student. 

In 2016, Yu-Hsien chose to return to her hometown to share with children in Taiwan what she’d learned and cultivated in Spain. Yu-Hsien became Genio Dance’s director in 2018, and she started to serve as a dance teacher in Kaohsiung Municipal Taoyuan Junior High School and the artist-in-residence in Nan’ao Wuta elementary school. From dancing in the city to dancing in the mountains, Yu-Hsien brought art resources and arts education to rural villages, providing the opportunity to learn professional dance. In addition, Yu-Hsien established a dancer training class in Genio Dance, drawing from the professional lessons of her alma mater to teach Taiwanese children, building blueprints of aspiration for Taiwanese young dancers.

Lian Ho
Flamenco Choreographer

On the radiant stage, you can see love in its purest and warmest form.

Lian Ho is one of the few dancers in Taiwan who can dance with the spirit of flamenco. She is a master of incorporating flamenco elements into contemporary dance choreography. Lian Ho’s works have a strong and rich emotional projection of life. Her early works always portrays women, love, beauty, and ugliness in a profound way, bringing infinite longing and heartwarming emotions to the audience.

Having walked through the turbulent winds of time, Lian Ho dances with her life and spreads love with her dance. In recent years, her works have been centered around the land of Taiwan, integrating into the dance the cry of the valley, the dignity of culture, the concept of love and unloved, the feeling of becoming more complete after having been broken and more cherished due to loss.

Some people say that watching Lian Ho’s works is like looking through the scenery of life. It brings back memories, picks up the broken pieces, and reorganizes them into a whole!

Since Typhoon Morakot in 2009, she and her dance troupe Genio Dance began travelling from the mountain to the sea, through remote areas and devastated places. They visited the Indigenous tribes and rural villages, and through dancing, helped to bring courage and healing from the trauma of the natural disasters, encouraging children to chase their dreams. In addition to bringing performance art into these villages, Lian Ho also launched the Taiwan Veteran’s House Touring Show Project. Every year they dance through sixteen veterans’ houses in Taiwan, paying respect to the former soldiers by dancing, embracing them with warmness and care.

From the Curating Team

2024 Hope Talks explore how people absorb, transform, and recreate culture between the migration process. Speak of the past in order to move forward!

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TAIWANfest Vancouver is grateful to be held on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territories of the Coast Salish peoples of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam Indian Band), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish Nation), and Səl̓ílwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh Nation). We acknowledge our privilege to be gathered here, and commit to work with and be respectful to the Indigenous peoples of this land while we engage in meaningful conversations of culture and reconciliation.

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