The Traditional

Chinese Music Troupe

Wen Chang Elementary School is the place where members of the Orchid Club gathered in year 2 of the Dao Guang period. In the Club, there was a spirit-tablet of Confucius. At that time, a Music Hall was also set up where people of literary circles could recite poems and enjoy music.

The ceremony of worshiping Confucius began in year 15 of the Dao Guang period. General Wang Der-Lu proposed raising funds to reconstruct and expand the Deng Yun Academy , which later became the cultural and education center of Ben Hsin Kang, where the literati met and teach.

Local scholars and gentry devoted themselves to the development of the cultural and artistic movements of Hsin Kang. For fear of seeing their children going astray, they erected ¡§Lyrics Hall,¡¨ where students learned manners, music, poetry, and classics.

In the Hall, students' minds were molded and shaped by melodious tunes so that they would learn courtesy and nourish noble sentiments. After the Taiwan Retrocession, Wen Chang Elementary School began operation once again. Under the meticulous management by its principals, it has preserved and promoted the tradition of academies and local culture.

Various ceremonial implements

in the Wen Chang Shrine

An earthquake struck Hsin Kang in year 30 of the Guang Xu period of Qing. The Deng Yun Academy and the Wen Chang Shrine were razed to the ground. The spirit-tablet of Confucius was moved to the Feng Tian Temple . After the Taiwan Retrocession, the government turned the ruins of the Academy into Wen Chang Elementary School , built the Wen Chang Shrine on the second floor of the School Administration Building , and carried the spirit-tablet of Confucius back to the Shrine. In 1996, the government rebuilt new classroom buildings and the Wen Chang Shrine in the traditional style of architecture. The ceremonial implements and equipments for the worship of Confucius were added continuously to the Shrine.

The Traditional Chinese Music Troupe play music in the ceremony of Confucius worship

In July, 1996, the Traditional Chinese Music Troupe was formed on campus and its members took part as Music Students in the annual Confucius worshiping ceremony that resumed in 1999.

In 2005, Chia Yi County Government set up budgets for Wen Chang Elementary School to hold the Confucius worshiping ceremony. For the first time, the Dance of Six Rows of Six appeared in the ceremony. While students from Hsin Kang Junior High School took part as Ritual Attendants, boys from Wen Chang Elementary School played the roles of Music Students and Dance Students. Row Dancers assumed by the students paid their respects to the Greatest Sage-Teacher with the accompaniment of music according to ancient rites. The solemn spirit of ¡§respecting the teacher and adhering to the heritage¡¨ was thus enhanced.

On September 28, 2005 , Wen Chang Elementary School held a grand ceremony celebrating the 2555 th anniversary of Confucius' birthday in the Wen Chang Shrine.

The County Government appropriated funds to support training the students in the School to perform the Dance of Six Rows of Six. County Magistrate Chen Ming-Wen took part in the ceremony as Chief Sacrificer.

Many representatives from all walks of life assumed the roles of Associate Sacrificers. There were also Dance Students and Music Students. The ceremony proceeded according to ancient rites.

The ceremony of worshiping Confucius

This was the first time the Dance of Six Rows of Six had ever been performed in the Confucius worshiping ceremony in Chia Yi County. 20 students from Wen Chang Elementary School wearing traditional robes assumed the role of Ritual Attendants. 4 acted as Dance Students carrying hanging charts on the right-hand and left-hand sides. 36 became Dance Students on the east and west sides. One was Chief Dance Student.

They all took their positions at eight-thirty in the morning. After the first, second, and third beatings of the drum, County Magistrate Chen Ming-Wen as Chief Sacrificer and other Associate Sacrificers worshipped Confucius according to ancient rites.

They greeted and welcomed the spirit of Confucius, worshiped his spirit-tablet with lighted incense sticks, presented white silk, offered first the chalice of wine, recited prayers, offered the chalice for the second and third times, sent the spirit of Confucius off, and with music from the harp, burned the prayer silk in the incinerator, and watched its fire.

Wen Chang Elementary School plans the ceremony 9 months before Confucius' Birthday.

Every stage of the ceremony is to be performed according to the rite rules set down by the government. Boys of 5 th and 6 th grades are trained to dance 2 or 3 months before the ceremony and the Traditional Chinese Music Troupe on campus provides accompaniment on musical instruments, The result of the training for two or three months satisfies the participating principal, teachers, and parents.

Students experience in person the respect due to the Greatest Teacher of All Ages. It is hoped that the spirit of ¡§respecting the teacher and adhering to the heritage¡¨ lasts forever and ever.


International Cyberfair 2007 / Wen Chang Elementary School, Hsin Kang Township, Chia Yi County, Taiwan