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HK Phil Handel's Fireworks and Water Music (10 & 11 Apr)
Featuring Korean Soprano Haeran Hong, winner of the International Queen Elisabeth Competition

23 MAR 2015

Hong Kong

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Doris Chan
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Tel: (852) 2721 9035

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[23 March 2015, Hong Kong] Harry Bicket, renowned as a leading interpreter of Handel’s music, joins the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra (HK Phil) to perform the magnificent suites from the Water Music and the Music for the Royal Fireworks on 10 & 11 April in the Hong Kong City Hall Concert Hall. Adding yet more colour to the programme, Haeran Hong, Grand Prize winner of the Queen Elisabeth Competition 2011, will perform a selection of Handel’s more dramatic operatic arias.

Handel’s Concerto Grosso, op. 6 made history when it first appeared in print in 1740 – the first time an orchestral score was ever published. Inspired by the music of his Italian rival, Corelli, this was also some of the first true concert music ever written, although Handel’s love of opera is always obvious through its dramatic outbursts and moments of deep beauty.

Cementing his ties with the English monarchy (and helping earn his PR status!), Handel’s jolly Water Music was composed for a royal barge trip down the River Thames, and featured one of the most extravagant bands ever assembled for a public performance in London. Also celebrating Handel’s royal patronage, the spectacular Music for the Royal Fireworks, was written to accompany a magnificent firework display presented to commemorate the signing of the Treaty of Aix-La-Chapelle marking the end of the War of Austrian succession. These are now among Handel’s most famous and popular compositions.

City Hall Series: Handel’s Fireworks will be held on 10 & 11 April 2015 (Fri & Sat), 8PM, in the Hong Kong City Hall Concert Hall.Tickets priced: $380, $280, $220, $180 are now available at URBTIX. For enquiries, please call +852 2721 2332 or visit


Harry Bicket, conductor [full biography]
Harry Bicket is a noted interpreter of Baroque repertoire. He is now the Artistic Director of The English Concert and the Chief Conductor of Santa Fe Opera. He has conducted Chicago and Tokyo Symphony Orchestras, Los Angeles and Saint Paul Chamber Orchestras as guest.

Haeran Hong, soprano [full biography]
Haeran Hong is a renowned Korean soprano. She joined the Metropolitan Opera for a performance of Verdi’s Macbeth and returned shortly afterwards in productions of Siegfried, Parsifal, Dialogue des carmélites, and Un ballo in maschera. Upcoming opera engagements include her début of the title role in Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor.


City Hall Series: Handel’s Fireworks
10 & 11 | 4 | 2015
Hong Kong City Hall Concert Hall
HK$380 $280 $220 $180
Tickets are now available at URBTIX
For ages 6 and above


Harry Bicketconductor
Haeran Hongsoprano


Click the thumbnail to download photos

Harry Bicket
Photo Credit: Richard Haughton

Haeran Hong

The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra
Photo Credit: Philip Chau






Concerto Grosso, op. 6


Water Music Suite


Alcina: Tornami a vagheggiar


Giulio Cesare: Piangerὸ la sorte mia


Giulio Cesare: Da tempeste il legno infranto


Music for the Royal Fireworks








Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra
Music Director: Jaap van Zweden







The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra (HK Phil) has recently returned from an extremely successful five-country, seven-city tour of Europe, with concerts in London, Vienna, Zurich, Eindhoven, Birmingham, Berlin and Amsterdam. Most concerts were sold out, there were standing ovations, and the reviews were universally positive. The concert in Vienna’s Musikverein was filmed for future broadcast on TV. With a history stretching back to 1895, when it was formed as the Sino-British Orchestra, the HK Phil was re-named in 1957 and became fully professional in 1974.



Thanks to significant subsidy from the Hong Kong Government and long-term funding from Principal Patron Swire, the Hong Kong Jockey Club and other supporters, the HK Phil now boasts a full-time annual schedule of classical music concerts, pops concerts, an extensive education programme, and collaborations for staged opera with Opera Hong Kong and the Hong Kong Arts Festival.

Conductors and soloists who have recently performed with the orchestra include Vladimir Ashkenazy, Ning Feng, Matthias Goerne, Lang Lang, Yu Long, Yundi Li, the late Lorin Maazel, Anne-Sophie Mutter, Yuja Wang and Edo de Waart, the HK Phil’s previous Music Director.

The HK Phil promotes the work of Hong Kong and Chinese composers through an active commissioning programme, and has released recordings featuring Tan Dun and Bright Sheng, each conducting their own compositions, on the Naxos label. Its acclaimed community engagement programme brings music to ten of thousands of children annually.

This season is Jaap van Zweden’s third as Music Director of the HK Phil. With him, the orchestra is undertaking major expansion and new projects, including the first-ever performances by a Hong Kong or mainland Chinese orchestra of Wagner’s The Ring of the Nibelung. The four operas are being performed, one a year, in concert and recorded live for the Naxos label.

The Swire Group has been the Principal Patron of the HK Phil since 2006. Through this sponsorship, which is the largest in the orchestra’s history, Swire also endeavours to promote artistic excellence, foster access to classical music and stimulate cultural participation in Hong Kong, and to enhance Hong Kong’s reputation as one of the great cities of the world.

The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra is financially supported by the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region
SWIRE is the Principal Patron of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra
The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra is a Venue Partner of the Hong Kong Cultural Centre

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