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Karen Gomyo returns for Bruch’s Famous Violin Concerto and
Jaap van Zweden conducts Asian premiere of HK Phil’s co-commissioned Solemn Night Music (17 & 18 June)

30 MAY 2016

Hong Kong

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[30 May 2016, Hong Kong]Jaap van Zweden, Music Director of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra (HK Phil), brings a taste of Italy to this concert, with Rossini’s delightful overture to The Thieving Magpie, and Respighi’s evocation of the spectacular Pines of Rome. Karen Gomyo returns to play Bruch’s best-loved violin concerto, and we give the Asian premiere of a new work by John Borstlap.

Recipient of the prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant in 2008, Japanese and French-Canadian violinist Karen Gomyo has been hailed by the Chicago Tribune as "a first-rate artist of real musical command, vitality, brilliance and intensity". She will join the HK Phil for Bruch’s famous Violin Concerto no. 1. Bruch wrote more than 100 works but is remembered almost exclusively for this violin concerto, which he composed when he was just 26. With its moments of virtuoso display and passages of searing beauty it is the ideal showcase for the talents of Karen Gomyo.

Dutch composer John Borstlap’s Solemn Night Music will receive its Asian premiere in this concert. In the autumn of 2014, the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra and the Dallas Symphony Orchestra co-commissioned this new work, which was successfully premiered in March 2016 by the Dallas Symphony Orchestra under international star conductor Jaap van Zweden.

The concert will open with Rossini’s famous La Gazza LadraOverture from the opera which tells of a young girl wrongly accused of stealing a silver spoon (a magpie took it!) and the music resembles the animated chattering of birds. The concert closes with Respighi’s spectacular Pines of Rome, which evokes images of Roman legions marching through the trees and uses a recorded bird-song to create a magical atmosphere.

Masterworks: Jaap & Karen Gomyo will be held on 17 & 18 June(Fri & Sat), 8PM in the Hong Kong Cultural Centre Concert Hall. Ticket prices: HK$680, $480, HK$380, $280 are now available at URBTIX. For enquiries, please call +852 2721 2332 or visit

Free Pre-concert talks are available before both concerts.


17 June 2016 (Fri)

18 June 2016 (Sat)


7:15 – 7:45pm

7:15 – 7:45pm


AC2, 4/F, Administration Building,
Hong Kong Cultural Centre

AC2, 4/F, Administration Building,
Hong Kong Cultural Centre


Mr Fung Lam
Composer and Music Educator

Mr Savio Lau
HiFi Review Editor (Music sector)





Jaap van Zweden, conductor [full biography]
Jaap van Zweden has risen rapidly in the past decade to become one of today’s most sought-after conductors. Having been named Musical America's 2012 Conductor of the Year, he has appeared as guest conductor with many leading orchestras around the globe including the Vienna Philharmonic, Berlin Philharmonic, New York Philharmonic, London Symphony, Chicago Symphony. In January 2016, the New York Philharmonic announced that van Zweden will be their new Music Director starting with the 2018-19 season. He will continue as Music Director of the HK Phil at least until the summer of 2019.

Karen Gomyo, violin [full biography]
Recipient of the prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant in 2008, violinist Karen Gomyo has been hailed by the Chicago Tribune as "A first-rate artist of real musical command, vitality, brilliance and intensity". Recently, she has established herself in as a much in demand soloist internationally, performing with orchestras such as the New York Philharmonic, LA Philharmonic, San Francisco Symphony and Philadelphia Orchestra.

Masterworks: Jaap & Karen Gomyo
17 & 18 | 6 | 2016
Hong Kong Cultural Centre Concert Hall
HK$680 $480 $380 $280
Tickets are now available at URBTIX
For ages 6 and above



Jaap van Zweden


Karen Gomyo



Click the thumbnail to download photos

Jaap van Zweden
Photo Credit: Cheung Chi Wai/HK Phil

Karen Gomyo
Photo Credit: Garielle Revere


The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra
Photo Credit: Cheung Chi Wai/HK Phil





La Gazza LadraOverture


Violin Concerto no. 1


Solemn Night Music (New commission, Asian premiere)


Pines of Rome





Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra
Music Director: Jaap van Zweden
Principal Guest Conductor: Yu Long

The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra (HK Phil) is recognised as Asia’s foremost classical orchestra. The Orchestra presents more than 150 concerts over a 44-week season and attracts more than 200,000 music lovers annually.

Jaap van Zweden, one of today’s most sought-after conductors, is the Orchestra’s Music Director, a position he has held since the 2012/13 concert season. Maestro van Zweden was recently announced as the next Music Director of the New York Philharmonic. This appointment will not affect his tenure with the HK Phil; his commitment to the HK Phil extends at least to the summer of 2019.

Yu Long was appointed for an initial three-year term in the 2015/16 season as Principal Guest Conductor.

Under Maestro van Zweden, the HK Phil is undertaking a variety of initiatives including a four-year project to perform and record the complete Ring of the Nibelung (Richard Wagner). The Orchestra is in the second of this four-year journey, performing one opera annually in concert. The performances are being recorded live for the Naxos label and mark the first performances by a Hong Kong or mainland Chinese orchestra of the entire Ring cycle.

Also under van Zweden, the orchestra undertook a highly successful five-country, seven-city tour of Europe in the 2014/15 season, with concerts in London, Vienna, Zurich, Eindhoven, Birmingham, Berlin and Amsterdam. Performances were met with enthusiasm and universally positive reviews. The concert in Vienna’s Musikverein was filmed for broadcast on TV.

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 and Yuja Wang.

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 tens of thousands of children annually. A recording was issued free to schoolchildren throughout Hong Kong of Britten’s The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra, Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf and Leopold Mozart’s Toy Symphony.

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.

Thanks to a 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.

The Orchestra’s history stretches back to 1895, when it was formed as the Sino-British Orchestra. It was re-named in 1957 and became fully professional in 1974.

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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