The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra and Hong Kong Ballet
Present Carmina Burana
A Celebration of Music, Dance and Literature
31 AUG 2022
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
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[31 August 2022, Hong Kong] The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra (HK Phil) and Hong Kong Ballet (HKB) join forces to bring the exciting production Carmina Burana. Under the baton of HK Phil Resident Conductor Lio Kuokman, acclaimed soloists, dancers, two choruses and the HK Phil present the world premiere of The Last Song by HKB’s Choreographer-in-Residence Ricky Hu Songwei and Artistic Director Septime Webre’s powerful dance masterpiece Carmina Burana. This epic double bill programme uniquely brings the world-class musicians of the HK Phil and the acclaimed dancers of HKB together for a celebration of culture and artistry combining riveting music with visually arresting dance. Five performances of Carmina Burana will take place at Hong Kong Culture Centre’s Grand Theatre on 14-16 October 2022. Tickets are now available at URBTIX.
Inspired by selections by J.S. Bach and Oscar Wilde’s The Nightingaleand theRose, Hu creates his new work The Last Song, which features HK Phil Concertmaster Jing Wang and Principal Cello Richard Bamping as soloists, exploring the ultimate definition of beauty. Carl Orff’s iconic Carmina Burana is a commanding interpretation of 24 medieval poems. With dances from medieval times to the present, Webre’s choreography is influenced by Orff’s bombastic music and by themes from Virginia Woolf’s novella Orlando about our eternal search for love. A striking eight-metre scaffolding surrounding the stage holds over 100 members of the HK Phil Chorus and Hong Kong Children’s Choir, joined by soprano Vivian Yau, tenor Ren Shengzhi and baritone Elliot Madore.
The production is exclusively sponsored by The Hong Kong Jockey Club (HKJC), and is one of the many initiatives supported by the HKJC’s approved donation of HK$630 million to the Government of the HKSAR to mark the 25th anniversary of the establishment of the HKSAR. The Hong Kong Jockey Club is resolute in pursuing its purpose of acting continuously for the betterment of society, all in support of creating stronger communities together.
HK PHIL x HK BALLET CO-PRESENT: CARMINA BURANA
14-16 | 10 | 2022
SAT & SUN 2:30PM & 7:30PM
Hong Kong Cultural Centre Grand Theatre
$1,200 (limited VIP tickets) $800 $600 $420 $240
Tickets now available at URBTIX
For ages 6 and above
THE LAST SONG (World Premiere)
MUSIC J. S. Bach
CHOREOGRAPHY AND COSTUME DESIGN
ASSOCIATE COSTUME DESIGNER Joanne Chong
SET DESIGN Siu Wai-man
LIGHTING DESIGN Mak Kwok-fai
CONDUCTOR Lio Kuokman
VIOLIN Jing Wang
CELLO Richard Bamping
ORCHESTRA Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra
CARMINA BURANA (Asia Premiere)
MUSIC Carl Orff
CHOREOGRAPHY AND SET DESIGN Septime Webre
COSTUME DESIGN Liz Vandal
LIGHTING DESIGN Mak Kwok-fai
CONDUCTOR Lio Kuokman
SOPRANO Vivian Yau
TENOR Ren Shengzhi
BARITONE Elliot Madore
ORCHESTRA Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra
Lio Kuokman, conductor [full description]
Currently serving as Resident Conductor of the HK Phil and Programme Director of the Macao International Music Festival, Lio is praised by the Philadelphia Inquirer as “a startling conducting talent”. He was the second prize winner of the third Svetlanov International Conducting Competition in Paris with Audience Prize and Orchestra Prize, and he has also served as the first Chinese Assistant Conductor with the Philadelphia Orchestra. In 2021, Lio was the recipient of the Hong Kong Ten Outstanding Young Persons award. In 2022, he was awarded Artist of the Year (Music) of the 16th Hong Kong Arts Development Awards and appointed a Justice of the Peace by the HKSAR Government.
Jing Wang, violin [full description]
Currently serving as Concertmaster of the HK Phil, Jing Wang is one of the most versatile and dynamic violinists of his generation. Since his solo recital debut in Marseilles, France at the age of six, Wang has garnered prizes in top international competitions, including the first prize at the 2007 Irving M. Klein International Strings Competition. In 2003, Wang was awarded the "Young Soloist of the Year" by Les Radios Francophones Publiques, a broadcast network of four countries including France, Canada, Switzerland and Belgium.
Richard Bamping, cello [full description]
Richard Bamping has been the Principal Cellist of the HK Phil since 1993. He has performed with many of the finest musicians of recent history – Lord Yehudi Menuhin, Leonidas Kavakos, Mstislav Rostropovich, Carlo Maria Guilini, Valery Gergiev, Leonard Bernstein, Lorin Maazel, Sir Colin Davis and Claudio Abbado, to name but a few. Bamping has performed many of the staples of the solo cello repertoire with orchestras from Europe to the Far East. He has a great passion for playing chamber music with friends and colleagues whenever he gets the chance.
Septime Webre, choreography and set design [full description]
An internationally recognised ballet director, choreographer, educator and advocate, Septime Webre joined Hong Kong Ballet as its Artistic Director in July 2017 after 17 years as Artistic Director of The Washington Ballet (US) from 1999-2016, and six years as Artistic Director for the American Repertory Ballet in Princeton (US) from 1993-1999. Much sought-after as a choreographer, Webre’s works appear in the repertoires of ballet companies globally. He has also worked frequently in theatre as well as opera. His work has received numerous honours, grants and awards.
Ricky Hu Songwei, choreography and costume design [full description]
Born in Jiangxi, China, Ricky Hu Songwei trained at Shanghai Dance School, LASALLE-SIA College of the Arts in Singapore and The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts. He joined Hong Kong Ballet as a Corps de Ballet member in 2008, was named Coryphée in 2015 and appointed Choreographer-in-Residence in 2019. He received the Award for Young Artist (Dance) at the 2012 Hong Kong Arts Development Awards.
Vivian Yau, soprano[full description]
Hailed as “a light, silvery, bright soprano with impressive coloratura” by The Aspen Times, Hong Kong soprano Vivian Yau performed the title role in the world premiere of Pierangelo Valtinoni’s Alice in Wonderland at the 2021 Hong Kong Arts Festival, a production co-commissioned by the Zürich Opera House and Yip’s Children’s Choir. Yau has also been a repeat featured guest artist with the Hong Kong Sinfonietta. Some other highlights of her career include Rosina in The Barber of Seville with the Aspen Opera Center and Mediterranean Opera Festival, her Carnegie Hall debut as a soloist in Bach’s Christmas Oratorio with the Cecilia Chorus of New York, and soprano solo in Handel’s Messiah in Radio Television Hong Kong’s annual Christmas Concert.
Ren Shengzhi, tenor[full description]
Ren Shengzhi is an opera singer and a singing teacher of the Harbin Conservatory of Music. He was a Scottish Opera Emerging Artist 2020/21. He completed the Young Artist Programme 2019/20 at National Opera Studio. From 2017 to 2019, he completed the Advanced Diploma in Opera at Royal Academy of Music. He was trained at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music, where he graduated with Bachelor's and Master's degrees with honours. His competition awards include: Third Prize and Audience Award at the Neapolitan Masters Competition 2019, First Prizes at the Golden Bell Awards 2015 (Hunan), First Prize at International Opera Competition 2010 (Hong Kong), etc.
Elliot Madore, baritone [full description]
Grammy Award winning Canadian baritone Elliot Madore has established himself as an international artist in demand at the leading opera houses and orchestras of the world. Recently he made his house debut in the world premiere of Giorgio Battistelli’s new opera Julius Caesar with Teatro dell’Opera di Roma, directed by Robert Carsen and conducted by Daniele Gatti. He also made his role debut as Dr Falke in Die Fledermaus with the Sieji Ozawa Music Academy in Japan. Orchestral work included Carmina Burana with Santa Cruz Symphony, conducted by Daniel Stewart.
The Hong Kong Children's Choir, chorus [full description]
The Hong Kong Children's Choir (HKCC) was founded in 1969 as a private non-profit-making charitable organisation. Established with only 39 members, HKCC is now the biggest choir in the world with over 5,000 boys and girls receiving choral, dancing, arts and craft training from the Choir. Each year, touring groups are invited to give performances overseas. The Choir has been well received and applauded in over 24 countries, gaining an international reputation as "one of the best children's choirs in the world" and "the Little Goodwill Singing Ambassadors from Hong Kong". In 2003, HKCC was awarded the "China’s Top Ten Children Chorus".
Hong Kong Philharmonic Chorus, chorus [full description]
Established in 1980, the Hong Kong Philharmonic Chorus collaborates with the HK Phil to perform a range of different works. In 2013, the Chorus undertook a new recruitment drive, and over 450 singers were attracted to attend the auditions. The first performance by the reformed Chorus was Handel’s Messiah. Since then, the Chorus has performed with the HK Phil in major works by composers including Britten, Mendelssohn, Beethoven, Haydn and Mahler under renowned conductors Lorin Maazel, Nicholas McGegan and Jaap van Zweden. The Fellows programme was launched in the 2020/21 Season.