Hong Kong, 2 April 2005 - The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra (HKPO) launches Mozart in the City, the new concert series that offers a combined experience of wine, dinning, and music. Featuring HKPO Principals as well as such star guest artists as pianist Imogen Cooper and Kolja Blacher, the series consists of four programmes, to be held in the Hong Kong City Hall Concert Hall between April and June. Such arrangement is designed to showcase some of the best works by Mozart and his contemporaries from the 18th Century.
"Compared to the Cultural Centre Concert Hall, the City Hall is a more intimate venue with very good sound, so it's an ideal place to play music of the Classical Period, said Edo de Waart, HKPO Artistic Director and Chief Conductor, who will be conducting the first concert in the series. The series, however, is more than just great music. Ticket holders to this series will enjoy food and drink offers at selected places in Lan Kwai Fong.
"The City Hall is very close to the lively bars and restaurants of Lan Kwai Fong, so it's natural for us to encourage our audience to enjoy all that the City Hall has to offer for a great night out - a cocktail pre-concert, wonderful music played in a fine acoustic, then supper or dessert to round off the evening," de Waart added, "I'm sure Mozart would have approved."
On 8 and 9 April (Fri & Sat) at 8pm is the series' first programme, with Edo de Waart on the podium. The evenings will star four of HKPO's Principal players - oboist Huang Zheng, clarinettist Andrew Simon, bassoonist Kam Shui and horn player Mark Vines as the soloists in Mozart's Sinfonie Concertante, K. 297b. De Waart will also conduct the Orchestra in Haydn's Oxford Symphony and J C Bach's Symphony in G minor Op. 6 No. 6.
In the second programme in the series, HKPO Principal Conductor Samuel Wong leads the Orchestra in Mozart's Paris and Linz Symphonies, while Concertmaster Dennis Kim and Principal Violist Huang Hung-wei will perform as soloists in Mozart's Sinfonie Concertante for violin and viola. The concerts will be held on 29 and 30 April (Fri & Sat) at 8pm.
Huang Zheng is the winner of the Grand Prize at the 2001 Kingsville International Competition and the first Chinese-born oboist to be a Principal Oboist of an orchestra in USA. Andrew Simon graduated from Juilliard School and is a first prize winner of the International Clarinet Society Competition. Kam Shui joined HKPO in 1988 and is one of the leading bassoonists in Asia. Mark Vines joined HKPO as Principal Horn in 1998 after wining the prestigious Charles Leggett Award for Horn.
Dennis Kim is one of the world's youngest concertmasters, and the youngest Concertmaster in Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra history. Huang joined HKPO at the age of 23 in 2002 after graduating from Mannes College of Music on a full scholarship.
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756 - 1791) and Joseph Haydn (1732 - 1809) were signature composers of the Viennese Classical period. Haydn once said to Mozart's father Leopold, "Before God and as an honest man, I tell you that your son is the greatest composer known to me either in person or by name", a claim that still rings true in the in 21st century. While Mozart burst into the world as a prodigy, left the most perfectly written music ever and died before his 36th birthday, 'Papa' Haydn worked faithfully in Count Esterhazy's estate as Music Director for more than two decades and received an Honorary Doctorate from Oxford University at the age of 59 in 1791, as a recognition of his outstanding musical achievement.
Mozart in the City continues in May and June. Mozart in Prague will be held on 20 and 21 May featuring David Atherton and Imogen Cooper in two Mozart's piano concertos. Haydn's London Symphony on 17 and 18 June will feature German violinist and conductor Kolja Blacher.
Tickets for The Oxford Symphony (8&9 April) and Paris and Linz (29&30 April) concerts are now available at URBTIX at HK$300, $220, $160, and $100, through reservation at 2734 9009 (URBTIX) or Credit Card Booking at 2111 5999 (Cityline). For enquiries, please visit or call 2721 2030. Further details on the Lan Kwai Fong offers are available at www.hkpo.com.