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The visit was organized with the belief that the beautiful sounds of a symphony orchestra bring hope and meaning to life. This also coincides with the Correctional Services Department’s belief that music making plays an important role in the rehabilitation process of prisoners.
Fifty players from the Orchestra gave two one-hour concerts under the baton of Resident Conductor Harmen Cnossen, with Horn player Homer Lee as presenter. The programme featured a number of Baroque and Classical favourites including Handel’s Arrival of Queen Sheba and Mozart’s Eine kleine Nachtmusik. Principal Cellist Richard Bamping also gave a solo performance of the first movement from Bach’s Cello Suite in G major.
About 400 inmates enjoyed the concert in rapt attention. A special performance by the band ‘Spark’, formed by five inmates of the Institution, treated the audience to two English pop songs and a Christmas medley, which was joined by Eddie Zong, Principal Double Bass, and Huang Zheng, Co-Principal Oboe from the Orchestra. Everyone joined in the singing of two Christmas carols, O Come, All Ye Faithful and Joy to the World at the end of the concert.
Mr Pang Sung-yuen, Kelvin, the Commissioner of Correctional Services, and Mr Leung Kwok-wing, Superintendent of Pak Sha Wan Correctional Institution, presented souvenirs to Richard Bamping and Wong Sze-hang, Concertmaster, as a token of thanks. Mr Kwok Leung-ming, Deputy Commissioner, and Mr Samson Chan, Assistant Commissioner (Rehabilitation) of Correctional Services were also among the guests in the audience.
The Orchestra would also like to thank Four Seas Mercantile Holdings Ltd. for giving out gift packs to inmates as a gesture of goodwill to celebrate this festive season.