Daniel Harding to Conduct London Symphony Orchestra on 3 and 4 March 2004 at Hong Kong Cultural Centre Concert Hall

December 23th, 2003

The Hong Kong Arts Festival is delighted to announce that the London Symphony Orchestra (LSO) will be performing at Hong Kong Cultural Centre Concert Hall on 3 and 4 March 2004 under the baton of Daniel Harding, the leading British conductor of his generation. Harding made his professional debut with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra in 1994, for which he won the Royal Philharmonic Society's "Best Debut" Award. He is closely associated with the LSO, regularly conducting this great orchestra. Maestro Gennadi Rozhdestvensky who was originally scheduled to conduct, had to withdraw from the two concerts due to ill health.

Hong Kong Arts Festival Executive Director Douglas Gautier said, "We are sorry that Maestro Rozhdestvensky has had to withdraw from these concerts and we look forward to his speedy recovery. We welcome Daniel Harding and are much excited by his forthcoming debut Asian performances with the Hong Kong Arts Festival. This is an opportunity for audiences here to experience the power of one of the most exciting and highly acclaimed conductors of the new generation. Apart from the change of conductor, the LSO's programme will remain unchanged."

As the assistant to Claudio Abbado in the 1995-96 season, Daniel Harding debuted with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra at the 1996 Berlin Festival. In 1996 he became the youngest ever conductor at the BBC Promenade Concerts. In the 2003/4 season, he becomes the first Music Director of the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, after serving three years as the Music Director of the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen. His previous positions include Principal Conductor of the Trondheim Symphony in Norway (1997-2000) and Principal Guest Conductor of Sweden's Norrkoping Symphony (1997-2003). In 2002, he was awarded the title Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Government.

The London Symphony Orchestra's two concerts with the Hong Kong Arts Festival is part of the Orchestra's 100th Anniversary Far East Tour and is made possible by generous support from Rolls-Royce plc, who also celebrate their Centenary in 2004. The concert on the 4 March is also the finale performance of the 2004 Hong Kong Arts Festival, and is sponsored by Hang Seng Bank.

The programme for the 3 March concert will include Sibelius' Oceanides and Violin Concerto in D minor, and Shostakovich's Symphony No 5 in D minor. The programme for the 4 March will be Britten's Four Sea Interludes from Peter Grimes, Stravinsky's Suite from The Firebird (1919 version) and Siberlius' Symphony No 5 in E flat major.

The 2004 Hong Kong Arts Festival will present a total of 111 performances, of 51 different programmes featuring 36 performing groups plus three exhibitions and four special outdoor performances, over 34 days from 3 February through 7 March 2004. Tickets are available at URBTIX outlets. Tickets for programmes performed at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts and the Hong Kong Arts Centre are also available through HK Ticketing.

For further enquiries, please contact Andy Yau, Assistant Marketing Manager, at
tel: 2824 3555.


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