40th Hong Kong Arts Festival 2012 announces Over 94% of tickets sold

March 05th, 2012

The 40th Hong Kong Arts Festival (HKAF)’s official closing ceremony took place on 4 March 2012 after the performance by the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra.

With the main part held over 41 days, the 40th HKAF presented 170 ticketed performances in 17 venues, including the performances of Richard III in September 2011, and the performances of The Truth About Lying and Titus Andronicus (2012) to be held in April 2012. Over 1,500 artists from 54 performing groups participated in this year’s Festival including 12 world premieres/new works and 10 Asian premieres.

As of 5 March, the average attendance of the 170 performances (6 additional performances* and 2 Hong Kong Jockey Club student matinee included) surpassed 94%, at over 130,400 tickets. Total audience number exceeded 149,500, including 19,108 Young Friends Scheme participants. The total number of tickets available at the box office was 137,600. The Festival saw 123 capacity houses, with attendances at another 17 performances at well over 90%.

Nine Festival commissions were featured at the 40th HKAF: June Lovers and Journey to Home from the New Stage Series; Resonantia performed at the recital by Louis Siu and Friends; the music theatre production Of Mountains and Seas; drama productions The Wild Boar, Show Flat and Titus Andronicus (2012); as well as About Living by Chou Shu-yi from the Asia Pacific Dance Platform; and all works in the Hong Kong Jockey Club Contemporary Dance Series.

Celebrating its 20th anniversary, the Festival’s Young Friends Scheme continued to be popular amongst students this year with close to 10,000 members from 167 secondary schools and 31 tertiary institutions attending 86 events. Discount student tickets were in demand with around 9,700 made available, partly supported by the Student Ticket Scheme.

HKAF PLUS had been fruitful for Festival-goers with 177 events in a plethora of activities including masterclasses, lecture demonstrations, talks, workshops and meet-the-artist sessions. Some notable examples included play readings and rehearsal observations under the Hong Kong Theatre Connection series; the About Dance and Dance on Screen 2 series, which introduced works by choreographers featured in the Festival; a series of workshops, talks, backstage tours and film screenings under the All About Mozart’s Opera series; and the Artist Encounters series where audience members got to meet the many international and local artists who performed in the Festival.

The Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust continued to sponsor special matinee for young people. Over 3,300 young people and students from 73 organisations and schools, who did not have the resources or opportunity to go to a formal performance, were invited to two performances of Le Songe (A Midsummer Night’s Dream) by the Monte-Carlo Ballet.

In collaboration with Cityline (Hong Kong) Ltd, Festival audiences in the Guangdong Province benefited from the new Cash-on-delivery ticketing service, while patrons in other provinces in China who booked through credit cards could opt to receive tickets by courier.

As ever, the Festival continues to reach out via new information platforms. While the award-winning HKAF iPhone app continued to provide Festival information on the go, the Festival introduced a new service for patrons to download house programmes online prior to the opening of every programme. The Festival also signed an agreement in early 2012 with Publisher MUSE for production and international distribution of bilingual e-scripts (English and Chinese). To give easy access to Hong Kong’s excellent new plays, distribution channels of the e-scripts include Amazon.

In addition, the Festival mounted a special exhibition showcasing 40 years of its posters at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre, as part of its 40th anniversary celebration. This was co-presented with the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust in celebration of 40 years of partnership.

Highlights of the line-up of the 41st HKAF already announced include: the American Ballet Theatre’s Romeo and Juliet; the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Riccardo Muti; Les Musiciens du Louvre under the baton of Marc Minkowski; the Australian Chamber Orchestra under the baton of Richard Tognetti; Einstein on the Beach, an opera in Four Acts by Robert Wilson and Philip Glass; La Traviata and Il Marito Disperato by Teatro di San Carlo, Naples; as well as a performance by Jordi Savall. More programme highlights will be announced in August and Advance Booking of the 41st HKAF will start in October.

MEDIA ENQUIRIES
For further enquiries, please contact Marketing Director Ms Katy Cheng, or Marketing Manager Miss Alexia Chow at (852) 2824 3555. *

Six additional performances included: two performances of The Wild Boar on 12 & 19 February (3:00pm); two performances of Show Flat on 19 & 26 February (3:00pm); one performance of Faith Healer on 4 March (3:00pm); plus a performance of Journey to Home on 12 February (3:00pm).


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