Hong Kong arts supremo Wilfred Wong talks to andrew dembina about an edgy new initiative.
NEW ARTS POWER (NAP), a Hong Kong-wide festival covering dance, music, drama, multimedia arts and visual arts, gets underway this month, flying a flag for local artists and a uniquely local interpretation of life. Initiated by the Hong Kong Arts Development Council (HKADC), and funded by the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust, the festival runs until late January.
Although NAP’s exhibitions and performances officially start in the second half of this month, outreach activities began in June through a number of community elements – including workshops at schools, in homes for the elderly and at adult and juvenile correctional institutions. The festival’s wide-ranging programme includes exhibitions of the work of multimedia proponent Kingsley Ng and ceramicist and sculptor Annie Wan; a three-day showcase of dance and choreography featuring, among others, works by Victor Fung and Hugh Cho; and music performances that include the a capella harmonies of the Yat Po Singers, jazzfusion by SIU2, and folk and alternative rock performers, such as the prominent and prolific Jabin Law and his band.
One of the most intriguing performances is the mobile theatre production My Luxury 50 sqft Life by Cinematic Theatre Company, which is touring more than 20 locations in Hong Kong in a 5.5-tonne truck. This follows its appearances at Taipei and Edinburgh fringe festivals – in fact, while performing overseas is one criterion for participation in NAP, another is that performers or artists are relative newcomers to the local arts scene. This all adds up to some edgy work being showcased, as homegrown talents return to the arena that first nourished them.
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