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Publication and Press Releases
2011
July
Exhibition to showcase Cantonese opera collection donated by renowned artist Lam Kar Sing
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     Dr Lam Kar Sing, a renowned Cantonese opera artist, has committed his life to exploring and revitalising the art of Cantonese opera. During his stage career, he performed a number of masterpieces involving the application of his own performance theory - "Breadth, virtuosity, depth and innovation" - and those performances have been well received by his fans. Today, despite his having retired from the stage, Dr Lam has continued to play an active role in promoting Cantonese opera, and he has been honoured by the Hong Kong Government as well as other arts organisations and the Cantonese opera community for his contributions to the field.

     Lately, Dr Lam donated 2 000 Cantonese opera artefacts to the Hong Kong Heritage Museum, greatly enhancing the museum's collection. Some of the artefacts donated by Dr Lam will be on display, along with other fabulous exhibits, at an exhibition entitled "Virtuosity and Innovation: The Masterful Legacy of Lam Kar Sing" at the Hong Kong Heritage Museum from tomorrow (July 20) until May 14, 2012.

     The opening ceremony of the exhibition and the donation ceremony of the Lam Kar Sing collection were held today (July 19) at the Hong Kong Heritage Museum. Officiating guests were the Secretary for Home Affairs, Mr Tsang Tak-sing; Dr Lam and his son, Mr Raymond Lam; the Executive Director of the Lam Kar Sing Foundation, Dr Stephen Chow; the Chairman of the Cantonese Opera Advisory Committee, Mr Charles Chow; the Director of Leisure and Cultural Services, Mrs Betty Fung; and the Chief Curator of the Hong Kong Heritage Museum, Ms Belinda Wong.

     Speaking at the opening ceremony, Mr Tsang said, "Visitors will be able to review Dr Lam's charm on the stage and his selfless commitment toward Cantonese opera through this exhibition. I hope more veterans of Cantonese opera will join us to share their accomplishments in this genre of art, so as to ensure the sustainable development of Cantonese opera and help this Chinese art form to be passed on through the generations."

     The exhibition comprises around 270 exhibits, most of them carefully selected from Dr Lam's donation. Exhibits include libretti, handbills, stills, records and costumes as well as audio and video clips of Dr Lam. Pictures of Dr Lam practising his martial arts routines as well as spending time with his wife, Hung Tau Tzi, will also be featured.

     Born Lam Man Shun in Hong Kong in 1933, Dr Lam developed a keen interest in Cantonese opera and operatic arias as a young boy by receiving training from two leading virtuosi in the genre, Tang Chiu Lan Fong and Sit Kok Sin. In a glittering career, he founded two Cantonese Opera troupes, Hing Sun Sing and Chung Sun Sing, where as director and lead actor he premiered many original works, including "The Sounds of Battle, "Paragons and Heroism", "A Chronicle Written in Blood", "Torn Between Love and Hate", "Lam Chung" and "The Jade Disc", which have become classics of Cantonese Opera in Hong Kong.

     When Cantonese opera went into decline in the 1970s, buffeted by the rise of other forms of entertainment that had a negative impact on the box office, Dr Lam signed a contract with Rediffusion Television to produce a series of TV programmes on Cantonese opera in a bid to attract new theatre-goers. It proved to be an inspired move, as it won larger audiences for live stage performances.
 
     After he retired from the stage in 1993, Dr Lam continued to play an active role in promoting Cantonese opera, setting up the Lam Kar Sing Foundation and engaging in community work. He was also honoured on several occasions by the Hong Kong Government, and received many awards and accolades from organisations such as the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts and the Hong Kong Arts Development Council for his outstanding contribution to Cantonese opera.

     The exhibition will introduce Dr Lam's lifelong passion and lasting commitment to Cantonese opera. To coincide with the exhibition, a series of educational programmes will be held at the Hong Kong Heritage Museum. They include "Clay Fun: Create Your Own Little General", to be held from 10.30am to 12.30pm on August 7 and 21 and September 25 at the Education Studio. The instructor will introduce the features of the "Da Kao", a theatrical costume in Cantonese opera, and teach participating kids to make their own lovely little generals with colourful light clay and drawing on their imagination. Twenty seats will be available for each session on a first-come, first-served basis. The programme fee is $25 per person. Another programme, "Shine on Stage – An Introductory Workshop on Cantonese Opera Headwear", will be held from 2.30pm to 4.30pm on August 13 and 27 and September 17 at the Education Studio. The instructor will show participants how to make different headdresses for the costume of a leading actress in Cantonese opera. Fifteen places will be available per session on a first-come, first-served basis. The programme fee is $50 per person and students and senior citizens can enjoy a concession fee. For details and seat reservations, contact the museum's Education Team at 2180 8260.

     Also, the Hong Kong Heritage Museum has produced a set of four Octopus card sleeves, tailor-made for distribution in phases to visitors to the exhibition. The first phase will begin on July 20. The second phase will commence on October 1, the third phase will start on December 16 and the forth phase will begin on March 1 next year. Visitors can collect the Octopus card sleeves, while stocks last, with a valid Leisure and Cultural Services Department museum pass or an admission ticket of the day at the Hong Kong Heritage Museum.

     For exhibition details, please visit the museum's website at www.heritagemuseum.gov.hk/eng/exhibitions/exhibition_details.aspx?exid=170, or call 2180 8188.

     The Hong Kong Heritage Museum is located at 1 Man Lam Road, Shatin. It is open from 10am to 6pm on Mondays and Wednesdays to Saturdays, and from 10am to 7pm on Sundays and public holidays. It is closed on Tuesdays (except public holidays). Admission is $10 and a half-price concession is available to full-time students, senior citizens and people with disabilities. Admission is free on Wednesdays.

Ends/Tuesday, July 19, 2011
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The Opening ceremony of the "Virtuosity and Innovation - The Masterful Legacy of Lam Kar Sing" exhibition and the donation ceremony of the Lam Kar Sing collection were held today (July 19) at the Hong Kong Heritage Museum. The picture shows the officiating guests (from left), the Director of Leisure and Cultural Services, Mrs Betty Fung; son of Dr Lam Kar Sing, Mr Raymond Lam; Dr Lam Kar Sing; the Secretary for Home Affairs, Mr Tsang Tak-sing; the Executive Director of the Lam Kar Sing Foundation, Dr Stephen Chow; the Chairman of the Cantonese Opera Advisory Committee, Mr Charles Chow; and the Chief Curator of the Hong Kong Heritage Museum, Ms Belinda Wong.

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Dr Lam (second left), accompanied by his son Raymond (right) and Dr Chow, hands a collection item to Mrs Fung to signify his generous donation of 2,000 Cantonese opera artefacts to the Hong Kong Heritage Museum.

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Dr Lam and other officiating guests visit the "Virtuosity and Innovation - The Masterful Legacy of Lam Kar Sing" exhibition.

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Dr Lam and other officiating guests visit the "Virtuosity and Innovation - The Masterful Legacy of Lam Kar Sing" exhibition.

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The picture shows a 1944 photo of Lam Kar Sing, Tang Chiu Lan Fong and other students (Lam Kar Sing: front row, sitting at right; Tang Chiu Lan Fong: front row, sitting in the middle), which is on display at the "Virtuosity and Innovation - The Masterful Legacy of Lam Kar Sing" exhibition.

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The picture shows the handbill of the Debut of the Hing Sun Sing Opera Troupe (1962), which is on display at the "Virtuosity and Innovation - The Masterful Legacy of Lam Kar Sing" exhibition.

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The picture shows the yellow grand armour embroidered with dragon motifs (worn by Lam Kar Sing in "The Sounds of Battle", 1980 to 1990s), which is on display at the "Virtuosity and Innovation - The Masterful Legacy of Lam Kar Sing" exhibition.

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The picture shows a photo taken at the 1962 wedding of Lam Kar Sing and Hung Tau Tzi, which is on display at the "Virtuosity and Innovation - The Masterful Legacy of Lam Kar Sing" exhibition.

 

 

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