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June
Beloved Chinese Music Company in concert July 4-5

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The Chinese Music Company of Hong Kong, a confirmed favourite among local music lovers, will present "An Evening of Fine Music - Like Pearls Pattering on a Jade Plate" on Friday, July 4 at 8pm at the Hong Kong City Hall Theatre and on Saturday, July 5 at 8pm at the Tuen Mun Town Hall's Cultural Activities Hall.

The concert is part of the Arts Care ticket scheme presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department. Special discounts apply.

Among the well-known Chinese works to be performed are Rainy Days in Jiangnan, Melody of Plum, Early Spring of Snowy Mountain, Song of the Frontier, Stream Flowing Over the Stones, The Sound of the Void, A Leisure Evening and, from Sketches of Life in the North, The Horse Race and Taming the Deer.

Renowned virtuoso Tong Leung-tak will conduct musicians including Tse Lai-chun (zheng), Wong Lok-ting (guqin), Chan Pik-yuk (yangqin), Ng Luk-wan (dasanxian), Lui Kwan-on (zhongruan/yueqin) and Li Ping, Lam Siu-king and Tsui Hung (pipa).

The Chinese Music Company of Hong Kong is a group of young to middle-aged musicians who work under the guidance of virtuosi, educators, critics and composers. In keeping with the Chinese tradition of solo recitals and small to medium-sized ensembles, the Company is dedicated to developing, researching and promoting classical and folk music genres such as Jiangnan string and wind music, Cantonese music, operatic music and Chiuchow music as alternatives to the mainstream symphonisation of Chinese music. Besides its concerts, the Company promotes appreciation of Chinese music in the community through seminars, masterclasses and school outreach programmes.

Tong Leung-tak was born into a family that has produced many generations of musicians in Shanghai; he and his relatives were performing as Tang's Family Ensemble as early as the 1950s. Tong is a distinguished erhu performer as well as a famous educationist, composer and conductor.

In April 1956, he was appointed to the Central New Film Philharmonic (now the China Film Philharmonic) of Beijing. He held a variety of posts, including erhu principal, deputy principal of the Philharmonic, leader of the classical music and Jiangnan wind and string music groups, principal of the light music band, acting principal of the band and acting conductor. At the same time, he was a teacher and a composer.

Tong moved to Hong Kong in September l977 and was appointed acting principal by the Hong Kong Chinese Orchestra in October 1977. He became a Training Officer of the Music Office in July 1978, was promoted to Senior Music Officer in 1982 and retired in September 1998. He was concurrently a part-time lecturer in the Music Department of The Chinese University of Hong Kong and a visiting professor of erhu at The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts. In l991, he received the Art Educationist of the Year Award from the Hong Kong Artists' Guild.

Despite his retirement, Tong still serves as an honourary executive member of the Chinese Folk Orchestra Society, a member of its Erhu Professional Group, an adviser of the Beijing Pipa Research Society and the Hong Kong Chinese Orchestra, Chairman of the Preparatory Committee of the Hong Kong Folk Orchestra Society, Chairman of the Hong Kong Chinese Music Instrumental Examination Association, Music Director-cum-Artistic Director of the Chinese Music Company of Hong Kong, and honorary adviser of the Wang Kwong Chinese Orchestra and the New Tune Chinese Orchestra.

Tickets priced at $120 and $70 (Hong Kong City Hall) and $100 (for Tuen Mun Town Hall) are now available at all URBTIX outlets.

Patrons will enjoy a 20% discount for a single purchase of four to seven tickets and 40% off for eight or more tickets to any programmes under the Arts Care ticket scheme. This offer is also applicable in conjunction with existing ticketing concessions: 50% off for senior citizens, people with disabilities, full-time students and Comprehensive Social Security Assistance recipients (Limited student and CSSA tickets are available on a first-come-first-served basis), or 10% off for Friends of LCSD performing venues (up to two full-price tickets per performance).

For programme enquiries call 2268 7321 or visit www.lcsd.gov.hk/cp. Ticketing enquiries and reservations can be made on 2734 9009. For credit card telephone bookings, call 2111 5999. Tickets may also be booked through http://www.urbtix.gov.hk.

End/Thursday, June 5, 2003

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