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Publication and Press Releases

Graphic: Press ReleasesGraphic: October
Harmonica duo to perform in Hong Kong next month

Internationally renowned harmonica soloists Willi Burger (Italy) and Yasuo Watani (Japan) will next month perform together in a concert, "Date with Harmonica Virtuosi".

Featuring works by Tchaikovsky, Gershwin, Schumann, Piazzolla and Arnold, the concert will be held at 8pm, Saturday, November 17, at the Concert Hall, Hong Kong City Hall.

Born in Milan, Willi Burger developed a passion for the chromatic harmonica in classical music and it was here that his intuition for the surprising quality and possibilities of this instrument transformed him into a virtuoso player of interpretation and technique and creating a vast classical repertoire for chromatic harmonica.

After conquering at the Winterthur competition by the Federation Internationale de l'Harmonica in 1955, he began an intense concert season with performances in Europe. Burger usually performs as a guest in an orchestra and, for several years, in duo with the pianist Marcello Parolini.

His repertoire includes classical and modern pieces written for the harmonica by world-famous composers, as well as his wonderful transcriptions for Harmonica. The versatile Burger is also a figurative artist. His famous works on glass are exhibited in the United States, Greek, Italy and other countries and have been published in a lot of specialised art books.

One of the world's most talented chromatic harmonica soloists, Kyoto-born Yasuo Watani began his harmonica lessons in 1966 with Tadao Kobayashi, and afterwards with Helmuth Herold in Germany. He received numerous awards in international competitions, including two first prizes for both the International Harmonica Competition 1988 in Netherlands and the second at the 1989 World Harmonica Championships and Festival in Germany. He had deep interest in performing art and was keen to enhance cultural exchange around the world. Being a recipient of two Japanese Music Awards and one Japanese Cultural Award, Watani performed enthusiastically in Europe, Japan, Hong Kong, Argentina, Brazil and Singapore. His collaborators include the New Japan Philharmonic Orchestra and Seiji Ozawa.

"Date with Harmonica Virtuosi" is presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department (LCSD).

Tickets priced at $100, $140 and $180 are now available at URBTIX outlets, while senior citizens, people with disabilities, full-time students and Comprehensive Social Security Assistance (CSSA) recipients may have 50% off (limited quotas for students and CSSA recipients on a first-come, first-served basis). 10% discount applies to Friends of LCSD performing venues.

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

Ends/Wednesday, October 17, 2007

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