I was very proud last month to be part of a concert given by the Hong Kong Band Directors Association Wind Orchestra. I conducted three of my works, while five very talented young Hong Kong composers conducted new compositions of their own. Stella Tsang Lai Ming: `The Third Day’, So Ka Wai: `The Utterance of Wind’, Tang Lok Yin: ‘Nebula’, Stephen Yi: ‘Mantra’ and Phoebus Lee Kar Tai: `Nocturne for Symphonic Winds’. I conducted my space epic `Gagarin’ in the first half and Fung Kai Man (Trumpet) gave the premiere, of the concert band version of `The Flavour of Tears’ originally written for Brass Band Buizingen and Harmen Vanhoorne. I closed the concert with my most recent wind orchestra work `Earthrise’. The musicians rose to all the challenges set them both in my work and the work of the other composers. I think it is an amazing achievement that the musicians that formed this orchestra all gave so much of their time, especially considering their other professional teaching and work commitments etc. When I work with various organisations I can usually find a few new ideas on how they can improve, but I believe that the Hong Kong Band Directors Association had arrived at so many right answers. It was an emotional trip for me to return to Hong Kong where I lived 25 years ago – I never expected to see what advances had taken place as far as music education was concerned. They should all feel proud of what is being achieved on the other side of the world, something we could all learn from!
The Objectives of the HKBDA are:
– to promote band music culture and band movement in Hong Kong through the interflow with both local and overseas bands;
– to advance the education of the public in the appreciation and knowledge of music with particular reference to bands;
– to establish a closer link and fellowship among members, other music lovers and performing groups;
– to attain a higher standard of artistic excellence for bands, their performers, their conductors, and their literature;
– to serve as a central advice and information bureau to assist in local band activities;
– to participate, associate and co-operate with international and foreign band music bodies.
`Earthrise’ performed by HKBDA Wind Orchestra conducted by Nigel Clarke