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West-Kowloon As Local Art Breakthrough

出自香港新聞網 - 樹仁新傳系學生實習習作

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                              By Isabel Chan

Tang Shu-wing, artistic director of Tang Shu-wing Theatre Studio, at a talk in Hong Kong Shue Yan University this Tuesday said he believes the ongoing West-Kowloon development project could be a breakthrough for local art.

Tang believes that government funding in the past 30 years is vital to local art, funding cultivates local performers and audience, but Tang also believes that after the millennium, it is debatable that whether funding local art as a mean of social service is the best for Hong Kong’s art ecology.

“The only way for local art to break through would be industrialization,” adds Tang. “and the West-Kowloon development provides the perfect platform for that.”

Tang points out that they need fixed venues and longevity plays (such as lion king and phantom of opera) to adopt the self-sufficient model as Broadway and West End.

“Hong Kong lacks the historical background that Broadway, West End and Centre Georges Pompidou have. Aid from government through policy is essential for local art to be a profitable self-sufficiency.

Tang clears the government’s name by saying that the government did fund and supported local art in the past 30 years. He thinks the government provided a lot of performance venues and opportunities.

However, Tang also pointed out that government funding alone is not enough.

“They fund to serve the society, which requires art programmes to be new, vast in number and cheap,” said Tang. “These makes production of longevity plays impossible and jeopardizes the chance of Hong Kong theatre group from being self-sufficient.”
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