HK in Transition programme

Hong Kong in Transition: Asian City-to-City Collaboration and Performing Arts Exchange, 1997-2017
9-10 September 2017, SOAS University of London

This two-day programme co-presented by the SOAS China Institute and Zuni Icosahedron marks the 20th anniversary of Hong Kong’s handover from the UK to China with a series of events focusing on intercultural exchange and city-to-city collaboration in the performing arts. Participants will reflect on Hong Kong’s cultural exchanges with London and several Asian cities over the past twenty years, as well as discuss proposals, opportunities, strategies, and challenges for the next two decades.

Academic Symposium – Hong Kong Theatre in Transnational Perspective: New Directions and Discourses since 1997

Saturday 9 September, Senate House Lecture Theatre (SALT), 9am – 5pm.

  • This symposium will explore aspects of theatre production in Hong Kong in the post-1997 period from a transnational perspective, including intercultural and cross-genre collaborations with other Sinophone and Asian performance cultures from Singapore, Taiwan, China, and Japan, Cantonese opera in the diaspora, experimental and political performance, and intersections between indigenous and foreign theatrical forms.

The registration desk will begin at 9.00am and the symposium will start at 9.30am.


  • Rossella Ferrari, SOAS University of London [organiser]
  • Joseph Lam, University of Michigan
  • Daphne P. Lei, University of California, Irvine
  • Whit Emerson, Indiana University
  • Wah Guan Lim, Bard College, New York
  • Jessica Yeung, Hong Kong Baptist University
  • Uchino Tadashi, Tokyo Woman’s Christian University
  • Lia Wen-ching Liang, National Taiwan Normal University
  • Ashley Thorpe, Royal Holloway, University of London
  • Michael Ka Chi Cheuk, SOAS University of London
  • How Wee Ng, SOAS University of London
  • Mirjam Tröster, Goethe University Frankfurt
  • Chen Lin, Freie Universität Berlin

Online registration is not open yet


Flee By Night from the Traditional to the Contemporary: A Journey through the Art of Kunqu

Saturday 9 September, Brunei Gallery Lecture Theatre, 6 – 8 pm

An evening of traditional and experimental Kun Opera performances curated by Danny Yung, co-Artistic Director of Zuni Icosahedron, with performers from the Jiangsu Kun Opera Theatre, Nanjing, China, followed by post-performance dialogue and Q&A.

This performance is free to attend, no registration required.

Practitioners Forum

City-to-City Cultural Exchange, Collaboration, and Performing Arts Development: London-Hong Kong-Taipei-Nanjing-Singapore-Shanghai.

Sunday 10 September, Brunei Gallery Lecture Theatre, 10am – 5 pm

In this forum, artists, arts managers, producers, and legislators from Asia and Europe will examine recent cultural exchange initiatives, arts policies, and performance collaborations between Hong Kong, London, Nanjing, Shanghai, Taipei, and Singapore, assess current strategies, and discuss future proposals for city-to-city cultural exchange and performing arts development.


  • Danny Yung, co-Artistic Director, Zuni Icosahedron, Hong Kong [organiser]
  • Cedric Chan, Zuni Icosahedron, Hong Kong
  • Kason Chi, Zuni Icosahedron, Hong Kong
  • Ke Jun, Kunqu Artist and General Manager of the Jiangsu Performing Arts Group, Nanjing
  • Leon Rubin, Director, East 15 Acting School, University of Essex
  • Kok Heng Leun, Member of Parliament and Artistic Director of Drama Box, Singapore
  • Jason Hsu, Legislator, Member of Parliament, and Head of TEDxTaipei, Taiwan
  • Ma Fung-kwok, Member of the Legislative Council, Hong Kong
  • Liu Xiaoyi, Theatre Director, Singapore
  • Lee Li-heng, Arts Manager, Shanghai
  • Li Xiaoju, Researcher, China Arts Academy, Beijing
  • Kim Na-ye, Hong Hong Academy for Performing Arts
  • Minli Han, National University of Singapore
  • Tommy Chung Yin Kwan, SOAS University of London

Online registration is not open yet

Organiser: SOAS China Insititute

Contact email:

Contact Tel: +44 (0)20 7898 4823

Sponsors: Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation for International Scholarly Exchange, SOAS China Institute, SOAS Faculty of Language and Cultures, Sino-British Fellowship Trust and Nanjing Arts Foundation

Full programme and registration details coming soon on the conference webpage:

Posted by: Rossella Ferrari <>

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