As part of the 47th Hong Kong Arts Festival PLUS programme, world-renowned conductor Marin Alsop, together with Latin America’s leading São Paulo Symphony Orchestra, will share the stage with two local award-winning student orchestras from Diocesan Boys' School and Diocesan Girls’ School, to support the development of young musical talent.
The open rehearsal will consist of two parts: in the first, Alsop will conduct and share with each student orchestra her rich experiences in the world of music. In the second, Alsop – a protégée of the late American composer Leonard Bernstein – will be joined by musicians from the São Paulo Symphony Orchestra to practice and perform Bernstein’s Candide Overture alongside the student orchestras onstage.
The open rehearsal will not only provide audiences the opportunity to enjoy the raw charisma of orchestral music, but also pass the flame of knowledge from Bernstein to Alsop, the São Paulo Symphony Orchestra and, finally, to Hong Kong’s bright young musicians.
Diocesan Boys’ School Symphony Orchestra
The Diocesan Boys’ School (DBS) Symphony Orchestra is one of the most historic youth orchestras in Hong Kong. The DBS Orchestra was founded by a former headmaster of the school, Mr George She, in 1956. Its early performances consisted of only 18 members, with Dr Lo King Man as the conductor. Now the orchestra has up to 80 members. The DBS Symphony Orchestra is currently the record holder of the highest marks ever achieved (98 marks in 2004) in the Hong Kong Schools Music Festival Symphony Orchestra (Senior) competition, having captured over 20 champions there since the 1990s. On the international scene, the DBS Symphony Orchestra participated in the 2015 Washington DC International Music Festival , capturing the Gold Medal with a high score of 93.6. Recent repertoire of the orchestra include Richard Strauss’ Don Juan, Tchaikovsky's Symphony No 5, Tchaikovsky's Symphony No 6, Shostakovich’s Symphony No 5, Shostakovich’s Symphony No 10, Prokofiev's Symphony No 1 "Classical", Mahler's Symphony No 5, Brahms' Symphony No 2, and Brahms’ Symphony No 4.
Conductor of Diocesan Boys’ School Symphony Orchestra
Samuel Pang studied orchestral conducting with Neil Varon and viola performance with Carol Rodland at the Eastman School of Music. Prior to studying orchestral conducting at Eastman, he was the orchestra director of the Diocesan Boys' School Symphony Orchestra from 2012–2015. During his time at the Diocesan Boys' School, he led the symphony orchestra and string orchestra to winning all six competitions they participated in at the annual Hong Kong Schools Music Festival. In April 2015, Samuel led the orchestras on a concert tour in the United States, performing in prestigious venues such as the Kilbourn Hall in Rochester, New York and the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington DC.
After spending two years in Rochester and New York, Samuel resumed his duties as the orchestra director of the Diocesan Boys' School Symphony Orchestra in September 2017. Inspired by J.S. Bach, Samuel's greatest desire is to glorify God through music.
Diocesan Girls’ School Symphony Orchestra
Formed by students from Grades 1 to 6, DGS Symphony Orchestra has achieved first place in various local schools’ music festivals over the years. It has performed in Taipei, Tainan, Macau, Wuhan, Guangzhou and Shenzhen, receiving high acclaims for its many collaborative performances with local secondary schools. The Orchestra has also collaborated with established artists including choreographer Mui Cheuk-yin and Russian pianist Ilya Itin, as well as renowned Hong Kong pianist Nicolette Wong, under the direction of our Performing Arts Director, Leung Kin Fung, founder of Hong Kong Pure Strings and First Associate Concertmaster of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra.
The Symphony Orchestra is currently conducted by Leung Kin Fung and Dorothy Hui.
Conductor of Diocesan Girls’ School Symphony Orchestra
Trained as a classical pianist, Dorothy Hui studied with Martha Fischer as an undergraduate at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. During her time there, she was also trained in choral as well as orchestral conducting in various musical ensembles. Her conducting teachers include Bruce Gladstone, James Smith and Beverly Taylor.
A graduate of Diocesan Girls' School (DGS) and Diocesan Girls' Junior School, she returned to her alma mater in 2012, leading instrumental and choral groups in achieving excellent results in the Hong Kong Schools Music Festivals and the Youth Interflows. In 2016, the DGS Junior Choir was awarded the Most Outstanding Choir of the Year under her leadership. The DGS Senior Choir, under her direction, captured the World Championship of the Youth Choirs of Equal Voices at the 10th World Choir Games held in South Africa. She was also invited as a guest conductor for the Macao Youth Symphony Orchestra. Dorothy is now in her seventh year as Music Teacher and conductor.