Hong Kong News

Nonpartisan, Noncommercial, unconstrained.
Friday, Mar 31, 2023

Hong Kong orchestra names new music director after delay caused by pandemic

Hong Kong orchestra names new music director after delay caused by pandemic

German Christoph Poppen steps up from principal guest conductor to music director of the Hong Kong Sinfonietta, succeeding Yip Wing-sie.

Hong Kong Sinfonietta has named its German principal guest conductor Christoph Poppen as its new music director.

The appointment, delayed by the Covid-19 pandemic, comes two years after Yip Wing-sie stepped down from the role to become the orchestra’s music director emeritus.

Poppen, 66, has been in his current role with the Sinfonietta since 2015 and will begin his tenure as music director at the start of the 2023/24 season.

Born in Munster, he studied the violin and was a founder of the Cherubini Quartet in 1978; he has been a professor of music since his early twenties.

Christoph Poppen conducts the Hong Kong Sinfonietta. He will take over as its music director from the 2023/24 season onwards.

The Sinfonietta also named Vivian Ip associate conductor beginning from the 2023/24 season, and extended Hong Kong visual artist Vivian Ho’s tenure as artist associate.

Poppen, whose family lives in Munich, southern Germany, will maintain his other commitments, which include being principal conductor of the Cologne Chamber Orchestra and artistic director of the Marvão International Music Festival, alongside his directorship of the Hong Kong orchestra when he takes over.

Together with Margaret Yang, the Sinfonietta’s chief executive, Yip turned an orchestra with no full-time players into a world-class professional ensemble.

One of Hong Kong’s best-known home-grown musicians and highly respected internationally as a pioneering female conductor, she first met Poppen in the 1980s when both were studying at Indiana University in the United States.

She said during the announcement at the Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong on Wednesday of Poppen’s appointment that she would still be heavily involved with the orchestra she has led for two decades.
Yip Wing-sie conducts the Sinfonietta in 2022. She helped turn it into a full-time, fully professional orchestra in her two decades as music director.

“Conductors don’t retire. As emeritus conductor, I remain in an advisory role. I live in Hong Kong. If Poppen is not here, HKS can count on me for support. This is like having an extra music director.”

She will take the orchestra on tour in Germany in April – a trip delayed for three years because of the pandemic. Poppen will join her and the orchestra for another tour of Portugal and Spain in July.

The German conductor, who has spent a total of 12 weeks in hotel quarantine in Hong Kong in the past three years, documenting some of his stays on video, said the orchestra had been a “role model” for groups around the world in how to adapt to crises and to attract a wider audience.

When performance venues were closed in Hong Kong, he joined the orchestra for some of its self-produced concert-based feature films, which required him to perform without a live audience for the first time in his long career.

He also made a humorous quarantine “countdown journal” on Youtube in 2020 when he was among the first international musicians to come to Hong Kong following the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The Hong Kong Sinfonietta was one of few orchestras in the world to accept incredible challenges like closed venues and to have the energy to gain audience through film projects. Its audience has actually grown after Covid,” he said.

He added that he had watched the orchestra mature in the past seven years and saw no reason to change its direction. “We can just continue what’s been done and will continue to support Hong Kong and local composers,” he said.

As one of nine official “major performing arts groups” recognised by the Hong Kong government, the Sinfonietta received grants totalling HK$41.2 million (US$5.3 million) in the 2021-22 financial year; 28 per cent of its revenues came from ticket sales, sponsorship and others sources.


Related Articles

Hong Kong News
Don’t Dismiss China’s Peacemaking Bid
Austrian Parliament members walk out when Volodymyr Zelensky begins speaking.
Father obliterates council members following viral TikTok of biological male masturbating in women’s bathroom..
Tsai Ing-wen received a "warm welcome" from the Chinese people in the US.
EU's von der Leyen: "We know this is an era where we rely on one single supplier. China. 98% of our rare earth supply."
China and Brazil have signed a new deal that will allow them to trade in their own currencies, bypassing the US dollar as an intermediary
Elon Musk and Others Call for Pause on A.I., Citing ‘Profound Risks to Society’
“We've had evidence prior to the pandemic that masks were largely ineffective at preventing community transmission of influenza “
Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz:
Former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz rejects being labeled a "billionaire"
Jamie Dimon is being deposed over JPMorgan Chase role in Epstein lawsuits
Brand new security footage has just been released to the public showing the Active shooter Audrey Elizabeth Hale drove to Covenant Church School in her Honda Fit this morning, parked, and shot her way into the building
Social Media censoring users for saying the true
Smart Iranian fashion designer teaching dummy TV anchors lesson about reality
U.S. charges FTX's Bankman-Fried with paying $40 million bribe
Fallen 'Crypto King' Who Owes Millions to Investors Was Kidnapped and Tortured
Regulators blame social media for SVB's rapid collapse: 'Complete game changer'
AOC explains why she opposes banning TikTok
Singapore’s Prime Minister says China and US need to stabilize relations because world can't afford a confict between the two superpowers
In a dramatic U-turn against His Government: Judicial Reform Legislation Must Be Halted, Says Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant
Gordon Moore, a co-founder of Intel Corporation, died at 94
Powell: Silicon Valley Bank was an 'outlier'
Bordeaux town hall set on fire in France pro democracy protest
Police violence in Paris
Paris: Some of the police are stepping down and showing solidarity with the protesters.
Donald Trump arrested – Twitter goes wild with doctored pictures
NYPD is setting up barricades outside Manhattan Criminal Court ahead of Trump arrest.
Credit Suisse's Scandalous History Resulted in an Obvious Collapse - It's time for regulators who fail to do their job to be held accountable and serve as an example by being behind bars.
Goldman Sachs cuts outlook for European bank debt over Credit Suisse crisis
Paris Rioting vs Macron anti democratic law
'Sexual Fantasy' Assignment At US School Outrages Parents
The US government has charged Chinese businessman Guo Wengui with leading a $1 billion fraud scheme that cheated thousands of followers out of their money.
Credit Suisse to borrow $54 billion from Swiss central bank
The BBC problem about China
Russian Hackers Preparing New Cyber Assault Against Ukraine
"Will Fly Wherever International Law Allows": US Warns Russia After Drone Incident
If this was in Tehran, Moscow or Hong Kong
Announcing GPT-4
TRUMP: "Standing before you today, I am the only candidate who can make this promise: I will prevent World War III."
China is calling out the US, UK, and Australia on their submarine pact, claiming they are going further down a dangerous road
A brief banking situation report
We are witnessing widespread bank fails and the president just gave a 5 min speech then walked off camera.
Donald Trump's asked by Tucker Carlson question on if the U.S. should support regime change in Russia?.
'No relation to the American SVB': India's SVC Bank acts to calm depositors amid brand name confusion.
Good news: The U.S. government is now guaranteeing all deposits, held by, Silicon Valley Bank, and the funds are available as of today
Silicon Valley Bank exec was Lehman Brothers CFO
In a potential last-ditch effort, HSBC is considering a rescue deal to save Silicon Valley Bank UK from insolvency
Saudi Arabia has announced a major breakthrough in diplomacy with Iran after two years of intense talks
Elon Musk Is Planning To Build A Town In Texas For His Employees