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SWIRE

Vision and Mission

To inspire through the finest music-making.Vision Statement

Vision Statement

To inspire through the finest music-making.

Milestones

2024
2019
2018
2017
2015
2012
2006
2004
2003
2000
1995
1989
1986
1984
1983
1979
1978
1977
1974
1957
Celebrating the 50th Anniversary

Celebrating the 50th Anniversary

01-2024

The orchestra was first established in 1947 as an amateur orchestra and turned professional in 1974. After 50 years, the HK Phil is now one of the foremost orchestras in Asia Pacific and the world, and has played a vital role in making Hong Kong a world-class cultural destination.
Awarded Gramophone’s Orchestra of the Year 2019

Awarded Gramophone’s Orchestra of the Year 2019

10-2019

In 2019, the HK Phil received the prestigious Gramophone Orchestra of the Year Award – the first orchestra in Asia to receive this distinction.
Completion of Wagner’s Epic Ring Cycle

Completion of Wagner’s Epic Ring Cycle

1-2018

Jaap, the HK Phil, a superb cast of soloists and a chorus successfully completed an epic four-year journey through Wagner’s Ring Cycle in January 2018. The concert performances and live Naxos recordings have been enthusiastically received by audiences and praised by critics at home and abroad.
Released the Recording of Götterdämmerung

Released the Recording of Götterdämmerung

11-2018

The recording of the Ring Cycle Part 4 Götterdämmerung was released on Naxos in November 2018.
The HK Phil Five-City International Tour

The HK Phil Five-City International Tour

2017

In 2017, in celebration of the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the HKSAR, and with support of the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Offices, the orchestra performed in Seoul, Osaka, Singapore, Melbourne and at the Sydney Opera House.
Debut concert at Vienna's Musikverein

Debut concert at Vienna's Musikverein

2015

8th Music Director - Jaap van Zweden, SBS

8th Music Director - Jaap van Zweden, SBS

2012

Jaap van Zweden, one of today’s most sought-after conductors, has been the orchestra’s Music Director since the 2012/13 concert season, a position he will continue to hold through to the end of the 2023/24 season.
The Swire Group – has been the HK Phil Principal Patron

The Swire Group – has been the HK Phil Principal Patron

2006

The Swire Group has been the Principal Patron of the HK Phil since 2006. Through this sponsorship, which is the largest in the orchestra’s history, Swire endeavours to promote artistic excellence, foster access to classical music and stimulate cultural participation in Hong Kong, and to enhance Hong Kong’s reputation as one of the great cities in the world. 
7th Artistic Director - Edo De Waart

7th Artistic Director - Edo De Waart

2004

First Tour to Europe:

First Tour to Europe:

2003

UK, Ireland and France
6th Music Director - Samuel Wong

6th Music Director - Samuel Wong

2000

First Tour to North America:

First Tour to North America:

1995

US and Canada
5th Music Director - David Atherton

5th Music Director - David Atherton

1989

Hong Kong Cultural Centre Opening Performance

Hong Kong Cultural Centre Opening Performance

1989

The HK Phil pPerformed in front of Prince Charles and Lady Diana at the opening concert of the Hong Kong Cultural Centre.
First Tour to China: Hangzhou, Shanghai and Beijing

First Tour to China: Hangzhou, Shanghai and Beijing

1986

4th Music Director - Kenneth Schermerhorn

4th Music Director - Kenneth Schermerhorn

1984

First Overseas Tour: Singapore, Bangkok and Osaka

First Overseas Tour: Singapore, Bangkok and Osaka

1983

3rd Music Director - Ling Tung

3rd Music Director - Ling Tung

1979

Released the First Album

Released the First Album

1978

2nd Music Director - Hans Günter Mommer

2nd Music Director - Hans Günter Mommer

1977

Became Fully Professional

Became Fully Professional

1974

The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra became fully professional in 1974. 
1st Music Director - Lim Kek-Tjiang

1st Music Director - Lim Kek-Tjiang

1974

Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra

Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra

1957

Originally called the Sino-British Orchestra, it was renamed the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra in 1957
 

 

 

The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra (HK Phil) is regarded as one of the leading orchestras in Asia. Presenting more than 150 concerts over a 44-week season, the HK Phil attracts more than 200,000 music lovers annually. The HK Phil won the prestigious UK classical music magazine Gramophone’s 2019 Orchestra of the Year Award – the first orchestra in Asia to receive this accolade.


Tarmo Peltokoski will become the HK Phil’s Music Director beginning in the 2026/27 season, after serving as Music Director Designate in 2025/26. Currently, Long Yu serves as Principal Guest Conductor, Lio Kuokman is the Resident Conductor, and Daniele Gatti is the Artistic Partner.


The HK Phil has flourished in the last two decades under Jaap van Zweden (Music Director, 2012–2024) and Edo de Waart (Artistic Director and Chief Conductor, 2004–2012). The orchestra successfully completed a four-year journey through Wagner’s Ring Cycle, performing and recording one opera from the cycle annually from 2015 to 2018. The concert performances were well received, and the live Naxos recordings were praised by critics, and garnered the Gramophone Orchestra of the Year Award 2019. Other recent recording projects include Mahler’s Symphony no. 10, Shostakovich’s Symphony no. 10, and Tchaikovsky’s Symphony no. 6 and Piano Concerto no. 1.
 

The HK Phil has toured extensively across Mainland China. The orchestra undertook a major tour in 2017 to Seoul, Osaka, Singapore, Melbourne and Sydney in celebration of the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. The HK Phil celebrated its 50th anniversary in the 2023/24 season, touring Europe, Asia, and Mainland China, performing in 22 cities across ten countries.


Conductors and soloists who have recently performed with the orchestra include Anja Bihlmaier, Stéphane Denève, Christoph Eschenbach, Paavo Järvi, Andrés Orozco-Estrada, Vasily Petrenko, Krzysztof Urbański, Joshua Bell, Ning Feng, Boris Giltburg, Lang Lang, Leonidas Kavakos, Olivier Latry, Yo-Yo Ma and Akiko Suwanai. The HK Phil promotes the work of Hong Kong and Chinese composers through an active commissioning programme, and it has released recordings on the Naxos label featuring Tan Dun and Bright Sheng, each conducting their own compositions. 


The HK Phil runs diverse education and community programmes in schools and outdoor spaces, bringing music into the hearts of tens of thousands of children and families every year. 


The Swire Group has been the Principal Patron of the HK Phil since 2006. Through this current sponsorship donation, the largest in the orchestra’s history, Swire endeavours to foster access to classical music and stimulate cultural participation in Hong Kong and the Chinese Mainland. A critical aspect of this is engaging with the community, especially young people. The sponsorship will also help promote local artistic excellence and enhance Hong Kong’s reputation as one of the great cities in the world. 


Thanks to a significant subsidy from the Government of the HKSAR and long-term funding from Principal Patron Swire, the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust and other supporters, the HK Phil now boasts a full-time annual schedule of core classical repertoire and innovative popular programming, extensive education and community programmes, and collaborations with, amongst others, Hong Kong Ballet, Opera Hong Kong and the Hong Kong Arts Festival.


The history of the HK Phil dates back to the establishment of the Sino-British Orchestra in 1947. In 1957, the orchestra was officially registered as the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra and became fully professional in 1974. The HK Phil is a registered charitable organisation.

 

 

 

The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra is financially supported by the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region and is a Venue Partner of the Hong Kong Cultural Centre


Swire is the Principal Patron of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra