Are you staying in Hong Kong for the summer? If you answered yes, then you’re in for a treat. From 5 July to 18 August, Hong Kong plays host to the International Arts Carnival 2019. Thanks to this amazing festival, the city will be thriving with 15 family focused performing arts shows from all over the globe. We’re definitely being spoilt for choice when it comes to summer theatre in Hong Kong!
The Carnival offers a huge program that covers classics like The Very Hungry Caterpillar & Other Eric Carle Favourites, opera for babies, and a world premiere of the international version of The Little Mermaid. There’s even a musical treasure hunt by the Hong Kong Chinese Orchestra.
Here are our top three recommendations.
The Heart of Robin Hood
The Royal Shakespeare Company premiered this reimagining of the classic English folk story only in 2011. It’s since toured the US and Canada and is now here in Hong Kong for us all to embrace. This performance has been created, together with UK playwright David Farr, by the Vesturport theatre group from Iceland. It’s loads of fun!
The Heart of Robin Hood presents as a modern, athletic twist on the original, with Lady Marion and Robin Hood at the centre of this romantic comedy the whole family will love. Get ready for an evening of high energy acrobatics, fast and furious fight choreography, impressive staging and a great soundtrack.
Showing from 5-7 July 2019. Read more and get your tickets here.
A O Lang Pho
If you love Cirque du Soleil performances, then A O Lang Pho is the show for you at this year’s International Arts Carnival. Director Tuan Le is the first solo artist of Vietnamese descent to have appeared in the world-famous Cirque du Soleil. He’s created this masterpiece by taking that experience and fusing it together with Vietnamese folk opera (cai luong) and modern stage design. It’s a circus-inspired narrative that takes the audience on a journey from rural Vietnam to frenetic urban life.
During the show, the stage is transformed by performers who use super-sized rattan baskets and bamboo poles to create new sets before your eyes. It’s a beautiful, physical, visually poetic show that is set to impress its Hong Kong audience through a combination of acrobatics, contortionism, martial arts, dance, and comic moments merged with Vietnamese folk opera.
Showing from 26-28 July 2019. Get more details and your tickets here.
Monsieur Croche: The Dreams of Composer Claude Debussy
This is a 45-minute striking mixed media show that incorporates live music, human actors, puppets, projections and more to deliver a ‘wow’ Hong Kong theatre performance. Monsieur Croche: The Dreams of Composer Claude Debussy is a short program inspired by the 19th-century French composer’s atmospheric impressionist works. A live pianist performs Debussy’s works throughout the performance. Meanwhile, the ensemble works on stage to bring these musical masterpieces to life. During the performance, they tell the story of Monsieur Croche and his wife who go on an adventure to an enchanted island.
On this Debussy-inspired adventure, the couple has a creative, joyous experience and meet some friends along the way. There’s a tussle with a mermaid amid the tossing sea, a meeting with a blue-haired fairy, a group of magical, giant-eyed elves, and even a huge insect who swallows musical notes. It’s a beautifully creative show that kids and parents alike will love.
Showing from 1-4 August 2019. See more information and get your tickets here.
Note: The above shows are for ages three and over. They are all recommended for six-year-olds and above, so please, leave the littlest members of your crew at home.
For the full International Arts Carnival 2019 schedule click here.
See more in our Living in Hong Kong section