Hong Kong 2003
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Recreation, Sport and the Arts
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Cultural Venues

Hong Kong Cultural Centre

Since its inauguration in 1989, the Hong Kong Cultural Centre has established itself as Hong Kong's premier performing arts venue, attracting leading artists from around the world. It has three main performing venues: Concert Hall, Grand Theatre and Studio Theatre with seating capacities of 2 019, 1 734 and 303/496, respectively. In 2003, a total of 537 496 people attended 671 performances in these venues. An Arts and Crafts Fair is organised at the Piazza every Sunday and on selected public holidays with the aim of enhancing the cultural atmosphere of the venue and attracting visitors.

Hong Kong City Hall

The Hong Kong City Hall has commanded a special place in Hong Kong's cultural life since its establishment in 1962. It is a major multi-purpose complex comprising a Concert Hall, Theatre, Recital Hall, Exhibition Hall and Exhibition Gallery. A total of 1 630 events were held during the year, attracting 340 175 people.

Regional and District Civic Centres

In addition to the Hong Kong Cultural Centre, Hong Kong City Hall and the two indoor stadia, the LCSD operates 11 regional and district civic centres: the Sheung Wan Civic Centre and Sai Wan Ho Civic Centre on Hong Kong Island; the Ngau Chi Wan Civic Centre and Ko Shan Theatre in Kowloon; and the Sha Tin Town Hall, Tsuen Wan Town Hall, Tuen Mun Town Hall, Kwai Tsing Theatre, Yuen Long Theatre, North District Town Hall and Tai Po Civic Centre in the New Territories.

Through the 'Artist-in-residence' Scheme, 12 local arts groups made use of these 11 venues for a designated period in 2003 to develop and promote their creative works and education programmes among the district communities.

The 'Programme Partnership' Scheme, first launched in 2002 at the Yuen Long Theatre and the North District Town Hall, was extended to the Sheung Wan Civic Centre and the Ngau Chi Wan Civic Centre. Under this scheme, facilities and resources were provided to selected arts groups so they could organise audience-building programmes and create new works. In this way, the arts community is offered the opportunity to be involved in organising programmes and to fully utilise the facilities at these civic centres.

West Kowloon Cultural District

A waterfront site of about 40 hectares at the southern tip of the West Kowloon Reclamation has been earmarked for development by the private sector into a world-class integrated arts, cultural, entertainment and commercial district to enhance Hong Kong's position as a centre of arts, culture and entertainment in Asia. Following announcement of the results of an Open International Concept Plan Competition for the development in February 2002, the Government had decided to adopt the concept plan of the first prize-winner as the basis for the master plan of the development, to become the West Kowloon Cultural District (WKCD).

The identifying features include an open-sided Canopy partially cladded with various types of solid or transparent panels, which unifies the many different land uses within the development and creates a comfortable environment for outdoor performances and leisure activities. It will be a fully integrated development which will include major arts and cultural facilities in a 'Cultural Headland' to the west, shopping and entertainment facilities in a central 'Retail and Entertainment Spine' and high-rise office and hotel buildings in the 'Commercial Gateway' to the east.

The Chief Secretary for Administration announced an Invitation For Proposal (IFP) on September 5, 2003, to invite the private sector to submit proposals for the WKCD development, to be submitted by June 19, 2004. Construction is anticipated to commence by 2007 and the core arts and cultural facilities will come into operation in phases starting from 2011.

Indoor Stadia

The Hong Kong Coliseum and the Queen Elizabeth Stadium are two of the largest multi-purpose indoor stadia in Hong Kong. The 12 500-seat coliseum is a leading venue for pop concerts, musicals, entertainment spectaculars, international sporting events, cultural programmes, large-scale celebrations and conventions. The 3 600-seat stadium is suitable for holding sports events, cultural and entertainment performances, school ceremonies, conferences and variety shows.

In 2003, 392 performances were staged in the two indoor stadia, attracting around 1 732 400 people.

URBTIX — Computerised Ticketing System

URBTIX, launched in 1984, has become the most popular ticketing system through which members of the public may purchase tickets at any of the 31 outlets as well as through its telephone reservation and Internet ticketing services. In 2003, some 3.5 million tickets for over 6 384 performances were sold, with a total sales value of $467 million.

The LCSD is proceeding to outsource the back-end ticketing system, i.e. hardware and software with enhanced features, to the private sector for development of an advanced ticketing system targeted to be completed in 2005. The department will maintain the operation of ticket outlets and services for venue hirers.

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