5:58 – 28 September, 2nd Anniversary

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5:58 when para-military police in green army style fatigues and armed with shotguns and semi-automatic rifles advanced on thousands of peaceful HongKongers and without warning opened fire with tear gas and started pointing rifles at those advocating democracy.

5:58 when HongKongers respect and faith in the police disappeared.

5:58 when Beijing exposed the reality behind the facade of one country two systems.

87 canisters, a gift from 689 to those who wish to stop him destroying the city and people he’s supposed to lead.

87 a blunt statement that nepotism, cronyism and corruption are the way of the future and free speech and democracy a thing of the past

Two years have passed, but none forget. We’ll be back!

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Click on any photo for more images.

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Queen + Adam Lambert @ AsiaWorld Expo – 28 September, 2016

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The show must go on as Queen + Adam Lambert entertained almost 10,000 sing-a-long fans at AsiaWorld Expo as the legendary rock group final made it to Hong Kong.

There is no replacing Freddie, as a couple of video clips showed, but Lambert works hard to entertain in what must be the strange job of filling the boots of a man who’s influence dominates the evening. Fans want to hear the classic songs, so he can’t make them his own and yet he’s not singing in a covers band… Tough task, but he makes a pretty good fist of it.

At 2 hours and 15 minutes the show is tight, professional and includes most of the hits. There’s an entertaining drum-off between Roger Taylor and his son, a long solo from Brian May and the two song encore ends with band waving goodbye to the strains of God Save the Queen.

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If there’s a complaint, beyond the, as usual, very average sound at AsiaWorld Expo, it’s that the show feels very orchestrated and choreographed. It lacked those moments of spontaneity and improvisation that can turn a good/great concert into a truly memorable even legendary one. Still a fun night out and there’ll be a lot of hoarse voices this morning. Thanks Freddie, Roger, Brian for so many great songs that will live forever!

Seven Seas of Rhye
Hammer to Fall
Stone Cold Crazy
Fat Bottom Girls
Don’t Stop Me Now
Killer Queen
Somebody to Love

Love of My Life
It’s a Kind of Magic
Drum Battle
Under Pressure
Crazy Little Thing Called Love

Another One Bites the Dust
I Want It All
Who Wants to Live Forever
The Show Must Go On
Guitar Solo
Tie Your Mother Down
I Want to Break Free
Bohemian Rhapsody
Radio Gaga

encore…
We Will Rock You
We Are The Champions

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Photos: Warner Music Hong Kong, tube.hk

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What are The Colours of Humanity?

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What are The Colours of Humanity? This is the intriguing question posed by the International Black Box Festival 2016 (ibb2016) which aspires that audiences immerse themselves in different artistic realms to discover the many colours of humanity. Organised by the Hong Kong Repertory Theatre the festival runs from 15 October to 20 November and features productions encompassing a wide range of styles each presenting a different approach to the dramatic text.

HK Repertory Theatre’s Artistic Director Anthony Chan commented, “These six highly anticipated productions are all stylistically unique. We live in an age of complicated emotions and relationships that affect not only the nature of human connection but also our thinking beyond national boundaries. We aim to provide our audience with a wide vista where imagination and creativity roam free among the many facets of our collective, civilized spirit.”

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The curator of ibb2016 Fung Wai Hang explains this year’s focus. “For the inaugural Black Box Festival we chose the theme of ‘body and movement’, while this year we focus on the ‘dramatic text’. In recent years, different approaches to the dramatic text have surfaced. We hope to establish a platform for international exchange, so that our local theatre professionals and enthusiasts can enjoy an enriching encounter with visiting artists through workshops and lectures.”

International Black Box Festival 2016 Programme

La Voix Humaine – Toneelgroep Amsterdam (Netherlands)
15-17 April, 2016 @ HK City Hall, Theatre
During an hour-long performance, a woman is trapped inside a box-like room, holding onto the receiver talking to her ex-lover. For the entire hour, the audience watches her in this emotional roller-coaster ride, becoming de facto “peeping toms”. La voix humaine was written by Jean Cocteau and directed by 2016 Tony Award-winning director Ivo van Hove. (Note this production took place in April).

Descendants of the Eunuch Admiral – Performer Studio (Hong Kong)
15-23 October @ HKRep Black Box
A classic work by the founding father of Singapore theatre Kuo Pao-kun, this play addresses power politics as well as castration, depicting Zheng He’s seven ocean voyages as well as the eunuch admiral’s physical and psychological challenges. It provides a parable on the pressures of modern life, where people are left with little choice: either self-castration or being castrated by others. Descendants of the Eunuch Admiral was written by Kuo Pao-kun, adapted and directed by Tony Wong.

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The 9 Fridas – Möbius Strip Theatre (Wales, Taiwan, Hong Kong)
27-30 October @ HKRep Black Box
The 9 fridas is a mosaic combining a patchwork of impressions and stories depicting the life of Mexican artist Frida Kahlo (1907–1954), with characters and their stories echoing the real life of Kahlo herself. The 9 fridas was written by Kaite O’Reilly and directed by Phillip Zarrilli, renowned for his psychophysical acting method.

Asagao – Bkyuyugekitai (Japan)
3-6 November @ HKRep Black Box
Asagao was created especially for the International Black Box Festival by Shed Skin playwright Tsukuda Norihiko, who not only wrote the script but also appears in the production. The story takes place after a husband returns after a six-month stint working away from home to discover a deserted house where morning glory vines have overtaken the walls and even the ceiling. Where is his wife? The story crosses time and space incorporating absurdist elements, humour and irony, at the same time; it is tinged with a sense of helplessness. Asagao is directed by Kamiya Shogo.

White Room – White Room Research Collective (Japan, Hong Kong)
10-13 November @ HKRep Black Box
Created and directed by Waguri Yukio, disciple of Butoh founder Hijikata Tatsumi and principal dancer of Asbestos-kan, White Room combines butoh and text in expressing the hearts and desire of seven patients. Written and directed by Waguri Yukio.

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Before After – Creative VaQi (South Korea)
17-20 November @ HKRep Black Box
Divided into sections based on time, Before After shows the changes that occur before and after a devastating event. A time before and after is created after a tragic, irreversible event. What experiences do we go through that make us realise that an event has affected ‘our’ lives? What happens as a point in ‘my’ time on stage suddenly meets ‘yours’ space. Before After is a collective work directed by Kyung-sung Lee.

The International Black Box Festival 2016 also includes workshops, talks and a symposium hosted by artists from around the world. Speakers at these events include Theatre du pif’s Artistic Director Bonni Chan, Japanese butoh master Waguri Yukio, Professor Winton Au, Professor Chiu Chui-de, Kaite O’Reilly, Tony Wong, Tsukuda Norihiko and Kyung-sung Lee. For more information on workshops, talks and symposium visit the festival’s website www.hkrep.com/ibb2016.

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International Black Box Festival 2016
Date: 15 October – 20 November, 2016
Venue: HK Rep Black Box Theatre
Tickets: $280 from Urbtix

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Nizakat Khan Scores Blistering Century

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Nizakat Khan has continued his red hot run of form from Hong Kong’s tour of the United Kingdom and Ireland with a blistering century in the Premier league.

Playing for Hong Kong Cricket Club, Nizakat smashed 116 off 60 balls with his century coming off just 52 deliveries. His innings included an incredible 13 sixes. The innings comes after Nizakat scored 69, 123, 62, 43 and 40 in matches against Ireland and Scotland, with the right hander now feeling confident in his own game.

“I still feel that I’m in the form of my life, had a great tour for Hong Kong. I missed out in the first Premier League game but I knew my day would come and today was my day.” said Khan “I was in an aggressive mood, I wanted to be positive from the first ball and told myself anything in my zone I would put away. I wasn’t looking for fours, I was looking for sixes and they kept coming.”

Khan continued “I hit a few out of the ground, my favourite shot is to hit straight and managing to hit one over the sight screen felt good. I’m sorry that we lost so many balls today! But seriously, I am just trying to stick to my routines in training, working on my fitness and my weaknesses. I just want to be on the winning team so today was great.”

Nizakat’s whirlwind innings proved the backbone of a dominant 192-run win for HKCC against Pakistan Association Club.

HKCC posted 336-6 with Mark Wright (65) and Scott Mckechnie (56) also scoring half-centuries.

In response, PACC did reach 117-3 at one stage thanks to Bilal Muhammad’s 71, but the visitors collapsed to be all out for 144. Giacomo Lamplough ran through the tail and picked up 4-16.

In Sunday’s other match, Kowloon Cricket Club scored an easy win over the newly formed Cricket Hong Kong Independents XI.

Spinner Dan Pascoe’s 4-26 helped dimiss CHK XI for 139, Haseeb Amjad top scored with 36.

The CHK XI total was made more disappointing by the ease in which KCC picked off the runs. Kinchit Shah (53), Jamie Atkinson (40*) and Aizaz Khan (38*) helped the home side surpass the score in just the 22nd over.

Match Scores

Hong Kong CC v Pakistan Association CC: www.crichq.com/#matches/431090/1st_innings
Kowloon CC v Cricket HK XI: www.crichq.com/#matches/431093/1st_innings

Other domestic scores: www.crichq.com/#organisations/821/competitions/current

Additional reporting and image: HK Cricket Association

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Women’s Rugby Shines on Super Saturday

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The 2016-17 season of the Women’s Premiership kicked off with a Super Saturday showcase at King’s Park with six of the seven Premiership teams in action, including Premiership debutants City Sparkle, last year’s League and Grand Champions Valley Black and the runners-up in both competitions Gai Wu Falcons.

Last year’s top two were convincing form with muscular bonus point wins on the opening weekend. In the season’s opening match Valley dispatched CWB Phoenix 45-7 in an impressive eight try performance even though three of its top players were absent representing Hong Kong in the Asian Sevens series.

The absence of Valley’s large contingent of Hong Kong representatives, combined with a number of retirements in the off-season, has catalysed a youth movement in the Valley with numerous players called up from last year’s second side Valley Red.

“I’m really pleased with our performance today,” said Sam Feausi, the long-time Valley star, who is serving as assistant coach for the team this season. “We showed good structure despite having a few girls missing. We had seven or eight players from last year’s second team in the first side today and it’s good to see the young girls stepping up.”

Their ability to transition to Premiership level will play a decisive factor in Valley’s ability to defend its two-season long unbeaten streak once the top sides face each other.

“We are confident, but this season is going to be much more competitive. Everybody is pretty strong. All of the teams are missing their sevens girls but the results are still really convincing,” Feausi added.

Gai Wu Falcons soared to their biggest opening day victory in the day’s second match dispatching Kowloon 56-0 despite lacking four of their stars including Hong Kong captain Christy Cheng Ka-chi who were also on international sevens duty.

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In the final match of the day, USRC Tigers withstood a fierce early charge from City Sparkle before overpowering the Premiership debutants 45 – 3.

Tigers coach Liu Kwok-leung said City’s intensity troubled his side early on: “They put us under a lot of pressure and it took us a while to get settled in and switched on. Their defensive line speed is good and stopped us from organising. They have good potential to compete this season.

“But eventually we settled a bit and I was pleased that we kept our structure and performed what we have been training,” Kwok added.

City coach Fung Kai-hang said, “Tigers are one of the top teams and they played well. We have set some goals for the league this season. There are games we target to win, games we target to compete in and games that we can use as a learning curve.

“This was our first Premiership match and the girls really felt the difference in intensity. It’s more confrontational and the speed and strength of the game is much better at this level, but we learned a lot today.

“We need to keep working on our set piece and the contact area. We play Football Club next and they have a big pack and will be similar to Tigers. But the girls are really positive. We gave up a lot of tries tonight but they kept working hard and going forward,” said Fung

For the full weekend’s results click here

Additional reporting and image: HKRU

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Hong Kong Take on Sydney Sixers

Babar Hayat - T20 v Ireland 2016

Hong Kong will play inaugural Big Bash League champions Sydney Sixers on the 16 December at C.ex Coffs International Stadium in Coffs Harbour as part of their 10-day tour to Australia in December. The fixture means Hong Kong will now play two matches against Big Bash League teams, following last week’s announcement of a fixture against Sydney Thunder.

HK Cricket Association CEO Tim Cutler said about the game “The opportunity to play in the country, and experience country NSW life is a great opportunity for the guys and will be a great character building experience,” said Cutler. “Australia only probably got a taste of what Hong Kong has to offer with Ming Li being the Sixers community rookie last year…so this is another great chance for Australians, and especially country Australians, to see what talent there is in Hong Kong.”

The game will see many of the Sixers’ stars have their final hit out before the start of the KFC T20 Big Bash League on 20 December. “The guys are fortunate enough to be heading to Coffs Harbour which will be four days before our first BBL match,” said Sixers and Australian spinner Steve O’Keefe. “It’s vitally important that we hit the ground running and we’re at top speed at that time of year, but not only that it’s important that we get out there and showcase our skills to the local people of Coffs Harbour.

Sixers General Manager Dominic Remond commented “It is a great opportunity for our fans to experience Big Bash. It is an added bonus that our friends from the Hong Kong Cricket Association are sending their National team to play.”

Hong Kong v Sydney Sixers
Date: 6pm, 16 December 2016
Venue: C.ex Coffs International Stadium, Coffs Harbour
Tickets: Free

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Women’s Rugby Results – 24 September, 2016

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Premiership

Valley Black 45-7 CWB Phoenix
@ King’s Park, Kick-off: 15:00

Gai Wu 56-0 Kowloon
@ King’s Park, Kick-off: 16:30

City Sparkle 3-45 USRC Tigers
@ King’s Park, Kick-off: 18:00

Photo: Valley Black

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Asia Sevens Series Korea: Day 1 Results – 24 September, 2016

Hong Kong’s men and women had a good first first day in the second leg of the Asia Sevens Series in Korea with both teams making it through to the Cup semi-final.

All the semi-finals and finals are being live streamed Asia Rugby‘s YouTube channel AsiaRugbyLive

Hong Kong’s women won their first two matches convincingly against Uzbekistan (51-0) and Singapore (24-0) but lost a closely fought final match of the day encounter against Japan 24-12. This though was a vastly improved performance against a team that thrashed them in Hong Kong a couple of weeks ago. Hong Kong finished second in Pool C and will play China, who easily won Pool D, in the second Cup semi-final on Sunday.

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The men also finished second in their pool, after cruising to easy wins over Taiwan (47-5) and Japan (57-0), Hong Kong lost a thrilling match against hosts Korea 28-21 and will also play China in their cup semi-final. While Japan are looking to blood new young university age players, it does devalue the competition and dis-respect the other competitors that their side is not even competitive.

Asia Rugby 7s 2016 - Korea

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