Press Releases

For Immediate Release 19 January 2021

Swire Extends Its Commitment to the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra as
Principal Patron for Another Three Years from April 2021

Introducing new community initiatives while continuing to promote cultural exchanges in the
Greater Bay Area and worldwide

Marking 15 years of partnership between the Swire Group (Swire) and the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra (HK Phil), we are delighted to announce today that Swire will be continuing its sponsorship of the HK Phil as Principal Patron for another three years from April 2021, with a grant of HK$46.4 million, the biggest corporate donation in the orchestra's history.

Swire has been Principal Patron of the HK Phil since 2006. Swire's patronage over the past 15 years has bolstered the HK Phil's long-term mission to promote artistic excellence, foster access to classical music, stimulate cultural participation in Hong Kong, and enhance Hong Kong's reputation as one of the great cities in the world.

Starting a new chapter of the partnership, Swire and the HK Phil join hands to take classical music further into the local community and groom local music talent through new education and outreach initiatives. New initiatives include "Phil Your Life", a brand new programme which blends music with exercise, storytelling and food; "The Orchestra Academy Hong Kong" co-directed with The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts (HKAPA), the first joint programme aimed at enhancing professional training for graduates from HKAPA's School of Music and facilitating their career development in the orchestral field. There are many more exciting initiatives to come with the new renewed period.

Along with the ever-popular "Swire Symphony Under The Stars", and "Swire Classic Insights" - a series of free concerts with programmes designed thematically, Swire will also be supporting the orchestra's other community initiatives, including admission-free performances at Swire shopping malls in Hong Kong as well as free relaxed concerts for disadvantaged groups conducted by the HK Phil Music Director Jaap van Zweden, SBS. Maestro van Zweden, the HK Phil and Swire share the same passion for giving fine music to all and promoting an integrated society through music.

Together with the regular concert series, "Swire Maestro Series", "Swire Denim Series" and "Swire Sunday Family Series", all these programmes allow the HK Phil to present a variety of music experiences to different groups of the public in the city.

Mr Merlin Swire, Chairman of Swire Pacific Limited said, "We are pleased to continue our sponsorship of the HK Phil for another three years. Over the past 15 years, our relationship has blossomed and continues to bear fruit as the HK Phil nurtures the talent of remarkable young musicians and brings classical music into the hearts of Hong Kong people. As we enter a new phase of our partnership, we are committed to bringing classical music closer to the local community. We hope that through the transformative power of music, we can bring positive and aspirational energy to Hong Kong, amidst the current challenges."

"Swire has been doing business in Hong Kong for 150 years, and throughout that time we have always taken a long-term view. This is reflected in our role as Principal Patron of the HK Phil, and we hope to continue our partnership long into the future," Mr Swire added.

Named Orchestra of the Year at the 2019 Gramophone Awards, the HK Phil is Hong Kong's cultural ambassador and is committed to participating in cultural exchange work, showcasing the artistic excellence of Hong Kong to audiences around the world. Touring plans to the Greater Bay Area and other cities in the Chinese mainland, as well as countries in South Asia, Europe and North America, are in the pipeline. The HK Phil strives not only to present the finest music-making to audiences in designated venues, but also in a more accessible way with people everywhere. In 2020, the HK Phil presented a wide range of online programmes to stay connected with music lovers across the globe, and will continue to bring different music experiences to our audiences, both online and offline.

Mr Y.S. Liu, MH, Chairman of the Board of Governors of the HK Phil, said, "We sincerely thank Swire Group for its unwavering support over the years. To maintain a high standard of performances, the orchestra requires substantial funding. Other than the unfailing support from the Hong Kong Government, Swire has given the HK Phil the greatest amount of corporate sponsorships in history as our Principal Patron since 2006, enabling the orchestra to open doors to new opportunities around the world, realising our artistic aspirations and missions. We are excited to continue our collaboration with Swire for many years to come."

Key Visual Designed by RCS

Music Director Jaap van Zweden and the Hong Kong
Philharmonic Orchestra at Swire Symphony Under The Stars

Photo Credit: Keith Hiro / HK Phil

Swire Symphony Under The Stars

Photo Credit: Ka Lam / HK Phil

Music Director Jaap van Zweden and the Hong Kong
Philharmonic Orchestra

Photo Credit: Eric Hong / HK Phil

Music Director Jaap van Zweden and the Hong Kong
Philharmonic Orchestra at the finale of the Ring Cycle

Photo Credit: Ka Lam / HK Phil

Music Director Jaap van Zweden and the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra
Photo Credit: Cheung Wai-lok / HK Phil

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About the Swire Group
A highly-diversified and global corporation, the Swire Group's businesses encompass property, aviation, beverages and food chain, as well as marine services and trading & industrial activities. Its core businesses are mainly focused in Asia, with its key operations in Hong Kong and the Chinese mainland. Within Asia, Swire's activities come under the Group's publicly quoted arm, Swire Pacific Limited (HKSE: 00019/00087), which is the major shareholder in two Hong Kong listed companies: Swire Properties and Cathay Pacific Airways.
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About Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra
The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra (HK Phil) is recognised as Asia's foremost classical orchestra, attracting more than 200,000 music lovers every year by presenting more than 150 concerts. In 2019, the HK Phil received the prestigious Gramophone Orchestra of the Year Award - the first orchestra in Asia to receive this distinction. Maestro Jaap van Zweden has been the orchestra's Music Director since the 2012/13 concert season and will continue to hold the position through to the end of the 2023/24 season; he is also Music Director of the New York Philharmonic. Maestro Yu Long is the HK Phil's Principal Guest Conductor. Lio Kuokman has been appointed as Resident Conductor, effective 1 December 2020 and covering the 2020/21 and 2021/22 seasons. It is the orchestra's mission to share its finest music-making in a more accessible way with people everywhere, not just in designated venues. In 2020, the HK Phil has produced a number of online programmes that allow us to reach out to a wider audience through recording, streaming and publishing on our website and social media platforms.
For more information, please visit