Charles Kwong is a composer currently based in Hong Kong. His creative output focuses on orchestral music, chamber compositions for musicians across various musical cultures, site-specific music, and transdisciplinary works that depart from the paradigm of concert music. Approaching music as experiential situations, Kwong’s works often concern with the sensuality of time and space as revealed by sounds and the act of listening, the eclecticism of performance practices in their juxtapositions, site specificity, and the performativity of musical forms and genres.
Kwong’s music has been internationally featured in festivals such as Ultraschall Berlin, Takefu, Ticino Musica, International de Piano La Roque d'Anthéron, Marvão, ManiFeste, among other professional presentations in Switzerland, France, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Japan, Korea, Indonesia, Taiwan and Hong Kong. In recent years he has received commissions from ensemble recherche, Lucerne Festival, Takefu International Music Festival, Hong Kong Sinfonietta, Tai Kwun Contemporary, Hong Kong New Music Ensemble (HKNME), and Hong Kong Arts Festival, among others. Other renowned groups and musicians who performed Kwong’s music include London Philharmonic Orchestra, Ensemble intercontemporain, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Orchestra UniMi, Neue Vocalsolisten Stuttgart, Divertimento Ensemble, Ensemble Offspring, Mario Caroli, Jeanne-Marie Conquer, Tadashi Tajima, Tosiya Suzuki, Edward Gardner, Christoph Poppen, Yip Wing-sie and Pierre-André Valade, among others.
Kwong has developed a long and fruitful collaboration with the Hong Kong Sinfonietta since his first orchestral commission from the orchestra in 2014. Their artistic bonding in the past decade, which include a two-season appointment of Kwong as the orchestra’s Artist Associate in 2020-2022, has so far amassed the creation of 6 orchestral commissions and 3 chamber commissions that have been showcased locally and as well globally in the orchestra’s overseas tours. With his role as Contemporary Music Research for the orchestra since 2015, Kwong also has been contributing ideas to the orchestra’s planning in contemporary repertoire and commissioning.
In 2020-2022, Kwong is among the three composers engaged by Ensemble recherche for the ensemble’s collaborative project “the new recherche”, an extensively-researched production that dealt with the subject of gentrification. The collaboration resulted in his commissioned work for the ensemble - “Migrating Tracks”, which was subsequently performed by the ensemble in Berlin, Munich and Freiburg. In 2022, Kwong is commissioned “Lullabies” - an orchestral piece for the programme of London Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Edward Gardner to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Hong Kong City Hall. In 2016, ensemble intercontemporain included Kwong’s “Lachrymae” in a programme among other works by Ligeti, Boulez, Donatoni, Pintscher, Bruno Mantovani, and Schoenberg, for the ensemble’s first ever performance in Hong Kong in its history.
Kwong’s interest in site specificity and transdisciplinarity of music in recent years led him to leadership roles in several grand-scale productions in Hong Kong. For the HKNME he conceived and curated “Our Audible City” in 2018-2019, for which he composed a series of site-specific ensemble compositions to be performed at six different non-concert venues, titled “Atlas”. In 2020 and 2021 Kwong further developed two site-specific works - “Lifelike”, commissioned by the HKNME as a series of site-specific performances at the Hong Kong Botanical and Zoological Garden; and “Requiem” commissioned by Tai Kwun Contemporary as a series of fictional rituals which Kwong co-created with poet Yuen Che Hung to take place at the sites of the former prisons and police station of Tai Kwun. To further his research in these aspacts, in 2020 he took up artist residencies respectively at Zurich (through the City of Zurich Artist-in-Residence Programme for International Artists in association with Zurich University of the Arts), and Tai Kwun Contemporary Artist Studio.
Born in 1985 in Hong Kong, Kwong in his formative years studied music at The Chinese University of Hong Kong and King’s College London, and earned his doctorate in compositions in 2013 from The University of York, under the supervision of Thomas Simaku. Over the years, he also received important benefits for his artistic development through tutelages from Toshio Hosokawa on multiple occasions, and the masterclasses from Francesco Filidei, Mauro Lanza, and Oscar Bianchi, among others.
Kwong is the co-founder and artistic director of PROJECT21st.
鄺展維的音樂作品在國際間曾於柏林Ultraschall當代音樂節、日本武生國際音樂節、瑞士提契諾音樂節、ManiFeste、法國拉羅克‧昂迪榮國際鋼琴音樂節、葡萄牙馬爾旺國際音樂節，以及瑞士、德國、法國、意大利、葡萄牙、西班牙、日本、韓國、台灣、印尼、香港等地之多個藝術節及音樂節中演出，近年委約者包括德國Ensemble recherche、琉森音樂節、武生國際音樂節、香港小交響樂團、大館當代美術館、香港創樂團及香港藝術節等，其他曾合作的知名樂隊及演奏家包括倫敦愛樂樂團、法國Ensemble intercontemporain、法國廣播愛樂樂團、斯圖加特創聲獨唱團、米蘭大學管弦樂團、意大利Divertimento樂團、澳洲Ensemble Offspring、長笛演奏家Mario Caroli、小提琴演奏家Jeanne-Marie Conquer、尺八大師田嶋直士、直笛演奏家鈴木俊哉、以及指揮家Edward Gardner、柏鵬、葉詠詩及Pierre-André Valade等。
2020至2022年間，鄺展維是獲Ensemble recherche邀請的三位作曲家之一，在樂團對士紳化作研究對象的製作「the new recherche」中參與構思及創作，並為此譜寫了委約室樂作品《Migrating Tracks》，由樂團於柏林、慕尼黑及弗賴堡作演出。為慶祝香港大會堂落成六十周年，鄺展維於2022年獲委約為Edward Gardner所領導的倫敦愛樂樂團譜寫管弦樂新作－《緣起》。2016年ensemble intercontemporain在樂團史上首次於香港演出的音樂會中，揀選了鄺展維之作品《樹猶如此》，與利蓋蒂、布列茲、唐那通尼、平沙爾、曼托瓦尼以及荀伯克的作品同場演出。
鄺展維1985年生於香港，早年於香港中文大學及倫敦大學國王學院修讀音樂，及後於英國約克大學在Thomas Simaku指導下鑽研作曲，於2013年獲頒授博士學位。他近年獲得細川俊夫多次指導，並曾參加Francesco Filidei、Mauro Lanza及Oscar Bianch等作曲家之大師班，從中獲重要啟迪。