:: The Great Statesman – Open Call Audition

The Great Statesman is West Kowloon’s first original Cantonese musical commission. Based on familiar stories and characters, and adapted through a contemporary lens, the production is produced in partnership with Hong Kong Repertory Theatre, and due for a preview season in 2019 and a premiere season in 2020. The core creative team comprises composer, arranger and musical director Leon Ko, lyricist Chris Shum, playwright Cheung Fei Fan and director Fong Chun Kit.

We are now looking for talented performers with musical training to be part of this exciting project. Auditions and recalls take place this April and May, with development workshops and rehearsals taking place between mid-June 2018 and end May 2019. Please scroll down for details and to apply.


Set in a tea house, where the customers and proprietors perform a play within a play, shifting in and out of character as the scenes progress, The Great Statesman revolves around the complex web of lies and deception surrounding the relationship between former solicitor Fong Tong Gang and his childhood friend Ah Sai. 

The Great Statesman is West Kowloon’s first Cantonese musical commission due for a preview season in 2019 and a premiere season in 2020.

As part of our continued commitment towards the creation of good work for the enjoyment of more audiences, the commissioning process began as early as March 2016, when the core creatives made up of Composer Leon Ko, Lyricist Chris Shum and Playwright Cheung Fei Fan wrote the first outlines to the musical. Director Fong Chun Kit joined the creative team in March this year.

The resolve to improve the conditions of creating an original musical within the context of Hong Kong has also led to our partnership with Hong Kong Repertory Theatre in co-producing this new commission. This confluence of an extended period of commissioning, provision of production dramaturgical support in the making and staging of the piece, as well as allowing a series of production workshops for the director, movement architect, designers and the ensemble to test out possible design and staging strategies, marks the desire for a new model of making a musical in Hong Kong.

Artistically, The Great Statesman uses a contemporary lens to relook at the rich vernacular tradition of Cantonese Opera by drawing inspiration from familiar characters and scenarios dealing with court battles, lies, false identities, revenge, absolution and redemption.

Production details:
Composer, Arranger and Musical Director: Leon Ko
Lyrics: Chris Shum
Book: Cheung Fei Fan
Director: Fong Chun Kit

Late May – Early June 2019

Hong Kong Premiere:
May 2020

Workshops and Rehearsals:
Work development workshop (1):  Mid-June 2018
Work development workshop (2):  Late September 2018
Work development workshop (3):  Mid-November 2018
Preview Rehearsal: 8 April – 23 May 2019

Audition details:

Initial audition: 21–22 April 2018 (Saturday and Sunday)
Recall audition: Mid-May 2018



Target applicants:
Performers with a background in musical training or prior experience in musical performance is preferred.

Closing date for applications:
9 April 2018


Successful applicants will be contacted by email on or before 16 April 2018.

Adverse weather arrangements:
If a black rainstorm warning or a typhoon signal no. 8 or above is in force two hours before the audition, the audition will be rescheduled. Affected candidates will be contacted by email.

Ms Kwok (852) 2200 0811, grace.kwok@wkcda.hk

Commissioned by:
West Kowloon Cultural District

Co-produced by: