In view of the uncertainty surrounding venue availability and social distancing measures due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Laila opera experience and the pop-up exhibition, scheduled for 25 February – 3 April at the Hong Kong Maritime Museum and the open area near Central Pier 9, will not take place as originally scheduled. Please visit the Project Laila website for updates and developments.

About 50th HKAF’s Special Project Laila
Laila at the 50th HKAF continues the Festival’s commitment to presenting innovative productions from around the world; this production, made possible by a meeting of performing arts with cutting-edge technology, conjures up untold possibilities, and will be sure to delight Hong Kong audiences, particularly younger ones. The special project Laila, along with complementary outreach and education activities will further advance arts and technology initiatives in Hong Kong.

Following the success of Opera Beyond in promoting Arts Tech through the creative open call, the Festival has curated a series of outreach and education events commencing in May 2021, leading up to the 50th HKAF in 2022. Fronted by the popular young local artist Mr Zeno Koo, Outreach Ambassador for the HKAF’s special project Laila, these initiatives aim to promote wider awareness of Arts Tech, as well as cultivating ideas among diverse local audiences and the younger generation. In the year-long series of outreach and education activities, Mr Koo will join and experience the learning process alongside the students.

The first Laila outreach and education activity rolled out is the “Arts X Tech Creative Competition”, for which an open call for proposals from students started on 20 May 2021. Shortlisted proposals will be showcased to the public during the 50th HKAF in 2022. There will also be demonstration performances at 20 local secondary schools in an immersive and interactive setting between October 2021 to January 2022. A unique guided tour will also be curated, enabling students to experience Laila and the complementary exhibition in February and March 2022.

A teacher seminar, to be held before this summer, will provide a platform for exchanges of ideas between teachers and arts educators on topics including STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Mathematics) education, cross-disciplinary collaborations, creative teaching strategies and Arts Tech.

Throughout the year, the HKAF will also present workshops in secondary schools and introductory talks for the public.