Mr Duncan Pescod, Chief Executive Officer of WKCDA (right) and Mr Li Jinsheng, Director-general of SRILT (left) signed the cooperation agreement. Courtesy of West Kowloon Cultural District Authority.

West Kowloon Cultural District Authority (WKCDA) is pleased to announce that it has joined the Silk Road International League of Theatres (SRILT) initiated by the China Arts and Entertainment Group as its first Hong Kong Member. At the symbolic signing ceremony held during the opening plenary of the China International Performing Arts Fair (CIPAF) and SRILT Annual Conference, the cooperation agreement was signed by the Chief Executive Officer of WKCDA, Mr Duncan Pescod, and Director-general of SRILT, Mr Li Jinsheng.

CIPAF is one of Asia’s biggest and most important cultural events. This year, it is held at Guangzhou Opera House from 11 to 14 December. Members of the SRILT and over 400 theatres, troupes, arts agencies from domestic and overseas have been invited to discuss about the establishment of stage performance exchange platform and promotion of Chinese culture abroad. Meanwhile, the SRILT Development Forum is held during the Fair and Mr Louis Yu, Executive Director of Performing Arts and Ms Alison Friedman, Artistic Director of Performing Arts attend as representatives of WKCDA.

Initiated by the China Arts and Entertainment Group and supported by the Ministry of Culture, the SRILT project is a major international performing arts network under the Belt and Road initiative. Since its establishment in October 2016, the SRILT has welcomed 88 members from 33 countries and regions as well as EU and UNESCO bodies. The SRILT is committed to bringing together performing arts venues from around the world to form a network to facilitate the development of cooperative projects and exchanges among member organisations.

Riding on the SRILT, WKCDA will further expand its already extensive global performing arts network, and add to the growing number of local and international collaborations, performances and events, such as the SRILT Cultural and Arts Festival, to promote team exchanges and boost productivity, to enhance bilateral and multilateral cooperation and raise the quality of cultural and artistic exchanges.

Mr Pescod said, “WKCDA is pleased to join this prestigious network uniting performing arts venues and organisations from more than 30 countries and regions. Participation will allow us to join the global map of participants and highlight the importance of arts and cultural development along the historic Silk Road. As SRILT’s first Hong Kong member, we look forward to ensuring the opportunities created through this new membership will be of benefit to our city, the audiences, and the performing arts industry as a whole.”

WKCDA is already an active member of six other performing arts networks within the region and beyond, including the Association of Asia Pacific Performing Arts Centres (AAPPAC) for which Mr Pescod has been an Executive Council (EXCO) member since 2016. Other networks in which the WKCDA participate include the Association of British Theatre Technicians (ABTT), Global Cultural Districts Network (GCDN), InfoComm International, IETM International Network for Contemporary Performing Arts, and the International Society for the Performing Arts (ISPA).

“Facilitating cultural exchange is one of the core directions of the WKCDA’s Performing Arts artistic strategy,” said Mr Yu. “As a member of SRILT, WKCDA will be able to work with even more industry peers, and explore the development of collaborative initiatives with performing arts venues and cultural institutions around the world. We can also provide further opportunities to introduce local artists to the international audience, as well as present global experiences to Hong Kong.”

“Hong Kong is a city where East meets West and the West Kowloon Cultural District is its important cultural development. WKCDA’s participation in the SRILT will further strengthen the cultural exchanges across the globe and cross the Strait. We look forward to enhancing and deepening the cooperation among member organisations as well as sharing the fruitful development of arts and culture,” said Mr Li of SRILT.

Remarks 

West Kowloon Cultural District
Located on Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbour, the West Kowloon Cultural District is one of the largest cultural projects in the world. Its vision is to create a vibrant new cultural quarter for Hong Kong. With a complex of theatres, performance spaces, and M+, the West Kowloon Cultural District will produce and host world-class exhibitions, performances, and cultural events, as well as provide 23 hectares of public open space, including a two-kilometre waterfront promenade.