Fresh from representing Hong Kong at the Venice Biennale, Hong Kong artist Samson Young premieres a major new work, a radio composition in five episodes and a sound installation, at the 2017 Manchester International Festival, MIF17, in the UK. at the 2017 Manchester International Festival, MIF17, in the UK. Inspired by mythic tales of 17th-century Chinese travellers making their way to Europe on foot, this multilayered piece asks: How are journeys remembered and retold? What of the aching feet that carry the bodies, the bumpy ride, the incidental mountains? How do stories lend meanings to places left behind?

The first work to be co-commissioned by West Kowloon and MIF, One of Two Stories, or Both (Field Bagatelles) begins with a first for the festival: a five-part radio series performed by a cast of actors, artists and musicians. Presented in front of a live audience at Low Four in Old Granada Studios in Manchester, this tapestry of sound, oral histories, songs and poetry can also be heard locally on FM radio, and by audiences around the world online. Following the radio series, a multi-channel sound and visual installation will premiere at Manchester’s Centre for Chinese Contemporary Art, bringing a further perspective to the stories. Coinciding with the 20th anniversary of Hong Kong’s handover from the UK to China, this event holds a particular poignancy for audiences both in the UK and Hong Kong.

One of Two Stories, or Both (Field Bagatelles) features text by writer and director Vee Leong, poet Nicholas Wong and Samson Young.

For more information about event, please visit

Recordings of Radio Drama:

Radio drama


30 June – 4 July 2017
Exhibition continues after MIF17 until 29 October

6:30pm (GMT 5:30pm)

Low Four, Old Granada Studios, Atherton St, Manchester M3 3GS, UK

Ticket fee:

The live broadcasts can be heard on FM radio in the Manchester area, exclusively on Unity Radio 92.8FM, and online at


7 July – 29 October 2017, daily 10am–5pm

Centre for Chinese Contemporary Art, Market Buildings, 13 Thomas St, Manchester M4 1EU, UK 

Free admission

Commissioned by Manchester International Festival, Centre for Chinese Contemporary Art, Edouard Malingue Gallery, University of Salford Art Collection and West Kowloon Cultural District. Supported by Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office, London as part of its programme of events commemorating the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.

Participating Artists

Samson Young

Samson Young is an artist and composer based in Hong Kong. Young's diverse practice draws from the avant-garde compositional traditions of aleatoric music, musique concrète, and graphic notation. Behind each project is an extensive process of research, involving a mapping of the process through a series of ‘sound sketches’ and audio recordings. His drawing, radio broadcast, performance and composition touch upon the recurring topics of conflict, war, and political frontiers.

Young was the inaugural winner of the BMW Art Journey Award at the Art Basel Hong Kong 2015. His recent solo projects include Hiroshima City Museum of Contemporary Art, Japan (2015); Team Gallery, New York (2015); Para Site, Hong Kong (2016); Experimenter, India (2016); and Kunsthalle Düsseldorf, Germany (2016).

As a practising musician, Young is the member of multiple bands and has collaborated with ensembles and orchestras worldwide. He has participated in international music and performing art festivals including Internationale Ferienkurse für Neue Musik, Darmstadt; Fusebox Festival, Austin; New York Electronic Art Festival, New York; Tonlagen Festival, Dresden; Transart Festival, Bolzano; and MONA FOMA Festival of Music and Art.

Vee Leong

Vee Leong is a writer-director in Hong Kong, and actively engages herself in cross-media and cross-cultural collaboration. Active in the wider Chinese theatre network spanning Beijing to Taipei, her work has also been seen in the UK. Dedicated to the research and practice of contemporary theatre making and new European writing, she is known for investigating socially loaded topics in an independent spirit.

Twice nominated for Best Director, Hong Kong Theatre Libre Awards (Caryl Churchill’s “Far Away”; Martin Crimp’s “The City”), she won the accolade for the latter in 2014. Her original play, “Who Killed the Elephant” (2012) toured Hong Kong, Taipei, mainland China (awarded "Best Performance 2012" by Guling St. Theatre, Taipei). It was invited for an English and also a Mandarin remount in Cardiff and Taipei respectively.

Vee has been commissioned by Taipei Huashan Living Arts Festival and HK Arts Festival, in collaboration with Mobius Strip Theatre (Taipei) and Paper Tiger Theatre Studio (Beijing) respectively. “Zoo as Metaphor” (2014) is her latest attempt of cross-disciplinary making in the white-cube environment at the pristine heritage site, Oil Street Arts Space.

Nicolas Wong

Nicholas Wong is the author of Crevasse (Kaya Press), the winner of the 28th Lambda Literary Award in Gay poetry. He is also the winner of the Hong Kong Young Artist Award in Literary Arts in 2017, and currently the Vice President of PEN Hong Kong. 

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