Cover A film still from The Swimmer, which will be screened at the Lesbian and Gay Film Festival 2022 (Image: courtesy of Ingenue Productions)

Where to go for the best Mid-Autumn celebrations? There’s something for friends, families, children and couples in this month’s round-up of cultural activities and arts performances

There are many more ways to celebrate mid-Autumn than with just mooncakes and lanterns. We’ve put together a list of arts and cultural activities which will run throughout the season to fill your weekends with dance, music and metaverse fun: from a sumptuous moon-themed dinner accompanied by jazz performances and an immersive theatre show with a detective story to an Andy Warhol exhibition, the Digital Art Fair and crypto workshops, we’ve got your next few months covered.

1. Ode to the Moon Jazz Dinner

Returning to The Peninsula this year is the Ode to the Moon dinner, organised in collaboration with the Italian Cultural Institute of Hong Kong. Enjoy live music by international jazz performers over a four-course Italian dinner prepared by The Lobby’s culinary team, which spotlights signature dishes, such as the Boston lobster ravioli with burrata and the truffle tiramisu, in the Cinquecento-style dining venue on the first two evenings of this year’s Mid-Autumn Festival.

September 10 and 11. The Lobby, The Peninsula, Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui.

2. Lesbian and Gay Film Festival

This 33rd in-person edition features 28 feature films and four short films with a focus on Asian filmmakers. The festival opens with The Swimmer, an Israeli film about two young male athletes who develop a relationship at a summer training camp, to tie in with Hong Kong’s hosting of the Gay Games in 2023. Hong Kong-based experimental filmmaker Danny Cheng Wan-cheung, who goes by Scud, will be included in this year’s Director in Focus programme. Scud is known for his films’ taboo subjects and explicit sex scenes. Four of his films: Permanent Residence, Amphetamine (2009), and Bodyshop and Apostles (both 2022). The latter two, which portray the lockdown era, together with Naked Nation, are his final works before his planned retirement this year after a 16-year career in the film industry.

From September 17 to October 1, 2022. Various screening venues.

3. Nocturnes

Wing Shya, who gained fame for his distinctive photography and cinematography aesthetics while working with Hong Kong director Wong Kar-wai, will present his work on the stage for the first time. In this production inspired by the quietness of the night, which is often considered to be the optimal time for artistic creativity, Shya collaborates with composer Lam Fung to pair ten pieces of piano, saxophone and ensemble music with ten video works. Lam is the first Hong Kong composer to have been commissioned by the BBC, and over the years has created works that blend music, dance, theatre and multi-media installation. This production is a celebration of Hong Kong music and cinematic art.

Sep 2 to 3. Hong Kong Cultural Centre, 10 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui.

4. Women Make Film: A New Road Movie Through Cinema

The M+ cinema will be screening one of the most famous works by Northern Irish director Mark Cousins, Women Make Film. Cousins is known for making long-form documentaries, such as his 15-hour 2011 work, The Story of Film: An Odyssey. Following this, he released the 14-hour documentary which took him almost 20 years to make. With more than 700 clips from different films structured according to 40 topics related to cinematography, this film celebrates the talents, styles and creativity of female filmmakers around the world.

From September 21 to 30, 2022. M+ Cinema, 38 Museum Drive, West Kowloon.

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5. Digital Art Fair

Themed on “Rhapsody of Art”, this year’s Digital Art Fair offers a multisensory and Web3 art experience. The 20,000 sq. ft. Central venue will be installed with interactive art tech features, and Chinese contemporary pop artist Jacky Tsai and avatar-influencers will be featured. Apart from displaying artworks by established artists in the scene and immersive art in the “Prestige Zone” and “Immersive Zone”, the fair will also have a section for VR and AR game experiences, and another for industry leaders to talk about crypto, digital finance and art tech.

October 20 to November 6, 2022. G/F & 1/F, Asia Standard Tower, 59-65 Queen’s Road Central.

6. Reflections on Refractions

Hong Kong Sinfonietta and City Contemporary Dance Company (CCDC) band together for the first time to present Reflections on Refractions, a music and dance production that celebrates the 60th anniversary of Hong Kong City Hall, which is the city’s earliest cultural centre, and the 50th anniversary of the Hong Kong Arts Festival. With Bach and Stravinsky music conducted by Hong Kong Sinfonietta’s music director Yip Wing-sie, the performance is the premiere of artist Charles Kwong’s AtLast, a site-specific work at the City Hall which is made up of the creative use of light, sounds and dance by CCDC dancers.

September 16 and 17, 2022. Concert Hall, Hong Kong City Hall, 5 Edinburgh Place, Central.

In case you missed: Hong Kong Arts Festival 2022: Tatler’s Top 6 Picks

7. Jumping Frames

Presented by the CCDC, Jumping Frames, which is Asia’s only dance video festival, explores the intersections between performance creation and moving image making. This year’s edition features more than 60 local and international dance videos or feature films created both by directors in Hong Kong and around the world. In particular, Taiwan-based Malaysian filmmaker Tsai Ming-liang’s The Wayward Cloud, which won the Silver Bear for Outstanding Artistic Achievement, will be screened. As well as screenings, the festival is lined up with industry forums, an exhibition and live performances, which will take place without a fixed schedule, venue and format during the festival.

Until October 2, 2022. Tomorrow Maybe, Eaton HK, 380 Nathan Road, Jordan. Some of the screenings will take place in Broadway Cinematheque, 3 Public Square Street, Yau Ma Tei.

8. An Unsolved Heist

Up for some detective thrills? Take the glass escalator to The Murray’s top floor restaurant Popinjays, where the immersive theatre show An Unsolved Heist is staged. At a silent auction, a multi-billion-dollar artwork was stolen. Guests are invited to help crack the case together over a delectable five-course dinner prepared by Chef Lexine Hepworth, whose signature Guinness Beef Short Ribs (slow-braised for 16 hours) and Golden Egg (a custardy onsen egg topped with caviar) will be served. Suit up in black and gold to get ready for a night of fun and feasting.

September 29, 2022. Popinjays, 29/F, The Murray, 22 Cotton Tree Drive, Central.

9. Warhol Makos: Andy Loves HK

Eleven sets of never-before-seen photographs of Andy Warhol, taken by American photographer Christopher Makos in Hong Kong, will be shown in this exhibition, which presents the relationship between Warhol and Hong Kong, which he visited 40 years ago, and the friendship between the pop art legend and the photographer. Each set comprises an original black-and-white photograph as well as a duo-tone filter print that Makos created exclusively for this exhibition. The show will also showcase Kakos’ works arranged in five themes: Andy Loves HK, Andy in Nature, Andy Rowing, Andy: Modelling Days and Lady Warhol.

Until September 23, 2022. Sauvereign, Shop 203B and Landmark Atrium, 15 Queen's Road Central, Central.

10. InnerGlow

The Electric Canvas, an award-winning Australian company specialising in large-scale architectural projections, will turn the Parade Ground at the 160-year-old Tai Kwun building into a stage for a colourful light and sound show. The 12-minute show, which inspired by the changing season from autumn to winter and the moon, takes place every night for three weeks.

September 10 to 25, 2022. Tai Kwun, 10 Hollywood Road, Central.

11. The Impossible Trial

Co-produced by Freespace and HKRep, The Impossible Trial is the first original Cantonese musical presented by the West Kowloon Cultural District. It took more than five years in the making and a trial run in 2019 to put together this complete version. Banding together veteran musicians and theatre talents, including composer Leon Ko, who created Monster Hunt's original soundtrack; lyricist Chris Shum, who had won Golden Horse and the Hong Kong Film Awards in the past in producing the best original songs; and another lyricist Cheung Fei Fan, known for writing the lyrics of the 2020 Cantonese musical, Tales of the Southern Sky.

The story follows how Guangdong’s most prominent advocate Fong Tong Geng, at the height of his career—obtained through malice and cunning calculations—faces his downfall when a bitter ghost haunts him to seek justice. Will Fong be able to turn the tide like he always has when he is finally brought to justice?

Until October 1, 2022. Grand Theatre, Xiqu Centre, West Kowloon Cultural District.

12. Phygital D

As part of West Kowloon’s new arts festival, Creative Tomorrow, Phygital D is a series of six performances that blend dance, live physical performance, film, motion capture and virtual reality experiences together. The line-up includes established local creatives and international dancers, such as Japanese dancer Hiroaki Umeda, who captures real-time 3D data from his dance with a Kinect camera to create both a live and VR performance. Another highlight is Chroma 11, which is the first Hong Kong project selected for Biennale College Cinema by La Biennale di Venezia, Hong Kong Film Awards Best New Director Tsang Tsui-shan combines installation, film and VR technologies to convey a love tragedy.

September 10 to October 9, 2022. Freespace, West Kowloon.

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