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Speaking note by USCST at press conference of French May Arts Festival 2023 (English only)
     ​Following is the speaking note by the Under Secretary for Culture, Sports and Tourism, Mr Raistlin Lau, at the press conference of French May Arts Festival 2023 today (March 16):
Ms Christile Drulhe (Consul General of France in Hong Kong), Ms Pansy Ho (Co-chairman of the Board of French May Arts Festival), Mrs Mignonne Cheng (Co-chairman of the Board of French May Arts Festival), distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,
     Bonjour. It gives me great pleasure to join you today for the press conference of the French May Arts Festival (French May) 2023.
     Since its first edition in 1993, French May has been one of the most anticipated international arts and cultural events in Hong Kong's event calendar. While the Government has spared no effort to drive the full recovery of Hong Kong after the pandemic, I am delighted to learn that French May is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year with the theme "PULSARTE". During the splendid months of French arts and culture in May and June, a rich diversity of arts and cultural productions and education programmes will be featured, bringing the best of French culture to Hong Kong. The Festival will enable audiences and visitors to feel the pulse of Hong Kong, connect the art and cultural scenes between Hong Kong and France, and facilitate mutual growth of both regions through arts and cultural exchange.
     The National 14th Five-Year Plan has set out clear support for Hong Kong to develop into an East-meets-West centre for international cultural exchange, and this presents room for development and opportunities in the arts, cultural and creative industries of Hong Kong. The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Government has formulated strategic directions for supporting the development of Hong Kong into our new cultural positioning, including enhancing cultural exchange and co-operation with the Mainland, and strengthening our connections with overseas arts and cultural organisations. French May, dedicated to bringing the best of French arts, culture and performance to the people of Hong Kong, has been a very successful platform in facilitating exchanges between arts and cultural lovers in Hong Kong and France, echoing our strategic directions for the development of Hong Kong into our new cultural positioning.
     The programmes to be brought by French May this year will be vibrant and diversified as always. I am excited about the collaborations between Hong Kong and French artists, including the piano duet recital by world-renowned pianists Niu Niu and Théo Fouchenneret. I am also looking forward to the new Hong Kong-France Theatre Exchange Project, Let the Mirror Speak, involving playwrights and directors Hoi Fai Wu and Nicolas Kerszenbaum.
     French May has long been the HKSAR Government's partner. I would like to take this opportunity to express my heartfelt gratitude and appreciation to the organisers, Association Culturelle France Hong Kong, Consulate General of France in Hong Kong, and French May's team for bringing one of the most iconic arts festivals to Hong Kong. May I wish French May a continuing success in the many more years to come. Thank you very much!
Ends/Thursday, March 16, 2023
Issued at HKT 18:18
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