Anna Vienna Ho (Hong Kong, China): The Buddha, the Monkey King and the Monk of the River

  • 9 Apr 2022 8 pm UTC
  • dur 66 min

A new opera adapted from Journey to the West by Wu Cheng’en, one of the Four Great Classical Novels of Chinese literature. Rooted in Chinese folk religion, mythology, and Confucianist, Taoist and Buddhist philosophies, this opera opens a new window on the novel, telling the whole story. The opera “The Monk of the River” is about a young monk seeking justice and revenge before his journey to the west, with a prologue “Buddha and the Monkey King” showing one of its most iconic moments in the novel as Buddha talks to the mighty Monkey King. Scored for an ensemble of Chinese and Western musical instruments, this opera blends both musical traditions. Sung in English.

Born in Hong Kong, Anna Vienna Ho is a versatile musician who has worked as a concert pianist, répétiteur, composer, opera singer and conductor for a number of music organizations, including Welsh National Opera, Birmingham Opera Company, Tête à Tête Opera Festival, Opera Novella, London Oriana Choir, London Gay Symphony Orchestra and Bel Canto Singers among others. She has been selected as a Du Vert a L’infini festival artist and the Montpelier Arts Center Classical Recital artist. Anna gained an Advanced Postgraduate Diploma and a Master of Music in Piano Performance with distinction from Royal Birmingham Conservatoire. Prior to that, she received her Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Music from Hong Kong Baptist University. She was a recipient of numerous awards and scholarships. Anna’s compositions include instrumental, vocal, electroacoustic, multi-media and operatic works, which were premiered around the world by various musicians. She has collaborated and was commissioned by many organizations, including the New Generation 2014(“The Forester”, for String Quartet), London Oriana Choir(“The Infinite Shining Heavens” for SATB choir), Birmingham Opera Company(“It Gets Lighter From Here” digital project), Animal Hope Varna(promotion videos collaborated with Bulgarian Artist Tatiana Arsova), David Bohn’s Twenty Seconds of 2020 project(“Chase”, for solo Clavietta), Fifteen Minutes of Fame project(“Fedora”, for solo bass flute), among others. Her solo piano piece “Images” and a piece for solo piano and tape “Medusa” are included in the RMN Classical albums “Modern Music for Piano” and “In Focus4” respectively and distributed in stores and digital platforms. Her opera “Buddha and the Monkey King” has been premiered at the Tête à Tête Opera Festival in 2020. Recently, she has been selected as an artist of the Du Vert a L’infini festival, France and premiered her composition “Sea Creatures in our Minds and Hearts” at the Château du Fresne-Saint-Mamès. Her second opera “The Monk of the River” has been premiered at the Tête à Tête Opera Festival 2021 with the support of the Arts Council England National Lottery fund. ARTIST’S WEBSITE