Chinese Name: 幻彩咏香江 Pronunciation: Huàncaǐ Yǒng Xīangjiāng
Building Number: 44
Start Time: At 8:00 every night
Show Time: About 13 minutes
First Show Time: 2004
Admission Ticket Fare: Free
Suggested Visiting Hours: 20 minutes
Address: Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, China
Brief Introduction of A Symphony of Lights
Lighting and Music Show
A Symphony of Lights is a famous laser lighting and music show in Hong Kong, featuring 44 skyscrapers, and landmarks on both sides of Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbour. Through interactive lighting and music effects, it shows the dynamic and colorful Victoria Harbour.
Since 2004, the Hong Kong Tourism Board has launched this tourism project to promote Hong Kong. With a total cost of HKD 44 million, it has attracted more than 4 million visitors and the public. On November 21, 2005, it was officially listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s largest light and music show.
A Symphony of Lights is on show at 8 pm every day, except when bad weather causes it to be suspended. It lasts about 13 minutes and 40 seconds and features music, lights, and lasers. On special occasions such as Labour Day and Hong Kong’s Handover Anniversary, A Symphony of Lights will be featured with fireworks on the roofs of the buildings or on the sea. Both the Avenue of Stars and Golden Bauhinia Square have loudspeakers to play background music and commentary. English version will be played on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, Mandarin version will be played on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, and Cantonese version on Sundays. They can also be listened to on both sides of the harbour by radio or mobile phone.
Content of A Symphony of Lights
The night view on both sides of Victoria Harbour in Hong Kong is one of the world-famous sightseeing spots. As high-rise buildings are scattered on Hong Kong Island and the Kowloon Peninsula, tens of thousands of lights reflect each other at night, and the night view of Hong Kong ranks among the world’s three largest night views, along with Hakodate in Japan and Naples in Italy. When the lights are on, the buildings around the harbor glow, showing a magnificent figure between the sky and the water; the forty-four major buildings in Hong Kong are simultaneously transformed into a stage of sound and light, leading the audience to experience the charm of Hong Kong as a vibrant and diverse international metropolis with numerous colors.
Five Show Themes
The Second Act – Energy Surges
The First Act— The Sun has just risen
First, a series of laser beams symbolize the gradual awakening of the earth. Then, the buildings in the show are illuminated by a riot of leaping and colorful lights, symbolizing the birth and growth of Hong Kong.
The Second Act – Energy Surges
The gradual change of colour from bottom to top of the buildings, and the movement of lasers and spotlights in the dark, signify the boundless creativity and vitality of Hong Kong.
The Third Act— Carrying forward Our Cause and Forging ahead into the Future
The Forth Act
With the melody of music, the buildings on both sides of Victoria Harbour are illuminated in auspicious red and golden colors to showcase Hong Kong’s traditional Chinese cultural characteristics.
The Forth Act – Making Great Achievement Together
With lasers and spotlights illuminating the opposite shore, and the illusion of the both sides of Victoria Harbour dancing with each other, the show signifies that Hong Kong Island and Kowloon Peninsula create glory hand in hand.
The Final Act – A National Celebration
The kaleidoscope of revolving light patterns, coupled with the soaring and dancing light effects, symbolizes our concerted efforts to create a brighter future for Hong Kong.
New Year Countdown
New Year Countdown
A Symphony of Lights has been held in Victoria Harbour every year since the end of 2007. Starting at about 11:40 pm on December 31, there will be a light show on both sides of the Harbour. In the last 20 seconds before entering the new year at the Hong Kong International Finance Center Phase II of 420 meters high, the most representative landmark building in Hong Kong Central business center, with the countdown, fireworks on both sides of the building rise into the sky and sparkle brightly along with the flickering laser lights. The seven-colour fireworks burst out at the midnight of the New Year, accompanied by the brilliant firework display from 16 skyscrapers along the harbour. After the countdown, the firework display continues for about two minutes. The whole countdown will be broadcast live on television and online.
Story Behind A Symphony of Lights
In 2017, Richard Lindsay, the Sydney-based founder of Artists in Motion, participated in the redesign work of A Symphony of Lights, which brought a completely new face to the light show. The skyline is like a long silk thread, skillfully stitching everything together from Kai Tak Cruise Terminal in the east, the myriad landmarks of Tsim Sha Tsui, and to the towering buildings of the Central. “We hope to highlight the theme of harmony by illuminating the skyline,” Lindsay said.
To create auditory harmony, Artists in Motion invited Berlin composer Christian Steinhauser to work with more than 100 members of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra to compose new music. “We always insist that local musicians should be part of the show. We believe that the music used in the show should represent the community, the local culture, and their relationship with this unique harbour.” Lindsay said, adding that the music has an irreplaceable role to match the spectacular scenery, and the wonderful level of the show has been elevated. “We have combined modern and classical elements to create an image that is forward-looking and passionate. These two elements are perfectly intertwined with the culture and activity of Hong Kong,” he said. As the musicians struck the first note, the lights came on to keep up with the rhythm. For more than 10 minutes, countless lights, lasers and LED screens interacted on the top floors of more than 40 buildings. It was not easy to achieve this. With a sophisticated model of Victoria Harbour, Lindsay and his team successfully made this show.
Night Scene of Victoria Harbour
In terms of lighting, the laser, and the program content, artists from different positions worked together. It also required complex coordination and a strong and distinct creative vision. Every link required flexibility and close communication.
Lindsay went on to explain: “We started with existing buildings, lighting fixtures, and laser systems, and then to scale up, we started using more advertising LED screens. The lighting on each building is based on the building’s own position and creative concept, so the design is unique. Some buildings are suitable for fewer but stronger spotlights; some have larger roofs, so the density and range of light can be increased accordingly.” The execution of the show is extremely complicated and the technology involved is quite sophisticated. When you watch it, think about how the creators made the clanging strings and colorful lights blend in the city, creating a dreamlike visual effect.
How to Get to the Viewing Locations
Preferred viewing locations are the Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade outside the Hong Kong Cultural Centre and the Avenue of Stars. You are advised to arrive early to find the prime location. Besides, you can enjoy a dual visual experience by watching WATER OF STARS music performance with colorful lighting effect!
Take Bus 1, 1A, 2, 6, 7, 8A, 8P and get off at Tsim Sha Tsui Pier.
Take MTR Tsuen Wan Line and get off at Tsim Sha Tsui Station (Exit E). You need to walk about 600 meters towards the Victoria Harbour.
Take MTR West Rail Line, and get off at East Tsim Sha Tsui MTR (Exit L6), follow the directions to Avenue of Stars and Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront. You need to walk about 900 meters.
Chinese: 请带我去尖沙咀海滨花园。English: Please take me to the Tsim Sha Tsui Promenade.
Chinese: 请带我去星光大道。English: Please take me to the Avenue of Stars.
If you take a taxi from Hong Kong International Airport, it takes about 40 minutes (300 HKD).
If you take a taxi from Hong Kong West Kowloon Railway Station, it takes about 10 minutes (30 HKD).