2014 Honorary Fellow
Mr Cheng Kok-kong loves the arts and to create for the arts. He spent 30 years as a primary school teacher, during which time he also ran workshops on writing the lyrics to songs at universities and some private institutions.
Early in his career, Mr Cheng worked at Rediffusion Television and TVB, producing children’s programmes and game shows including Small Theatre, Knowledge Rediscovered, Hopscotch, Flash Fax, Three Generations under One Roof, and Ladies and Gentlemen, Miss Phoenix, in addition to variety shows such as Hong Kong Nocturne and Enjoy Yourself Tonight. He also wrote the lyrics for special programmes such as Miss Hong Kong Pageant, Miss Asia Pageant and Tung Wah Charity Show.
In a professional career as a lyricist that began in the 1970s, Mr Cheng has written over 2,000 songs for children as well as pop songs with inspirational themes. He has also written lyrics for movies and stage productions, including songs for The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts student productions Light of Day and Grease.
Of the many awards Mr Cheng has received over the years, he considers two of them to be of special significance: 1992’s “Golden Needle Award” from RTHK which has been regarded as the greatest honour in the field of Cantonese pop music, and the “Hall of Fame Award 2002” from the Composers and Authors Society of Hong Kong. Mr Cheng is also the recipient of other important awards including “Artist of the Year (Lyrics)” from the Hong Kong Artists’ Guild in 1990, “Contribution to Children’s Song Award” from TVB also in 1990, “Golden Jubilee Award” from RTHK in 2003, and “Outstanding Lyrics Award” from the Hong Kong Federation of Drama Societies in 2009. In 2011, he also received a “Certificate of Merit” at a presentation ceremony organised by The Boys’ and Girls’ Clubs Association of Hong Kong for inspiring young children with his lyrics, and an Honorary Fellowship from the Hong Kong Institute of Education in 2014.
Over the years, Mr Cheng has been commissioned by the Government of HKSAR and many other social organisations to write the lyrics for theme songs and promotional songs, and he has always been grateful for such recognition. Some of the more noteworthy projects include songs for the government’s cleansing campaign, road safety campaign and anti-drug campaign. Mr Cheng is especially proud of the song Convergence of Lights, which was written at the height of the pre-handover emigration boom to encourage Hong Kong people to stay and build a better Hong Kong. In turn, he wrote the lyrics for the song Connected, which celebrated the reunification of Hong Kong with the Mainland. Others songs include Virtues with No Boundary for the inauguration of the Big Buddha on Lantau Island, Hong Kong Sentiment to boost morale in the fight against SARS, and Love as part of the fundraising campaign for the victims of the Indian Ocean tsunami in 2004.
Mr Cheng’s publications include the Primary 1-6 music text book Music Today, the autobiographical A Life Inspired by Lyrics and Painting, and the children’s music book Local Lyricist Series.
In recent years, Mr Cheng has devoted himself to the healthy future of Cantonese opera by writing Cantonese opera productions for children.