2014 Honorary Doctorate
Professor Lo King-man was born in Hong Kong. He attended the Diocesan Boys’ School and was admitted to The University of Hong Kong where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts Degree with Honours in English in 1962. While still an undergraduate, he won an Italian Government Scholarship to read drama history and literature at the Sapienza University of Rome. While in Italy, he worked two summer seasons as an intern in stage production design at the Opera Theatre of Rome and the Morlacchi Theatre of Perugia.
In a working career of more than 50 years, Professor Lo has devoted his time and energies to three main areas of activity: academic administration, community service and artistic endeavour. In academic administration, he spent 11 years at The University of Hong Kong, rising to the rank of Senior Assistant Registrar. In 1973, he became the first Academic Secretary of the newly established Hong Kong Polytechnic, where he was eventually promoted to be the Deputy Director.
In 1993, Professor Lo was appointed Director of The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, a position he held until his retirement in 2004. Under his leadership, the Academy received the necessary accreditation to introduce its first degree programmes, covering all the disciplines it offered at the time. During his tenure, the School of Film and Television was founded, the Departments of Liberal Arts Studies and of Languages were established, and the Centre for Chinese Traditional Theatre Studies was created. The Academy was also granted the beautiful Béthanie heritage site in Pokfulam as an extension of its campus.
In 2004, Professor Lo accepted an invitation from the Guangdong authorities to take up the post of Principal of the Canton International Summer Music Academy, which offers professional training for young orchestral musicians, a position he held until 2009. He is currently the Director-General of Musica Viva Hong Kong, a not-for- profit organisation devoted to the performing arts, with particular emphasis on music and opera, and dedicated to the development of young professional artists.
In the area of community service, Professor Lo has served on a wide range of public bodies. He was appointed to the former Urban Council in 1984 and was elected its Vice-Chairman from 1990 to 1995. He was a member of the Basic Law Consultative Committee from 1985 to 1990. He sat at various times on the District Board of Kowloon City, on the Councils of four local universities, the Examination Authority, the Broadcasting Authority, the Vocational Training Council, the Community Relations Committee of the Independent Commission Against Corruption, the Standing Commission on Civil Service Salaries and Conditions of Service, the Hong Kong Arts Development Council and numerous governmental advisory committees. Professor Lo was one of the founders of the Hong Kong Arts Centre and played an active role in the establishment of both the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra and the Hong Kong Sinfonietta as professional orchestras. He was the Chairman of the Select Committee that supervised the commissioning of the Hong Kong Cultural Centre. For a period of six years, he was the Chairman of the Leisure and Cultural Services Department’s Advisory Committee on Cultural Programmes and Development. He continues to sit on the Court of The University of Hong Kong, the Council of the Centennial College, and the Advisory Council of the Asia Society Hong Kong.
As a practising creative artist, Professor Lo has written, designed, directed and produced over 180 western-style operatic, theatrical and musical productions both in Hong Kong and abroad. He serves on the Advisory Council of the Beijing Music Festival and is a Visiting Professor at the Central Conservatory of Music, Beijing. The awards, honours and decorations bestowed on Professor Lo include: “Best Stage Design” from the Hong Kong Federation of Drama Societies, “Best Stage Director” from the Hong Kong Artists’ Guild, “Citation of Merit for Life Achievement” from the International Society for the Performing Arts based in New York, and the “Award for Outstanding Contribution in Arts” from the Hong Kong Arts Development Council.
Professor Lo was appointed a Justice of the Peace by the Government of HKSAR, made a Member of the Order of the British Empire in the Queen’s Honours List, honoured as a Cavaliere of the Order of Merit by the Republic of Italy, and decorated with the title of Chevaliere de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Ministry of Culture and Communications. Honorary Fellowships have been conferred upon him by The University of Hong Kong, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts and the Royal Society of Arts in Great Britain. In 2005 and 2012, respectively, Professor Lo received the Bronze and Silver Bauhinia Stars of the HKSAR.