Vivienne Chow

Vivienne Chow

Vivienne is a journalist and critic specialising in the arts, culture and cultural affairs. She was named one of the world’s best young journalists and critics while representing Hong Kong at the 2004 inaugural Berlinale Talent Press at the Berlin International Film Festival, and in 2015 was awarded the IJP Fellowship for mid-career journalism training and conducting research on cultural policy. Vivienne was a staff reporter with the South China Morning Post for 15 years, and remains a contributor after founding her own non-profit educational initiative, the Cultural Journalism Campus. Follow her on Twitter @VivienneChow and read her blog, Culture Shock, at www.viviennechow.com

Latest from Vivienne Chow

Kafka’s apeman: why early 20th-century story of caged primate that ‘turns human’ still resonates with artists

Hong Kong choreographer and director Ivanhoe Lam’s experiential dance production, inspired by short story ‘A Report to an Academy’, forms part of New Vision Arts Festival

Hong Kong choreographer and director Ivanhoe Lam’s experiential dance production, inspired by short story ‘A Report to an Academy’, forms part of New Vision Arts Festival

Kafka’s apeman: why early 20th-century story of caged primate that ‘turns human’ still resonates with artists
21 Oct 2021 - 10:44AM
Opinion | Why the Clubhouse app is so popular despite its security risks

The Clubhouse app’s popularity reflects our burning desire to communicate and connect in a pandemic despite the emerging data risks. It is, in essence, a social experiment on how to responsibly exercise our freedom of speech

The Clubhouse app’s popularity reflects our burning desire to communicate and connect in a pandemic despite the emerging data risks. It is, in essence, a social experiment on how to responsibly exercise our freedom of speech

Why the Clubhouse app is so popular despite its security risks
25 Feb 2021 - 8:45AM
Opinion | Canto-pop has a future, it’s Hong Kong fans who are stuck in the past

The recent debate over the emergence of pop star Keung To is the first time in years Canto-pop has been talked about. Local music is integral to Hong Kong culture, and we should be glad young people are still pursuing their Canto-pop dreams

The recent debate over the emergence of pop star Keung To is the first time in years Canto-pop has been talked about. Local music is integral to Hong Kong culture, and we should be glad young people are still pursuing their Canto-pop dreams

Canto-pop has a future, it’s Hong Kong fans who are stuck in the past
30 Jan 2021 - 6:57AM
Opinion | How Disney’s misconceived Mulan lost the Chinese audience it so cravenly courted

In its pursuit of the Chinese audience, Disney fails to understand that they watch Western films about China, such as Mulan, through a magnifying glass, looking for errors and cultural slights.

In its pursuit of the Chinese audience, Disney fails to understand that they watch Western films about China, such as Mulan, through a magnifying glass, looking for errors and cultural slights.

How Disney’s misconceived Mulan lost the Chinese audience it so cravenly courted
16 Sep 2020 - 3:26PM
Opinion | How the Hong Kong Museum of Art can stay relevant, during a time of political turmoil and beyond

The return of HKMoA in a time of crisis is an important reminder of what shaped Hong Kong. In future, however, will the government-run museum be able to showcase Hong Kong contemporary art that is critical of the status quo?

The return of HKMoA in a time of crisis is an important reminder of what shaped Hong Kong. In future, however, will the government-run museum be able to showcase Hong Kong contemporary art that is critical of the status quo?

How the Hong Kong Museum of Art can stay relevant, during a time of political turmoil and beyond
1 Jan 2020 - 10:00AM
Opinion | What Hong Kong’s protests mean for the city’s art market: an upsurge in creativity amid economic woes

While professionals on the international circuit express concern about Hong Kong’s art market, the protests have generated a range of creative output. How these art works can be preserved and the creativity behind them channelled is worth considering.

While professionals on the international circuit express concern about Hong Kong’s art market, the protests have generated a range of creative output. How these art works can be preserved and the creativity behind them channelled is worth considering.

What Hong Kong’s protests mean for the city’s art market: an upsurge in creativity amid economic woes
2 Nov 2019 - 7:23AM
Taiwanese film star Brigitte Lin – how she lost herself in cinema, her most memorable roles and how, turning 65, she stays young at heart

Brigitte Lin Ching-hsia appeared in 100 films, from Taiwanese romantic dramas in the 1970s to Hong Kong action films of the 90s. Once so busy she’s confessed she felt lost, Lin found peace as a wife and mother after retiring 25 years ago.

Brigitte Lin Ching-hsia appeared in 100 films, from Taiwanese romantic dramas in the 1970s to Hong Kong action films of the 90s. Once so busy she’s confessed she felt lost, Lin found peace as a wife and mother after retiring 25 years ago.

Taiwanese film star Brigitte Lin – how she lost herself in cinema, her most memorable roles and how, turning 65, she stays young at heart
6 Jan 2020 - 8:46PM
Whatever happened to Maggie Cheung, icon of Hong Kong cinema? 15 years after her last leading role, a new career beckons

In The Mood For Love actress all but disappeared from cinema screens after her last award-winning turn, in 2004 film Clean; recently she appears to have revived her dreams of a singing career.

In The Mood For Love actress all but disappeared from cinema screens after her last award-winning turn, in 2004 film Clean; recently she appears to have revived her dreams of a singing career.

Whatever happened to Maggie Cheung, icon of Hong Kong cinema? 15 years after her last leading role, a new career beckons
6 Jan 2020 - 8:46PM
Chen Zhifo – Chinese master of meticulously realistic bird and flower paintings – takes ‘flight’ at Macao exhibition

Credited for reviving the detail-oriented ‘gongbi’ technique, the artist had far-reaching influence on modern Chinese paintings as an educator. The show features 166 items including paintings, sketches and preparatory drawings to illustrate the master’s own evolution in style

Credited for reviving the detail-oriented ‘gongbi’ technique, the artist had far-reaching influence on modern Chinese paintings as an educator. The show features 166 items including paintings, sketches and preparatory drawings to illustrate the master’s own evolution in style

Chen Zhifo – Chinese master of meticulously realistic bird and flower paintings – takes ‘flight’ at Macao exhibition
17 Oct 2019 - 10:40AM
How two Cantonese opera veterans stopped ‘Emperor of Heaven’ from vanishing

Downsizing of opera troupes since 1930s may be one reason the historic production, which features huge cast of 108 performers, has struggled to survive

Downsizing of opera troupes since 1930s may be one reason the historic production, which features huge cast of 108 performers, has struggled to survive

How two Cantonese opera veterans stopped ‘Emperor of Heaven’ from vanishing
2 Sep 2019 - 10:45AM
From Alan Tam to Sandy Lam, 10 of Canto-pop’s original stars: where are they today?

Alan Tam, Sandy Lam, Sam Hui – these performers from the genre’s beginning left an indelible mark, with some still pulling in the crowds. We take a look back at their stellar careers and where they’ve been seen recently.

Alan Tam, Sandy Lam, Sam Hui – these performers from the genre’s beginning left an indelible mark, with some still pulling in the crowds. We take a look back at their stellar careers and where they’ve been seen recently.

From Alan Tam to Sandy Lam, 10 of Canto-pop’s original stars: where are they today?
19 Aug 2019 - 3:34PM
Chinese boy band star’s parents’ bubble tea shop shut after three days – it went viral, and staff, equipment couldn’t cope

The family of Chinese boy band TFBoys’ singer Karry Wang opened a tea shop, Chaforu, in Chongqing trading on his fame. It was so successful staff were overwhelmed and machines broke down, and it shut after three days, before reopening.

The family of Chinese boy band TFBoys’ singer Karry Wang opened a tea shop, Chaforu, in Chongqing trading on his fame. It was so successful staff were overwhelmed and machines broke down, and it shut after three days, before reopening.

Chinese boy band star’s parents’ bubble tea shop shut after three days – it went viral, and staff, equipment couldn’t cope
23 Jul 2019 - 6:55PM
Jackson Yee is China’s most valuable pop star – can he achieve crossover international success?

With more than 70 million followers on Weibo, Jackson Yee is one of C-pop’s biggest stars and considered ideal to crack the Western market. But do C-pop stars have the musical ability to compete with Western stars?

With more than 70 million followers on Weibo, Jackson Yee is one of C-pop’s biggest stars and considered ideal to crack the Western market. But do C-pop stars have the musical ability to compete with Western stars?

Jackson Yee is China’s most valuable pop star – can he achieve crossover international success?
26 May 2019 - 7:20PM
Opinion | Chinese blockbuster The Wandering Earth may break new ground worldwide, but may not go far in Hong Kong

While mainstream films produced on the mainland have long been cold-shouldered in Hong Kong, recent political tensions, such as over the national anthem law, have exacerbated antipathetic feelings.

While mainstream films produced on the mainland have long been cold-shouldered in Hong Kong, recent political tensions, such as over the national anthem law, have exacerbated antipathetic feelings.

Chinese blockbuster The Wandering Earth may break new ground worldwide, but may not go far in Hong Kong
28 Feb 2019 - 11:48PM
Eight classic Chinese New Year songs to get you in the mood and capture the holiday spirit

From Andy Lau to the Twins, from Sam Hui to Adam Cheng and Liza Wang Ming-chun, here are some traditional new year songs. Common themes are luck and prosperity, and karma and mahjong.

From Andy Lau to the Twins, from Sam Hui to Adam Cheng and Liza Wang Ming-chun, here are some traditional new year songs. Common themes are luck and prosperity, and karma and mahjong.

Eight classic Chinese New Year songs to get you in the mood and capture the holiday spirit
4 Feb 2019 - 3:00PM
Opinion | Why hypocritical Jackie Chan’s empty confessions deserve no sympathy

Yes, the actor had a painful childhood, but why has he visited on his own daughter the abandonment and trauma he experienced then? Worst of all in Hongkongers’ eyes is his rejection of the city’s core values.

Yes, the actor had a painful childhood, but why has he visited on his own daughter the abandonment and trauma he experienced then? Worst of all in Hongkongers’ eyes is his rejection of the city’s core values.

Why hypocritical Jackie Chan’s empty confessions deserve no sympathy
8 Dec 2018 - 12:53PM
Blood, sweat and tears: behind the scenes of Chinese acrobatic extravaganza

Gravity-defying show by Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps Acrobatic Troupe brings Chinese heroic folklore to life in Hong Kong

Gravity-defying show by Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps Acrobatic Troupe brings Chinese heroic folklore to life in Hong Kong

Blood, sweat and tears: behind the scenes of Chinese acrobatic extravaganza
30 Nov 2018 - 12:02PM
5 steps to ensure you enjoy dancing – even if you don’t know how

Event adviser Andy Wong says all Hongkongers should cast aside their inhibitions at Dance Day in December

Event adviser Andy Wong says all Hongkongers should cast aside their inhibitions at Dance Day in December

5 steps to ensure you enjoy dancing – even if you don’t know how
19 Nov 2018 - 8:50PM
Dispelling 5 common misconceptions about Cantonese opera

Art form transcends cultures and generations, and is alive and well in Hong Kong

Art form transcends cultures and generations, and is alive and well in Hong Kong

Dispelling 5 common misconceptions about Cantonese opera
8 Nov 2018 - 7:30PM
Chinese lion dance reinvented: can it end Hong Kong’s ‘identity crisis’?

Choreographer Daniel Yeung hopes to use contemporary dance to cultivate national heritage and end city’s post-colonisation struggles

Choreographer Daniel Yeung hopes to use contemporary dance to cultivate national heritage and end city’s post-colonisation struggles

Chinese lion dance reinvented: can it end Hong Kong’s ‘identity crisis’?
28 Sep 2018 - 8:24PM
Opinion | Is Hong Kong a multicultural city? Not in its films and television

The city’s rich heritage in film and television does not reflect Hong Kong’s diversity of people and influences. Now, it even lags behind mainland China and Taiwan in its openness to foreign talent.

The city’s rich heritage in film and television does not reflect Hong Kong’s diversity of people and influences. Now, it even lags behind mainland China and Taiwan in its openness to foreign talent.

Is Hong Kong a multicultural city? Not in its films and television
28 Sep 2018 - 5:49PM
Pop star Ellen Joyce Loo was trailblazer for Hong Kong’s LGBT community and broke down stigma around mental illness

On Sunday, the Hong Kong pop star died from a suspected suicide. Reporter Vivienne Chow looks back on her last meeting with the singer, where she appeared to have come to terms with her sexuality and bipolar disorder

On Sunday, the Hong Kong pop star died from a suspected suicide. Reporter Vivienne Chow looks back on her last meeting with the singer, where she appeared to have come to terms with her sexuality and bipolar disorder

Pop star Ellen Joyce Loo was trailblazer for Hong Kong’s LGBT community and broke down stigma around mental illness
8 Aug 2018 - 8:21PM
Asura flops, but shines a light on China’s increasingly sophisticated film audience

The devastating failure of the Chinese film industry’s most expensive production ever shows that filmmakers now need original storytelling to woo a domestic audience of growing discernment – and that’s good news for the industry.

The devastating failure of the Chinese film industry’s most expensive production ever shows that filmmakers now need original storytelling to woo a domestic audience of growing discernment – and that’s good news for the industry.

Asura flops, but shines a light on China’s increasingly sophisticated film audience
23 Jul 2018 - 1:25PM
Is China’s rise driving an Asian art renaissance in Europe?

Western institutions are showing an increasing interest in art to their East at a time when Beijing’s political and economic influence is growing.

Western institutions are showing an increasing interest in art to their East at a time when Beijing’s political and economic influence is growing.

Is China’s rise driving an Asian art renaissance in Europe?
23 Jul 2018 - 3:02PM
The story of Beyond: 25 years since Hong Kong’s biggest rock band lost its frontman

Rock star Wong Ka-kui was recording a Japanese TV show when he fell off a stage and sustained massive head injuries. His death six days later was the beginning of the end for Beyond, the Hong Kong band that have never been matched since

Rock star Wong Ka-kui was recording a Japanese TV show when he fell off a stage and sustained massive head injuries. His death six days later was the beginning of the end for Beyond, the Hong Kong band that have never been matched since

The story of Beyond: 25 years since Hong Kong’s biggest rock band lost its frontman
25 Jun 2018 - 9:27AM
What Chinese Opera fans in Hong Kong can look forward to during two-month festival

Hong Kong has long been a Chinese opera hub, but the Pingdiao and Puxian variants have unique stunts, and Xiqin shares the same origin as the local Cantonese style

Hong Kong has long been a Chinese opera hub, but the Pingdiao and Puxian variants have unique stunts, and Xiqin shares the same origin as the local Cantonese style

What Chinese Opera fans in Hong Kong can look forward to during two-month festival
12 Jun 2018 - 10:52AM
Hong Kong rappers LMF working hard to promote their lazy ideal with Asian tour before their 20th anniversary

The group’s songs rage against social injustice and the music industry. They are often named as influences by China’s top rappers, despite having only played there once and their material being considered too controversial for authorities

The group’s songs rage against social injustice and the music industry. They are often named as influences by China’s top rappers, despite having only played there once and their material being considered too controversial for authorities

Hong Kong rappers LMF working hard to promote their lazy ideal with Asian tour before their 20th anniversary
22 Apr 2018 - 1:38PM
Bands on the run: musicians urged to look outside Hong Kong for a bigger audience

A shrinking local market, unstable venues and a lack of artistic curiosity blamed for limited traction for city’s groups

A shrinking local market, unstable venues and a lack of artistic curiosity blamed for limited traction for city’s groups

Bands on the run: musicians urged to look outside Hong Kong for a bigger audience
24 Mar 2018 - 4:25PM
Hong Kong rocker Josie Ho celebrates 10th anniversary with the Uni Boys with two concerts

After a shaky start in Canto-pop, Ho turned to rock music and 10 years on her band Josie Ho & the Uni Boys are staging two concerts that she says are a psychedelic musical journey and celebration of life

After a shaky start in Canto-pop, Ho turned to rock music and 10 years on her band Josie Ho & the Uni Boys are staging two concerts that she says are a psychedelic musical journey and celebration of life

Hong Kong rocker Josie Ho celebrates 10th anniversary with the Uni Boys with two concerts
19 Mar 2018 - 9:16PM
Changing Hong Kong people’s traditions won’t make them love China

A move to change the marching style of uniformed youth groups is just the latest heavy-handed attempt by Beijing and local authorities to instil love for China. It won’t work.

A move to change the marching style of uniformed youth groups is just the latest heavy-handed attempt by Beijing and local authorities to instil love for China. It won’t work.

Changing Hong Kong people’s traditions won’t make them love China
13 Feb 2018 - 7:11PM