Umbrella revolution

Changing City

Posted in: by Pete Moser on 21 October 2014
Tagged with: Far East 2014 0

Every conversation turns on the protest
As I carry on with a normal day of meetings
Remaking contacts and still trying to plan a community music strategy
For this changing city where people are becoming a deeper community


First, with Eric, to see Mimi who runs the Music Fund at CASH
Composers and Songwriters of Hong Kong (PRS equivalent)
We present to open ears and the conversation flows
As we look for ways to work together 
Musical training from skilled songwriters for the community music sector
Interventions into local Sham Shiu Po community and (randomly)
Teambuilding for the CASH staff!
Mimi came to the Long Walk in 2009 and 'gets' what we are doing
The 2005 international exchange in Gateshead initiated by CASH
Was the second step after the tragedy in Morecambe Bay that started this journey 
That now finds me in this changing city 
Where together we want to work to support an engaged community

To the office at CCCD to carry on talking with Eric about our plans
To meet with Gus Mok to tell him about my travels in China
And to think about how and who we want to work with.
A coffee with the artist Chiu (father of Amanda, partner of Yin)
Who came to visit and work with us in 2013. 
He shows me his studio and share the excitement of old age,
New touring exhibitions and the current state of play in the city.
Final work conversation of the day is with Jone Chui
Songwriter, backing singer, teacher, father, cyclist, traveller
We first met in 2005 and at every visit I make sure to see him.
I show him the spaces at CCCD as potential workshop rooms 
Then we head for a vegetarian Buddhist restaurant in the locality
Where I share the CASH ideas, he talks of his projects and we 
Share thoughts about how young people are now changing the city. 


My evening at the protests starts at the main site in Admiralty.
Since I was there last it has become even more embedded.
Entrances and exits are well signed and hand railed
A learning zone with desks, lights is in the central highway
Speeches are given all evening to a massed crowd in the main space
I go and sit and talk with musician friend Chuen, play some tunes
Then wander around to look at the paper umbrella sculptures,
The group screen printing Tshirts, the library, the hundreds of tents.
The scale of this protest site, of total engagement in community building
Brings tears to my eyes.
There are extensive food and water supplies, free for all 
Cable tv tents, Arts displays on every wall, 
Massive barriers made of metal, bamboo, wood and cable ties
Everywhere umbrellas. 
As it gets late I head to Mongkok site to wander and sit and chat.
Tony and Helen - native Hongkongers - working every day, coming out at night
Want me to share what is happening.
I say I will - and I do so here is my next report from
This changed city that the people own





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