What’s on? Things to do this July in Hong Kong

From music festivals to art exhibitions, there’s something for everyone to enjoy as Hong Kong continues to bring forward its vibrant and diverse entertainment scene through fun events that can’t be missed. Get ready to immerse yourself in the culture, music, and art of this captivating city.

Out of Thin Air

For those who like to cast a critical eye over the costumes worn by actors on the big screen, the Out of Thin Air: Hong Kong Film Arts and Costumes Exhibition is an amazing showcase with a plethora of cinema-related exhibits to explore. A fascinating collection of movie props, costumes, sketches, manuscripts and more will transport you behind the scenes of your favourite films. Scheduled as part of the Hong Kong Pop Culture Festival, the memorabilia shine a light on the industry’s creative process and energy.

When: Ongoing
Where: Hong Kong Heritage Museum, Sha Tin
How much: From HK$10
Click here for more information.

Also Festival

Whether you are curious about the Hong Kong music scene or a firm fan of the city’s talented musicians, singers and rappers, the Also Festival is the perfect event to explore the local hip-hop culture. Straddling the calendar change from June to July, this year’s lineup showcases about 30 exceptional acts. Among those taking to the stage on 1 July are Novel Fergus, Geniuz F The Future, Yellow Peril, Matt Force, Ansonbean and Martian.B. Given that the first Also Festival was a total blast, attendees of this repeat performance will expect their idols to raise the roof.

When: 1 July
Where: KITEC, Kowloon Bay
How much: From HK$580

Attack of Clone Venus

Marrying traditional art techniques with the latest digital trends is Attack of Clone Venus, a solo exhibition by the acclaimed Japanese artist Takeru Amano, whose career has spanned various geographical locales. In this particular display, Amano combines NFTs collectables with sculptures, canvases and installations that vividly tell a series of stories. The collection comprises more than 1,000 works, with interactive AR filters on hand to boost perceptions to ensure that each visitor is emotionally involved with the art.

When: Until July 4
Where: Artelli, Central
How much: Free entry
Click here for more information.

BTS Exhibition: Proof in Hong Kong

As the world-famous K-pop sensation Bangtan Sonyeondan celebrates its 10th anniversary, the group is set to take fans on a retrospective journey. Hybe, the South Korean entertainment giant behind BTS, brings an immersive exhibition to Hong Kong that will use music, motion graphics, audiovisuals and more to let fans (called the Army) know their idols better. For those fervent followers who have seen Proof in Seoul and/or Busan, the Hong Kong rendition contains some exclusive content so it is a showcase that should not be missed by all.

When: Until 16 July
Where: K11 Musea, Tsim Sha Tsui
How much: From HK$198
Click here for more information.

Harbour Chill Carnival

Looking for a way to chill this summer? You won’t need to look very hard as the Hong Kong Tourism Board’s Harbour Chill Carnival provides a collection of fun-filled and entertaining weekend events against the broad canvas of Victoria Harbour. These include music stages, performance art pieces by local and international artists, and a never-seen-before version of the daily A Symphony of Lights show. With so many attractions to admire on top of the magnificent view, spending time on the waterfront has never been so enticing.

When: 8 July – 6 Aug
Where: Harbourfront Area, Wan Chai
How much: Free entry

TeamLab Future Park

Anyone who has scrolled through Instagram has come across this touring exhibition with interactive installations that youngsters and the young at heart will find magical. Hong Kongers, get excited because TeamLab’s Future Park launches in the city this month as part of insurance group FWD’s 10th anniversary celebrations. Spreading across 10,000 square feet, the magnificent multi-sensory event comprises six installations for imaginative play: Graffiti Beating Mountains and Valleys, Red List, Sliding Through the Fruit Field, Light Ball Orchestra, Hopscotch for Geniuses, A Table where Little People Live and Sketch Town.

When: 9 July – 14 Jan
Where: MegaBox, Kowloon Bay
How much: From HK$180

International Arts Carnival

Hong Kong welcomes the return of a familiar summer programme in which art and performance come together to form a stage that is guaranteed to be captivating. Designed to entertain youngsters during the school break, the latest rendition of the International Arts Carnival will deliver a lineup of dance, vocals, acrobatics and drama that is made all the more engaging by the employment of art and technology. Excitingly for the little ones, the main character of IAC 2023 will be a dinosaur.

When: 14 July – 13 Aug 2023
Where: Various venues
How much: Prices vary
Click here for more information.

Ateez World Tour 2023

Fans of Ateez will be ready to wave their light sticks as the K-pop group make a stop in Hong Kong as part of their The Fellowship: Break the Wall concert tour. With Hong Kong being one of only five Asian stops for the eight-member band, the Atiny faithful can look forward to a whirlwind of entertainment. Whether or not they break the wall remains to be seen, but the boys will surely set the stage on fire with their energetic dance moves, stunning vocals and addictive raps.

When: 15 July
Where: AsiaWorld-Expo, Lantau
How much: From HK$880
Click here for more information.

Night of the Living Monsters

As its pride month celebrations move into July, the Eaton HK presents another fascinating event in a lineup of panel discussions, exhibitions, performances and more that has accepting queerness in a largely heteronormative society as the primary theme. Pride@Eaton 2023: It’s Morphing Time! continues with the enthralling drag skit Night of the Living Monsters, starring drag queens including Yihao, JiJi Hardy, BB Ice Fun, RaveFun and Charlieowo. Looking back on the past and into the future, the performance party is certain to encapsulate the emotions that come with being part of the Hong Kong LGBTQ+ community.

When: 15 – 16 July
Where: Eaton HK, Kowloon.
How much: From HK$250

All about BTS’ J-Hope and the K-pop star’s mega success

In 13 June 2013, a 19-year-old named Jung Ho-seuk made his debut with a new K-pop boy band that would soon smash records and set hearts racing around the world. His prowess in dance, which he had practised since the tender age of six, saw him become the third idol trainee signed by Big Hit Entertainment to become a member of BTS. At that time, few would have guessed that this callow youth would shine as part of a global pop culture movement.

J-Hope and Glory The biggest money-spinner of K-pop phenomenon BTS is no slouch when sharing his success with the world gafencu (10)

Fast forward to today, and not only has BTS become the most successful, best-selling South Korean musical act in history.

The singing-and-dancing septet has hit countless other international milestones, including becoming the first Asian and non-English-speaking group to be named ‘Global Recording Artist of the Year’ by the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry; the non-profit organisation representing the interests of the recording industry across the globe, which recently reconfirmed their 2020 accolade to BTS for a second year. Dubbed the ‘Princes of Pop’, the band has garnered numerous music accolades in South Korea, and in the West.


Such is the popularity and success of J-Hope (Jung’s stage name) and his cohorts that they’re estimated to pull in a staggering US$5 billion a year.

To put that into perspective, that’s roughly half a percent of South Korea’s overall GDP. In recognition of their efforts, in another historic first, BTS became the youngest-ever recipients of the country’s Order of Cultural Merit.

Although all members of BTS have reaped serious rewards for their years of hard work, J-Hope has been tapped as the highest earner according to a variety of media outlets. Here, we delve into the circumstances of his rapid rise, famous family members and other lesser-known facts about the mega talented dancer, rapper and singer.


Also Read: Hallyu to the World: The rise and rise of Korean Culture


Sibling Success
Jung was born on 18 February 1994 in Gwangju, South Korea’s sixth-largest metropolitan city. Few details are available about his parents – some claim his father is a teacher of literature, while other sources identify him as a businessman.

There is, however, rather more known about his elder sister, Jung Da-won, who also uses the name Jung Ji-woo. She’s so much more than just the sister of a K-pop idol, though. An entrepreneur at heart, she runs several businesses – fashion company AJ Look, e-commerce platform Mejiwoo as well as eyewear brand Fun the Metal. The social-media whizz also boasts millions of followers on both Instagram and YouTube, and latterly signed an exclusive contract with another South Korean entertainment company, Cube Entertainment. Clearly, the Jung siblings have more than their fair share of natural talent.

J-Hope and Glory The biggest money-spinner of K-pop phenomenon BTS is no slouch when sharing his success with the world gafencu

Big Hitter
J-Hope is renowned as a skilled dancer, rapper and singer. However, during his schooldays, he had another, more athletic aptitude: tennis. “It’s funny how I started playing… my teacher asked, ‘Who wants to play tennis?’ and I was just stretching with both of my arms up high at that moment and she thought I wanted to join tennis,” recalls Jung with a laugh. Despite this accidental and somewhat inauspicious start, the tennis starlet would go on to win third place at a national tournament.

J-Hope and Glory The biggest money-spinner of K-pop phenomenon BTS is no slouch when sharing his success with the world gafencu (6)

Stepping Up
Bitten by the dancing bug as a young child, J-Hope began taking lessons at Gwangju Music Academy, whose famous alumni include fellow idols Seungri of Big Bang and 2NE1’s Minzy. He then went on to accrue several prestigious dance laurels including the top prize at a 2008 national competition.

With these experiences under his belt, he joined underground dance team Neuron before auditioning for JYP Entertainment in 2009. While the 15-year-old didn’t make the cut there, he was quickly able to turn things around and continue pursuing his dream. His sense of rhythm was applauded at Big Hit Entertainment, which signed him up later that year, leading to his spot in BTS.


Also Read: Awkwafina: The unexpected Hollywood star we didn’t know we need

J-Hope and Glory The biggest money-spinner of K-pop phenomenon BTS is no slouch when sharing his success with the world gafencu (12)

Lyrical Low
J-Hope is admired by the ARMY (Adorable Representative M.C. of Youth, or BTS’s legion of global die-hard fans) as the ever-chipper member of the group. However, that’s not to say that he hasn’t faced his own uncertainties when it comes to his music. “I’m someone who got into music from dance. [So] I still need direction when it comes to music,” he shares.

Recalling a recent painful slump in his songwriting abilities, he says: “I met a lot of producers and showed them my music and got feedback, then fell into a dilemma. I realised that I had chosen a difficult musical direction and it shook me up mentally. I wanted to resolve it quickly, but it wasn’t coming out the way I wanted, so I felt ashamed and wondered, ‘Is this my limit?’ I’m only gradually overcoming this struggle.”

J-Hope and Glory The biggest money-spinner of K-pop phenomenon BTS is no slouch when sharing his success with the world gafencu (8)

Flying Solo
In 2018, five years after his BTS breakthrough, J-Hope debuted his first solo mixtape, Hope World. While he’s not the first of the group to step out on his own – the band’s two other rappers, RM and Suga, released their albums in 2015 and 2016 respectively – Jung’s effort is, perhaps, the most successful.

Self-described as ‘my calling card to the world’, Hope World peaked at number 38 on the US Billboard 200 and made the charts in nine other countries around the world. His next solo outing (Chicken Noodle Soup, a single in collaboration with US songstress Becky G) in 2019 would go on to break even more records, and raised his profile as the first BTS member to chart as a Billboard Hot 100 solo artist.

J-Hope and Glory The biggest money-spinner of K-pop phenomenon BTS is no slouch when sharing his success with the world gafencu (5)

Despite the success he has found outside the band’s purview, Jung is adamant that BTS will remain his priority. “The team always comes first, so I focused on our projects as BTS and tried to make time [to work on my own stuff] in hotel rooms, on the airplane, whenever I could find a few minutes,” he explains.

Hope for Others
As with many of his bandmates, J-Hope is a strong proponent of giving back to society. Over the years, he’s personally donated hundreds of millions of Korean won to various causes. He has championed an array of worthy initiatives – from supporting visually and hearing-impaired children and youngsters suffering from violence in Tanzania to boosting the welfare of minors impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic – it’s clear that the star’s ability to bring literal J-Hope (joy and hope) is not just limited to the musical sphere.


(Text: Tenzing Thoundup)

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