On & On Theatre workshop
On and On Theatre Workshop is a professional theatre company subsidized by Hong Kong Arts Development Council. Commonly known as On and On, it was set up in 1998 and started off as a theatre-in-education organisation. Inspired by a peer running workshops for kids, who named his initiatives as “Amble Along”, our name “On and On” suggests that the exploration of art is a path that allows us to amble along, and gradually make great strides.
In 1998, On and On set up its first headquarters in Oil Street Artist Village to become one of the first art groups that operated its own performance space. In 2001, the company was relocated to Cattle Depot Artist Village in Tokwawan and converted one of the heritage blocks into Cattle Depot Theatre, the first public venue for performance that was independently run by a theatre company.
Theatre in education, experimental theatre, and venue operation were the three artistic focuses of On and On in its early stage. Moving beyond traditional drama, we strived towards cross-disciplinary collaboration and a diversity of creativity, while holding onto the belief that art should speak to our society, culture and history. Our collaborators included educators, visual artists, musicians, performance artists, cultural advocates and designers, etc..
The year 1998 to 2005 mark the founding stage of On and On, best remembered for the classic programmes of “Generation i-D”, “Little Theatre Movement”, “New Directors Series”, “Directors Lab”, and also the original works by Chan Ping-chiu. A wide array of events were held, including workshops, art salons, community tours, exhibitions and performances.
“Cattle Depot Theatre Season” was first introduced in 2006 where the company curated and produced its own seasonal repertoire. Spearheaded by a line-up of experimental works and cultural exchange programmes, Cattle Depot Theatre was soon heralded as a cultural venue innovative and progressive. From 2006 to 2011, the company enjoyed a period of maturity and vibrancy, witnessing a growth in productions, as well as the publishing of an independent online art magazine.
A new initiative in 2012 was “New Writing for Contemporary Theatre”, a flagship programme that drew references from European new writing to investigate the boundary of text-based theatre in relation to the changing socio-cultural and political landscapes of our times. Encouraging the translations and productions of exemplary play texts from Europe, and the creations of local works that are responsive and relevant, as well as innovative in forms, the programme has resulted in new works, art appreciation events, research and archive, translations and publications.
Celebrating its 20th anniversary in 2018, an exciting line-up of events and performances was introduced to envision the many possibilities of the company’s next stage.