Artist of the Month- March- Joshua Wolper

Our Artist of the Month is Joshua Wolper, resident actor and director at Shakespeare4All.

Joshua chats with us about his latest project, The Light Dragon. Exploring his fascination with the old Kowloon Walled City and its history, the play brings together the past and the present, fantasy and reality, theatre and motion pictures. Through a chance encounter in the Kowloon City Park, a young girl makes a new friend as they share their connection to the neighbourhood. Embarking on an adventure together that bends time and space, the Light Dragon is a fun and heart-warming story that explores a piece of Hong Kong’s history, and the power of storytelling. iIt is produced by Shakespeare4All and will incorporate multimedia into the production. The production will be showing at the Yuen Long Theatre April 28-30, 2017.





1.     Name, Birthplace: 

Joshua Wolper, Hong Kong


2.     How does where you were raised affect your work?  

We moved around quite a bit growing up: Hong Kong, Seoul, New York, San Francisco. I always needed to connect and communicate with new people. My parents also loved the theatre, so we would see all the musicals and productions that would come through Hong Kong, and when we were in New York, I'd see all kinds of shows. However, the need to connect and communicate has probably given me a desire to work collaboratively and inclusively. Well, as much as possible anyway.


3.     Where did you train?

I trained at a small studio – The Actor’s Center of San Francisco (now Duse Studio of Dramatic Art), run by Shelley Mitchell, who now works mostly in LA. I also studied at the Black Nexxus studios in New York City.


4.     What is your favourite style of theatre? Why?

I love it all. Do you guys get this answer a lot? But it’s the honest answer. I’m looking for meaning and truth, and it doesn’t matter to me what form that takes.


5.     What was the best show you EVER saw?

The Little Flower of East Orange – Labyrinth Theater, NYC. It starred Ellen Burstyn and Michael Shannon and was directed by the late great Philip Seymour Hoffman. But beyond the big names, it was a powerful play, and well directed. It was a life changing experience.


6.     What was the best show in HK you EVER saw?

  There was a playback theatre production a few years ago at the Cattle Depot Artist Village. For a portion of the production, the audience would share stories, and the cast would perform the scenario. It wasn't always naturalistic, and that challenged some of the new theatre goers, but it also allowed them to experience how a concrete, real story can take shape and have meaning in the form of physical performance. There were some tears for sure, and it succeeded I thought in connecting people to the power of theatre.



7.     What piece of work are you the proudest?

  A few years ago I had the opportunity to be a part of a 10-minute theatre festival in Hong Kong. It was in conjunction with HKU's students that graduated from the creative writing Master's program. It wasn't the largest or most glamorous production I'd been a part of, but I was proud of the way our group worked together. It was also humbling to bring to life a story written by a new young writer.


8. What is your process like?

It depends on the job, whether I'm directing or acting, but I like to research and construct things from the inside out. I also really enjoy the psychological aspect of acting. I like to dig deep, go far, and find the lines and boundaries of characters. Learning lines was never my forte, though - you can ask some of the directors I've worked with. 



9.     What is your dream project?

The chance to tour a production I've written and directed outside of Hong Kong.


10. What do you think about the arts and theatre scene in Hong Kong?

It has certainly grown over the years, which I'm pleased about, and there are more resources made available to artists and theatre companies, although we often hear about the bureaucracy that can go with applying for grants, there are places to get funds to do theatre – it’s just about researching and applying… and waiting. Tedious, but it's there.

Often in Hong Kong, theatre is tied to education, as that is typically where the funds are. We may not see the rewards immediately when we look at the percentage of the population that would regularly and willingly pay to see productions, but in the long term, theatre’s role in education should bring in greater interest from our younger generation, whether they become practitioners or patrons.


S4A's latest theatre production is open for bookings. Take your pick, as it promises to blend live action and cinema on stage, and history and fantasy in the story, and just as sensational for each show!


For order enquiries, please feel free to contact us at 2520-6232 or

Click here for more information. 

Student Special: April 28, 2:30pm, 4:30pm ($45 per student. Book by March 31 to get 10% off for a purchase of 50 student tickets or more. Please contact S4A at 2520 6232.)

Public shows: April 28, 7:30pm, April 29, 2:30pm, April 30, 2:30pm

Ticket prices: $160, $80 (full-time students, senior citizens aged 60 or above and people with disabilities)



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