Lucia Hwong

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Lucia Hwong
Lucia Hwong and her Pipa (a Chinese lute), January 2012. Photo by Marco Glaviano
Lucia Hwong and her Pipa (a Chinese lute), January 2012. Photo by Marco Glaviano
Born Hawaii
Occupation American composer

Lucia Hwong is an American composer and instrumentalist.[1] She has created music[2] for theater,[3] film, television,[4] dance and the concert stage.[5]


Hwong was born in Hawaii and raised in Los Angeles, California. Her grandmother was a grande dame of Chinese opera and her mother is international actress Lisa Lu. Her first public performance was in concert, playing the pipa, an ancient Chinese lute, at the age of six. She studied ethnomusicology, theater and dance at UCLA and Columbia University from 1978 to 1982, graduating with a B.A., Cum Laude, in Ethnomusicology.

She has chaired philanthropic events for organizations including the Women's Project,[6] American Theatre Wing,[7] Asia Society and Parrish Art Museum[8] and has been on committees such as Southampton Hospital.[9]


Her music for theater includes the scores for the Tony Award-winning Broadway production of M. Butterfly [10] and Tony-nominated Golden Child;[11] as well as David Henry Hwang's New York Shakespeare Festival presentations of Sound and Beauty and The Dance and the Railroad and the Obie Award-winner FOB.[12] She composed the music for Iago and Venus Voodoo at Lincoln Center.

Hwong also scored the Mark Taper and McCarter Theatre premieres of Anna Deavere Smith's Twilight: Los Angeles 1992 [13] and created a 12-tone fugue for Joyce Carol Oates' The Perfectionist.[14] Among her dance scores, Fierce Attachments debuted at the Brooklyn Academy of Music's Next Wave Festival.[15] She also scored Ali MacGraw's Yoga Mindbody and created music for the Guggenheim Museum's Soho video wall.

Her music for television and film include Hiroshima (NBC), Vietnam War Story (HBO), Forbidden Nights (Tiananmen Square massacre) (ABC), Paper Angels (Angel Island) (PBS), Jennifer's in Jail (girl gangs) (Lifetime), Lotus (women's emancipation in China) (AFI)[16] , Who Killed Vincent Chin? (racial murder) (1998 Oscar nomination: Best Documentary) and Silverlake Life-the View from Here (AIDS), honored with Sundance Film Festival and Peabody awards.

Concert pieces include The Unwelcome and Rhythm of Your Pulse, commissioned and performed by the Women's Philharmonic.

Her two albums, House of Sleeping Beauties and Secret Luminescence were released on the Private Music label. The Goddess Trilogy CDs of new-age music were released on her own label, Goddess Music, and received a Visionary Award in 2000.

The works of Lucia Hwong
THEATER 1998 GOLDEN CHILD Composer, Incidental Music Broadway New York
1993 TWILIGHT:LOS ANGELES 1992 Composer, Arranger, Performer McCarter Theater, Princeton, NJ
1993 THE PERFECTIONIST Composer, Arranger, Performer McCarter Theater, Princeton, NJ
1993 TWILIGHT:LOS ANGELES 1992 Composer, Arranger, Performer The Mark Taper Forum, Los Angeles Music Center
1993 SNAKE IN THE VEIN Composer, Arranger, Performer Blank Theatre Company, New York, NY
1993 THE PERFECTIONIST Composer, Arranger, Performer McCarter Theater, Princeton, NJ
1992 THE BIG ONE SHOT Composer, Performer Naked Angels Theatre, New York, NY
1989 VENUS VOODOO Composer, Arranger, Performer Lincoln Center, New York, NY
1989 M. BUTTERFLY Composer, Arranger Westbury Theatre, London
1988 M. BUTTERFLY Composer, arranger, On-Stage Music Director O'Neill Theatre, Broadway New York
1983 SOUND AND BEAUTY Composer, Arranger, Performer New York Shakespeare Festival
1981 THE DANCE AND THE RAILROAD Composer, Music Director, Performer New York Shakespeare Festival
1980 F.O.B. Composer, Music Director, Performer New York Shakespeare Festival
1980 IAGO Composer, Played Desdemona Mitzi Newhouse Theater - Lincoln Center (NY);
1979 IAGO Composer, Played Desdemona Inner City Cultural Center (LA)
FILM 2010 GIVING BACK Music Score Giving Back Foundation
1993 SILVERLAKE LIFE:THE VIEW FROM HERE Composer : Score Sundance Film Festival
1988 LAWLESS LAND Composer : Score Roger Corman
1988 LOTUS Actress
1987 WHO KILLED VINCENT CHIN Composer : Score
1987 CHINA GIRL Composer : Song Vestron
1987 THE LAST EMPEROR Actress: Featured Role Lady of the Book
1985 YEAR OF THE DRAGON Composer : Title Music
1984 NOTHING LASTS FOREVER Actress : Lunar Maiden
1982 HAMMETT Musician : Pipa; Chinese music consultant to John Barry
TELEVISION 1993 THE WORLD OF LUCIA HWONG Composer : Score Time Warner Cable
1991 JENNIFER’S IN JAIL Composer : Score Lifetime
1990 FORBIDDEN NIGHTS Composer : Score CBS
1989 VIETNAM WAR STORY : THE LAST DAYS Composer : Score HBO / The Last Soldier
CONCERTS 1996 DRUM SONG Composer-Lyrics by George C. Wolfe Boys Choir of Harlem
1991 THE UNWELCOME RHYTHM OF YOUR PULSE Composer Women’s Philharmonic San Francisco
1989 VENUS VOODOO Creator, Composer, Performer Lincoln Center
DANCE & MULTI MEDIA 1995 AKASHIC WEEKEND Pipa performer Event of Ira Cohen
1994 ALI MACGRAW YOGA MIND & BODY Composer : Score M32 Music Co.
1987 FIERCE ATTACHMENTS Composer : Score BAM/Next Wave Festival
RECORDING 1999 GODDESS MYSTICAL VISIONS Vol.3 Composer, arranger, performer M32 Music Co.
1998 GODDESS CELESTIAL REALMS VISIONS Vol.2 Composer, arranger, performer M32 Music Co.
1998 GODDESS AWAKENING VISIONS Vol.1 Composer, arranger, performer M32 Music Co.
1994 NEUROTRANSMITTER BATH Composer M32 Music Co.
1987 SECRET LUMINESCENCE Composer, arranger, performer Produced by Kurt Munkacsi
1987 NEO GEO Pipa performer Album of Ryuichi Sakamoto
1984 HOUSE OF SLEEPING BEAUTIES Composer, arranger, performer Private Music

Awards and recognition[edit]

In 1978, Hwong received a Citation of Outstanding Contribution by the Board of Public Works of the City of Los Angeles. Time magazine (September 1986) and The New York Times (May 1986) included her in a list of America's exceptional new composers; and in 1993, she received the first Asian American Arts award from the Asian American Arts Alliance as Artist of the Year.

Composer Philip Glass wrote, "a young generation of composers has begun to appear. And the thing which distinguishes that they represent...dual tradition...perhaps really for the first time, or something new. Not a borrowing from one tradition or incorporating the sounds of another, but a real blending of Eastern and Western music. Lucia Hwong is such a composer."[17]

Hwong is on the Board of The Women's Project and was honored at its Women of Achievement Awards on March 2, 2009.[18] Mayor Bloomberg declared the day "Women's Project Day" by Proclamation. Lucia has chaired the 21st,[19] 22nd[20] and 23rd[21] Women's Project Galas.

Personal life[edit]

Hwong is married to businessman Peter Gordon. They reside on the Upper East Side in New York City with their two children Sabrina and Sofia Gordon


  1. ^ Lucia Hwong on IMDb
  2. ^ Entry at
  3. ^ Lucia Hwong at the Internet Broadway Database
  4. ^ "Movie Tickets - Movie Times - Fandango". Retrieved 2015-09-10. 
  5. ^ "11 results in SearchWorks". Retrieved 2015-09-10. 
  6. ^
  7. ^ "American Theatre Wing - 2009 Annual Spring Gala". Archived from the original on 2009-08-15. Retrieved 2015-09-10. 
  8. ^ "Parrish Art Museum: The Great American Family Picnic - :|MANHATTAN SOCIETY|:Manhattan, New York City Event Photo Gallery". Retrieved 2015-09-14. 
  9. ^ "SOUTHAMPTON-AUGUST 1: Lucia Hwong-Gordon "Fashion Committee" wearing Dennis Basso, Jacqueline Murphy Stahl, Sara Herbert-Galloway, Ramona Singer attend Southampton Hospital's 51st Annual Summer Party--A Centennial Celebration on Saturday August 1, 2009, Wickapogue Road, Southampton, New York (Photo Credit: Sara Herbert Galloway for - :|MANHATTAN SOCIETY|:Manhattan, New York City Event Photo Gallery". Retrieved 2015-09-10. 
  10. ^ IBDB,
  11. ^ IBDB,
  12. ^ Gussow, Mel (May 20, 1990). "Review/Theater; Culture Shock in Hwang's 'F.O.B.'". The New York Times. 
  13. ^ "Postmodern Culture, Volume 4, Number 2 - Table of Contents". Retrieved 2015-09-10. 
  14. ^ "Celestial Timepiece | A Joyce Carol Oates Patchwork". Retrieved 2015-09-10. 
  15. ^ New York Magazine. New York Media, LLC. 1987-09-21. p. 177. ISSN 0028-7369. Retrieved 2015-09-10. 
  16. ^ DeepFocus Production,
  17. ^ Glass album notes for the Private Music CD of “House of Sleeping Beauties,” 1985
  18. ^ Women's Project,” 2009
  19. ^ Women's Project 21st Gala,
  20. ^ Women's Project 22nd Gala,
  21. ^ Women's Project 23rd Gala,

External links[edit]