Ah, festivals, we’ve missed you! The pandemic was cruel, with all the most significant festivals shuttered since the summer of 2019. After three years of uncertainty and cancelled plans, one of Hong Kong’s biggest music festivals is back!

Music lovers can expect a dazzling list of artists from Hong Kong and overseas, notable food and beverage vendors, and fun activities. So, mark your diaries for March 3-5, 2023, as Clockenflap returns for its 12th edition.

Clockenflap Hong Kong is back for its 12th edition

Hong Kong’s home-grown music festival Clockenflap has earned a loyal following over the last decade, so we’re expecting massive things for its latest edition. This year sees the event completely sold out for the first time in its 15-year history.

The festival will be held in a spectacular outdoor environment featuring multiple stages. The Harbourflap Stage is the main stage where you can find the highest-profile artists. The FWD Stage will be showcasing artists from a wide spectrum of styles, genres, and countries. Meanwhile, the Park Stage is set within the festival’s grassy lawns. It’s the place to catch edgy, emerging talents.

Over at Electriq, the electronic stage is the place to sample the finest in dancefloor energy. The Robot Stage boasts two personalities: family-friendly, kids-focused content by day, and DJs and party crew by night. Finally, the Topper Stage makes its debut this year. This stage will keep the vibes flowing in between the live sets across the neighbouring Harbourflap Stage.


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Local and international artists will take over the stage

Joining rock band Arctic Monkeys as headliners are hip-hop legends Wu-Tang Clan, Swedish indie-pop superstars The Cardigans, and British rockers Bombay Bicycle Club. Flying the flag for Hong Kong is a talented list of local acts that include Canto-rock giants KOLOR, rap sensation Tyson Yoshi, and indie-pop five-piece The Hertz.

Some of the best acts in Asia are also part of Clockenflap. Be sure to check out Thai favourites Three Man Down, alternative K-pop group Balming Tiger, Filipino folk-pop band Ben&Ben, and Japanese indie-rockers Hitsujibungaku. Other musical mavericks to keep an eye out for are British jazz quintet Ezra Collective, Taiwanese singer-songwriter LÜCY, and Japanese experimental rock master MONO.

Clockenflap is also bringing the hottest up-and-coming acts to Hong Kong, such as American songstress Sasha Alex Sloan, French instrumentalist FKJ, Canadian indie darlings Men I Trust, and more. The three-day event promises all sorts of stuff – but the irresistible F&B offerings make it even more exciting.


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Going beyond music

In addition to food and drink offerings, festivalgoers can enjoy an art programme featuring a selection of Instagrammable attractions and audiovisual adventures. Make time to visit Pause.Record.Play is a space that allows visitors to jam together through a collection of special sound effects. You can also admire Videotage, a curated visual journey into the artists’ mental imagery of local cityscapes. Meanwhile, street art by Caratoes and Parents Parents provides plenty of photo opportunities too!

Similar to previous years, families and children of all ages are more than welcome at the festival. Catch puppet-based performances at Treasure Chest Theatre or show off your skills for percussion at the Drum Jam. Handmade Hong Kong is returning to organise the popular Craft Market, where over 30 different stalls will be selling different festival-friendly items.

The festival’s sponsor, Cathay is hosting the VIP lounge, a feather wearable craft workshop, and a temporary glowing tattoo workshop. In between sessions, Clockenflappers can take the chance to relax at a spacious beer garden, complete with beanbags, picnic tables, and parasols, all while enjoying Belgian wheat beers, fruit-flavoured brews, and refreshing sorbets from HOEGAARDEN.

Food and drinks at Clockenflap

Replenish yourself at food panda’s Food Bar, which is offering a variety of great eats. There will be numerous food suppliers on the site with cuisines from around the world. One of the highlights includes a special stall by The Chilli Lab, which recreates the chilli sauce from the recent Hong Kong comedy film, Chilli Laugh Story. Expect local street food favourites such as siu mai, lo mein noodles, and chicken wings. Furthermore, Kuuchi Cafe is partnering with Blue Bottle Coffee, to serve coffee, coffee cocktail, and other light refreshments.

Clockenflap has got you covered if you’re out to swill some tepid lager and witness some groundbreaking musical performances. Of course, make sure you save some energy to groove to the dance numbers too!

(Hero and feature image credits: Kitmin)

This story first appeared in Lifestyle Asia Hong Kong