Applauding Hong Kong Pop Legend: Roman Tam
Thematic Gallery (6),
Hong Kong Heritage Museum
21 December 2011 - 30 July 2012
The whole of Hong Kong mourned when Cantopop legend Roman Tam passed away in 2002. His spirit, however, lives on thanks in particular to the generous donation of over 3,000 items of memorabilia from Tam's career as a performing artist that his sister presented to the Hong Kong Heritage Museum in 2006 and that now forms the museum’s first complete collection of a local pop singer.

Roman Tam began his career as a singer in the mid-1960s when he formed a band to play popular Western hits in bars. He progressed to being a backstage singer for local films, where he attracted attention for his vocal skills in his interpretations of Mandarin songs, before he reached the peak of his art, storming the charts with a succession of Cantonese pop hits. He later went on to produce musicals, opening up new horizons for his undoubted talent. With a performing career stretching over more than 30 years in Hong Kong, he has left us a legacy of golden hits such as Bright Future (the theme from a Japanese drama series aired on TVB), themes from The Romantic Swordsman and Below the Lion Rock, among many others. He won countless awards and is rightly regarded as one of the legends of the Hong Kong music scene.

To commemorate both Roman’s achievements as a versatile artist and the 10th anniversary of his death, we now present this exhibition to revisit the close connection between Tam’s career and the development of popular music in Hong Kong.

Video Clip on the Exhibition
Exhibition Pamphlet

Exhibit Highlights

Roman Tam in the 1987s Roman Tam in the 1970s

Stage stills from Liuyi's Letter

Roman Tam was unsparing in his efforts in promoting musicals. He organised his second Cantonese musical Liuyi's Letter. The production team was made up of well known professionals, including the music by Joseph Koo, libretto and lyrics by James Wong, styling and fashion design by Eddie Lau. Susanna Au-yeung and Lo Hoi Pang were major actors.

Stage stills from Liuyi's Letter

Advertisement of Roman Tam's first concert at the Lee Theatre Advertisement of Roman Tam's first concert at the Lee Theatre


Champion Award of Japan for Singers

Presented by the Yomiuri Telecasting Corporation, this singing contest was broadcast every week in Japan, with five professional singers taking part each time. A singer who won the contest 10 times would receive the Champion Award, and when Roman achieved this feat he became the first non-Japanese singer to be crowned champion.

Champion Award of Japan for Singers

Specially-designed by renowned designer Eddie Lau, this silver-grey tuxedo was worn by Roman at his farewell concert Roman Tam's Glorious Stage.


Other Past Exhibitions