Meet in Beijing

08:26, April 06, 2010      

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Running throughout the month of May each year, the annual Meet in Beijing Arts Festival has become a highlight on the capital's art and culture calendar. Attracting 2,000 performers from all corners of the globe, this year's program will see the city come alive with over 150 performances by 30 top-notch art troupes.

Russia's Bolshoi Theater will kick off the festival at National Center for the Performing Arts with grand ballet The Pharaoh's Daughter, scheduled from April 30-May 2.

Choreographed by Marius Petipa, one of the founding fathers of Russian ballet and performed by a star-studded cast of over 200 dancers, The Pharaoh's Daughter's China premiere is all set to enchant audiences with its grand Egyptian style, splendid costumes and spectacular scenes.

Contemporary ballet Snow White created by French dance master Angelin Preljocaj in cooperation with fashion designer Jean Paul Gautier will take to the stage at BTV Grand Theater from May 22-23.

Debuting at Chaillot Theater under the Eiffel Tower in 2008, the production presents a beautiful, tragic yet violent world of the Grimm's fairy tale with Snow White dancing barefoot and battling her stepmother, while the seven dwarfs resemble Greek nymphs.

Kunqu opera Lian Xiang Ban by acclaimed Hong Kong director Stanley Kwan will stage at Poly Theater from May 11-14.

Adapted by Qing Dynasty literati Li Yu's work of the same name, the story tells of two women who are in love with each other trying to marry the same man so that they can stay together.

To mark great Chinese novelist Lao She's 111th birthday, stage play Lao She's Short Stories by renowned director Lin Zhaohua will play at Poly Theater from May 27-29. Featuring selections from five of the most influential short stories by the master, including Assuming Office (Shang Ren) and Liu's Compound (Liu Jia Da Yuan) the stories depict the tragic lives of ordinary people in old Beijing and form an emotional reflection on human existence and life itself.

For mandopop fans, the festival also has something to offer. Touted as one of the most prominent Hong Kong singers since Jackie Cheung, Eason Chan will hit the stage at Beijing Workers' Gymnasium for two solo concerts on April 29 and 30.

This year's Meet in Beijing Arts Festival will also continue its theme of embracing cultural diversity and global harmony through the UNESCO Cultural Diversity Festival scheduled from May 21-28 at venues in Beijing and Guangzhou. The festival includes 3D fairytale drama Aladdin from the UK, the Intro electronic music festival, which features top DJs from Acupuncture Records and electronic bands from home and abroad, as well as the 2nd Chinese Ethnic and Folk Arts Gala.

Chaoyang Pop Music Week will run from April 29-May 7 with free-of-charge public outdoor events held at various venues and university campuses across the city.
Since its inception 10 years ago, the Meet in Beijing Arts Festival has established itself as one of the world's most prominent international art festivals.

"The past 10 years has seen world-class musicians like Valery Gergiev, Placido Domingo, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Roland Petit gracing the stage of the festival, as well as classical works by the Philadelphia Orchestra, musical Cats and River Dance," explained Zhang Yu, general manager of China Art and Entertainment Group, the chief organizer of Meet in Beijing.

The festival has featured performances by over 30,000 artists and 1,000 art troupes from 110 countries and regions since it began.

"As a comprehensive arts festival, we hope Meet in Beijing will serve as an effective platform for cultural exchanges between China and the world and represent Beijing as a truly international metropolis," added Wang Zhu, head of Beijing Municipal Bureau of Culture.

Source: Global Times


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