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venue or in a traditional teahouse - and the superb Chinese acrobatics displays, both
of which remain timeless arts. Fewer investigate the equally worthwhile contemporary
side of the city's entertainment scene - the indie music , classical music, theatre and
dance events. There are also a number of cinemas where you can check out the pro-
a little inconveniently located; many, in particular, lie in a wide stretch south of Ti-
an'anmen Square but it's worth remembering that many “tours” to the most popular
shows often cost the same as the regular ticket price, yet throw transport in for free.
Listings For mainstream cultural events - visiting ballet troupes, large-scale concerts and
so forth - check the listings in the China Daily (available at most hotels). For a more in-
depth view and comprehensive listings, including gigs and art happenings and the like,
check the expat magazines: Time Out ( ) , The Beijinger (
thebeijinger ) and City Weekend ( ) .
Tickets Tickets for all big shows are available at the venue box offices, or from China Ticket
Online ( 400 6103721, ) . It's amazing how many of them cost exactly 180.
However, for opera, martial arts and acrobatic performances, it's usually better to book dir-
ectly through your hotel or hostel since transport to and from the venue in question are some-
times thrown in for free. The only problem with this is that it'll be their choice of venue rather
than yours.
< Back to Entertainment and the arts
A trip to see Beijing's famous opera is one of the most popular diversions for international
travellers. Apart from checking out the dedicated venues , most of which are in the south of
the city, you could also visit a teahouse for your opera fix. Teahouse performances are short
and aimed at foreigners: you can also slurp tea or munch on snacks - often Beijing duck as
well - while being entertained.
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