Good month for Serbian DJs in Beijing (see Tijana T, below): Antidote is bringing in two stars of the Belgrade underground for their first-ever Asia performance. Both Boiler Room veterans, the men hail from their city’s infamous Klub 20/44. Expect a night of eclectic and forward-thinking club music.
First performed in Copenhagen in 1879, Henrik Ibsen’s A Doll’s House is regarded as a masterpiece. The play is notable for its strong main character, Nora, who through her actions, questions the traditional roles of men and women in 19th-century marriage. It touches upon themes of love, money, reputation and social status.
Media company Hugoeast and Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA) present a series of weekly movie screenings, held every Friday. The event showcases critically acclaimed films from all around the world. This month the theme is ‘Crime and Punishment,’ and includes the following films: Aibou 4: The Move IV (Dec 8), Paulina (Dec 15), Clean Hands (Dec 22) and Glory (Dec 29)
Globe-trotting Serbian DJ Tijana T has played on stages at major festivals and top nightclubs across Europe – and now she’s bringing her critically-acclaimed techno to Lantern, her first-ever China show. Support comes from Lantern stalwarts Weng Weng, BB Deng, Nigls and more.
You may not know DJ Snake, but we’d be shocked if you didn’t recognize the hook from ‘Let Me Love You,’ his collab with Justin Bieber that topped the charts all last summer. But the French trap, pop and EDM producer’s got more under his belt (most notably, ‘Turn Down For What’) that he’ll be strutting at Sir Teen this month.
Celebrate the holiday season at Slow Boat’s fun-filled, family-friendly day. Expect cookie decorating, holiday crafts, a tasty brunch and the release of Slow Boat’s Safe Harbor Christmas Ale. Price includes brunch for both parent and child, a pint of Christmas Ale or coffee, and access to the craft station. Families with children of all ages are welcome. Non-profit organization Bread of Life Bakery is a partner of the event.
The holidays aren’t just for humans. Ttreat the special animal in your life to a fluffy good time at International Center for Veterinary Services’ (ICVS) Christmas party. Expect presents and treats, including a specially catered feast, with help from Penny’s Food Studio, Beijing’s premier gourmet pet food company. Partygoers can also take part in a raffle draw, with all proceeds donated to ICVS’ non-profit humane animal welfare programs. ICVS helps stray, rescued and rehomed animals in Beijing with a range of programs including adoption, surgeries and vaccinations. Note: All pets that attend must be fully vaccinated, with cats in carriers and dogs on leash.
Ever since his first independent release in 1999, Machinedrum has been a major influencer in American electronic music. His genre-shifting style and clever, conceptual sounds have led him to innovate both as a solo artist and in group projects such as Sepalcure, JETS and Dream Continuum.
Forget box office cinema, head down to The Hutong instead for a special film screening of King of Peking. Featured at the Tribeca 2017 Film Festival, the comedic drama is set in 90s Beijing and follows a former film projectionist who, along with his son, starts a pirate movie company. The film examines themes of morality and father-son relationships. Try not to feel nostalgic at the cool 90s visuals and the ‘good old days’ of Beijing setting. The screening will be followed by a 30-minute Q&A session with director Sam Voutas and producer Melanie Ansley. An Australian native, Voutas was raised in Beijing in the 80s and 90s.
NYC-based noise rockers A Place to Bury Strangers found A Place to Play in Beijing at Yugong Yishan. The trio are known for a sound that blends shoegaze, psychedelia and garage rock, and have opened for the likes of Nine Inch Nails and MGMT. This is your chance to experience the sound that the Washington Post once called: “the most ear-shatteringly loud garage/shoegaze band you'll ever hear.”
If you haven’t been to Cirque du Soleil before, you haven’t lived. Seriously, though, the show’s acrobatic performers’ death-defying stunts and beautiful costumes are wonderful. And Kooza ain’t clowning around (despite the main characters being, well, clowns), as it explores themes of power, identity and fear. Follow protagonist ‘The Innocent’ as he encounters surreal characters in a bizarre world.
Dec 17: Christmas Barbecue at the Great Wall
Beijing Experience is holding an exclusive BBQ at the foot of the Badaling Old Great Wall, just before Christmas. Visit an old section of the wall, enjoy live music and chow down on Casti Uruguayan beef, craft sausages, imported and local beers, mulled wine, and dessert by Hutong’er Pie. The venue is a private indoor room, though participants can also go hiking. Price includes transportation, meals and drinks and entrance to Badaling Old Great Wall. Book before Dec 14.
Sun Dec 17, 8.30am meetib; RMB499 (adults), RMB399 (kids); Badaling Old Great Wall (for more info and booking, add WeChat ID: 130 7113 9166)
Coming from Japanese reggae soudsystem Might Crown, Sami T is bringing his custom reggae sounds to Dada just in time for a pre-Christmas dance party.
Christmas Eve is spicy this year at MoMo Café, where you can celebrate by challenging your taste buds with a spicy fish-eating contest. The first one to finish an entire half-kilo of tuna will be awarded the grand prize of the evening: a two-night stay in a Deluxe guest room, with breakfast for two, at the Courtyard by Marriott Beijing Northeast. Other dishes from the buffet are also available, as are activities for the little ones.
Christmas isn’t complete without a feast. So this year, Feast will have the roast with the most at their Christmas Eve dinner and Christmas Day all-day buffet. Their bountiful buffet will be complimented with festive dishes including traditional roast turkey, roast lamb leg, baked salmon, oysters, lobster and more.
JW Marriott Hotel Beijing Central is doing Christmas right with not one, but two Christmas dinner options. Enjoy a specially crafted set menu at Casalingo, their award-winning Italian restaurant, for a high-end holiday experience. Or go crazy with all-you-can-eat seafood, including lobster, sashimi, crabs and shellfish, at JW Kitchen. Christmas just got merrier.
Mon Dec 25, 5.30-11pm; JW Marriott Hotel Beijing Central; Seafood Buffet Dinner at JW Kitchen, RMB688 per couple; Chistmas Set Menu at Casalingo, RMB1,588 per couple of RMB888 per person (or more information or to book, call 6391 6361). See event listing.
Truffle Season: Dining at Opera Bombana
Forget Thanksgiving – truffle season is the late-Autumn meal of your dreams. Opera Bombana does it like nobody else, with a custom menu created by Executive Chef Marino D’Antonio using the finest Italian truffles. This year’s menu features homemade tagliolini with butter and parmesan, whipped organic Japanese egg and risotto with cheese and seasonal mushrooms. Each dish comes sprinkled with truffles, which are shaved in front of you by the Chef himself. A one-of-a-kind dining experience not to be missed.
All month; Opera Bombana.
Daily: Art in Hospitals
Launched two years ago by Professor Lili Tang, Art in Hospitals seeks to comfort patients through the gift of music. Peking University Cancer Hospital is looking for volunteers who’d like to share their musical passions with patients and staff at the hospital. If you can play piano, violin, accordion or other, have some time to spare, and are keen to make a difference, get in touch with the contact below.
Daily; Peking University, 1 Yiheyuan Lu, Haidian 海淀区颐和园路1号 (contact Eva Wang, 139 1041 0111, www.bjhacf.org/en/)
Every Saturday Migas Sanlitun transforms into a sultry paradise with new party night ‘Tropicalismo.’ Join the fun-loving crew for an evening (and early morning) of dope music, including Latin trap, Mambo and Spanish classics, palm trees, mojitos and rum. Migas puts on the heat – you just need to get your booty on the d-floor, as DJ Joyce & Friends spin tracks from Spain and Latin America.
Saturdays, 10pm-late; free entry; Migas Sanlitun.
Mondays & Tuesdays: Social Nights @ EQUIS
Weekdays are the new weekends. At least at EQUIS, they are – the glitzy bar and club has launched ‘Social Nights’ on Mondays and Tuesdays to get the beautiful people of Beijing out and boozing during the week. Sip cocktails as you tap your feet to the musical stylings of DJ Foxy J, be wowed by Argentinian-born magician Mirko Callaci (seriously, he’s good), and enjoy special deals on packages of Champagne and oysters. (Then call in late to work the next day.)
Every Monday and Tuesday; EQUIS, 5/F The Four Seasons Hotel Beijing, 48 Liangmaqiao Lu, Chaoyang 朝阳区亮马桥路48号北京四季酒店5/F (5695 8880)
Weekends: La Granja Farmers Brunch
Migas has debuted a new tummy- and heart-warming brunch just in time for winter. Inspired by farming villages in Spain, La Granja Farmers Brunch will be serving rustic Spanish breakfast dishes with a creative twist. Enjoy your huevos and wine – this is one meal that ought to last a long time.
Weekends, 11.30am-2.30pm; Migas Sanlitun.
Through Jan 7: Room 39
A photography exhibition inspired by artist Zheng Jing’s experiences during an artist-in-residence program at Lichterfelde Prison in Berlin, Germany, Room 39 examines different ways that nature, the human body and architecture undergo reform.
Zheng spent 57 days living in the eponymous prison room. Measuring 3.36 meters by 2 meters, and including a metal window high up on the wall, the room’s dark and claustrophobic conditions led the artist to wonder what kind of person occupied such a room and what crime he or she committed to be sent there. To find out the answers to these questions, Zheng met one of the prison’s former prison guards, Stefan, who told him: “We sat here, chatted and chatted, and suddenly 12 years had gone by.”
Through Sun Jan 7, Tue-Sun, 10am-6pm; MOCUBE.
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