What's On in Beijing: January 2019

By That's Beijing, December 31, 2018

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Jan 1-6: Rhinoceros in Love

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Courtesy of promoters

Experimental theatrical production Rhinoceros in Love will grace the NCPA stage early this month. The avant-garde Chinese play, written by Liao Yimei, tells a captivating tale of two young lovers Mingming and Ma Lu and has been performed all over the globe since its premiere in Beijing in 1999. 

Tue Jan 1-Sun Jan 6, 7.30pm; RMB180-380; National Center for the Performing Arts (NCPA), see event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jan 2-6: Heartbeat of Home

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Courtesy of promoters

From the creators of Riverdance, stunning dance spectacle 'Heartbeat of Home' is bringing their freshness and energy to Beijing. With components of traditional Irish, Latin and Afro-Cuban music and dance, the stage is a lively sight to behold, full of emotion and sincerity. 

Wed Jan 2-Sun Jan 6, various times; RMB 280-1500; Beijing Exhibition Center Theater, see event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jan 5: Twink

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Courtesy of promoters

Psychedelic rock veteran Twink stops by the capital while on his China tour. The drummer has been involved in several groundbreaking bands and has collaborated with musicians like T. Rex. He’ll be bringing the noise to DDC early this month, along with supporting acts Birdstriking and Xiao Wang. 

Sat Jan 5, 9pm; RMB100 (presale), RMB120 (door); Dusk Dawn Club, see event listing.

Jan 5 & 6: The Nutcracker

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Courtesy of promoters

A whimsical fantasy world for children and adults alike, The Nutcracker is a fairy tale classic. Catch the magnificent and charming performance by the prestigious Russian Ballet right here in Beijing. The thrilling excitement offered by the advanced choreography is enough to fascinate all audiences. 

Sat Jan 5 & Sun Jan 6, various times; RMB280-880; Rulun Lecture Hall of Renmin University, see event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jan 8: Romeo and Juliet

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Courtesy of promoters

The timeless and tragic story of Romeo and Juliet will be performed by TNT Theatre Britain at the Rulun Lecture Hall of Renmin University. Don’t miss this powerful and innovative reimagining of Shakespeare’s most popular drama. 

Tue Jan 8, 7pm; RMB100-280; Rulun Lecture Hall of Renmin University, see event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jan 10-13: The Last Warrior Elephant

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Courtesy of promoters

Directed by He Nian, the Shanghai Puppet Theater brings you The Last Warrior Elephant, a visually outstanding production set during the Anti-Japanese War period. Presenting the harmony of man and nature, this story of a devoted boy and a baby elephant will tug on your heartstrings. 

Thu Jan 10-Sun Jan 13, 7.30pm; RMB100-960; National Center For the Performing Arts (NCPA), see event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jan 11: CHAI

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Courtesy of promoters

Japanese pop punk band CHAI consisting of twin sisters Mana and Kana, along with friends Yuuki and Yuna, are determined to redefine what it means to be kawaii. Together, the Nagoya natives coined the term neo-kawaii, which translates to ‘the new cute,’ and have devoted themselves to smashing oppressive beauty standards and inspiring confidence with their bold and fearless music. Read our recent interview with the band here.

Fri Jan 11, 9pm; RMB150 (presale), RMB220 (door); Omni Space, see event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jan 13: Reol

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Courtesy of promoters

From singer-songwriter to producer, eccentric Japanese EDM artist Reol embarks on a live tour. Prepare for a genre-blending night of electronic pop and unique artistry by the darling oddity. 

Sun Jan 13, 3pm; RMB450 (early bird), RMB480 (presale), RMB580 (door); Tango, see event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jan 18: Soulciety

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Courtesy of promoters

Mastermind Productions is bringing you their first party of 2019: Soulciety – a night of nothing but soul, funk and jazz. Stop by Zhao Dai to see local talent fRUITY GROUP, V-Nutz and DJ Watermelon. 

Fri Jan 18, 10pm-late; RMB80; Zhao Dai, see event listing.

Jan 19: Mappa Mundi Exhibition

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Courtesy of UCCA

Nearly a decade ago Qiu Zhijie began to plot out intricate maps of the relationships among his various artworks, starting his ‘Mapping the World Project.’ Since then, he has produced hundreds of maps that recall the ink and brushwork of traditional landscape painting, where he outlines a coordinate system of ideas, individuals, objects and situations. Visit one of the largest collections of his works to date at UCCA. 

Sat Jan 19-Wed May 15, Tue-Sun, 10am-7pm; Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA), see event listing.

Jan 20: Envy

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Courtesy of promoters

Underground Japanese band Envy hits Beijing after a stop in Shanghai. The post-rockers have been making music for two decades and have since toured with Mogwai, Deafheaven and more. Catch their raucous gig at Omni Space at the end of the month. 

Sun Jan 20, 9pm; RMB200 (presale), RMB240 (door); Omni Space, see event listing.

Jan 20: Slash

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Courtesy of promoters

Hard rock guru Slash touches down at the Beijing Exhibition Center Theater this month. The award-winning musician is best known worldwide as the lead guitarist of revolutionary rock bands Guns N’ Roses and Velvet Revolver. Since then, he’s established himself as a legendary solo artist. 

Sun Jan 20, 7.30pm; RMB680-1280; Beijing Exhibition Center Theater, see event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jan 22-26: La Traviata

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Courtesy of promoters

Set in Paris during the 19th century, Giuseppe Verdi’s three-act opera La Traviata is coming to move Beijing. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to see spectacular performances, lighting and costumes, and to hear the gripping love story of main character Violetta. 

Tue Jan 22-Sat Jan 26, 7pm; RMB100-1632; Opera House at the National Center for the Performing Arts (NCPA), see event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jan 27: White River Ice Hike

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Image via Beijing Hikers

It might be cold outside but that doesn’t mean you should stay indoors all winter long. Join Beijing Hikers and embark on a trail that crosses a frozen river in Miyun District, all while breathing in fresh air and admiring some beautiful winter scenery. 

Sun Jan 27, 8.30am; RMB420, RMB380 for members; see event listing. To reserve or for more information, visit www.beijinghikers.com.

Jan 30: Ballet Flamenco de Granada 'Carmen'

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Courtesy of promoters

With heart-pounding music and intense Spanish Flamenco dancing, the classic story of gypsy girl Carmen comes to life on the NCPA stage. Flamenco itself is an artwork that combines dancing, singing and music – making for a glamorous and aweinspiring audiovisual experience. 

Wed Jan 30-Fri Feb 1, 7.30pm; RMB160-880; National Center for the Performing Arts (NCPA), see event listing. Buy tickets here.

Through January

El Barrio Weekly Specials

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Image via El Barrio

El Barrio has some crazy good deals going on. Get half price tacos on Mondays, half price fajitas on Tuesdays and – prepare yourselves – a ladies night on Wednesdays featuring RMB10 frozen margaritas for the gals all night long. DJ Franck takes over the tables on the weekend. 

Every week, 5.30pm-late; El Barrio, see event listing.

New Menu at Hulu

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Image via Hulu

Hulu revamped their menu with some fabulous new additions alongside prized favorites. Feast in style on artfully prepared dishes like sweet potato croquettes, sea urchin, creamy mushroom risotto and tender flank steak – all superb options for lunch or dinner. Round it out with a sweet and airy mango cake or go for the luscious milk chocolate souffle. 

Daily, 11am-11pm; Hulu, see event listing.

RuPaul's Drag Race Screening

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Courtesy of promoters

Join Slow Boat at Side Street every week for a viewing party of RuPaul’s Drag Race All-Stars. The fun kicks off every Tuesday with guest drag queens Miss Hymn and Siberia. The entrance ticket includes a free shot and you can enjoy discounted pints of Slow Boat’s S.O.S Belgian Wit inside. 

Tuesdays, 8.30pm; RMB15 (advance), RMB20 (door); Side Street, see event listing.

Weekend Brunch at Bottega 

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Image via Bottega

Step up your brunch game at Bottega’s location on Xinyuanli, where they’re serving classic Italian brunch plates and Romana-style pizzas paired with free-flow Prosecco, spritz and cocktails. 

Weekends, 11.30am-2.30pm; Bottega (Jinshang), see event listing.

The Bake Shop Pizza Dinner 

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Courtesy of promoters

Get a slice of the pizza action at The Orchid’s pizza dinner, in collaboration with The Bake Shop. Held every Saturday at the boutique hotel’s roomy event space across the street, the dinner features a set menu of salads, small plates, pizza and dessert. 

Saturdays, 7.30pm; RMB200 (price subject to change); The Orchid, see event listing.

Roast Beef Sunday Lunch

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Image via Arrow Factory Brewery

What better way to recharge after a long weekend of parties than with a hearty roast beef lunch? Arrow Factory is now serving a traditional home-cooked meal every Sunday featuring roast beef, potatoes and homemade Yorkshire pudding. Get stuffed and then head home to take a much-needed nap. Add RMB30 for a brew, house wine or Prosecco. 

Sundays, 12-3pm; RMB128/person; Arrow Factory Brewing, see event listing.


Have an event to list? Head here to list your upcoming event. We’ll choose the best new additions to feature on next week’s edition of ‘What's On in Beijing.' Not sure where to start? Here's a full guide on how to list your upcoming events on our website.

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