What's On in Beijing: June 2019

By That's Beijing, June 3, 2019

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Jun 6-8: Tadashi Suzuki's ‘King Lear’


King Lear has been performed thousands of times, but Tadashi Suzuki is determined to tell its story with his own unique spin. An edited, cut and rearranged version of the original play, Suzuki plays on the themes of tragedy, delusion and betrayal by telling a story of an old man hours away from death who sits and listens to his nurse read him the tale of King Lear. Suzuki takes this classic tale fuses his trademark style to create a narrative that is both familiar, bold and new. 

Thu Jun 6-Sat Jun 8, 7.30pm; RMB240-600; National Center for the Performing Arts, see event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jun 6-9: Yang Liping: Pingtan Impression Dance 


Yang Liping is a renowned performance art director famous for appearing in the art show Dynamic Yunnan, and his newest creation Pingtan Impression highlights Pingtan, a small island between Taiwan and Fujian, that has a rich traditional folk culture. The show combines choreographed dance, puppet and marionette shows, and dragon dances that draw inspiration from the Chinese folk goddess of the sea, Matsu. 

Thu Jun 6-Sat Jun 9, 7.30 pm; RMB280-1080; Tianqiao Performing Arts Center, see event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jun 7-9: YinYang Music Festival


The YinYang Music Festival marks its return this year for its sixth iteration. Boasting the incredible backdrop of the Great Wall of China, the electronic music festival will celebrate music culture, arts and sustainability in style once again. This year, the festival will change locations to the Jinshanling section of the Great Wall, located approximately two hours from Beijing. Each ticket sold will donate RMB30 to the City Forest Project in Tianjin. Festival-goers are encouraged to BYOB, and it should be noted that glass bottles are not allowed. Stay tuned for our giveaway for your chance to win weekend passes!

Fri Jun 7-Sun Jun 9, 11am; RMB488-550 (one day), RMB638-700 (weekend pass); Jinshanling Great Wall, see event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jun 8: Vegan Kitchen Takeover 


Join chef Sarah O'Connell for Indonesian street food as she takes over The Orchid's event space for an 8-course vegan dinner that is both healthy and adventurous. Sample dishes like gado gado (an Indonesian salad and one of the country's five national dishes), nasi goreng(fried rice) and wedong ronde (glutinous rice ball soup), and the chef’s take on an exciting and healthy cuisine. 

Sat Jun 8, 6.30pm; RMB168; The Orchid, see event listing.

Jun 13: Nomak 


Since the release of this 2007 breakthrough album Calm, Japanese musician Nomak has been making waves. Combining traditional Japanese forms with modern musical techniques, his songs are marked by a sense of melancholy due to an inclusion of flutes, violins, saxophones and other music that fuses the old with the new. 

Thu Jun 13, 8.30pm; RMB150 (presale), RMB180 (door); MAO Livehouse Wukesongsee event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jun 13-30: Wizard of Oz


Whether you're seeing this Broadway show for the first time or revisiting it, the classic adaptation of L. Frank Baum's 1900 novel and subsequent 1939 film will dazzle you in equal measure. This updated musical is set to hit Beijing this June with fresh, newly designed sets. Experience the timeless music and classic story of Dorothy as she sets off down the yellow brick road in search of friendship and self-discovery.

Thu Jun 13-Sun Jun 30, 7.30pm; RMB280-980; Tianqiao Performing Arts Centersee event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jun 14-16: Sherlock Holmes: The Sign of Four 


Based on the events of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's second Sherlock Holmes tale, Blackeyed Theatre aims to bring a daring performance to Beijing audiences this month. Boasting romance, comedy, original live music and unforgettable storytelling, Sherlock Holmes: The Sign of Four tells the tale of Mary Morston and the mystery of her missing father. Holmes is tasked with navigating an underworld full of deceit and lies as he works through a plot full of murder and stolen jewels. Blackeyed Theatre company has been presenting high-quality work across England for the past 12 years. 

Fri Jun 14-Sun Jun 16, 7.30pm; RMB80-380; Nine Theatersee event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jun 15: Fujiya & Miyagi


With almost 20 years working together in the bag, British band Fujiya & Miyagi have inevitably gone through a multitude of musical shifts, had their fair share of critical hate and lived to tell the tale. Since they burst onto the alternative rock mainstream with their 2006 album,Transparent Things, they've inevitably been compared to German krautrock legends, Can. Their latest album, Flashback, sees the band more relaxed, happy to combine electronified strings with bulbous, pulsating electro beats. They return to China with a gig at Omni Space this month.

Sat Jun 15, 8.30pm; RMB150 (presale), RMB200 (door); Omni Spacesee event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jun 15: ‘The Deep Deeeeeep South’ Drag Show Brunch


They’re back! Haus of Lily hosts another wild and extravagant show, this time dubbed ‘The Deep Deeeeeep South’ at Home Plate, complete with a hearty brunch buffet. Aside from a complimentary ‘welcome queen juice,’ there will be draft beer deals and cocktail specials on all day. 

Sat Jun 15, 11am-3pm, RMB250 (includes welcome drink); Home Plate BBQ, see event listing.

Jun 15-Sep 1: ‘Picasso – The Birth of a Genius’ Exhibition

Image via @ucca798/Instagram

The art of Pablo Picasso makes its way to Beijing. This exhibition will see work from Picasso's first three decades – 103 pieces in total that include paintings, sculptures and works on paper. Specially curated for UCCA by the Head of Collections at Musée National Picasso-Paris, the event promises to showcase one of the true modern art heavyweights and his formative years. 

Sat Jun 15-Sun Sep 1, 10am-7pm; RMB60; Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA)see event listing.

Jun 16: Father's Day

Image via Pixabay

Celebrate a real-life superman this Father’s Day with Sunday brunches galore. Stay tuned for our guide on the best places to treat your dad this month. 

Sun Jun 16

Jun 16: Suchmos


Japanese rock group Suchmos continues their China tour in Beijing this month. Formed in 2013, the sextet is currently touring to promote their latest album Anymal, released in March. Inspired by rock, jazz and hip-hop, the group derived its name from jazz musician Louis Armstrong's nickname, “Satchmo.” The band have graced the covers of various fashion and culture magazines and remain one of the signature Japanese artists speaking for the millennial generation today. 

Sun Jun 16, 8.30pm; RMB280 (presale), RMB380 (door); Tangosee event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jun 20-23: Turandot 


Giacomo Puccini's Turandot is the first Western opera that the NCPA performed after its conception. Its extravagant costumes and creative sets help to tell the story of a cold-hearted Princess Turandot, the most beautiful Chinese princess, who gives potential suitors a series of three riddles in order to receive her hand in marriage. After a series of suitors lose their lives, an exiled prince of Tatary is determined to solve the riddles. The Puccini Festival Foundation has been involved in the entire process of bringing the opera to Beijing. 

Thu Jun 20-Sun Jun 23, 7pm; RMB180-1000; National Center for the Performing Artssee event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jun 22: Sugar House ‘Love On Top’ Pool Party


Sugar House brings you another installation of Beijing's “vibiest” R&B party. The monthly event has been a smash hit with high-energy sets featuring the city's finest DJs. This time, Sugar House is bringing the party to a pool for the ultimate summer bash. Come dressed in your coolest swimwear and get your drink on while listening to bumping R&B beats and soaking up incredible city views at The Emperor Hotel's luxurious rooftop pool. Keep an eye out for our upcoming giveaway to score some free tickets!

Sat Jun 22, 3-10pm; RMB100 (early bird ticket), RMB120 (door); The Emperor Hotel, see event listing.  

Jun 22: Lite


Japanese math-rock band Lite is set to rock out at Omni Space. Formed in 2003, the offbeat and often irregular time signatures of Lite combine to offer an unforgettable musical experience from one of Japan's most famous progrock groups. Beijing will be the last leg of their tour, so don't miss out on what some have called “one of the most exciting bands to emerge from Japan in the last decade.” 

Sat Jun 22, 9pm; RMB150 (presale), RMB180 (door); Omni Spacesee event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jun 22: Tan Dun & Orchestre National de Lyon 


NCPA hosts the award-winning Chinese composer Tan Dun this month. The innovative artist is famous for his scores in movies such as Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon along with his compositions for the medal ceremonies of the 2008 Olympics in Beijing. He will be joined by the admired Orchestre National de Lyon, made up of 104 talented musicians bringing his compositions to life. 

Sat Jun 22, 7.30pm; RMB400-880;National Center for the Performing Artssee event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jun 23: Jazzy Sport Label Party


Mastermind presents a double dose of Japanese music at Yue Space this June, featuring DJ Mitsu the Beats and afrobeat band .A/NAOITO. DJ Mitsu the Beats has gained notoriety in recent years, but his 2003 debut album New Awakening is where it all started. He will be joined by .A/NAOITO, a group that consists of eight unique members that have international experience, incorporating jazz, Brazilian, Latin and rock influences with Afrobeat to create a unique sound and rhythm. 

Sun Jun 23, 9pm; RMB180 (presale), RMB220 (door); Yue Spacesee event listing. Buy tickets here.

Jun 30: Yunmeng Gorge Hike 

Image via beijinghikers.com

Take part in one of Beijing Hikers’ many excursions outside of the city by joining them for a hike along the Yungmeng Gorge, where you can enjoy a picnic and a swim. The hike is a total of 8km, or approximately three to four hours with a two-hour drive each way. Feel free to explore the general area, or kick back, relax and enjoy your surroundings. The bus will leave Liangmaqiao at 7.30am and Lido Hotel at 8am, returning to Beijing at 5.30pm. 

Sun Jun 30, 8am-5.30pm; RMB380, RMB340 (members); pickup at Liangmaqiao or Lido, see event listing. For more information and tickets, visit beijinghikers.com.

Through June

Q Mex X Gyu Tetsu New Dishes


Q Mex Taqueria and Japanese BBQ joint Gyu Tetsu team up to bring you the ultimate fusion food. Executive chefs Marcus Medina and Shoyama Shimpei have created two collaborative dishes: Japanese Wagyu beef tacos topped with wasabi and seaweed strips, and Mexican-inspired Wagyu skirt steak marinated in pineapple, chili and apple vinegar. Stop by Gyu Tetsu and Q Mex Taqueria before the middle of the month to get a taste. 

Daily through Sat Jun 15; Gyu Tetsu and Q Mex Taqueria

Jing-A X Pak Pak Beer Garden 


Jing-A joins forces with Thai eatery Pak Pak to bring you yet another beer garden collaboration to visit this season. Savory Thai snacks meet six cool Jing-A brews at Pak Pak's new beer garden overlooking the park views in the CBD. 

Daily; Pak Pak Thai Kitchen (CBD)

‘Bowie by Mick Rock’ Photography Exhibition


798 Art Factory hosts an exciting exhibition featuring 65 photographs of the glam rock legend David Bowie taken by his official photographer Mick Rock. There will also be an original soundtrack for the exhibit, performance footage, filmed interviews with the iconic British photographer and more. 

Through Sun Aug 4, 10am-7pm; RMB108 (weekday ticket), RMB120 (weekend ticket); 798 Art Factory, see event listing. Buy tickets here.

[All images courtesy of promoters]

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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