You've probably heard the rumors of 4corners's demise, but are they premature? "Forced renovations" is how owners Tavey Lin and Jun Trinh describe their popular bar/restaurant/livehouse's impending (temporary?) closure. What this means for the rest of us is two huge parties, today and tomorrow. To get a preview, I sat down with Tavey and Jun on Wednesday. In addition to looking ahead, they couldn't help reminiscing a bit about everything, from parties to concerts to bathroom sex.
Spring switches us from latent to active, and spring being the season of festivals in Beijing, it's one more reason to get up and busy (and stop marathoning shows on Sohu). Beginning next Tuesday, April 8, the six-day Beijing Improv Festival returns with shows and workshops featuring greater China's finest improv crews. Knowing almost nothing about the art, I spent time with the local bilingual group Plus One during one of their weekly Sunday rehearsals to get the scoop.
The bawdy and good folk of That's Shanghai have published the three winning entries from its erotic fiction competition held earlier this month at Glamour Bar as part of the Capital M Literary Festival. (You might remember Jacob Dreyer's review of the event for this site, which was heavy on Bai Ling.) As That's editor Ned Kelly so delicately summarizes:
Blogging China was a March 18 Bookworm Literary Festival panel discussion moderated by Anthony Tao and featuring Jeremy Goldkorn (Danwei), Alec Ash (the Anthill), Mia Li (Sinosphere), and Tao Stein (WeChat: 石涛讲故事 / shitaojianggushi). In front of a full house, we talked about the characteristics of bloggers (journalists without credentials? writers without agents? mavens without business plans?), the purpose of blogs, particularly in relation with traditional media, censorship, curation / aggregation, Sina Weibo, and whether WeChat is the future of blogging -- among many other topics.
This is it: your final reminder that I'll be joined by three docents and five poets tonight at the Bookworm to celebrate poetry in Beijing. The event will feature Peter Behr, Stephen Nashef, Edward Ragg, Emily Stranger, and Yuan Yang (and Gower Campbell) reading selected works, as curated by Canaan Morse, Eleanor Goodman, and Helen Wing. (The curators and I will present a little something as well.) The festivities begin at 8 pm. Tickets are available at the door.
It’s not just every night that I walk into Glamour Bar and hear someone talking about figs mixing with the juices from their crotch. Well, all right, pretty much any time that I went I could hear that, but it’s too expensive for my nightly apertif. Still, an old friend was in town and wanted to meet there, and after all, it was only five minutes from my office, so I found myself at 3 on the Bund listening to all of the erotic fictions that Shanghai -- and even one from Beijing -- has to offer.
"Festival Fever," declares the cover of relentlessly upbeat Time Out Beijing. Coming at the end of what might just be China’s worst week in recent history – starting with a massacre in Kunming and ending with 230 people, including 140 Chinese, seemingly disappearing into the Twilight Zone – it’s hard to share their enthusiasm.
We're rapidly approaching the March 1 submission deadline for those interested in reading at Poetry Night in Beijing, a curated community event on March 16 that's part of the Bookworm Literary Festival. If you're wondering whether you should submit, please heed the advice of Eleanor Goodman, one of our curators: "Submit! There’s nothing lonelier than a poem sitting unread on a laptop or in a notebook."
The event is live! Tickets for Poetry Night in Beijing on March 16 at the Bookworm Literary Festival are officially being sold at the Bookworm. Please let this be a reminder that we are still seeking submissions for those interested in participating in the event, i.e. reading in front of an audience. Along with Pathlight, our lovely event partners, we are accepting poems until March 1. Please see here for guidelines.
Police mounted a surprise raid on Dada Bar on Wednesday at 8:30 pm, where the group “Beijing Creatives" was hosting a speaking event where, among others, a photographer, a book designer, and Beijing Cream’s Anthony Tao were giving short talks.
Hope everyone had a fun and -- more importantly -- safe Chinese New Year on Thursday night. By safe we mean: you didn't break a window, did you? You didn't burn anything down? Because there was both a broken window and a HUGE-ASS FIRE at 4corners, the Gulou bar with the healthy reputation for holding uproarious and unpredictable parties.
Poets! Yes, you. Beijing Cream and Pathlight are excited to present Poetry Night in Beijing at the Bookworm Literary Festival on Sunday, March 16, a curated community event to promote English-language POETRY in this wonderful city of ours. We need your help.
We are seeking four poets enthusiastic about reading their work at the March 16th event for a keen audience of peers and poetry lovers.
The people behind what we called the worst China party of the year posted a statement to Facebook around midnight today about the debacle that was November 1’s Electric Castle Party at the Dynasty Chateau in Tianjin. Here it is in full:
"The environment seemed to make everyone adopt this crazed animalistic nature" --Tianjin Electric Castle Party attendee
Did hundreds, possibly thousands of expats — including promoters Street Hustle Promotions, ticketing agency Send Me Tickets, and local magazines — get swindled by organizers of the worst China party of the year?
We at Beijing Cream do not actively condone buffoonery, excessive alcohol intake, or buffoonery as the result of excessive alcohol intake, but understand we are surrounded by all of the above anyway -- and that it can be fun. And so it's with no small amount of ambivalence that we announce: this Friday, November 1, revelers in Halloween costumes will be gathering around 9 pm (+30 minutes or so) at Dongzhimen Subway Station and riding south on Line 2 for this year's official Halloween Subway Party. BYOB.
This week's podcast was recorded at the Bookworm on Wednesday for the Literary Death Match, hosted by Adrian Todd Zuniga, featuring the four readers/competitors Leslie Ann Murray, Tom Carter, Stanley Chan, and Anthony Tao, and the judges Alice Xin Liu, Vicky Mohieddeen, and Sherwin Jiang.
The hottest ticket in town will be the one to see Dr. Dre and LeBron James at Spark this Saturday. How do you get tickets? No idea. They're probably not going to be publicly available. (Maybe. Who knows.) But there are giveaways and such on the table, beginning with the one advertised by That's Beijing, who's got itself quite the bona fide expat-mag scoop...
Occasionally in showbusiness or sports, the odds against a performer's success are so stacked that the audience chooses, out of the goodness of human compassion, to root against probability. It's why we pull for Celtic FC when they face Barcelona, or Susan Boyle. I hadn't planned to cheer for the pageant contestants of Miss World China on Sunday at Galaxy SOHO -- hadn't not planned to cheer, as planning these things one way or another would be odd -- but a realization dawned upon me sometime between the rain and the fake applause piped in through the sound system: these girls are all underdogs in their own spotlight. They deserve better.