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A visit to one of Beijing's evening shows is guaranteed to excite and offer a window into Chinese culture. Our favourite show is probably the dramatic Acrobatic Show at the Chaoyang Theatre. The stunts and performances take on a myriad of forms, including ballet, gravity-defying gymnastics and balancing, awesome shows of graceful strength, human pyramids on bikes and the extraordinary 'circle of death' motorbike cage. The action is non-stop and is performed in traditional dress to Chinese folk music. The precision, timing and strength of the performers really does have to be seen to be believed.

The Peking Opera is firmly entrenched in Chinese folklore. It is famous for its intricate costumes, face-painting, vivid artful storytelling, and is a quintessentially Chinese experience. Foreign visitors might struggle to follow the thread of the story, but without doubt will get swept away by the beauty of the performances, mimes, music and acrobatics.

Another typical Chinese experience is Kung Fu. The story centres around a young Buddhist monk, who uses the martial arts form as a means of fitting into his new surroundings and then to win the heart of a young lady. The show is a prestigious one, featuring some of China's top practitioners.

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READY - 14 May 2024

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