The May Labour Day holiday is once again upon Beijing, ushering in a whole month of various musical festivals to enjoy. And with the weather turning nicer there is no better excuse to get out and enjoy Beijing before the sweltering heat of summer.
1) Wi-Fi buses planned
According to recent reports, Beijing Public Transport and China Mobile have signed an agreement to make city buses into Wi-Fi hotspots. The plan will allow any passenger with a Wi-Fi enabled device to connect for free to surf the web, get information about city transportation or view promotions from shops and restaurants along bus routes.
2) Black boxes to be installed in Beijing elevators
Beijing has announced plans to install black boxes (similar to those in airplanes) to provide real-time monitoring of elevators in Beijing by 2015. The plan is a large undertaking considering that Beijing has over 140,000 elevators in use with nearly 10,000 being added annually. Most elevators in major public areas should have the black boxes added by the end of this year.
3) Toilet paper thieves
In recent weeks toilets have gotten a lot of attention in Beijing. First there was the "occupy the toilet" movement aimed at providing more restrooms for women. Then there was a woman who gave birth in a public toilet. Now city officials are saying they have to spend as much as 20,000 RMB on toilet paper for each public toilet facility annually because much of the toilet paper is stolen, accounting for why only 3,000 of the city's 12,000 public bathrooms offer toilet paper.
Vertical Road. Photo: theculturist.com
1) Labour Day music festivals
As mentioned in the last Beijing Watchdog, don't forget about the great lineups available during Labour Day holiday this year. There are plenty of music festivals across Beijing for you to enjoy. To help you make the decision of which to attend, see our write-up here.
2) Hanggai World Music Festival
If you are looking for more than mainstream offerings of rock and pop then the Hanggai Music Festival is a must. The musical extravaganza which will run from May 5-6th at Mako Livehouse and will feature talented folk and world music artists from all over the world including: Yemen Blues, Rhythm of Rajasthan and of course Hanggai. For more information, click here.
3) DJ Adam Beyer comes to Tango
If you are looking for some music to dance to, head out to Tango on May 11th to listen to the hot beats of Swedish DJ Adam Beyer. Beyer, who also founded Drumcode Records, will be supported by a list of other DJs. The party starts at 22:00 and tickets are 150 RMB presale and 200 RMB at the door.
4) Vertical Road by Akram Khan
If you are interested in dance performance, don't miss out on your chance to see acclaimed British choreographer Akram Khan go back to his Bangladeshi roots with Vertical Road. The performance, inspired by a 13th century Persian poem and featuring innovative lighting and an original score by Nitin Sawhney, comes to the National Centre of the Performing arts on May 12-13. Tickets cost anywhere from 120-480 RMB depending on location. For more information click here.
5) China Music Valley Festival
If you aren't able to get out to all the great music festivals in early May, don't worry because on May 18-20th the China Music Valley Festival will be held at the Yugong International Ski Resort outside of Beijing. The lineup includes some great acts like Scottish rockers Glasvegas and R&B queen Joss Stone.
Tickets prices are as follows:
Note: Free Friday Pass with a Saturday Ticket
Tao Cafe in China View
If you live or spend a lot of time around Gongti North Road and enjoy a nice laid-back cafe you might want to head over to the China View and check out the newest cafe to hit the area, Tao Cafe. They offer a simple menu and a nice brew of Yunnan coffee for 15 RMB. Go check it out for yourself.
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Keywords: Beijing watchdog Wi-Fi buses in Beijing music festivals in Beijing Hanggai World Music Festival Akram Khan in Beijing
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