QMUL Confucius Institute Movie Night: Monkey Magic!

We are comingto the end of the Chinese Year of the Monkey, a year that was celebrated in the cinema with the release of “Monkey King 2″, the follow up to the 2014 Donnie Yen film. The Monkey, Sun Wukong, with his origins in the classic text “Journey to the West”, has now become an international symbol of Chinese culture, as important to China’s overseas image as Confucius, Mao Ze Dong, and Bruce Lee.

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Flow by Chua Boon Kee: Master Class at Asia House

I am delighted to have the opportunity to work with Chinatown Arts Space and Asia House, to interpret for renown Singaporean artist and winner of the SUSTAIN award, Chua Boon Kee in his sculptor master class, which took place earlier this week, during the auspicious time of Mid-Autumn Festival. His commissioned sculpture, FLOW, has been installed on the corner of Gerrard Place and Shaftsbury Avenue, and was unveiled this afternoon.

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Last Days of Limehouse

After Yellow Earth’s fantastic Dimsum Nights, I have been following the troupe’s movements, and when I saw that their new production, charting London’s original China Town, would be performed at the old Limehouse Town Hall, I practically leapt for a ticket. Directed by Gary Merry, and Yellow Earth’s overall artistic director, Kumiko Mendl, I’m very glad I did.

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An Evening of Independent Chinese Animation

This year’s Chinese Visual Festival is collaborating with the Chinese Independent Film Festival to bring to the UK their 10th anniversary animation selection, and I went to see it at King’s College in the middle of May.

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East-Asian Theatre From Yellow Earth

This is the remainder of my October theatre articles, which I had edited together into a fuller article at the end of December. Whilst that was considered a look back at 2013, I decided that I would complete the editing, and upload this final part before the year of the Snake was through.

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An October of Theatre Part I

This October has been an extremely good month for Sinophiles in London, with so many China-related events in museums, theatres, conferences as well as TV and the radio. I have actually overexerted myself a little over this month, attending so many events, filling notebooks with article plans and talk outlines, that I gave myself no time to actually write and upload anything, so consider this article a guide to the highlights, and pitfalls, of Chinese culture through the Western lense.

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Masterpieces of Chinese Painting 700-1900

This last season, London’s theatres, galleries and museums have rolled out a fantastically full programme of exhibitions and plays on China and its culture. Many of those I have reviewed for other publications, but have yet to post anything here. A few of them continue into 2014, but if, in these few days between Christmas and New Year, you have time to visit the V&A, you can still catch “Masterpieces of Chinese Painting 700-1900”

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On The Factory (Covent Garden) and Artistic Photography in China

Located in the heart of the West End, the Factory is a boutique photography studio that offers shoots for modelling, other professional purposes or just keepsakes for a fun day out. Earlier this year, I was bought a session as a treat by some friends, and of all the special instructions they passed on, only the one about not offering me too much to drink was passed through on the day.  The first shoot did not go well at all, what we were told would happen didn’t, the pictures were nothing like we were expecting, and I was very distraught. After my friends had words with the studio, and the situation was discussed, The Studio saw where they went wrong, and corrected it. They also gave me a second shoot, in order to show exactly how they could do it. This is a review based on that second shoot, and with the consideration that they’re continuing with the very high standard they showed us. The studio, situated on the top floor of the terraces on Great Newport Street, is not as big as one would expect, even announcing itself as boutique. It consists of a lounge area with make-up mirrrors against one wall, and one hair styling chair, two actual studios, one of which usually serves as a changing room for clients, and a small office/viewing room. The changing room, which, with its fleur-de-lis wall-paper and brocaded chaise-longue, felt rather like a boudoir (right down to the very low level Continue Reading →

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