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October 15, 2009

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Festival showcases original talent

AFTER a year of planning, the Second Daning Music Festival featuring Chinese original singers will kick off later this month as part of the 11th Shanghai International Art Festival.

During the weeklong festival from October 24 to November 1, four free live shows will be performed at Daning Life Hub plaza.

Five popular singer-songwriters will bring their live bands, including Zheng Jun, Cao Fang, Zhong Lifeng, band Su Yang and Xu Wei.

"The upcoming shows will showcase the strength of original music in China, bringing pure sounds to an enthusiastic audience," says Chen Hong, director of the Zhabei District Culture Bureau.

Daning Music Festival was first held last year, with acts by heavyweight Chinese rockers such as Cui Jian, credited as the "father of Chinese rock music," the band Tang Dynasty and young star Wang Xiaokun, champion of 2006 "My Show" singing competition.

This year's festival opens with a performance by Zheng on October 24.

Zheng is regarded as one of the best Chinese rock singers. His first album, "Naked," was released in 1993, achieving immediate success. Many of his works reflect Chinese folk and minority cultures, like "Back to Lhasa," "Cinderella" and "Naked."

"I love giving live shows - I see it as the most direct way to communicate with my audience through the music," said Zheng at the press conference in Shanghai announcing the festival line-up. "I'll be singing familiar songs with my live band, and I hope the audience will enjoy the atmosphere of the live shows."

Singer Cao will perform the following day with new songs from her coming album. As an indie pop singer and songwriter, Cao has a youthful voice and a sweetly melodic style. Some of her songs show the influence of hip-hop, bossa nova, and the music of China's ethnic minorities.

Cao released her first album "Black Perfume" in 2003. Although the album was poorly promoted and didn't sell well, she gradually achieved fame as a blogger discussing her work.

Her second album, "Encounter Me," released in 2005 sold more than 100,000 copies and won several awards.

Cao is now preparing her fourth album which will be released next month followed by a concert tour.

"I hope the upcoming show in Shanghai will bring the most comfortable music to my audience in such a pleasant season," says Cao, who will also debut some new songs from her latest album at the show.

Venue: Daning Life Hub, 1978 Gonghexin Rd (at the crossroad of Gonghexin and Daning roads)

Tel: 6630-1818

More information and free tickets are available at


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