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September 30, 2010

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Start making those holiday plans

IN a metropolis as big as Shanghai you'd expect a plethora of things to be going on during the National Day holiday. The city doesn't disappoint with everything from Peking Opera to a pet carnival. Xu Wei provides the lowdown.

The National Day holiday will offer something for everyone. Traditional theater performances, TV galas, themed exhibitions and a pet carnival will spice up the golden week.

For TV fans, special holiday programs will be aired.

Tomorrow is the country's National Day and also China National Pavilion Day at the World Expo. To commemorate this special occasion, Dragon TV will provide live broadcasts of the celebrations, cultural galas and fireworks show taking place around Shanghai beginning at 8:30am.

Local stand-up comedian Zhou Libo, who is also a judge on the hit reality series "China's Got Talent," will present a new talk show at 7:30pm from October 2-7 on Dragon TV.

Zhou will give his own interpretation of this year's hot issues and share his views on the city's history and culture. He will discuss topics like workplace culture, so-called "leftover women" and the tourists who were taken hostage in Manila, Philippines.

Since Shanghai embraces fashion, art, and cosmopolitan glamour, fashion lovers will be offered a dazzling "Fashion Festival" on Channel Young at 5:30pm on October 8.

Noted fashion designers, celebrities and "China's Got Talent" contestants will share wardrobe and shopping tips.

Chinese rock band Dada and other singers will also present exciting musical performances.

Traditional theater is also on offer during the National Day holiday.

Shanghai Peking Opera House will stage a series of performances from October 2-5 at Yifu Theater. The city's top Peking Opera artists and young talents such as Shang Changrong, Guan Dongtian, Yan Qinggu, Wang Peiyu and Fu Xiru will be among the performers.

The repertoire includes the newly adapted historical show "The Disinterested Governor Yu Chenglong," "The Unofficial Life History of Yang Taizhen," a classic once performed by master Mei Lanfang, romantic comedy "Happy Fate" and the kung fu thriller "Mu Guiying Takes Command," a story about an ancient female general.

The performers will also visit the Expo park and some residential communities to make the age-old art form more accessible to the public.

Additionally, a special retrospective exhibition on Peking Opera's development, particularly from the 1920s to 1940s, is also running at the Companion Art House.

The exhibition features valuable pictures, documents, Peking Opera properties, as well as exquisite costumes from classics such as "Farewell My Concubine" and "Drunken Concubine."

The exhibit shows how Peking Opera, as a major entertainment during that period, largely influenced society and was spread to other countries through successful cultural exchanges by Mei Lanfang.

Peking Opera films, singing excerpts, instrumental performances and opera face-painting workshops will also be presented during the exhibition, providing visitors a rare chance to learn about the unique aspects of the art form.

According to Chen Xiaoling, an organizer of the exhibition, they have been engaged in preserving and promoting Peking Opera in big cities like Shanghai and Beijing since 2007.

They're trying to make it appeal to today's young generation by bringing performances and lectures to campuses and communities. "Those who dislike Peking Opera should give themselves a chance to get to know the art, and then they will find the opera is not insipid, nor outdated," Chen says.

The holiday is also a good time for pet owners to interact and have fun with their furry friends.

At Shanghai Sculpture Park in suburban Songjiang District, pet owners can take their dogs to a hilarious DIY dog fashion show.

Pet experts will also be invited to share professional dog training tips. And a large pet mart is ready to offer a variety of pet supplies and services.

Peking Opera serial performances

Date: October 2-3, 1:30pm, 7:15pm; October 4, 1:30pm; October 5, 7:15pm

Venue: Yifu Theater, 701 Fuzhou Rd

Tickets: 30-380 yuan

Tel: 6322-5294

Peking Opera retrospective exhibition

Date: through mid-November, 10:30am-4:30pm

Venue: Companion Art House, 195 Guangfu Rd

Tel: 6381-2777

Pet carnival

Date: October 1-7, 9am-4:30pm

Venue: Shanghai Sculpture Park, 1158 Linyinxin Rd, Songjiang District

Tickets: 120 yuan for adults, 50 yuan for children

Tel: 5779-8090


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