Thursday, June 5, 2008

Beijing Music Fair 2008

Ok so here we go, an update on my trip to Beijing for their yearly music fair. It wasn't a particularly big scale fair, but all the better since I don't need to cover so much ground. I didn't take a lot of pictures so here they are.

Here is the entrance to the fairgrounds. The balding guy in the centre of the picture with a sling bag across is my father.

Here is where you insert your tickets. When you exit, you get touts waiting to buy your tickets to resell to others. But you have the police walking around trying to catch the touts as well.

In preparation of the upcoming Olympics, all visitors have to have their belongings scanned. They only confiscated cigarette lighters. I don't see anyone being searched like in the airport.

Here's where you line up to get your pass into the exhibition area. Foreign visitors have an express queue. :)

Another shot before going into the exhibition area.

There are booths set up opposite the ticketing area, mostly electronic products.

Traditional Chinese Music Instruments occupy a small hall on level 2. This is the first booth you see when you enter the hall.

Next to it is the booth of Biquan Guzhengs. They have a Guzheng performance going on!

Real triplets playing the Guzheng. Very charming. They are personally coached by my good friend and famous Guzheng performer Yuan Sha. They are 16 years old this year - all of them.

They were bamboo thin the first time I saw them 3 years ago. I heard they've been told to watch their weight!

Here's a short video of them in action:

This is the booth of Beijing Raoyang instruments factory. The boss is a certain Mr Yang. I had dinner him together with Dizi maker Dong Xue Hua and Pipa maker Cao Wei Dong one night. Boy can they drink. After downing a few bottles of Chinese liquor with 55% alcohol content, they still have to order a few bottles of beer to wash down the Chinese liquor!

Some Pipas hanging at the back of Beijing Raoyang's booth with artwork on it:

Newly designed arty Hulusis!

Ooh...Looks like some part of the female anatomy with dragons tattooed on it.

Erhu with huge scales on the snake skin.

Get an idea of the noise level I had to deal with at the fair:

Dear dear binoculars, what are you doing together with banhu resonators? Have you lost your way? The fair for peeping toms is on the other side....

Another electric Erhu found. I'll leave the details for another post.

Finally, a young dude in Zhang Zhong's booth playing Jiang He Shui. He's pretty good.

I'll post more after I've finished testing my newly acquired accessories.

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