Nightlife in China
央视国际 2003年05月13日 09:53
In China’s major cities， the nightlife is rich with fun and local color. From wild discos popular among young people to serene teahouses catering to the tastes of older people and to walks in the moonlight， you can enjoy all these in China.
Previously， entertainment was limited to over－priced fancy hotels， however， China’s economic boom in the 1990s brought countless karaoke venues and small discos， as well as regular and traditional style teahouses， which form the backbone of China’s nightlife. This is China， 2002，and you are sure to find something to your liking.
Chinese theater is extremely varied and colorful， with almost every place having its unique genre of opera. A visit to china is not complete without appreciating Chinese national or local opera.
Today’s Chinese theater is particularly lively， with the revival of many traditional operas and emergence of new playwrights dealing with contemporary social issues. In addition， there are regular productions of foreign plays in Chinese and increasingly frequent visits by foreign companies， including ballet troupes and symphony orchestras. Concerts， ballets and national song and dance performances are staged almost every day in large cities.
One of the most famous forms of Chinese theatre－－－Beijing opera， is a unique theatrical synthesis of song and dance， acting and acrobatics， with many foreigners and even some Chinese finding difficult to understand. Nevertheless， foreign eyes can feast on the sumptuous costumes and make－up and the acrobatic items， even though the plot may seem confusing.
Besides the world－famous Beijing variety， there are many different provincial versions of the art throughout China， such as “Hu Ju” in Shanghai， “Yue Ju” in Guangzhou， “Yu Ju” in Henan， and “Ping Ju” in Hebei.
Yue Ju， or Cantonese opera， is fluent and beautiful with fresh and sprightly rhythm. The melodies are graceful and moving. Cantonese operas are usually performed in temporary bamboo theatres in the People’s Park and at annual festivals in the midst of beautiful natural scenery on the Tropic of Cancer.
There is an old Chinese saying， “food is the No. 1 necessity of the people”. Along with the improvement of the living conditions of the Chinese people， dining out has become quite common for them. In many cities， open－air night snack markets are open all year round.
These markets present a scene of the real life of the cities although they are usually very crowded. The snack markets at Dongdan and Donghuamen in Beijing are bustling with noise and excitement， attracting a great many local people and foreigners. There， visitors can not only find out how some Chinese enjoy their evenings， but also taste many typical Chinese snacks including wanton， tea soup （cha tang）， mutton skewer and fried glutinous rice cakes.
Spectator sports constitute an important part of the nightlife in China. In large cities， public sports competitions， international matches and demonstrations are held frequently.
The most popular sports in China are soccer， basketball， table tennis， volleyball， badminton， ice hockey and gymnastics， plus the traditional Chinese sports of “Wushu” （martial arts） and “Yingqigong”， in which special breathing techniques enable the athletes to perform amazing feats of strength and stamina. As a rule， sporting events are held in the evening， usually starting around 19:00. Tickets are available from the box offices on the day of the event or several days in advance for special attractions， such as visits of foreign teams or the finals of national championships.
For young people， there is no other place more attractive than bars and discos， where the wild music and dances may stir their pulses. Whether you are a jazz fan， or you are looking for the blues， nightlife in China is colorful enough to satisfy all your needs.
Beijing， Shanghai， Guangzhou and other major cities are practically bristling with all types of bars and clubs， most of which stay open until 2 or 3 in the morning， or go from dusk to down.
The main concentration of bars is in the area known as Sanlitun， nestled in the Embassy District， which is basically made up of two streets going north to south. You'll find dozens of hangouts in this district， each catering to a slightly different crowd. There are also a dozen clubs for lock rock and jazz bands， and outdoor music festivals are sometimes held in summer.
Shanghai bars and nightclubs are even more diversified and lively. Amid flashing lights and video projections， your sense of what is normal in Shanghai will be challenged.
Karaoke， the favorite Chinese pastime， involves sitting in a private room with 3 to 10 friends， in front of a TY， with a songbook， a microphone and drinks. It is a most popular form of entertainment in Guangzhou， especially for Chinese businessmen in search of relaxation and recreation.
Recently， teahouses have seen a big comeback in Beijing and other parts of the country. It is now quite fashionable to go to a traditional teahouse for some good old－fashioned tea appreciation.
The atmosphere in teahouses is usually calm and tranquil， and combined with the graceful waitresses serving you the tea， almost intoxicating. Some teahouses offer a wide repertoire of traditional arts， including Beijing opera， martial arts and other folklore arts. Visitors can watch the shows while sipping tea and nibbling away on snacks. This is really a nice relaxing way to spend an evening.
After having spent a joyful evening and strolling along the brilliantly－lit streets， you can feel that， nightlife in China， another powerful tourism magnet， is also a perfect way to enrich your understanding of the Chinese people.