China Now

21st March 2008 at 00:00
A decade ago, showing an appreciation of Asian culture meant chugging down spicy fried noodles while watching Banzai.

With China now boasting the fourth-largest economy in the world, even lazy Brits have been inspired to take a second look.

The China Now festival, which brings music, food, opera and art from the People's Republic to locations across the UK over March and April, is the perfect way to buff up on one of the world's fastest-changing countries.

The China Design Now exhibition at the Vamp;A in London, which opened last week, features a cross-section of fashion and graphics from up-and-coming cities such as Shanghai and Shenzhen.

A restaurant in Soho's Chinatown is the unlikely setting for a performance of Slippery Mountain, an ancient Chinese fable presented in traditional Peking Opera style, complete with clowning, singers, musicians and bombastic costumes. Not So Loud Theatre Company star.

Meanwhile, new artists will exhibit at The Collection in Danes Terrace, Lincoln. The London College of Communication presents China Comics Now! And if that doesn't fire up your engine, you can even learn about modern Chinese railways at the National Railway Museum in York.

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