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The best things to do this week

Your forecast for the week's best events

King Lear
Last week brought freezing sub-zero temperatures, this week we're bracing for high levels of pollution. If you're feeling like this winter isn't pulling any punches, take stock in the fact that there's still plenty to see and do. And for theatre buffs, you're particularly spoiled with productions of King Lear and The Merry Widow at the NCPA, plus live screenings of the Metropolitan Opera's La Sonnambula and The Pearl Fishers.

Monday

Suburbicon

Half a movie we know too well and half that might have benefited from more attention, Suburbicon is a smart-alecky late-'50s-set crime comedy that follows an uptight family patriarch and his impulsive plan to run off with his sister-in-law and a wad of insurance money after staging a home invasion.

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Cinemas around Beijing 12-31 Jan Buy tickets

Tuesday

Cirque du Soleil: Kooza

Critics' pick

A return to Cirque du Soleil's origins, Kooza combines acrobatic performance with the art of clowning, while exploring fear, identity, recognition and power. Written and directed by David Shiner, a former Cirque du Soleil clown, Kooza is an enthralling circus spectacle featuring jaw-dropping feats and theatrical ingenuity.

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Chaoyang Park (朝阳公园) , 1 Nongzhan Nan Lu 17 Dec - 28 Jan Buy tickets

Thursday

The Merry Widow

Critics' pick

Franz Lehar’s witty, upbeat operetta about a young widow with an inheritance of 20 million francs. Desperate to keep the money in the country, the government orders Count Danilo Danilovitch to court her, but when he discovers she is a long-lost love he refuses. The widow, however, has never quite gotten over him, and now has a second chance.

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NCPA , 2 Xi Chang'an Jie 18-21 Jan Buy tickets

Friday

A Clash of Crus at The Opposite House

12 wines, 10 dishes, two chefs, one night. China takes on the wines and cuisine of Europe this Friday at The Opposite House. In the one corner, Chef Talib’s European haute cuisine and its rarefied crus and in the other, lauded Chinese delicacies from Li Dong backed up by a new breed of home grown wine makers.

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The Opposite House , 11 Sanlitun Lu 19 Jan

Cyantific + The Prototypes

Critics' pick

Cyantific and The Prototypes are currently two of the biggest drum'n'bass names in the scene and it’s set to be an absolutely epic showdown when these two heavyweights collide at Dada.

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Dada , 206 Gulou Dong Dajie (below Temple Bar) 19 Jan

The Wallace Roney Quintet

American jazz trumpeter Wallace Roney has performed alongside the likes of Tony Williams, Carole King, Herbie Hancock and Joni Mitchell, to name a few. One of the few musicians in his generation who learned and perfected his craft directly from jazz masters, his most significant and influential relationship was with Miles Davis.

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Blue Note , 23 Qianmen Dong Dajie 19-20 Jan Buy tickets

Jackie

Critics' pick

A biographical film about the aftermath of John F. Kennedy's 1963 assassination, Jackie (as the film's title suggests) follows Jackie Kennedy (Natalie Portman, in a stunning performance) in the days immediately following her husband's death.

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Cinemas around Beijing 19 Jan - 09 Feb Buy tickets

Saturday

Skarra Mucci

Critics' pick

Jamaican-born Mr Mucci is something of a modern dancehall legend, having collaborated with the likes of Beenie Man, Yellow Man and Mad Professor. He’ll likely be showcasing his top-notch new album Dancehall President.

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Dada , 206 Gulou Dong Dajie (below Temple Bar) 20 Jan

The Metropolitan Opera Live: La Sonnambula

Critics' pick

Tony award-winning director Mary Zimmerman transfers Bellini's bucolic tale to a rehearsal room in contemporary New York, where an opera company rehearses La Sonnambula – and where the singers are truly in love with each other. Watch Natalie Dessay and Juan Diego Flórez deliver vocal fireworks in this screening of the 2009 production.

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NCPA , 2 Xi Chang'an Jie 20 Jan Buy tickets

NCPA Drama Commission: King Lear

Critics' pick

One of Shakespeare’s four great tragedies, an old man’s vanity turns his daughters into vipers and brings his kingdom crashing down around him as, predictably, tragedy ensues. Award-winning actor Pu Cunxin stars as Lear. For Chinese-speaking audiences.

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NCPA , 2 Xi Chang'an Jie 20-28 Jan

Sunday

The Metropolitan Opera Live: The Pearl Fishers

Critics' pick

Bizet's rarely heard opera returned to The Met for the first time in a century on New Year's Eve 2015, in Penny Woolcock's acclaimed production. Star soprano Diana Damrau sings Leïla, the virgin priestess at the centre of the story in this screening of the Metropolitan Opera's 2015 performance.

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NCPA , 2 Xi Chang'an Jie 21 Jan Buy tickets

Philippe Entremont

Critics' pick

The exceptional career of Philippe Entremont began at the age of eighteen when he came to international attention with the success of his New York Carnegie Hall debut where he performed André Jolivet's Piano Concerto and Liszt's Piano Concerto No.1. Since then, he has pursued a top international career as a pianist, and for the last 40 years, on the podium as well.

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NCPA , 2 Xi Chang'an Jie 21 Jan Buy tickets

Find more things to do

Beijing walking tours

Discover the hidden streets and histories of the hutongs on these beautiful Beijing explorations

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