Archive for the Taipei Category

No sign of let up in China’s skyscraper building spree [People’s Daily]

Posted in China, Guangzhou, Housing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Taipei, Taiwan on June 26, 2011 by Zuo Shou / 左手

June 8, 2011

Hong Kong, Shanghai and Shenzhen have the most skyscrapers in the country, according to the first China’s skyscraper report released by http://www.motiancity.com.

Hong Kong has 58 skyscrapers, followed by Shanghai’s 51 and Shenzhen’s 46. Beijing was ninth place with 13 high-rises.

China has been on a building spree of modern skyscrapers. Five of the world’s top 10 tallest buildings are in China. Apart from the tallest 828-meter-high Burj Khalifa in Dubai, the second tallest, the third, the fourth, the seventh and ninth are in Taipei, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Nanjing and Guangzhou.

According to the report, in the next three years, one high-rise will be completed every five days in China. The total number of Chinese skyscrapers – taller than 152 meters – will reach 800 in five years.

Some small cities also plan to build skyscrapers, arousing doubts about overheating investment, the report said.

Fangchenggang City in Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region has less than 1 million residents, yet plans to build a 528-meter-tall Asian International Financial Center, taller than the Shanghai World Financial Center, it said.

Researchers doubt whether skyscrapers in small cities can be leased out due to a lack of headquarter economy support and insufficient numbers of white-collar workers.

Source: Shanghai Daily

Article link: http://english.people.com.cn/90001/90776/90882/7403905.html

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The freewheelin’ Bob Dylan tour — China, April 2011 UPDATED [Xinhua]

Posted in Beijing, China, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Taipei, Taiwan on April 6, 2011 by Zuo Shou / 左手

UPDATE – April 8, 2011:  Dylan’s set list for the Beijing show can be viewed here

BEIJING, March 23 (Xinhuanet) — Chinese fans of the counterculture hero will finally get a chance to see him live at concerts in Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Taipei.

Bob Dylan probably wouldn’t think much of his China tour coverage by Xinmin Evening News, one of Shanghai’s most-read newspapers. The photo it used for a story about him on March 4 turned out to be that of Willie Nelson.

Apparently, the error received few complaints from readers, and it is still not corrected on the paper’s website, at the time of writing.

"In China, maybe many people have heard of Dylan, but not many really know who he is," says Zhang Xiaozhou, a Beijing-based music critic.

Nonetheless, Zhang expects the American troubadour’s China concerts to be well attended, as he believes that many Chinese will not want to miss the chance to see one of the world’s most famous counterculture icons.

Dylan, who turns 70 in May, will play his first mainland show on April 6 at the Workers’ Gymnasium of Beijing, followed by another at Shanghai Grand Stage on April 8.

He will also perform in Taipei on April 3 and in Hong Kong on April 12 and 13.

Dylan’s Chinese fans have been celebrating his coming since the day the news was announced, and many who don’t live in the cities on Dylan’s route are planning to travel to those places to see him.

The Hong Kong concerts were announced before those in Beijing and Shanghai, and Ma Zhen, a 29-year-old Dylan fan from Shandong province, immediately secured a ticket to the Hong Kong concert and started working on flights, hotel, and the Hong Kong and Macao Pass, which is the required documentation for mainlanders to travel to Hong Kong.

Now that Dylan is set to perform in Beijing and Shanghai, Ma is planning to attend those concerts too.

"My life has been greatly influenced by Dylan’s works, especially his views about the world and humanity," says Ma, who has a tattoo of Dylan’s logo on one of his arms.

In China, most Dylan fans are young people who grew up after China’s reform and opening-up in 1978.

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Sky lanterns light up Taiwan – PHOTOS [People’s Daily]

Posted in China, Holidays in China, Taipei, Taiwan on February 18, 2011 by Zuo Shou / 左手

February 18, 2011

Sky lanterns light up the sky at a square in Pingxi, a rural district in the eastern part of New Taipei city, Taiwan, Feb 17, 2011. People in Taiwan celebrate the annual Lantern Festival by flying sky lanterns, which are made of oiled paper and bamboo frame, and contains a candle or other lighting inside. [Photo/Xinhua]

Full photo article link here

Sun Yat-sen’s granddaughter dies in Taipei [Xinhua]

Posted in China, Taipei, Taiwan on February 2, 2011 by Zuo Shou / 左手

TAIPEI, Jan. 29 (Xinhua) — Nora Sun, granddaughter of Sun Yat-sen [Sun Zhongshan], the forerunner of China’s revolution to end feudalism, died Saturday afternoon in a Taipei hospital, about one month after being injured in a car accident.

Sun, 72, was severely injured in a car crash while on her way to an airport near Taipei on Jan. 1.  She was in stable condition after several operations, but her condition abruptly deteriorated Saturday afternoon, according to hospital officials, without giving additional details.

Sun, who spent most of her time in Shanghai, came to Taipei to attend the Flora Expo.  While returning to Taoyuan International Airport near Taipei the black sedan Sun was riding in crashed head-on into an oncoming vehicle, described as a red car.  Sun had planned to return to Hong Kong that day.

Sun’s car had been driven by a friend.  The driver of the red car, who was believed to be speeding, according to police, died on the spot. Sun, her friend, and an injured passenger in the red car were immediately transported to a hospital. .

Sun is the youngest daughter of Sun Fo, son of Sun Yat-sen, the leader of the 1911 Revolution that ended imperial rule in China.

Article link here

US rock band The Eagles soaring towards first concert on Chinese mainland [Xinhua]

Posted in Australia, Beijing, China, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Taipei on January 22, 2011 by Zuo Shou / 左手

BEIJING, Jan. 11 (Xinhuanet) — The rock band will play its first gig in the Chinese mainland, as part of a world tour that sold more than 600,000 tickets for 40 shows in 2010.

Forty years after the Eagles was founded, the United States band will perform in the Chinese mainland for the first time. Eagles will play at the Mercedes-Benz Arena in Shanghai on March 9 and the Wukesong Arena in Beijing on March 12, as part of its Long Road out of Eden world tour, which will also include Taipei and Hong Kong.

“I’m really excited about going to China. We are running out of places we’ve never been to, so it’s exciting to go to a new place,” said the band’s guitarist and singer Joe Walsh in an exclusive interview with China Daily after a recent Eagles concert in Melbourne, Australia. “It’s like a whole different energy going somewhere for the first time.”

Titled after its 2007 album, the Long Road out of Eden concert is set to feature songs from the double CD, as well as Eagles classics like Hotel California, Desperado, and Take It Easy.

“I don’t know how familiar Chinese audiences are with the Eagles’ music. We may rework the set list a little bit for the concerts in China. Fortunately we have many songs so we can rotate them,” Walsh said.

Founded in 1971, the Eagles released six highly successful albums in the 1970s. The band broke up in 1980 but reunited in 1994 after taking a “14-year vacation”, said the band’s drummer Don Henley.

With six Grammies, the Eagles is one of the most successful US bands. At the end of the 20th century, two of its albums, Their Greatest Hits (1971-1975) and Hotel California, ranked among the 20 best-selling albums in the US, according to the Recording Industry Association of America.

Although at the peak of their career in the 1970s the Eagles was little known in China, it was one of the first Western bands introduced to Chinese audiences in the 1980s, when Chinese radios started to play Western pop music.

“Eagles ranks among the best-known Western groups among Chinese. Every Chinese person who listens to Western pop music knows them,” said DJ Zhang Ming of Love Radio, a 24-hour music radio channel in Shanghai.

“Although most Chinese people cannot name many of their songs, they are familiar with the melodies.”

Zhang said the Eagles’ most popular song in China is Hotel California, and the video of the song from its 1994 live DVD Hell Freezes Over is often used as a test track for sound and video equipment at music equipment stores.

Hotel California, released in 1976 on the band’s album of the same title, is also Walsh’s personal favorite song.

“I say it’s my favorite song because I’m proud of the guitar work,” Walsh said. “Some of Eagles’ songs are pretty much automatic for me now, but to play Hotel California live is still a challenge.”

Aged in their 60s, the Eagles tour extensively. In 2010 it gave 40 concerts around the world, each lasting about three hours.

Walsh, 63, said he keeps fit so as to be able to continue his performing career, goes to the gym, sleeps a lot, meditates and doesn’t drink anymore.

“In the old days I didn’t take care of myself. I didn’t think very much about what I’d be like when I was 60. Now I think the only way I can do what I do is to really take care of myself,” he said.

“I don’t feel like retiring. I don’t feel I’m done yet.”

Talking about the old days, Walsh said he is glad to have been young and learned the guitar when The Beatles started playing, because that is what he’s doing now.

“I have really great memories from the past, but I’m also having a wonderful time being 60 and playing our music to people who come to hear us. That is a real blessing,” he said.

What he cannot adapt to is the way that music is being made in the digital era.

“I don’t really understand a lot of the music that’s out now. Digital recording has really changed the way music is made,” he said. “It’s all like samples instead of performing. You put one part on it at a time and it comes out different. I miss real performances.”

The Eagles has, however, adopted some new technologies, most notably in its use of videos during performances, which Walsh said really adds something to the shows.

Having toured Asia before, Walsh believes the language barrier isn’t much of a problem with the songs, but their jokes between sets don’t work so well.

Although Walsh has never been in China, he expects Chinese audiences will be more polite than those in the West. Also, he’s not sure if they will sing along with the tunes as much as in other parts of the world.

“It’s OK if they don’t sing. If they do that’ll be great, but we won’t expect it. We will just go play an Eagles concert and be us. However the audience wants to react is fine as long as they have a good time and hear the songs that they come to hear,” he said.

Tickets for the Eagles concerts in Shanghai and Beijing are already on sale, with prices ranging from 350 to 2,580 yuan ($52.77-388.96).

“Overall this year (2010) the Eagles has sold over 600,000 tickets to just 40 shows worldwide and grossed over $62 million. We hope the shows in Shanghai and Beijing will also sell out,” said Luke Hede, vice-president of promotion for Live Nation Asia Pacific, promoter of the China tour.

Hede says the level of the venues and professionalism of live performances in China has increased substantially in the last few years and Beijing and Shanghai now have some of the best venues in the world.

The Mercedes-Benz Arena in Shanghai and the Wukesong Arena in Beijing were built, respectively, for the World Expo and Olympic Games.

“There is not a long history of live performances of Western artists in China, but China is definitely a very important market because it has the biggest population in the world,” he said.

“We are learning the rules and culture of China and trying to bring more Western artists to perform in China.”

(Source: China Daily)

Original article title: “Eagles still soaring”

Article link: http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/indepth/2011-01/11/c_13685123.htm

7 Chinese cities make 2010 Global Cities Index / 2010全球城市排名中国七城市上榜 [People’s Daily / 人民网]

Posted in Beijing, China, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Taipei, 中文-英文 / Bilingual ~ English-Chinese on August 23, 2010 by Zuo Shou / 左手

Seven cities in China were on the 2010 Global Cities Index, according to the American journal Foreign Policy on Aug. 15.

According to Foreign Policy, the consulting firm A.T. Kearney and the Chicago Council on Global Affairs published its second joint global cities index, a ranking of global cities.  The list ranked 65 major cities around the world.

The ranking was based on several criteria, including influence, the global market, culture, innovation and overall strength.

On the 2010 Global Cities Index, New York ranked 1st; Hong Kong, 5th; Beijing, 15th and Taipei, 39th. In addition, Shanghai ranked 20th; Guangzhou, 57th; Shenzhen, 62nd and Chongqing, 65th.

By People’s Daily Online

2010全球城市排名中国七城市上榜

据美国《外交政策》杂志8月15日报道,全球管理咨询公司科尔尼公司、芝加哥全球事务委员会以及《外交政策》杂志日前联合推出了第二届全球城市指数,对全世界65个大城市进行了排名。衡量标准包括影响力、全球市场、文化以及革新等综合实力。

在2010年指数排名中,纽约排名第1,中国香港排名第5,北京排名第15,中国台北第39,上海、广州、深圳、重庆皆上榜。

此外,上海排名第20位、中国台北第39、广州第57、深圳第62、重庆第65位。

Article link here / 文章在这人

Asian Cosplay Innovative Creation Exhibition held in Taipei [Xinhua]

Posted in Cosplay, Taipei, Taiwan on May 3, 2010 by Zuo Shou / 左手

Two cosplay fans put on poses of cartoon figures during the 2-day Asian Cosplay Innovative Creation Exhibition in Taipei, southeast China's Taiwan, April 24, 2010. More than 1,000 cosplay fans took part in the exhibition. (Xinhua)

A cosplay fan puts on a unique pose of cartoon figure during the 2-day Asian Cosplay Innovative Creation Exhibition in Taipei, southeast China's Taiwan, April 24, 2010. More than 1,000 cosplay fans took part in the exhibition. (Xinhua)

I can’t not share these photos!  Cosplay, a kind of pop culture character costumed role play, came out of Japan and is now spread throughout eastern Asia and beyond.  It’s on the Chinese mainland, to what extent I don’t know.   Cosplay receives harsh criticism from some quarters for its superficiality and frivolity.  I was a very pathetic Vampire Hunter D at a small mainland cosplay event, the costume consisted of a face-obscuring black floppy hat, black clothes and cape, and toy sword.  No photos exist of that…fortunately or unfortunately.

Link to Xinhua photo article