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Beijing's Olympic social, cultural calendar

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(CNN) -- Planning to visit China during the Olympics, but already worried about what else there will be to do besides watching the Games?

Dancers perform the traditional lion dance at Tiananmen Square in Beijing in early August.

Dancers perform the traditional lion dance at Tiananmen Square in Beijing in early August.

Don't fret: the Olympics is about more than sport. The athletic competition offers the host nation a chance to offer its culture to the rest of the world.

The following is a partial social and cultural calendar of notable events taking place in China during the Olympics month of August.


  • Torch Relay: Tianjin
  • ART: 2D and 3D: Negotiating Visual Languages, August 1-September 28, PKM Gallery Beijing
  • CONCERT: Love My China -- Songs Collection of China, Minorities Cultural Palace Theatre
  • LIVE MUSIC: Bling Bling, Yugong Yishan
  • AUGUST 2

  • Torch Relay: Tianjin
  • ART: Chinese Character Biennale, August 2-September 6, Ku Art Center
  • PUPPETRY: Bilingual Magic Puppet Show Three Baby Pigs, July 19-August 10, China Puppet Theatre
  • LIVE MUSIC: MicroMu Live Recording, Jiangjinjiu
  • AUGUST 3

  • Torch Relay: Sichuan
  • CULTURE: Bird-raising story by Beijing Bird Men, Park in Beijing
  • DINNER THEATRE: Peking Night Show, throughout the year, No. 1 Dayabao Hutong
  • LIVE Formula 1 broadcast from Hungaroring, Hungary, Pavillion
  • AUGUST 4

  • Torch Relay: Sichuan
  • ART: Foundations Wen Fang, June 21-August 13, Paris-Beijing Photo Gallery I
  • FORUM: Olympic Champion Forum, August 4-5, Peking University Centennial Memorial Hall
  • CONCERT: The Masters of Voices -- Assemble under the Five-Ring Flag, August 4-5, National Center for the Performing Arts Opera House
  • AUGUST 5

  • Torch Relay: Sichuan
  • MUSEUM: Olympics Postal Stamps, July 20 through end of August, Imperial City Art Museum
  • OPERA: Yueju Opera: The Butterfly Lovers, August 5-7, National Center for the Performing Arts Theatre
  • LIVE MUSIC: Sambasia, MAO Livehouse
  • AUGUST 6

  • Torch Relay: Arrives in Beijing
  • ART: Notes of Conception: A Local Narrative of Chinese Contemporary Painting, July 12-August 15, Iberia Center for Contemporary Art
  • MUSEUM: Capital Museum, permanent displays include Buddhist statues, jade, calligraphy, etc.
  • FOLK ART: Chinese traditional variety show, daily, Lao She Tea House
  • AUGUST 7

  • Torch Relay: Beijing
  • ART: Guanghua Road 2008, July 26 through August, L.A. Gallery Beijing
  • CONCERT: Large--scale Chinese music concert: Ariose Years, August 5-7, Haidian Theater
  • LIVE MUSIC: Panjir, Jiangjinjiu
  • AUGUST 8

  • Olympics Opening Ceremony at 8:08 p.m. (12:08 p.m. GMT)
  • ART: Andy Worhol Portraits: Sports, Stars, and Society, July 26-September 21, Faurschou Beijing
  • CLASS: Family Kite making and mask decorating, The Hutong
  • LIVE MUSIC: African Nights, Yugong Yishan
  • AUGUST 9

  • MUSEUM: The Palace Museum; Several new exhibitions open before the Olympics inauguration
  • MUSICAL: Rock Action musical: Monkey King world premiere; August 9-17; August 9-17; Beijing Exhibition Theater
  • LIVE MUSIC: Taiwan aboriginals "A Night of Ancestral Souls"; Yugong Yishan
  • AUGUST 10

  • ART: Colors & Olympism -- 3rd International art biennale, July 8-August 12, National Art Museum of China
  • HIKE: A long way to catch a train, Beijing Hikers
  • AUGUST 11

  • ART: TF Chen's Art and Olympics, through August 14, Bridge Art Center
  • CLASS: Foot Reflexology, China Culture Club
  • ACROBATICS: Splendid Real Top Acrobatics, July 4-August 31, Poly Theatre
  • AUGUST 12

  • ART: "One World" The 2nd International Print Art Touring Exhibition, July 12-August 14, Amelie Art Gallery
  • MUSEUM: Beijing Police Museum, permanent displays include rare relics collected from criminal cases and investigation interactive games
  • DANCE: Large-scale creative Vaudeville -- The Rhyme of Four Seasons, August 10-13, Tian Qiao Theater
  • AUGUST 13

  • ART: Plusmarca: Art & Sport, July 20-August 20, Iberia Center for Contemporary Art
  • OPERA: Visual Peking Opera Madame White Snake, August 13-14, National Center for the Performing Arts Theatre
  • AUGUST 14

  • ART: Gao Feng: Traditional Metamorphosis, July 13-August 15, Art + Beijing
  • MUSEUM: The Great Civilizations, through September, Beijing World Art Museum
  • MUSIC: Brit Pop, MAO Livehouse
  • AUGUST 15

  • ART: Wang Du, through August 20, Arario Beijing
  • DANCE: Sky Dance by Kook Soo--ho Didim Dance Company, Forbidden City Music Hall
  • LIVE MUSIC: Made in Ninxia, 2 Kolegas
  • AUGUST 16

  • ART: A Gallery With A View -- Conversation 2008 Image China, through August 31, Inter Art Center and Gallery
  • CLASS: Mahjong Workshop, China Culture Club
  • MUSICAL: Multimedia Musical Drama Marco Polo, the Imaginary Journey World Premiere, National Center for the Performing Arts Opera House
  • AUGUST 17

  • ART: Xijing Olympics: An Exhibition by the Xijing Men Collective, August 17-29, Boers-Li Gallery
  • HIKE: Tang Dynasty Cave Dwellings, Beijing Hikers
  • DRAMA: Large--scale Fairy Tale Friendlies, August 15-23, Anderson Theatre
  • AUGUST 18

  • ART: Our Future: The Guy & Myriam Ullens Foundation Collection, July 19-October 21, Ullens Center for Contemporary Art
  • MUSEUM: Beijing Planetarium and Ancient Observatory; permanent displays exhibit ancient China's astronomy, epigraphs from the Qing Dynasty and other ancient astronomical instruments
  • DRAMA: Zen Nonverbal Stage Spectacular, August 18-31, Haidian Theater
  • AUGUST 19

  • ART: Unmoved, July 12-August 24, Galleria Continua
  • SIGHT: Beijing Zoo, check out the pandas!
  • CONCERT: A Night for Piano in China, National Center for the Performing Arts Opera House
  • AUGUST 20

  • ART: Wu Jian'an: The Heaven of Nine Levels, July 12-August 24, Chambers Fine Art
  • CLASS: Tai Chi -- Rhythms and Eating Well, The Hutong
  • MUSICAL: Action Musical Terracotta Warriors, August 19-23, Beijing Exhibition Theater
  • AUGUST 21

  • Olympic finals in football (soccer), volleyball
  • ART: Li Zhanyang: "Rent"-- Rent Collection Yard, April 26-August 24, Galerie Urs Meile
  • DRAMA: Autumn Begins, August 20-21, National Center for the Performing Arts Theatre
  • AUGUST 22

  • Olympic finals in volleyball
  • ART: Summer Group Show, July 26-August 26, Aura Gallery
  • BALLET: The Red Detachment of Women by China National Ballet, August 22-23, National Center for the Performing Arts Opera House
  • LIVE MUSIC: Punk v.. Hip-Hop, MAO Livehouse
  • AUGUST 23

  • Olympic finals in basketball, football, volleyball
  • MUSEUM: Beijing Ancient Architecture Museum; Permanent exhibition: Elements of traditional Chinese building techniques
  • LIVE MUSIC: Tag Team Records Gathering, 2 Kolegas
  • AUGUST 24

  • Olympics Closing Ceremony; finals in basketball, volleyball, several athletics competitions including the marathon
  • MUSEUM: Poly Art Museum; Displays include stone Buddhist effigies and ancient bronzes.
  • AUGUST 25

  • ART: Selection of paintings of China's Ming & Qing dynasties, July 16-August 29, National Art Museum of China
  • CULTURE: The Preservation of Beijing Hutongs, The Hutong
  • OPERA: Peking Opera, daily, Huguang Guild Hall
  • AUGUST 26

  • MUSEUM: "One World, One Dream"; early August through October, Beijing World Art Museum
  • ACROBATICS: Top acrobatic class, daily, Tiandi Theater
  • MARTIAL ARTS: The Legend of Kung Fu, daily, The Red Theatre
  • AUGUST 27

  • MUSEUM: Beijing Museum of Natural History; Temporary exhibition: Marine Life, through August
  • OPERA: Kunju Opera The Peony Pavilion, August 27-29, People's Liberation Army Opera House
  • LIVE MUSIC: Hanggai, Yugong Yishan
  • AUGUST 28

  • ART: Red Gate Stars, August 2-31, Red Gate Gallery
  • BALLET: Raise the Red Lantern, directed by Zhang Yimou, August 24-28, National Center for the Performing Arts Opera House
  • MAGIC: The Legend of Magic, July 1-August 31, Tiandi Theater
  • AUGUST 29

  • ART: Zhangjian Solo Exhibition, August 1-September 1, Felix Ringel Gallery Beijing
  • OPERA: Peking Opera Version of Puccini's Opera Torandot, August 29-31, National Center for the Performing Arts Opera House
  • LIVE MUSIC: Gia + HOTB, Girl Kill Girl, 2 Kolegas
  • AUGUST 30

  • ART: The Day After Tomorrow: Liu Ye solo exhibition, August 30-October 29, Yan Club Arts Centre
  • ACROBATICS: Traditional Chinese acrobatics show, daily, Chaoyang Theater
  • LIVE MUSIC: Section 6, Yugong Yishan
  • AUGUST 31

  • HIKE: A Long Way to Pray for Rain, Beijing Hikers
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  • FOLK ART: Peking Opera, daily, Chaoyang Theater
  • LIVE MUSIC: Zhou Yunpeng, Jiangjinjiu Bar
  • Researched and complied for CNN by Ying Ying Joyce Choi

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