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Music Fans Tune Up for Beijing Festival

While many people prefer to travel during the National Day vacation, young music lovers from all over the country will gather in Beijing to enjoy four days' live music at the 2004 Midi Modern Music Festival, to be held from October 1 to 4 at the Beijing International Sculpture Park near the Yuquanlu subway station.

The Midi festival actually has nothing to do with the term midi (abbreviation for "musical instrument digital interface"). It is named so simply because of the sponsor Beijing Midi School of Music.

Starting in 2000, the Midi festival was at first a showcase of bands formed by students of the Midi school. Since 2002, the festival has become a large-scale outdoor music festival, performed by mostly young and little-known bands.

At the 2003 Midi festival, 43 bands from home and abroad performed at the Midi school campus to a daily audience of more than 10,000 people.

The 2004 festival, the fifth of the annual event, was originally scheduled to be held in May, but was postponed.

To provide a better environment for the festival, the Midi school decided to move the 2004 festival to the 40,000-square-metre Beijing Sculpture Park square.

From 3 to 10 pm for four days of this year's festival, audiences can watch 45 bands playing various music styles including rock, folk, blues, hip-hop and jazz.

The bandlist includes Cold Fairyland, Twisted Machine, AK-47, Another Idea, CMCB, Handsome Black, Recycle, Subs, The Believers, The Verse, Muma, Last Successor, Kungfoo, Aska, Sand, Yaksa, Street of Happiness, Chun Qiu, Xia Jia Jazz Trio, Sound and Toy, Ruins, Brain Failure and Cold-Blooded Animal.

The Midi festival has been a free festival since it started. All the bands perform there for free. However, since this year's festival has moved to Beijing International Sculpture Park, audiences will have to pay 10 yuan (US$1.20) to get into the park.

Sponsored by the China Independent Music League and Midi school, the "Exhibition of Chinese Independent Music" will also be held along with the festival. The items on display will include CDs, posters and music magazines.

(China Daily September 28, 2004)

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