Apologies for such a late post, but I blame the Monkey myspace since they only did a bulletin about it last night lol. "Monkey In The Year of the Rat (29/1) On Saturday 9th February the British Museum will host a special day of celebration for Chinese New Year. To welcome in the Year of the Rat, the Museum will present a spectacular programme of performance, displays, workshops, story telling, and more. The centrepiece of the day is a first for London, as the Museum presents Monkey Suite - chamber music and visual excerpts taken from the groundbreaking contemporary opera Monkey: Journey to the West. Monkey: Journey to the West is based on the 16th century Chinese classic tales of the Monkey King, retold for a modern audience. The original production premiered to critical acclaim at the Manchester International Festival in June last year, the work was composed by Damon Albarn, directed by Chen Shi-Zheng, with visual concept, design and animation by Jamie Hewlett. Admission to the Museum is free all day on Saturday 9th February except the Monkey Suite which is a free ticketed event. Tickets for the Monkey suite will be available on the day at the museum before 17.00, subject to availability! Turn up, get those tickets and check it out!" -- Posted on myspace as a bulletin http://www.myspace.com/monkeyjourneytothewest What is Monkey? "Monkey : Journey To The West is a dazzling circus opera for the 21st century, based on an ancient Chinese legend, reworked as sheer spectacle involving over 40 Chinese circus acrobats, Chinese vocalists and performing martial artists. For centuries the epic tale of the Monkey King's journey of enlightenment has been an omnipresent part of Chinese culture, delighting young and old with the heady mix of adventure, mystery and magic. Now East meets West in this new production, which has been adapted and directed by Chen Shi-Zheng whose credits range from Chinese opera and theatre to the Hollywood movie Dark Matter, starring Meryl Streep. The music is composed by Damon Albarn and the design and animation by Jamie Hewlett, the artists behind award-winning virtual band Gorillaz. Monkey: Journey to the West reinvents the legend as a thrilling combination of music and action." -- blurb on Monkey's myspace page FF-UK North (by NorthWest) saw this last Year in Manchester, and it was really really great. So I highly recommend that if you have some time today, go down and pay the BM a visit, though it will be busy - the Terracotta Army exhibit is still on. Btw, no definites yet, but I am looking at coming down to London on a weekday (Monday) in the first of the two weeks off for Easter, but I have to check trains etc.