Let the music play
Shanghai will transform into a music city on Sept 30, when 15 groups of artists from home and abroad are scheduled to perform from 5 pm to 11pm, non-stop.
Named after the venue where it will be held, the W-Bank Music Festival on the west bank of the Huangpu River in Shanghai, claims to be the first original music festival of the metropolis.
"It's a brand-new landmark carnival on the western side of the Huangpu River in Shanghai," says Li Lin, director of the festival.
The area next to Expo Park on the western bank of Huangpu River was refurbished to become a creative community after the World Expo 2010, and the festival will be held at Xuhui Riverside Greenland.
"A high-quality music festival will help Shanghai people familiarize themselves with the area, and we've managed to bring some very good musicians to achieve that," Li says.
Emir Kusturica from Serbia is a two-time Cannes Film Festival winning movie director. He has played in a band named Emir Kusturica &the No Smoking Orchestra since the late 1980s. The group plays a mixture of styles, between rock and gypsy. This will be the first time Kusturica performs in an event in China.
Also making his debut performance in Shanghai is Yann Tiersen from France, who is better known for his creation of sound tracks for films such as Good By Lenin' and Amelie. Although Tiersen doesn't claim to be a composer and says he doesn't have a classical background, he has created a unique artistic music style that "combined the elegance of classical music, the alternative charm of rock music and the posh feeling of Paris fashion", according to Shanghai-based music critic Tian Yimiao.
Audiences will also get to watch American guitarist Minucci, who has won the Emmy Award three times for his creation of TV and film soundtracks.
His music style is very diverse, from pop to rock, new age, world music and jazz.
"The audio engineering will be done by a company from Taiwan, who work ed with Lady Gaga and Faye Wong in their Asian gigs," Li explains.
Some people complained online about the high ticket prices - 330 yuan ($52) for one-day entrance and 780 yuan for a three-day pass - which is almost double that of other music festivals in China.
But Wu Liangyu from Shanghai Shining On Culture, the company in charge of the publicity for the festival, explains: "Each group will be performing for no less than 50 minutes and audiences can enjoy five mini concerts for the price of one."
Also performing at the festival are pop groups Shinhwa from South Korea.
Sodagreen from Taiwan, Anthony Wong and Denise Ho from Hong Kong, as well as musician from other parts of mainland such as Xu Wei and Zhou Yunpeng will also take the stage.