Will Mako Transform Beijing's Live Music Scene?
A new venue called Mako hopes to join the ranks of other revered clubs such as D-22, Mao Livehouse and Yugong Yishan
The growth of Beijing's indie scene has coincided with that of the venues that have acted as showcases for local talent that might otherwise not be heard. Now a new venue called Mako has launched, hoping to join the ranks of other revered clubs such as D-22, Mao Livehouse and Yugong Yishan.
Mako's full name is MAKO Arts Display Center, located in the Chaoyang District where a Beijing Jeep plant used to stand, China's first joint venture cooperation. The entire space is over 2,000 square meters, consisting of two drama theaters, a music stage, the rehearsal rooms, bars, cafes and other multi-functional areas. The various performance and arts spaces will serve as a web of live artistic platforms, from stage shows, music, opera, folk art and many other vivid arts. This coexistence of various forms of arts in one center is a historic first in Beijing. And it has reportedly the the best sound system in Beijing, with over 3 million RMB invested in it.
While it may be a first for performaning art, the reuse of abandoned industrial space for the arts clearly borrows a page from the 798 Art District, a site of derelict state-owned factories in the Dashanzi area turned into a community of contemporary art, architecture, and culture. Actually, the dragons in the MusicDish*China Sounds logo were actually taken in that district on my last trip to Beijing.
A space this large and sophisticated is likely to have the same impact that 798 had for the arts in Bejing: putting the city on the map as a world class center for creativity, bringing to the next level what D-22 started in 2006. I'm looking forward to catching some great performances - as well as the five-meter-tall Transformer - when I pass by on my next trip to China.
MAKO Arts Display Center
No. 36, Guangqu Road, Chaoyang District,
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