- Title: CHINA: Pop diva Kylie Minogue dazzles in her first ever concert in Beijing
- Date: 4th December 2008
- Summary: PEOPLE ENTERING VENUE, WALKING PAST GUARDS PEOPLE WALKING THROUGH GATES PEOPLE STANDING BEHIND FENCE, LOOKING ON PEOPLE ARRIVING AT WORKERS' GYMNASIUM
- Reuters ID: LVA4F96VC2CH4UGND4S0035FHLD6
- Location: China
- Country: China
- Duration: 00:00:23
- Topics: Entertainment
- Story Text: Aussie pop darling Kylie Minogue brings her concert tour to China, staging her first ever concert in Beijing.
Pop star Kylie Minogue, who went from soap actress to become one of the world's most famous female recording artists, wowed fans at her first ever performance in Chinese capital Beijing on Monday (December 1).
Nicknamed in Chinese media the "pea princess" in reference to her small size, Minogue's debut attracted a large crowd to the city's Workers' Stadium.
The fans were expecting to be dazzled. KylieX2008 Tour is an enormous 16 million U.S. dollar (USD) production that has already travelled to more than 21 countries.
This is the first time for Kylie to bring her tour to China, following a performance at the launch of clothing chain H&M in Shanghai last year.
Chinese fans crowding outside the venue said they were looking forward to seeing "sexy dancing" and "good singing".
Peter, a Chinese citizen who lives in New Zealand, said he had bought a VIP ticket to ensure he'd get as close to Minogue as possible.
"Because I'm...I bought the VIP ticket so I actually want to smell her perfume as well. Sorry. And I want to see her sing the songs, my favourite song," he said.
Minogue, who recently overcame breast cancer, has sold over 40 million records.
While not as well known in China as Madonna or Celine Dion, Minogue packed in the crowds at the Workers' Gymnasium, with the most expensive ticket going for 2,580 yuan (376.5 USD), well out of the price range of the average Chinese.
Both local and foreign fans admitted that many of their friends and colleagues did not know the singer, whose name has been phonetised in Chinese to "Kaili Minuo"
"I asked some of my colleagues and they all said they didn't know much about Kylie because not many people know her but most of them know Madonna," said Hao Chenguang, an English major student .
"I asked a few of my staff or I told my staff that I was going to the Kylie Minogue concert but none of them knew her so I don't think the Chinese people know her so much," Matthias, a German living in Beijing, said.
The diminutive Australian became a household name in Britain in the 1980s after starring as Charlene in the TV soap "Neighbours".
She turned to music after leaving the popular show, releasing her first single "Locomotion" in 1987 and has continued to enjoy huge chart success with songs such as "Can't Get You Out Of My Head" and "Spinning Around".
In 2005 she was diagnosed with breast cancer but returned to performing after recovering from surgery and chemotherapy.
Visits by Western singers and bands to China are still fairly rare, though increasing, with the likes of the Rolling Stones and the late James Brown performing in the world's most populous country in recent years.
Their shows don't always go off smoothly.
Earlier this year, Icelandic singer Bjork shouted "Tibet! Tibet!" at a Shanghai concert after performing her song "Declare Independence", angering the government and local fans alike.
China has ruled Tibet with an iron fist since People's Liberation Army troops marched into the Himalayan region in 1950 and denounces any challenge to its authority.
Artists are forbidden to perform content that would harm "national unity" or "stir up resentment" and promoters are asked to submit set-lists and lyric sheets for approval.
Performers deemed to have hurt national sentiments are put in the freezer indefinitely, or until seen to have made due penance.
Last year, a Beijing concert for U.S. rock act Sonic Youth was nearly scuppered at the last minute after local authorities were tipped off that it had played at "free Tibet" concerts.
But Minogue avoided any hint of politics during her show.
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