China Peking Rock

A dose of spiritual pollution

Kaleidoscopic spotlights flashed. A slick crew of singers and musicians, led by a pair of go-go dancers in skimpy black-leather skirts, gyrated rhythmically as two boyish British rockers strutted and sang. Amplified music boomed. The sight was familiar: a concert by the British hit group Wham! But the setting, Peking's Workers' Stadium, was not. Neither was the reaction. The group's visit to China last week, the first by a major Western rock group, was met largely with politeness and puzzlement by the audience, which included more than 6,000 Chinese.

Most of the crowd, ranging from teenagers to high-ranking officials, watched expressionless,...

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