China's capital of cool stays in high gear following the Shanghai Formula One race with the month-long China Shanghai International Arts Festival. The seventh annual festival in this metropolis of 17 million people will host acts from around the world, cementing its reputation as one of the world's 'in' cities. This year's festival, which runs from October 18 to November 18, is heavy on tradition, with a calendar featuring more than 150 dance, music and cultural events. With a mandate to 'present the best in world culture, promote Chinese ethnic arts and enhance Sino-foreign cultural exchange', the festival does just that with its eclectic mix of acts. Collaborations between east and west abound. Graeme Murphy's production of Mulan (October 18 to 20, Opera Hall of the Oriental Arts Centre) fuses a cast from the Sydney Dance Company with the Shanghai Song and Dance Ensemble. A similar union will take place musically as the Stuttgart Radio Symphony, led by conductor Sir Roger Norrington (October 29 to 30, Concert Hall of the Oriental Arts Centre), plays Invisible Voice, the latest work by renowned Chinese composer Chen Qigang, in its performance. This year, the festival's showcase country is Egypt. On an occasion that marks the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Egypt, Egypt Culture Week (November 4 to 11) features an array of events highlighting the ancient civilisation. Tickets to the Berlin Philharmonic will be among the most coveted by festival-goers. With Sir Simon Rattle at the helm, the renowned orchestra will make its Shanghai debut (November 10-11) in two concerts, with Pudong's impressive new Oriental Arts Centre as its backdrop. The first night's repertoire includes Berlioz's overture from Le Corsaire, Ravel's Ma Mere L'oye, and Beethoven's Symphony No 3 in E Flat Major - Eroica. The next day includes selections from Haydn's Symphony in D Major, Thomas Ades' Asyla, and Richard Strauss' Ein Heldenleben. Another must-see is world-famous cellist Yo-Yo Ma, (November 14, Shanghai Grand Theatre). He will be performing with the Shanghai Philharmonic under Singapore Symphony Orchestra music director Lan Shui. Making its debut is Grammy winner the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra (October 24, Shanghai Grand Stage). Under the baton of maestro Erich Kunzel, the orchestra will perform show tunes from hit films such as Lord of the Rings, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and Anna and the King. Other musical highlights include the Tokyo Philharmonic under conductor Chung Myung-whun (November 3 to 4, Concert Hall of the Oriental Arts Centre), featuring hot newcomers Korean cellist Kon Bohn-ihn, Japanese violinist Sayaka Shoji and blues-jazz by Icelander KK (October 19, Shanghai Concert Hall). For the younger set, Taiwanese teen idols May Day play at the Hongkou Stadium on October 22. In dance, Chinese and Russian artists will stage a performance of the Symphonic Dance - The Leningrad Symphony to mark the 60th anniversary of Russia's victory in the second world war (November 6, Shanghai Grand Theatre), with performances at the Shanghai Opera House under the choreography of Andrey Petrov from the Kremlin Ballet company. On a lighter note, Burn the Floor (October 19 to 21, Shanghai Grand Stage) is an Australian troop that features world champions doing every kind of dance from rumba to swing and salsa. The West Australian Ballet company will dance to Puccini's La Boheme (October 28 to 29, Shanghai Grand Theatre). Other shows include the Song and Dance Company of the Ukrainian Military Forces (October 31, Shanghai Grand Theatre), featuring more than 100 performers from the former Soviet Union Red Army Song and Dance Ensemble. There is also the acrobatic show Era (October 19, Shanghai Circus World) by famed Canadian troupe Cirque du Soleil. Polish theatrical troupe Teatr Dramatyczny performs Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew (November 17 to 18, Arts Theatre, Shanghai Dramatic Arts Centre), while Spanish ensemble Tricicle performs Sit (October 19 to 20, Shanghai Centre Theatre). More traditional fare is on offer from the Shanghai Yueju Opera House, which is performing writer Bai Xianyong's Jade Love and The Butterfly Lovers, the Chinese version of Romeo and Juliet. The festival will open on October 18 with Chinese baritone Liao Changyong performing in the comedy The Barber of Seville (Shanghai Grand Theatre) with celebrated tenor Juan Jose Lopera and soprano Inva Mula. The Macau Orchestra's Shanghai premier concert (Concert Hall, Oriental Arts Centre) closes the festival on November 18.