“Comedy in the Chinese Cultural Sphere”
by Mark Rowswell, (a.k.a. Dashan 大山)
Date: Wednesday, Feb 1
Time: 12:00 noon
Place: Center for Korean Studies Auditorium
Abstract: Dashan is the Chinese stage name of Canadian Mark Rowswell—a bona fide celebrity and the most famous Western personality in the media industry of the People’s Republic of China. Dashan can speak English and Mandarin fluently. He has appeared four times on CCTV’s New Year Gala show, broadcasting to an audience of nearly 1 billion each time, as a professional performer of xiangsheng—“comic crosstalk” or “the art of comedic language.” Xiangsheng is regarded in China as a highly skilled form of performing art beyond the reach of most native speakers, much less a foreigner. He has also served as a television host and a film actor, having portrayed the 18th century Italian Jesuit painter Giuseppe Castiglione as well as the American scholar Edgar Snow, and won numerous awards for his work.
In this presentation, Dashan will reflect on his career and its place in the Chinese comic tradition.