Canada to be Featured Country at China’s Largest Cultural Festival

April 14, 2016 (Toronto, ON) – The Meet in Beijing Arts Festival will feature Canada as the honoured guest country this year, announced Minister John McCallum today at a press event in Ottawa. Launched in 2000, the annual festival showcases a diverse range of international and Chinese arts and culture programs staged at venues across Beijing. The festival opens April 25, 2016 with a showcase featuring a variety of Canadian performers (including The Ottawa Bach Choir, Chan Hong Goh, Buzz Brass, and Dashan) and runs until May 21, 2016.

“We are honoured that Canada has been selected as the featured country for the Meet in Beijing Arts Festival.  Exchanges such as these promote and strengthen the strong relationship between Canada and China and benefit our diverse arts and cultural sector globally”, said Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Minister John McCallum. Governor General David Johnston also commented, “as bridge-builders between nations, artists and the contributions they make are essential to the smarter, more caring world to which we aspire”.

“This honour spotlights Canada on the world stage and serves to strengthen ties through arts and culture,” says Chair of Can4Culture Dr. Nelly Ng.  Can4Culture coordinated Canada’s involvement in the 2016 Meet in Beijing Arts Festival. “The power of collaboration from all parties involved in this project has transcended national boundaries. As we nurture connections, we promote understanding, and in the process, cement relations between the people of Canada and China,” continued Dr. Ng.

Featured Canadian performers at 2016 The Meet in Beijing Arts Festival include:

  • Buzz Brass / Buzz Cuivres from Montreal, Quebec
  • Chan Hong Goh and the Goh Ballet from Vancouver, British Columbia
  • Comedian Dashan (aka Mark Roswell) from Toronto, Ontario
  • Ensemble Caprice from Montreal, Quebec
  • Soprano Katherine Whyte from Toronto, Ontario
  • Award-winning pianist and vocalist Laila Biali from Toronto, Ontario
  • Ottawa Bach Choir (OBC) from Ottawa, Ontario

In addition, a photo exhibition on Canada organized with Canadian Geographic, will be on display at the festival.

Prestigious artists and groups who have performed at the festival since its inaugural year include José Carreras, Placido Domingo, Renee Fleming, Valery Gergiev with the Kirov Symphony Orchestra, Sarah Brightman, the Philadelphia Symphony Orchestra, the Bolshoi Theatre, River Dance, Paul Taylor Dance Company, the British Royal Shakespeare Company along with some of Asia’s biggest pop stars. Australia, Russia, Mexico, Cuba and France are among previously featured countries.

For more information, photos or interview requests please contact

Talvi Kuld (416.917.7323,


About Meet in Beijing                                                     

Meet in Beijing aims to enrich the cultural life of capital citizens and promote cultural exchanges between China and foreign countries. Over 400 foreign artists and performing groups from 25 countries and regions will be present during the festival. For more information about The Meet in Beijing Festival please contact Bai Nan (+86-10-64031627 ,