“A bilingual interview program of PKU distinguished alumni”
百廿载初心不改，双甲子砥砺前行。值此北京大学120周年校庆之际，北京大学国际合作部联合北京大学电视台推出《我是北大人》系列双语访谈节目。本期嘉宾是北大加拿大籍校友——大山 Mark Henry Rowswell。
Mark Rowswell：A Cultural Messenger who brings laughter to the world.
From 1984-1988, Mark Henry Rowswell studied Chinese at the Department of East Asian Studies at the University of Toronto where he was given the Chinese name "Lu Shiwei", derived from his last name Rowswell. In 1988 (at 23 years old), he received a full scholarship and came to Peking University, where he majored in Chinese linguistics and literature for three years. Later, his career revolved around cultural communication, covering various fields such as traditional comedic arts, television, Chinese and Canadian cultural exchanges, and stand-up comedy.
Dashan as comedy idol and media man
In 1989 (24 years old), after appearing in CCTV’s New Year’s Eve Gala, Rowswell began using the Chinese name “Dashan”. He studied under Jiang Kun and Ding Guangquan, two famous Chinese comedians. Over the next 10 years, he found success in the entertainment industry, appearing in various kinds of art forms such as comedy acts, MC/hosting, theater, Chinese opera, etc.
Dashan as China/Canada cultural envoy
Dashan has been dedicated to promoting the cultural exchanges between China and Canada. In 1999, when he was 34 years old, he served as the Goodwill Ambassador to the Canadian Cancer Society in China. He also worked on a joint Canada-China public education campaign for environmental protection. He was Team Attaché for the Canadian Olympic Team in 2008 and Commissioner General for Canada at the Shanghai World Expo in 2010. In 2012, he was named “Goodwill Ambassador to China” by the Prime Minister of Canada.
Creating his new stand-up comedy show "Dashan Live"
After disappearing from comedy for many years, Dashan returned in 2015 with a new standup comedy show “Dashan Live” which combines both Chinese and Western elements. In 2017, he took his show to the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, one of the largest comedy festivals in the world, with the only Mandarin language performance in the festival. Dashan is committed to embracing cultural differences and hopes to expand the Chinese comedy market abroad. He believes China and the West are inherently similar, but people tend to focus on their differences, saying, "China can be western, and the West can be Chinese, but most people spend 80% of their time talking about the 20% difference."
He is our guest of BeidaRen today : Mark Henry Rowswell