back to news May 10, 2013

Ohio State Students to share Music, Dance, Theatre in China

Ohio State will send 12 students from dance, music, and theatre to perform throughout China during the upcoming year, representing Ohio State in major cities and lesser-known areas in China. The endeavor will be funded by a U.S. State Department $50,000 grant, awarded to the Center of American Culture collaboratively directed by Ohio State and Wuhan University (WHU) in Hubei Province. In addition to the center at WHU, students will perform at various other Centers of American Culture throughout the country, showcasing American cultural talents in regions of China largely unfamiliar with the U.S. These include cities such as Nanning, Xinxiang, Shenyang, and Changchun.

The grant proposal was led by Chris Carey, director of the Global Gateways initiative, and Bob Eckhart, director of the WHU-OSU Center of American Culture. “Our process was to propose a set of music, dance, and theatre tours that would promote awareness of the important arts programs at Ohio State, a great strength of our university that are not as well known in China,” Eckhart said.

Specifically, the tours will feature:

  • Department of Theatre recent graduate John Houston and his solo show The Life of The Louisville Lip, about Mohammad Ali,
  • Department of Dance majors performing contemporary dance works,
  • Student musicians from the OSU Jazz Ensemble,
  • Members of the Ohio State Freestyle and Beatbox Club.

“Members of the OSU Jazz Ensemble are looking forward to sharing a range of American jazz styles, including ragtime and traditional, swing, bebop, funk, and contemporary, with our Chinese friends and associates as we learn more about each other’s cultures and strengthen the bond between us,” said Ted McDaniel, professor of music and director of the jazz studies program.

Ohio State’s East Asian Studies Center will contribute to the pre-departure orientation of Ohio State students and faculty. The first groups will tour to China in autumn semester, with others following next spring. All students will be accompanied by faculty members.