Full Frame Close Up: China’s Favorite Foreigner

Full Frame

Out of pure wanderlust, Canadian Mark Rowswell started studying Chinese at the University of Toronto. He then traveled to China for a six month immersion program and soon after arriving he ended up on a Chinese TV show. And not just any TV show. He appeared on CCTV’s New Year’s Gala in 1989 in front of an audience of about 550 million people. He played the character “Dashan” in a short comedic skit and overnight Dashan became a household name.

He went on to make many appearances on CCTV and even mastered “xiangsheng” – a traditional Chinese comedic performing art also known as “crosstalk”. And nearly 30 years after first appearing on CCTV, Dashan is still at it. This time he’s touring the world with a new solo stand-up act called “Dashan Live.”

Full Frame caught up with the funny foreigner at “Dashan Live” in Vancouver, BC.