On November 24, 2018, the Wayland Li Martial Arts Centre celebrated its 20th anniversary of Wushu training in Markham, Ontario, Canada. Thank you everyone for coming to the gala and supporting the school!
Former and current students attended the event, along with various special guests, which altogether totaled more than 600 people in attendance.
The evening comprised of many events that included:
A lion dance to kick off the evening
A speech from Master Li
Honorary remarks from special guests including Canadian MP Geng Tan, Chinese consuls Yang Baohua and Li Sining, Councillor Alan Ho (City of Markham) and Councillor Jim Karygiannis (City of Toronto)
Wushu demonstrations from the beginner and intermediate students, as well as the kids competition team
Wushu demonstration from elite athletes together alongside former members of the school
Singing performances from Ms. Sheng Li (盛莉) and Mr. Paul Sun (孙俊国)
Recognition certificates from the City of Markham and City of Toronto for students that competed internationally
A sash and certificate ceremony for all current students
Student speeches from Dylan and Zeina
A cake cutting and toast
A musical performance from students Dylan and Remy
… and of course, the lucky draw!
See you again at the 30th anniversary in 2028!
A Lion Dance to Start off the evening
Honorary Remarks by Master Li and Special Guests
Wushu demonstrations from current and past generations Performing together
Two singing performances
students REcognized for representing Canada in International Competition
Certificate of achievement and sash awards for current students
An evening of fun, family and friends, and celebration
Master Li’s speech (李师傅的演讲)
然而，对我来说最重要的不是这些成就和名声, 而是我的学生。我教他们武术，可以帮他们懂得中国传统文化，帮他们正心修身。因为练武先练心，我希望他们学会“武德”，成为宽容、坚韧、仁义、尊师爱友并自强不息的君子；我希望他们也懂得谦虚，不骄不躁，始终有一颗不断学习不断进取的心 。我很高兴，从我们学院毕业和大学学习后，有不少学生成了医生，牙医，律师和其他社会成功人士。这点对我很重要。
Dear leaders, distinguished guests, dear parents and classmates:
Good evening, everybody!
Thank you for coming to our dinner. Tonight, I am honored to have invited members of the political community, the Wushu world, the entertainment industry, several Chinese-Canadian organizations and many friends who love martial arts. The guests present today are:
• Mr. Tan Geng, Member of Parliament for Don Valley North
• Consuls Yang Baohua and Li Sining, Chinese Consulate Office of Greater Toronto
• Councillor Jim Karygiannis, City of Toronto, Ward 39 Scarborough-Agincourt
• Councillor Alan Ho, Ward 2, City of Markham
• Councillor Godwin Chan, Ward 6, Town of Richmond Hill
• Many masters of the Wushu world
• Members of the Arts and Entertainment Community
• The Inner Mongolia and Hebei Overseas Associations
• … and many more friends from every walk of life.
Twenty years ago, I founded the Wayland Li Martial Arts Centre. Starting and managing a martial arts academy is not easy and comes with many hardships. However, nothing worthy is achieved without hard work; this is the essence of martial arts spirit that I pass onto my students so that they train hard and diligently, that they are brave and dedicated, and that they never waver in their loyalty to the martial arts. Today, I can proudly say that our centre has become one of the most successful Wushu academies in Canada and North America.
As a martial arts teacher, my greatest asset are my students and their achievements. They have traveled all around the world to participate in international competitions: in Canada, the United States, Turkey, Malaysia, Macau, Bulgaria, Brazil, and of course China. Collectively, they have won countless medals at events such as Beijing Olympics, the Nanjing Youth Olympics, and many more championships. When I see them succeed, I am filled with happiness. I am so proud of them.
But Wushu is not just about competition. In the past 20 years, our academy has performed in many large cultural events in Canada to promote traditional Chinese culture. Our students have performed in China on CCTV’s annual Spring Festival Gala, thousands of lion dances and martial arts performances commemorating Chinese New Year, as well as countless other large and small pro-bono performances.
However, the most important thing for me is not achievements and fame, but my students. I teach them martial arts so they can understand Chinese culture and help to cultivate themselves in both mind and body. Training in Wushu is actually first about training your mind, and so I hope my students will learn what WuDe or Martial Morality. This means becoming students of the martial arts that are tolerant; tenacious and strong-willed; kind to others; respectful of teachers, parents and friends; and endlessly aspiring to improve themselves. I hope that they also understand how to be modest, not arrogant, and always have an inquisitive mind inspired by continuous learning and improvement. I am very happy that after graduating from our academy, many of my students graduate university to become doctors, dentists, lawyers and other outstanding members of this society. This is very important to me.
I’m a man of few words and I’m not that great at speeches, so I won’t say much more. I sincerely thank you for your support to us over the years.
Thanks again for coming!