Chengdu, China

Confirmed Speakers 


Kamel King, Music Bureau Manager, Visit Mississippi (USA)

Kamel spent 10 years as the Attorney on the Road for GRAMMY nominated group The Williams Brothers, was a Director of Operations for both Blackberry Records Inc. and Terminal Recording Studios, a GRAMMY award winning studio, and has had many years of experience in booking and event production. Kamel has since been Ass. Producer in the Recording Academy© endorsed “Mississippi…Celebrates Its GRAMMY© Legacy” events, “Mississippi Night” at the L.A. GRAMMY© Museum and other tourism conferences. Kamel is also a contributing author in the American Bar Association released book "Entertainment Law: For The General Practitioner". He is a practicing entertainment attorney.

Kamel is most proud to currently be the Music Bureau Manager for the State of Mississippi's Tourism Development agency which manages the Mississippi Blues Trail, Country Music Trail, Freedom Trail, Writers Trail and the state’s rich music and cultural branding at many trade shows and festivals.

Marilena Pillati, Deputy Mayor, City of Bologna (Italy)

Marilena holds a doctorate in Statistical methodology for scientific research from the University of Leuven and is a Professor at the University of Bologna.

Elected in 2004 in the Savena District Council, she coordinated the "School and Childhood Policies" committee until 2009.s

She took part in the constituent phase of the Democratic Party and from December 2007 to 2011 she was head of the Emilia Romagna School of the Democratic Party.

In 2009 she was elected for the first time in the City Council of Bologna on the Democratic Party list.

In the administrative mandate 2011 - 2016 she was a Councillor for the School, Training and Personnel Policies.


Lord Clement-Jones, Chair of the Music in Society Inquiry & Co-Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Artificial Intelligence, the House of Lords, UK Parliament (UK)

Tim is currently Chair of the 'Music in Society' inquiry conducted at the house of Lords examining the full 360-degree role of music in public health, skills training and economic development. In the House of Lords Tim also successfully introduced the Live Music Act 2012 which deregulated the performance of live music in smaller venues.

Alongside this Tim is a Consultant of the global law firm DLA Piper, member of the Advisory Board of Airmic (the Association of Insurance and Risk Managers in Industry and Commerce) and Board Member of the Corporate Finance Faculty of the ICAEW.

Tim was made CBE for political services in 1988 and life peer in 1998. Until July 2004 he was the Liberal Democrat Health Spokesman and thereafter until 2010 Liberal Democrat Spokesman on Culture, Media and Sport, in the House of Lords. He is the former Chair of the House of Lords Select Committee on Artificial Intelligence (2017-18) and Co-Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Artificial Intelligence. He is Deputy Chair of the APPG on China and Vice-Chair of the APPG on Intellectual Property and has most recently been appointed as Chair of the Advisory Council of the Institute for Ethical AI in Education, led by Sir Anthony Seldon.

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Gillian McDaniel, Acting Principal Director of Culture and Creative Industries Policy, Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment & Sport (Jamaica)

Gillian has held positions in private sector and government working in trade policy, investment promotion and creative industries primarily film, music and entertainment. She manages the focal point for the UNESCO Creative City of Music in the Ministry of Culture and chaired the multi-sectoral Kingston Creative City of Music Steering Committee that led to the successful designation of Kingston as a UNESCO Creative City of Music in December 2015.

She was previously Director of Community Partnerships for the Boston-based Fenway Alliance where she managed the Boston Foundation and Massachusetts Cultural Council grants related to access and community partnerships. In this role, Gillian worked with twenty-one arts and educational institutions and co-authored the Anchors & Wings report on the Economic and Cultural Impact of Fenway Alliance Institutions for the Boston Foundation. Through her work in entertainment and culture, she has been working to improve entertainment and creative industries data collection and analysis in the public sector.



Lee, Dong-yeun is currently a professor of Korea National University of Arts. He is teaching cultural theory, art policy and cultural planning at the university.   

He is also working on MP of "Seoul Arena Project and Global Music City Seoul", and is the general director of Platform Changdong61 as well as a co-organizer of the DMZ Peace Train Music Festival.

As one of the representative activists of cultural studies in Korea, he has published over twenty books including "The Logic of Cultural Capital" and "The Formation of Alternative Cultures".  

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Dani Ribas, Head of Research, Data and Studies, SIM SÃO PAULO (brazil)

Dani Ribas holds a PhD at UNICAMP (University of Campinas, SP) and she’s also a specialist in Management and Cultural Policies at Itau Cultural and Girona University (Spain). She was a consultant for music projects at UNESCO.

She conducted the research for the project entitled “Public Policies, Culture and Creative Economy” at IPEA/Brazil (2018). She teaches Culture Management at FESP Sao Paulo and UNICAMP. She has been a member of the Consulting Board at SIM São Paulo since 2015. Dani is also the director of DATA SIM, a research group and data management hub for the Brazilian music market - created and supported by SIM SÃO PAULO. 

Sharzede Datu Hj Salleh Askor, CEO, SARAWAK TOURISM (MALAYSIA)

Sharzede has accumulated over 30 years of working experience with her early years in the quasi government agency and hospitality industry while the remaining 22 years, she spent her career in the corporate world as part of the Senior Management team.

She has a Master’s Degree in Business Administration and is currently pursuing her Doctorate in the same field majoring in Tourism.

Considering herself as a specialist in Branding & Communications, she helms the position of the CEO at the Sarawak Tourism Board when the Sarawak State Government is currently pursuing its Visit Sarawak Campaign, an international marketing program to rebrand and reposition Sarawak as Malaysia’s prime destination for Culture, Adventure, Nature, Food and Festivals.

Fan guobin, General manager of China recording group (China)

Fan Guobin is the General Manager of China Recording Group, President of China Drama Publishing House, Vice President of the Chinese Opera Society and holds a Doctorate in Arts.

As well as these roles Fan is a judge for the National Art Foundation and Director of the organising committee for the 10th China Golden Record Awards.

Bonnie Dalton, General Manager, Victorian Music Development Office (Australia)

Bonnie Dalton is the General Manager of the brand new Victorian Music Development Office, where she will be responsible for working with artists and the businesses that support them, to foster sustainable music industry careers and partnering with music organisations and businesses. Prior to the VMDO, Bonnie worked predominantly as an artist manager but also across events, production, and programming. A recipient of the Lighthouse Award for management, she has previously worked with Little Red, The Vasco Era and more recently Ali Barter and Oscar Dawson. She was the producer of the Melbourne St Jerome’s Laneway Festival for ten years, worked in senior management at Falls Festival and has programmed line-ups at a range of festivals and events from Low Light, Queenscliff to Melbourne’s House of Vans.

Yin Long, CEO, MIDI Music Media (China)

Yin Long, the first graduate of Midi Music School has gained many years of successful entrepreneurial experience in the real estate, education and internet industries as well as having started his own business.

He has served as Executive Dean of China Real Estate Business School and CEO of China Real Estate Education Co., Ltd( and presided over the development of China's first real estate industry network university.

In 2017 Yin took over as the CEO of MIDI Music Media, and co-founded the China Campus Music Award with China Record Group and Peking University.

Yin is an expert in the operation of the music industry in China.

Duoyang Namu, Director General, Chengdu Culture, Radio and TV, Press and Publication Bureau (China)

Duoyang Namu is the Director General of the Chengdu Culture, Radio and TV, Press and Publication Bureau and the Chengdu Municipal Cultural Relics Bureau. As well as this, Duoyang is the Director of the Chengdu Music Industry Promotion Office.


In his role, Craig promotes Mississippi as a travel destination and film location. 

Ray returned to the Mississippi Development Authority in 2016 after serving as a Principal in The Talon Group, LLC.  Prior to joining The Talon Group, Ray served as President of DCRAY Consulting and as Executive Producer of a number of statewide and national events, including Mississippi Night at the GRAMMY Museum in Los Angeles and the Mississippi GRAMMY Celebration.  Ray has also served in senior-level positions for three United States Presidents and for two state governors.

Ray previously served as the Director of the Tourism Division at the Mississippi Development Authority from 2004 – 2009.  During his tenure he played a key role in developing the branding campaign for “Mississippi— The Birthplace of America’s Music” as well as launching the groundbreaking Mississippi Blues Trail. Today, the Mississippi Blues Trail has more than 185 markers throughout Mississippi and the world.

Denise Stanley-Charde, Founder, Clock Your Skills (UK)

Denise Stanley-Chard, a musician, ethnomusicologist and business woman has developed, delivered and evaluated learning programmes in workplaces, community learning spaces and formal education, for beginners to established professionals. Denise continues to deliver consultancy work, design industry-based training and develop community learning projects.

Over the last 15 years, Denise facilitated a series of international research projects to develop the curriculum for the ground-breaking CLOCK programme ( This programme was designed by employers and creative practitioners from 10 countries to provide recognition, validation and higher education certification for non-formal and informal learning in the creative and cultural industries. CLOCK also supports learners at any level in formal, non-formal and informal contexts.

CLOCK is delivered by an international community of highly experienced and skilled Sector Experts.

Denise is the current Director of the CLOCK Programme, a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and a consultant to Creative Higher Education Programmes.

Tang Xiaoming, Founding Partner, WeCapital (CHINA)

Mr. Tang Xiaoming, an investment professional in cultural industry with more than 20 years of equity investment and operating experience, is currently the founding partner of WeCapital. The current portfolio includes but is not limited to Dragonfly FM (a PUGC audio platform), Modern Sky Entertainment (one of the key indie music companies in China), MaiAi Culture (an electroacoustic music composition company), the Thirteen Month record company (a music label), Earth Entertainment (a music content development company), White Media (an artist management company), Jetavana Entertainment (a comprehensive entertainment company)

Mr. Tang Xiaoming served as the executive director and member of investment committee of China Culture Industrial Investment Fund, and he holds a bachelor degree of National Economics at Renmin University of China and also holds the MBA degree at University of Chicago.

Kate Ben-Tovim, Associate Director of Arts Centre Melbourne’s Asia Pacific Triennial of Performing Arts (Asia TOPA) & Creative Director of Turning World (Australia)

Kate is a curator and producer specialising in engagement with the Asia-Pacific. Kate is currently Associate Director of Arts Centre Melbourne’s Asia Pacific Triennial of Performing Arts (Asia TOPA) and is Creative Director of Turning World, a boutique cultural agency focussing on creative production and cultural diplomacy. During her 20+ years in the arts, Kate has worked with artists, cultural institutions and governments in Indonesia, India, China, PNG and throughout Australia.

Kate has worked with music artists throughout her career including producing showcase concerts for 2018 Commonwealth Games, 2012 London Olympics and multiple award winning collaborations between contemporary music artists and symphony orchestras. She was the first producer of The Black Arm Band, a ‘superband' of Australia’s leading Aboriginal music artists and created Asia Pop Fest, a large-scale event welcoming Melbourne’s international students to the city. She has a Bachelor of Music from University of Adelaide with post-graduate studies in International Relations.

Councillor Huw Thomas, Leader of Cardiff Council (UK)

As Leader of one of the fastest growing cities in the UK, Huw’s administration is committed to promoting inclusive growth, with major projects including a £300m school building programme, the construction of 1000 council houses by 2022, significant transport infrastructure developments, and the delivery of a new 15,000 capacity Indoor Arena.

He is the Welsh Local Government Association Spokesperson for Culture, Tourism & Major Events. He is also the Core Cities UK Cabinet Member with responsibility for Culture and was a board member of the 2009 Cultural Cities Enquiry.

Huw is a fluent Welsh speaker who graduated in Music from Oxford University before completing a Masters degree in International Relations at Aberystwyth University.

Richard Bellis, Emmy Award-Winning Composer, Board Director of ASCAP & Author (USA)

Richard Bellis is an Emmy award-winning composer for Stephen King’s IT (1990 version), has two Emmy nominations including HBO’s Doublecrossed with Dennis Hopper and Double, Double, Toil and Trouble.

Richard is the author of “The Emerging Film Composer: An Introduction to the People, Problems and Psychology of the Film Music Business”; is a past president of the Society of Composers & Lyricists; served on the faculty of the University of Southern California’s Scoring for Motion Pictures and Television course and UCLA Extension’s Film Scoring Certificate program; served on the Board of Governors for the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (Emmys) and, for 21 years, served as the director and mentor of the “ASCAP Film Scoring Workshop with Richard Bellis”.
 He currently serves on the Board of Directors of ASCAP and lectures internationally on film and media music.

Isabella Pek, Founder, SEAMEX (Malaysia)

Isabella Pek founded the music education market, the first Southeast Asia Music Education Exchange (SEAMEX) in 2017, held in Kuala Lumpur. SEAMEX 2018 was again successfully held in Bangkok, and SEAMEX 2019 will be held at Yogyakarta, Indonesia, SEAMEX 2020 at Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. SEAMEX brings music talents, educators and industry together in a sense of regionalisation for music in Southeast Asia, strengthening and deepening the regional network, aiming for awareness, exposition and interaction.

Isabella had worked as a piano player, music arranger / orchestrator and band leader with Orkestra Radio TV Malaysia, during which she had also served National Symphony Orchestra in their popular music series.  In her work with Orkestra Tradisional Malaysia, the creative use of Malaysian instruments is the focus.  She graduated from Berklee College of Music (1993), earned an MBA from University Malaya (2007) and she is due to complete her PhD at Middlesex University, UK.

MAESTRO Lorenzo Tazzieri, President International Association of United Cultures (Aicu) and Composer (Italy)

Maestro Lorenzo Tazzieri is one of the most accredited exponents of the new Italian generation of conductors. At the age of 33, he is principal conductor of the Tokyo Metropolitan Opera Foundation, artistic director of the Genoa International Music Youth Festival and the Amman Opera Festival, the first opera festival founded in the Arab world. Recently he was the youngest musician awarded by the Mayor of Genoa and the President of the Italian Senate with the title of Ambassador of Genoa in the World.


Chloé Nataf, Head of cultural entrepreneurship programs at Trempolino & coordinator, European Music Incubator (France)

Since 2009, Chloé Nataf has been working at Trempolino in Nantes (France). At first she was in charge of all programs dedicated to recording musicians and since 2016 she is head of cultural entrepreneurship programs. Chloé has developed a strong strategic monitoring for Trempolino related to the music business and innovation.

Alongside her work at Trempolino, Chloé is also the coordinator of the European Music Incubator – a European program dedicated to “in-between musicians”, she has built bridges between the music sector and other creative sectors such as video game, branding, tourism and movies.

Previously, she used to work as an artistic director at Musicast, a distribution platform leader for urban music.

Jess ScullY, Councillor for the City of Sydney & CURATOR (AUSTRALIA)

Jess Scully is a curator and creative industries advocate who is passionate about cities and city-making, and in 2016 was elected as a Councillor for the City of Sydney. Jess was the founding director of Vivid Ideas, Australia's largest creative industries event, and has curated creative sector events including Junket, TEDxSydney and Curating Participation. Jess was a founding contributor to the Sydney Culture Network, launched in late 2017. As a public art curator, her projects included Green Square Library and Plaza. She has served as an arts policy advisor and strategist, directed the Qantas Spirit of Youth Awards and the Creative Cities East Asia project, and began her career as editor of a number of creative industries publications including Yen, Empty and Hotpress.

Ariel Blum, co-founder, GRID Series (Australia)

Ariel Blum is the co-founder of GRID Series (Grass Roots Indie Development), an artist development program that works with musicians from outer suburban regions around Australia to develop skills, content, community and networks, empowering and enabling artists to ensure that creating music remains a mainstay in their lives. GRID Series partners with academic institutes, government and the commercial sector to deliver programs in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Perth.

As a musician in his own right, Ariel works as a producer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, and has worked with artists including Sydney R’nB artist Lara Andallo, Perth artist Anna O, Melbourne artists Daniel Elia, Gordon Koang, Cash For Gold, Sahida Apsara , The Fabric (fronted by Angie McMahon) and UK artist Florence and The Machine. Ariel also composes for film and TV, with his original works having featured in campaigns for Samsung, Sukin, Suzuki and Corona and as a songwriter, he is one half of trip-hop duo St.Ives.

Mindy Meng Wang, Composer and Guzheng Performing Artist (China/Australia)

Mindy Meng Wang is a versatile Chinese/Australian Composer and Guzheng Performing Artist, her cross-cultural life and professional experience influenced her music and create an interesting and unique style that combines east and west, modern and traditional.

Mindy was born and classically trained in China, moving to the UK at 17 to study and perform, and now living in Australia. Mindy collaborates with many high-profile artists and frequently performs in many significant festivals around the world. Mindy is a true pioneer, bringing the Guzheng into western genres.

Mindy’s work explores the fertile space between traditional and contemporary practices, she creates a strong voice for young female composers/artists of Chinese heritage. She is an important part of a significant movement of Chinese musicians redefining and reinvigorating their musical tradition on the global stage.

Dr. Christoph Wirtz, Secretary- General of INTERKULTUR (Germany)

Dr. Christoph Wirtz, Secretary- General of INTERKULTUR, studied modern history and political science at the Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg in southwest Germany before he started his career as a journalist and author for major German newspapers, among them 'Stern', 'Welt' and 'Welt am Sonntag'. In 2014 he joined the non-profit organization INTERKULTUR, the world's leading organizer of international choir competitions and festivals. Since 1988 INTERKULTUR has brought together almost 10,000 choirs following its motto “Singing together brings nations together”. Every other year INTERKULTUR invites the choirs of the world to the Olympic Games of choral music: the World Choir Games, the world’s largest international choir competition – founded on the Olympic ideals, aiming to peacefully unify singing people and nations connected by song in a fair competition.

Dr. Michael Seman, Director of Creative Industries Research and Policy at the University of Colorado Denver College of Arts & Media (USA)

Dr. Michael Seman is Director of Creative Industries Research and Policy at the University of Colorado Denver College of Arts & Media where he also teaches Artist Management for music business majors. Michael’s work primarily examines how music ecosystems help drive regional growth and can be found in many academic journals, edited volumes, and CityLab. National Public Radio, Wired, The Washington Post, Vice, and regional media outlets often seek his perspective concerning music city dynamics. Michael is currently under contract with the University of Texas Press for a book concerning music cites and has released three albums as a member of the band Shiny Around the Edges. Michael previously managed daytime programming for two music festivals in Denton, Texas and spent several years as an internal marketing executive at Creative Artists Agency in Beverly Hills, California. He is represented by the Creative Class Group for speaking engagements.

Iris Huting Byrd, Director of Project Management, World Choir Games in China & Canada and Deputy Director, INTERKULTUR China (CHina)

A leading industry professional for more than a decade, Iris Huting Byrd heads project management for all INTERKULTUR events in China and Canada, while also serving as the deputy director of INTERKULTUR China.

Since the 2012 Cincinnati World Choir Council Meeting, Ms. Tingting Byrd has been an integral member of the organizing committee of the World Choir Council.

She is proud to have contributed to successful INTERKULTUR events in Russia, Europe, the United States and China.

Dennis Madsen, manager of urban & long range planning, City of Huntsville (USA)

Dennis Madsen, AICP, received his Masters in Architecture from Georgia Tech and subsequently spent two decades working for private-sector architecture, urban design and community planning firms in Atlanta. In 2013, he joined the City of Huntsville as the Manager of Urban and Long Range Planning, and he has since then been leading the comprehensive planning effort known as “The BIG Picture”. The plan focuses on a range of growth issues, including the continuing refinement of quality-of-life concerns, which has led to the active Huntsville music audit.

Claudia Pinna, senior tourism data analyst & city tourism marketing MANAGER, City of Genoa (Italy)

Claudia Pinna is the senior tourism data analyst for the City of Genoa’s website, she is also the Content Manager for Genoa’s official app. As well as this Claudia is an IT and Digital Project Manager and a city tourism marketing coordinator and manager in partnership with European City Marketing network.

Merlijn Poolman, Night Mayor, Groningen (Netherlands)

Since he was around 16 years old Dutch cultural entrepreneur Merlijn Poolman started organising concerts and this gradually evolved into supporting dozens of acts with their tours all over the world. After starting a nightclub for underground dance music in his hometown of 'Eurosonic-city' Groningen around 2011 his expertise and network grew substantially and in 2018 this led to him being elected as the Night Mayor of the city.

In the past 6 years, a strong cultural relationship with the Chinese music scene was formed by him and this led to the founding of China Pavilion conference at Amsterdam Dance Event and various festivals in China. As a former fellow member of the European Music Council and member of the Popcoalitie (advisory board to the Dutch government) Merlijn likes to keep a strong balance between the formal world and the raw informal grassroots culture where it all started for him.

Sharon Hurt, Councilmember at large, City Of Nashville & Organiser of the Jefferson Street Jazz & Blues Festival (USA)

Hurt currently serves as President/CEO of JUMP-Jefferson Street United Merchants Partnership, an organization dedicated to revitalizing the businesses on Jefferson Street and bringing commerce to the North Nashville Community.

Annually Hurt coordinates the Jefferson Street Jazz & Blues Festival, an event drawing 30,000 celebrants each year to provide an economic impact to the North Nashville area as well as celebrate the rich cultural role Jefferson Street plays in Nashville’s history.

For her advocacy of Nashville and service to the community, the Nashville Business Journal named her a 2017 Woman of Influence, the Nashville Post inaugural “Most Powerful Women” of Middle Tennessee in 2011. During her tenure, JUMP has secured more than four million dollars in funding from the Neighborhood Stabilization Program Grant to acquire and rehab homes in the North Nashville community and a Community Enhancement Grant for beautification project on Jefferson Street.

GIACHERIE TIPIK, President & Founder, (MALAYSIA)

Giacherie started off as a volunteer for an NGO mainly leading the youth community with regards to urban & rural youth development by tapping into the creative form. He’s also worked as an event executive, and more recently as President of ‘Creative Artrepreneurship Transformation: Music’ or better known as

CatSound, a social enterprise - is an advocacy to nurture and grow the ecosystem of the music industry in Sarawak to be in line with the development of the state, while promoting the global mindset through a series of fireside chats, forums and eventually conferences and festivals.

Their aim is to bridge the gap between the creative industry players (local & international) to the Ministry, Government Agencies, Corporate bodies, as well as the regional ecosystem to the global ecosystem.

Nelly Jin, Director of iResearch Academy & Partner of iResearch Consulting (China)

Nelly leads the research of iResearch Academy in new economy sectors, including media marketing, new retail, artificial intelligence (AI), education, finance, etc. Through professional and in-depth research and insights, she is dedicated to helping the enterprises, institutional investors, academic cycles and government to improve their understanding of new economy and optimize decision-making.

At the same time, she is also in charge of iResearch North market research services, integrating big data and market research methods and dedicated to meeting the demand for intelligent operation of the enterprises in the new year.

Dedicated to insights into new economy industry for 16 years and with a research team made up of 100+ experts, iResearch Academy have released 2,000+ industry reports and carried out a large number of industry consulting and advisory projects. The reports, data and views released by iResearch are widely quoted by domestic and overseas mainstream media, institutional investors, new economy companies, etc.

Gavin TJONG, General Manager, West China, Cushman & Wakefield (CHINA)

Gavin has over 20 years of extensive and solid experience in commercial real estate agency and consultancy business in both Hong Kong and China. He is responsible for clients and government relationship management, business strategic setting and execution, resources allocation, corporate image promotion, office management and risk management for West China offices including Chengdu, Chongqing, Kunming and Guiyang.

Gavin also provides professional services to portfolio landlords and investment funds in managing their asset for continuous value growth. He is also the thought leader in the market to provide insights and views to media and government officials. Before Gavin re-joined Cushman & Wakefield in 2013, he led the biggest and most successful commercial agency team in West China specializing in open market transactions and handling multi-national corporations’ commercial requirements.

Lisa Gedgaudas, Manager, Create Denver, Denver Arts & Venues, City & County of Denver (USA)

Denver native, Lisa Gedgaudas has been recognized for her outstanding leadership in advancing arts and culture in the City of Denver for over 8 years. Lisa currently serves as the Manager of Create Denver, a City initiated program with Denver Arts & Venues that showcases Denver’s talented and dynamic creative community, recognizes its role in making Denver vibrant and economically vital and catalyzes the sector to become cohesive and sustainable. Her role includes the enhancement of Denver’s quality of life through implementing Denver’s cultural plan, IMAGINE 2020, leading the Denver Music Strategy, along with art and cultural district development, research, policy and advocacy and granting.

Pierce Freelon, professor, director, Emmy-Award winning producer, & former candidate for Mayor of Durham, North Carolina (USA)

Pierce Freelon is a professor, director, Emmy-Award winning producer, and former candidate for Mayor of Durham, North Carolina. Pierce has traveled the world, building spaces for creative expression and social justice. He founded Blackspace, a digital maker space where youth learn about music, film and coding. He is the writer, composer and co-director of an animated series called History of White People in America, which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2018. In 2012 he co-founded and starred in Beat Making Lab, an Emmy-winning PBS web-series. He is the frontman of the jazz and hip-hop band The Beast. Pierce earned a BA in African and African American Studies at UNC Chapel Hill and an MA in Pan African Studies at Syracuse University. He has taught music, political science, and African American studies at UNC Chapel Hill and North Carolina Central University.

Joyce Lai, Founder of CityFM 102.6 (China)

Joyce Nai, the founder of CityFM 102.6 which was officially launched in 2004, is very experienced in the music & media industry in mainland China and Taiwan. She has made CityFM the most popular music station in the southwest of China, and the best choice of promotion for major celebrities and artists.

JOYCE founded ShowTime Media in 2018, and has created well-known local original brands, such as <LeKaPLAY Tribal Concert> - ethnic minorities' music from Taiwan and Sichuan area, <She Said Salon> - for modern elite women and so on.

Yi Jiayang, General Manager of Strategist Department, TAIHE Music Group & lyricist from Taiwan (TAIWAN/CHina)

Yi Jiayang (Kevin Yi), was Music Planning Director of Rock Records Taiwan, Music Director of Sony Music Entertainment (Taiwan) and Warner Music Taiwan. He has written a long list of hit songs for popular singers such as Stefanie Sun, Yida Huang and many more.  Yi joined TAIHE Music Group in 2016 to be lead singer and original music development. Hit songs by Kevin include: By My Side, Song for Singles, Anonymous Baby, A Love Before Time (theme song of Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon) etc. Yi is known for his gentle, cultured temperament and profound swordsmanship. Kevin has written over a thousand songs and is an important figure in Chinese pop music industry.

Lacie Carpenter, Musician, Orchestra Director & Former world champion fiddler (USA)

Lacie holds a BFA in Music Education/Specialization in Violin Performance and a MS in Psychology.

Lacie is the winner of many East Texas Music Awards. Fiddler Of The Year seven times, ETX Bluegrass Act of the Year, and Vocal Act of the Year. In 2008, she was named “World Champion Fiddler.”

Lacie was the youngest orchestra director in East Texas. She slowly built four programs from scratch. After two years, she felt a calling to take her skills else where. She took a leap to Ireland where she helped school orchestras grow musically and quantitatively. After ten months, she was was asked to build another program in Texas before moving to Nashville, where she currently resides.

Hong QiA, Musician and Executive Secretary of the Music Industry Promotion Committee for the Chinese Audiovisual and Digital Publishing Association (China)

Hong QiA is a musician, folk song poet and songwriter. He also serves as the Executive Secretary for the Music Industry Promotion Committee of the Chinese Audiovisual and Digital Publishing Association. QiA is a council member of the Chinese Music Literature Society and the Chinese Musicians Association Pop Music Society. He won the 2014 "Chinese Golden Melody Award for Best Folk Entertainer", and his main works include "Whose Sheep", "Red Saussurea", "The Way to Home", "I Think, I Think" among others.

Aaron Bethune, Music Industry Consultant (CANADA)

Aaron Bethune has 20 years of experience covering all aspects of the music industry. Over the years Aaron has created a music & brand services company, publishing company, booking agency, boutique music licensing catalog, and developed experience driven travel events for talent and their fans. He has provided music clearance for T.V., Ads, and film, services as a music consultant, talent manager, mentor, digital strategist, brand architect, and music marketer. He has worked as a music journalist, authored a music business textbook, spoken at music institutes, produced records & films, performed internationally, worked as a session guitarist and is an award-nominated songwriter.

Most recently Aaron has worked with government agencies and their tourism departments to provide organic reach and brand seeding through creative initiatives to their target demographics. In 2017 Aaron collaborated with the State of Mississippi to create the role of Music & Culture Ambassador of Mississippi.

Dr Julia Jones, Chief Executive of Found in Music (UK)

Dr Julia Jones is Chief Executive of Found in Music, a UK based advisory and experiential firm that helps clients in the private and public sector leverage music to achieve economic and health targets. Found in Music clients have included Olympic squads, the Mayor of London, Gibson Guitars, the NHS and a range of consumer brands. Julia’s PhD research examined music taste and ageing and demonstrated how the embedded emotional connections with music from youth can be harnessed by cities, regions and brands to drive customer engagement and public health benefits. She acts as Secretariat of the Music in Society inquiry conducted at the House of Lords and sits on the Education Task Force of the UK’s All Party Parliamentary Group for Artificial Intelligence. She has recently delivered a music strategy for the UK’s first dementia village and is the author of ’The Music Diet’ a music and heath book available in 2019.

Alejandro Abrante González, General Manager of Auditorio de Tenerife and director of International Development of Teatro Comunale di Bologna (SPAIN/ITALY)

Alejandro is a veteran opera agent, having represented big names like Mr. Lv Jia, the Music Director of the National Centre for the Performing Arts of China, for many years. Today he is the General Manager of Auditorio de Tenerife in Spain, as well as Director of International Development for Teatro Comunale di Bologna of Italy.

Martin Elbourne, Co-Founder of Music Cities Convention, Co-Founder of the great escape festival & head booker at Glastonbury (Uk)

Martin Elbourne is based in the UK and has experience of over forty years in the music industry.

He has owned a record label and music magazine, has worked as a manager, agent, promoter and booker. In the mid-eighties he became an agent working with acts such as the Smiths and New Order and became one of the main advisors and bookers to Glastonbury Festival, a role which he continues to this day.

He has helped establish numerous events internationally, the most recent being the DMZ Peace Train Festival in South Korea.

He is co-founder and creative director of Europe’s leading Showcase Festival, ‘the Great Escape’. Co-founder of Music Cities Convention and acts as an advisor on live music policy to various government cities around the world.

Professor Sun Hongbin, Vice-president & graduate student supervisor of Sichuan Conservatory of Music (China)

Professor Sun is a Technological and Academic Leader of Sichuan Province, member on the executive board of Chinese Music Literature Association, and Vice-chairman of Sichuan Musicians’ Association. His research achievements include a second prize at the 16th Social Sciences Awards of Sichuan; his successful teaching career earned him a first prize at the Sichuan Provincial Government Awards; his composition won honours at the prestigious 8th Golden Bell Award of China; and he has received multiple Five “One” Project Awards.

Professor Sun’s works include: the choral number Rhododendron Blossoms, ethnic orchestral piece Dreams of the Water Town, and the song Moon Over Desert Poplars. He is also the mind behind the Tianfu Old Town Festival.

Jesse Elliott, Director, The Music District Fort Collins (USA)

Elliott is the founder and songwriter of two rock and roll bands, These United States and Ark Life, who released 6 albums and performed live 1,200 times in the last decade. With his company Range Music Ecosystems, Elliott and co-founder Dr. Bryce Merrill researched and wrote the music strategies for the City of Denver and the State of Colorado, and brought together international thinkers on music and community for the City of Austin, the Denver Music Summit, the Biennial of the Americas, and others.

In 2015, Elliott began consulting on the Music District, and on Bohemian Foundation’s larger music ecosystem, which includes a free public 100,000-person festival, 5 music venues, a music-themed hotel, an outdoor concert series, nationwide funding of youth music education, grants for nonprofits, touring programs, public and private partnerships & international convenings. Elliott moved to Fort Collins to open and direct the Music District in 2016. In its first two years, the 5-building music hub has produced hundreds of events, workshops, and creative collaborations, and drawn thousands of visitors, musicians, and music organizations from around the globe.


Alberto Macrì, Graduated in Piano at the Conservatorio N. Paganini of Genoa and graduated in Musicology at the Faculty of Musicology of the University of Pavia/Cremona. He has been a speaker at national and international conferences in Europe and USA. He has taken part in musical educational projects for Europe in Asia, was project Manager of the Amman Opera Festival and the Genoa International Music Youth Festival, and he is Professor of Music History and Music Theory at the Liceo Musicale S. Pertini in Genoa.

ZHANG WEI, Founder & Chairman, Big Picture Universal Group Limited (China)

Zhang Wei has accumulated over 20 years of rich experiences and resources in the International Entertainment Industry, including but not limit to holding oversea concerts, running an advertising business and investing in big TV Dramas, films and variety shows.

Considering his deep cultural background and resources, he used his deep connections with overseas professional music production and promotion teams to found up the company, Big Picture Universal Group Limited, devoted to creating the best music content and artists in China.

Yngvil Vatn Guttu, Exec Director, Northern Culture Exchange, founding director, Spenard Jazz Fest and co-founder, AKIMI - Alaskan Independent Musician's Initiative (Norway/USA)

Norwegian - born multi-award winning composer and performer Yngvil has degrees in theatre and music from London, UK and New York, USA. She has appeared on Broadway, composed music for Asian mega channel Zee TV and been nominated for the South African Music Awards. Settling in Alaska, YNGVIL recorded jazz albums Akutaq (2010) and Plan B (2011), ran a theatre company, a found object percussion group, and helped start an art center. Her album "On The Crosswalk" charted for 7 weeks in the US & Canada. Yngvil is the Executive Director of an non profit umbrella organization Northern Culture Exchange and founding director of Spenard Jazz Fest, an annual festival for new, original Alaskan music. In 2016, Yngvil co-founded AKIMI - Alaskan Independent Musician's Initiative , with a mission to Develop, Brand and Export Alaskan music. Inclusivity is key for Yngvil's work as a community organizer: “I feel compelled to include people and bring them along with what I do. Working towards my own goals seems more justified when a dozen - or a thousand - people join me on the way.”