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Mao's Last Dancer wows the 2013 MercyCare Oration audience

The inspirational Li Cunxin proved his magic extends far beyond the ballet stage when he wove his spell over 500 guests at the 2013 MercyCare Oration in September.

Distinguished guests joined high profile West Australians including His Excellency, Governor Malcolm McCusker, Tony Simpson MLA representing the Premier Colin Barnett, and Bishop Donald Spoxton VG, representing the Archbishop, to hear Li’s amazing story.

Li recounted his incredible life story to the audience, sharing personal photos and anecdotal stories while deftly switching between the humorous and the heartbreaking.

It was one of triumph and success in the face of insurmountable adversity, as chronicled in his phenomenally successful biography Mao’s Last Dancer which was adapted to the screen as a box office hit in 2009.

MercyCare Chief Executive Officer Chris Hall drew parallels between Li’s tales of discipline, resilience, determination and perseverance and MercyCare’s own history, traditions and values.

“We were thrilled Li Cunxin travelled from his home in Queensland to join us at the 2013 MercyCare Oration,” he said.

“I don’t think there was a single person in the audience who wasn’t touched by Li’s incredible Oration, as I believe we all have lessons to learn from Li’s inspiring story about the importance of faith, self-belief and perseverance.

“Many times we hear, or see, stories of people and children suffering extreme disadvantage, whether it be poverty, starvation, displacement or abuse. Yet, all too often, we tend to see the problem, not the person.

“Li’s story, highlighted the person behind the circumstance, and expressed magnificently, what can be achieved when a person’s full potential is allowed to shine. We are lucky enough to see many similar stories lived out each day, as patients, residents and clients of MercyCare go to amazing lengths to change their lives.

“Li’s story resonates deeply with MercyCare’s guiding vision to achieve wellbeing, dignity and justice for all parts of the community, and as such I think we can safely say he was a perfect choice for our 2013 Oration.

Mr Hall extended special thanks to all MercyCare’s Corporate Partners and Sponsors who attended the Oration.


  Premier Partners  
Catholic Super HT Datacom
  Corporate and Print Partners  
Seniors Own Com Bank Worldwide


Mr Li Cunxin appears by arrangement with Saxton Speakers Bureau