BAFTA Breakthrough China Ambassador Tom Hiddleston, BAFTA Chief Executive Amanda Berry and fashionista Natasha Lau attend VIP launch event held at The Peninsula Shanghai

The Peninsula Hotels is proud to partner with world-leading independent arts charity BAFTA (the British Academy of Film and Television Arts) on the launch of their new programme ‘BAFTA Breakthrough China’ – an initiative designed to identify and nurture the next generation of creative talent in Asia, and encourage mutual collaboration between practitioners.

The inaugural programme was launched last night at a star-studded event held at the historical No. 1 Waitanyuan, a former British Consulate building managed and operated by The Peninsula Shanghai. In attendance was actor Tom Hiddleston, BAFTA Chief Executive Amanda Berry and Asian fashionista Natasha Lau, as well as representatives of The Peninsula Hotels.

Identifying and nurturing new talent

 Each year, a ‘BAFTA Breakthrough China’ jury of industry notables will identify up to five on and off-screen talented newcomers recognised for having had a breakthrough year. Those selected will in turn join a year-long mentoring and guidance programme, which also involves access to BAFTA events and networking opportunities in the UK and internationally. Supporters of the UK version of the initiative – BAFTA Breakthrough Brits, which has been running since 2013 – include actors Olivia Colman and Tilda Swinton, actor-producer Brad Pitt, directors Tom Harper and Barry Jenkins, game designers Brenda Romero and Tim Schafer, and actor-writers Sharon Horgan and Amy Schumer. BAFTA will offer similar opportunities through BAFTA Breakthrough China, with access to British, Chinese and international industry figures.

BAFTA Breakthrough China is in partnership with Yu Holdings and supported by Official Partners – The Peninsula Hotels and Champagne Taittinger.

“Partnering with BAFTA to support the success of up-and-coming talent in Asia is an inspiring endeavour that we are honoured to support,” said Peter Borer, Chief Operating Officer of The Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels, Limited, owner and operator of The Peninsula Hotels. “Mentorship, training and encouraging industry progression are fundamentals held dear by The Peninsula, and we felt that this particular programme was a wonderful opportunity to help foster success in the wider community.”

This inherent desire to reach the highest possible standards led to The Peninsula Hotels being named the first and only hotel brand to achieve a Forbes Five-Star rating across its entire portfolio earlier this year.

Speaking of the partnership with the luxury hotel brand, Amanda Berry, BAFTA’s Chief Executive said: “Both The Peninsula Hotels – a company founded in Asia – and BAFTA are dedicated to developing and supporting the highest calibre of talent in their respective fields.  With our shared vision and values they are the perfect Hotel Partner for BAFTA Breakthrough China.”

Heritage and innovation

No stranger to the arts, the partnership with BAFTA is the latest in a long history of The Peninsula Hotels supporting and promoting the rich and vibrant cultural aspects of the destination cities in which the luxury brand resides.

In a continuation of the group’s ethos of innovation, The Peninsula Hotels recently launched ‘Art in Resonance,’ a multi-year contemporary art programme that serves to commission work from artists who are poetically pushing the boundaries of their mediums. With a prime motivator behind the programme being to provide guests and visitors access to art that’s designed to inspire and enchant, ‘Art in Resonance’ reflects a deeper commitment from The Peninsula Hotels to engage with the artistic sphere – not only as a venue, but as an originator and innovator of culture.