Posts Tagged “FISM2009”

As previously reported, The FISM 2009 venue was changed in February, from the newly constructed National Center for the Performing Arts, to the China National Convention Center.

There wasn’t much information about why the change happened, although it did seem to be linked to hotels, and suitability of the venue for close-up. the FISM 2009 site has now put out a open letter explaining the change of venue (bad english preserved!):

Dear magic friends and magic lovers,

FISM World Championship of Magic 2009, to be held from July 26th to 31st, 2009 in Beijing has been under intense preparation. As part of that preparation we have continued to look for a venue that will offer everything anyone attending would love to have available. We believe we have finally found the best location for YOU. The China National Convention Center. Although the firstly proposed venue National Grand Theater is spectacular and fully integrated with facilities, the theater, dealer’s room and lecture room are separate and far away from each other. It is inconvenient for close supervision during the convention. There is no hotel nearby so that participants have to take bus or subway to the venue. Besides, lack of catering utilities in National Grand Theatre also brings much inconvenience to participants.

With suggestions by experts of magic circle and all-around inspection by the Organizing Committee, we finally chose the China National Convention Center as the venue of FISM WCM2009 Beijing. The sole goal of the Organizing Committee is to ensure all the schedule of the magic convention to be carried out smoothly and guarantee all participants has a comfortable and convenient stay during the convention.

China National Convention Center with the investment of 5 billion RMB is the most advanced convention center in Asia. The center is located at the heart of Olympic Green, which is the fastest-developing district in Beijing and environmentally friendly, right next to the Bird Nest (Olympic main stadium in 2008), the Water Cube (National Aquatics Center)and National Gymnasium. It is just 30 minutes to the airport by car. There is a subway station in front of the center and it only takes 20 minutes by subway to the center of Beijing city. The center is connected with one newly-built 4 star and one 5 star hotel. Within walking distance, there are also many hotels of different star.

China National Convention Center will provide the venues for competition, gala show, dealer fair, lecture and banquet. The more important is that it is favorable for close supervision. Besides, the center, which is also equipped with several restaurant and shopping center underground, brings much convenience to participants.

In the late January of 2008, through on-the-spot inspection, International President of FISM Mr. Eric Eswin and International Vice President Mr. Domenico Dante agreed that all-round circumstance of China National Convention Center can meet the FISM WCM’s requests.

The Organizing Committee of the 24th FISM WCM2009 formally announces here: FISM WCM2009 will be held from July 26th till and included 31st, 2009 at China National Convention Center.

To let magic friends learn more about the new venue, further details about it will be released later on If you have any questions or suggestions about the new venue or FISM WCM2009, welcome to contact us! Welcome to register. Early registration guarantees a good seat! Look forward to meeting you in Beijing in 2009.

Also there is an FAQ about the new venue (again bad english preserved):

1.What is true Beijing?

Beijing is a historical and cultural city with modern and fashionable flavors. Welcome to log onto our official website ( to skim over written information with photos. As to some unfriendly and untrue reports of China by some media, we believe that a true Beijing will be seen through the reports from countries’ media during the Olympic Games in August, 2008 and Paralympic Games in September, 2008. These reports will surely diminish your negative concerns.

2.With which venue Beijing bid for hosting FISM WCM2009 on the General Assembly in Stockholm?

On the FISM General Assembly in Stockholm, 2006, Beijing bid for FISM WCM2009 with the planned venue Beijing Exhibition Center and its theater which were built in 1958. Before the bid, FISM delegates were invited to visit the Center twice. Although some delegates were worried about its classic style and capability of air conditioning, most of delegates gave their valuable votes to Beijing.

3.Under what circumstance, Organizing Committee showed a preference to National Grand Theater?

After Beijing won the bid for hosting FISM WCM2009, Organizing Committee has been preparing for the convention. In the meantime, the committee got to know the National Grand Theater which was under construction. Since Beijing Exhibition Center and its theater were built in the 1950’s, the circumstance and facilities are not that modern. To keep the promise of making the convention successful and to offer a better condition for participants from all over the world, Organizing Committee proposed National Grand Theater to be new venue. Then, in October, 2007, Organizing Committee invited FISM delegates and famous magicians from different countries to inspect the newly-built National Grand Theater which will be formally open in December, 2007, and asked for their suggestions and advices.

4.Why does Organizing Committee decide the China National Convention Center as the venue of FISM WCM2009 Beijing?

Although the planned venue National Grand Theater is spectacular and fully integrated with advanced facilities, there are some disadvantages to hold a FISM convention. For instance, the theater is inconvenient for close supervision, lack of catering utilities and lack of hotels within walking distance. Therefore, with these professional suggestions by those FISM delegates and famous magicians, Organizing Committee searched for a better venue and finally found that China National Convention Center under construction met nearly all the requirements. To successfully hold FISM WCM2009, the Organizing Committee wants to use a venue which is more suitable for WCM. The committee have paid great efforts and done a great deal of work to reach the goal. The changes are, in fact, to choose ceaselessly newly-built and better conditioned venue with the fast developing of Beijing construction work. The new venue will be better than the previous one and more convenient for registrants. It surely will be accepted by the participants.

5.How is China National Convention Center?

China National Convention Center, with the investment of 5 billion RMB (3 billion by National Grand Theatre), is the most advanced convention center in China and even in Asia. The center is located at the heart of Olympic Green, which is the fastest-developing district in Beijing and environmentally friendly, right next to the Bird Nest (Olympic main stadium in 2008), the Water Cube (Olympic swimming center) and National Gymnasium. It is just 30 minutes drive to the airport. There is subway station at the front of the center gate and it is convenient to get to the downtown and places of great interest by subway. The center is connected with one newly-built 4 star and one 5 star hotel. There are also many hotels within walking distance. For detailed information, please log onto their website:

6.For the registered participants, what can they do if they have any doubts or difficulties concerning the changing of the venue?

Registrants, who still have questions about the venue or need help from Organizing Committee, could contact Organizing Committee Office by email, fax or telephone. To get the detailed contact information, please log onto the FISM official website.

So there you have it… Magic Unlimited and TheCuso also have posts on the news..

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FISM is the Olympics of the Magic world, I went to my first one in 2006 and thoroughly enjoyed it. The next one is scheduled for Beijing, China, and I’m keen to attend again. Each country hoping to host the FISM convention has to create a case, and bid for the honor of hosting the event, in 2006 it was down to three, one of which was China.

I think one of the major points for the Beijing bid was the use of the newly constructed National Center for the Performing Arts, a mammoth $400 million titanium and glass half dome. Housing a concert hall, opera house and theatre under one space, the venue looked amazing, and really seemed like a great home for FISM 2009.

However reading an email on the Electronic Grymoire last night, and checking the FISM 2009 site, it seems there has been a quiet change of venue..

New Venue for the FISM World Championships of Magic 2009 in Beijing

After multiple discussions about the best venue to host the 2009 event in Beijing, Mr Lin Jian, President of the organising committee has proposed to drop the National Grand Theatre in favour of the China National Convention Centre, in the heart of the Olympic Green in the North of Beijing.

Reserves and concerns expressed over the initial venue on Tianenmen square were the difficulty to organise a compact event with great distances between the different rooms (dealer fair, competitions, lectures, etc.) and the lack of hotels nearby.

The China National Convention Centre, which is to be home of the modern Pentathlon as well as the broadcast centre for the 2008 Beijing Olympic games, will allow a much more intimate event. Further details about the new venue will be released later on

This news is actually not on the main FISM front page, and is almost shown to be an after thought, raising for me some questions. Firstly did the venue have problems to start off with (lack of nearby hotels, venue too large?), and if it did, then why was it selected ? and secondly, each country bidding for FISM had to make a case for it’s selection. Delegates from around the world were shown the National Grand Theatre as part of the site inspection, and based on inspections and ability to give FISM a good home, Beijing got the vote.

Changing the venue with less than 18 months to go sounds very worrying, the majority of Beijing’s bid was around the ultra modern and sophisticated new performance venue.

We know very little about the replacement The China National Convention Centre and it’s my guess that no site inspection has taken place of this venue. I hope the FISM main committee will be updating us on the changes..

UPDATE: Magic Unlimited (Tim Ellis and Sue-Anne Webber) are also now reporting on this, and shed a little more light on the subject:

Though no official word has come out yet, it appears that the FISM 2009 convention in Beijing has moved to a newer and possibly more practical venue (with a hotel right next door!). You can take a look at the Chinese National Convention Centre and take a ‘virtual tour’ of it right here.

Having a hotel right next door sounds good, but with no official word, except the snippet on the FISM main media site, it makes arrange hotels a little more complex. It’s good news if the venue is more practical, but the Chinese National Convention Center site is all in Chinese,  so it’s not that enlightening!!

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