Cathy Barbash


Contact Information

[email protected]


New York, New York

Early Music Skills & Interests


Early Music Affiliations

Advocate, Board Member -Other


For over 25 years, Cathy Barbash has been a specialist in cultural diplomacy, creative industry development, and an independent producer, working with the People’s Republic of China and the Republic of Cuba. She received a 2015 Silver Magnolia Award from the Shanghai government in recognition of her longtime contributions to the economic and social development of the city, and the 2018 Patrick Hayes Award from the International Society for the Performing Arts, in recognition of her transformative leadership in the performing arts.

China-related projects include New York’s 2015-2020 Chinese New Year fireworks; touring vertical dance company Bandaloop to Shanghai and Macao; creating The Philadelphia Orchestra’s China residency program; and touring Native American performers to Inner Mongolia, Yunnan, and Beijing.   She was the lead architect of the Philadelphia Orchestra’s current China tour/residency project. In December 2018, she participated in a National Committee on U.S.-China Relations panel discussing the trajectory of 40 years of U.S.-China formal diplomatic relations.

In 2016 and 2017, Barbash participated in the Primera Linea Havana International Music Forum, and lectured at La Unión de Escritores y Artistas de Cuba. She also toured traditional Native American performer Kevin Locke to Cuba and brought the Ted Nash Trio to the Festival Jazz Plaza Havana in January 2018. In March 2018, she brought the El Ciervo Encantado theater company for performances and classes in New York City. Since 2019 she has advised Cuban companies El Ciervo Encantado, Ludi Teatro, Trébol Teatro, and Paso a Paso Dance Theater on cultural industry infrastructure development and international marketing.

Barbash has spent over 30 years managing and consulting to organizations including The Philadelphia Orchestra, the United States Department of State, The President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, The Ministry of Culture of the People’s Republic of China, Arts Midwest, The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, The Juilliard School, Nederlander Worldwide Entertainment, China Shanghai International Arts Festival, and the China National Centre for the Performing Arts. A graduate of Harvard University, Barbash has served on the boards of the International Society for the Performing Arts, Ping Chong & Company, and City Contemporary Dance Company (Hong Kong), and Teatro Yerbabruja. She is a member of the International Advisory Council of the Shanghai Jewish Refugee Museum and the National Committee on United States-China Relations.



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