As a professional Shanghai yueju cross-dressing performer, Haili joined Shanghai Luwan Yueju Company at the age of 16 and played many leading roles in yueju repertoires. Since coming to the UK, Haili has worked actively to bring yueju – and Chinese opera in general – into the western academic and theatre world. After receiving a 2:1 in English Literature, and an MA in Chinese Business and Asia Pacific Studies (Merit) from the University of Leeds in 2006, Haili was invited to act as an artistic associate and to play a leading role (Song) in DisOrientation. This was a professional collaboration between Shanghai Yueju Theatre and Border Crossings, a London based intercultural performance company. In 2007, in another intercultural performance – Paradise in Strangers’ Heart, specially composed for the Manchester International Festival – Haili sang yueju with a company of international musicians, which received a five starred reviews from the Manchester press.