Rupert Harvey has been studying the martial arts for over forty years. In his long journey in the martial arts he has studied several styles under world class masters, and has achieved instructor ranking in several martial arts systems.
In his pre-teen years, Sifu Harvey studied informally with his older brother Carl Harvey and a group of friends. It was very difficult to find any martial arts clubs back in the 60s, so they set up a training space in a friend’s basement and tried their best to learn from books. After a couple of years, his older brother Carl was accepted to train at a Shotokan dojo. Carl would teach the young Rupert the techniques that he was learning. Rupert would practice fanatically, his dream from early childhood to be like those guys he would watch on the big screen. This was the era of Bruce Lee and the blossoming of martial arts in North America. It was an amazing time. The arts were just starting to come into the mainstream, and every kid wanted to be a Kung-Fu super hero.
In the 70s, Rupert started training in Tae Kwon-do and Wanin-do under Grand Master Kyong Lee and his brother Hyun. He was awarded a black belt after seven years. He continued his training under his senior, Vince Pratchett, and was put in charge of the Tae Kwon-do program at the University of Guelph when Pratchett left to study in China.
In the late 80s, Harvey began to train with Grand Master Mo Chow and his son Sifu Ian Chow in the Choy Lay Fut style. It was through this connection that Harvey met his most influential teachers. Harvey was attending a banquet held by the Chinese Kung-Fu Federation in Toronto, at the time that the television show “Kung Fu: The Legend Continues” was just about to begin filming in the city. It just so happened that Rob Moses, David Carradine‘s personal coach and a Tai Chi Praying Mantis Master, and Mike Vendrell, the stunt coordinator, himself a master of multiple disciplines including Shaolin Chin-na and Yee Chuan, sat at his table. After a night of much conversation and lots of laughter, they both accepted Harvey as their student. Thanks to his teachers, he was able to appear on many episodes of “Kung-Fu: The Legend Continues” as a stunt performer. Rupert also appeared in several other martial arts films including “Talons of The Eagle”, “TC 2000”, “The Killing Machine” and many others.
Rupert was promoted to the rank of Sifu in 1996 by the Tai Mantis Association and is an 11th generation descendant in that lineage. He is also ranked as a 37th generation Northern Shaolin Master.
Sifu Harvey is certified in Shaolin Chin-Na under Grand Master Vendrell. He has also studied Kali (Filipino stick fighting) with him.
Over the years he has also studied qigong with many other masters including Sifu Daisy Lee, Francesco Garripoli, and Grand Master Charles Mardell.
Sifu Harvey has been teaching at the Golden Harmony Kung-Fu Club in Toronto for many years and has established a branch in Virginia under his student Sifu Gordon Wicks.
Sifu had the title of Honorary Overseas President bestowed on him by the Hong Kong Shang Dong Mantis Boxing Association and has a great network of martial arts masters world wide.
Sifu Harvey and Sifu Mike Shaw of London, Ontario are currently working on setting up a Praying Mantis Brotherhood comprising the many styles of Mantis for North America.
Sifu Harvey is the creator of the Walk With Courage Martial Arts Program, a series of hands-on participatory seminars designed to empower women and give them the means of effectively dealing with physical confrontation.
Sifu Rupert Harvey is also a well-known musician that has toured internationally. Some of his music career highlights are appearing on stage at the SkyDome with one of his heroes, Nelson Mandela. Tour dates include shows with the Clash, Frank Zappa, Burning Spear, at the World Youth Festival in Kingston, Jamaica, Long Beach Arena, Lahaina Civic Center Hawaii, and many others. His band Messenjah appeared in the Tom Cruise movie “Cocktail”. He is a Juno winner and is listed in the Canadian Encyclopedia of Pop Music.
Sifu Harvey was instructed, in the age-old tradition, to keep an open mind, focus on and continuously analyze the principles of motion, to learn to adapt and evolve the system further, and teach his students to teach themselves to become inquisitive martial scientists.