Chinese Fan Tells Shen Yun: ‘I Hope One Day, I Can Watch the Performance in China’

May 14, 2023

NEW YORK CITY, N.Y.—It’s a mission that spans around the globe, but currently stops at the gates of communist China.

New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts, the world’s premier classical Chinese dance company, has wrapped up its 2023 touring season.

The group travels to over 200 cities around the world every year in an effort to revive China’s 5,000 years of traditional culture. But Shen Yun is not allowed to perform in China. Information about the performance is also strictly censored on China’s state-controlled internet.

So for many audience members that hail from the mainland, 2023 was their first time seeing Shen Yun.

Daniel Zhai had heard about Shen Yun while in China but was only able to see the live performance after coming to America.

“Mindblowing, really mindblowing,” Zhai said of Shen Yun’s performance in Purchase, New York, “Watching the performance reminded me of the feeling of seeing the spring water on the Huang mountain—very, very traditional.

“Being able to see a performance of this level … I really … I would say, first of all, us Chinese people should come see it, because you won’t be able to in China.”

Mr. Huang, a Chinese student pursuing studies in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, told NTD he was shocked by Shen Yun’s performance.

“I’ve lived in China for 20 years since I was born, and I have seen performances like the state-controlled broadcaster’s New Year Gala. But none of them can compare to Shen Yun.

“I feel this is the real traditional Chinese culture,” he said.

Some like Mr. Luo, from San Jose, California, wiped away tears after watching a dance story about spiritual seekers holding onto their faith despite persecution by China’s modern-day ruling communist party.

“I cried after seeing the story about [Chinese authorities] harvesting a girl’s organs, her heart, because I know it’s real,” he said. “Some western audiences may think it’s just a fictional story, they don’t know [it’s real]. Because I have real lived experience [in China].”

Mr. Luo added that he has a relative who practices the spiritual belief Falun Gong and who was arrested and beaten up for his belief. “He was lucky in that his organs weren’t harvested, because his bloodtype didn’t match with people looking for organ transplants. But he was detained and beaten up. So I know it’s real.”

Falun Gong is a meditation discipline that teaches living in accordance with the universal principles of truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance. It has also been the target of a Chinese Communist Party (CCP) persecution campaign for the past two decades.

Millions of practitioners have been thrown in jail simply for their faith and tortured. More than 4,000 are confirmed to have been killed, although the number is sadly believed to be magnitudes higher, with an unclear number becoming victims of forced organs harvesting—murdered for their organs by China’s state-sanctioned organ transplant market for profit.

“Tears rolled down my face while I was watching the story [about Falun Gong], from start to finish.” said Ms. Wan after watching Shen Yun in Boston, Massachusetts. “I’m not a practitioner, but I’ve heard about the persecution while inside China.”

A patron urged more people to speak out about Beijing’s human rights abuses.

“If we can’t stop the Chinese regime from doing just whatever it wants, every single one of us—regardless of whether we’re in the East or West—will be the victims. So we must speak out for justice, and declare war on the evil,” Mr. Luo said.

Shen Yun’s mission is to revive China’s 5,000 years of traditional culture—one that’s almost been destroyed under the imported communist ideology and its atheistic world view.

Chen Zhengmin, a Chinese student in California, said the destruction of China’s traditional culture was a great national loss suffered under the rule of the CCP.

“I was born in Nanjing, a very ancient city. There was a lot of ancient architecture in my city, but the CCP smashed them all.”

Others have a more positive outlook. “It’s a shame for the Chinese people that this culture has been destroyed by Beijing,” Mr. Huang said from Pittsburgh. “But I believe the CCP will collapse, and we will see a renaissance of traditional Chinese culture.”

Many patrons said they’re proud of Shen Yun for their efforts to revive China’s traditional culture.

“Shen Yun really loves China,” Daniel Zhai said. “Of course, it doesn’t love the communist party, and because of that, the CCP doesn’t allow this art company to perform. This is the CCP’s shame.

“The CCP is the real traitor … The CCP needs to get out of China. This is what I want to say.”

Others say they have a wish for Shen Yun.

“[Shen Yun’s] performers are excellent, and I really hope that one day, they will bring the performance to a stage in Beijing,” Pinky said after watching Shen Yun perform at the Lincoln Center in New York.

“I hope that one day, I can quietly—without interference, freely, feeling relaxed and happy—watch Shen Yun with my family in China.” Mr. Luo added, saying that he knows it may take a long time before that day arrives but he believes it will.

NTD News, New York