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Archive for the ‘the Chinese Spectacular’ Category

Divine Performing Arts’ Classical Chinese Culture Show Warms Up Chicago

Posted by Author on December 29, 2008


By Lisa Sim, Epoch Times Staff, Dec 27, 2008 –

CHICAGO— Chicago saw its first show of the Divine Performing Arts 2009 World Tour on Saturday afternoon, while temperatures in the city rose to the mid-50F, nearly 70 degrees higher than last week.

Mr. Stuart, owner of a construction company based in Wichita, Kansas brought his family to see the show after it was highly recommended by a tour guide from a large credit card company.

“Just awesome, just awesome!” said Mr. Stuart, saying the show was very interactive with the screen and the performers.

Mr. Stuart’s daughter Ashley, who is 12 years old and has been taking ballet for nine years, said she really liked the show a lot, especially the dancing. Her favorite was the opening act The Five Millennia Begin and The Monkey King Triumphs.

“I would definitely come to see the show again.”

Memories of Tibet

Ms. Bansa, who owns a day care center in Roger’s Park area of Chicago, said she wished she had been able to bring all one hundred and one children at her center to see the show.

Having traveled to Tibet with her husband, she said she really appreciated the Dance of the Snow-Capped Mountain, adding, “All the dances and the beautiful costumes just bring back memories for us. The mountains and the peace.”

Based in New York, the DPA was founded in 2006 with the purpose of rediscovering the true cultural heritage of China.

The DPA New York Company will hold one more performance in Chicago, at 2pm Sunday December 28.

The Epoch Times is a proud sponsor of the Divine Performing Arts 2009 World Tour.

Please see DivinePerformingArts.org for more information.

Posted in all Hot Topic, China, Chinese Culture, Culture, Dance, Event, News, the Chinese Spectacular, USA, World | 2 Comments »

Audiences Regret the Cancellation of ‘Chinese Spectacular’ Show by Malaysia Government

Posted by Author on April 1, 2008


Epoch Times Staff, Mar 31, 2008-Audience members asked for the reason why the performances were cancelled.

March 24-The Malaysian government, under the pressure from Chinese Embassy to the Ministry of Culture, Arts and Heritage, cancelled the Divine Performing Arts performances that were originally scheduled on March 22 and 23 at Kuala Lumpur Convention Center.

(Photo: Audience members asked for the reason why the performances were cancelled.)

NTDTV Global Media Network Malaysia, the organizer of the Divine Performing ArtsMs. Lee show, explained the situation to the public at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre after the event was forced to cancel.

Even though the event organizer advertised on newspapers and held a press conference to inform the public of the cancellation a week ago, some audience members still arrived at the Center around 6 p.m. on the scheduled night. The audience members were not only from all around Malaysia, but from other countries as well. They felt sorry and disappointed at the forced cancellation of the show.

(Photo right: Ms. Lee: “I think the Chinese Spectacular show is the pride of Chinese people in the world.”)

Chinese Tourists Made a Special Trip to Watch the Show

Three tourists from China arrived at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre around 7pm on 22nd. They made a special trip just to watch the show, and rushed to the Center evenMs. Ling with their suitcases. They were very disappointed when they were told the performance was canceled.

One of the tourists, Ling Li, said she got to know about the Divine Performing Arts show from the Internet, and had always hoped to see it. Due to the inconvenience, she bought the ticket late. She found the best seats had been sold out when she was ordering her ticket. She then realized that the Divine Performing Arts show is so popular. Therefore, she rushed to buy the ticket, because she thought it was very likely that the tickets would be sold out in several days.

(Photo right: Ms. Ling: “The Chinese Communist Party makes too many enemies in the world for interfering a wonderful performance like this.”)

‘It’s very disappointing’

“I came here very early today. I have been waiting for three hours already. I’m very disappointed to hear that the show has been cancelled. Really, I’ve been looking forward to watching the Divine Performing Arts show. It is so popular in the world, and I want to find out why. I really want to watch the show, and compare it with other shows,” said Ling Li in an interview:

“I don’t understand why it was cancelled. So many people want to see it. I just met a Chinese couple who came all the way from Melbourne to watch the show, and I got the cancellation news from them. This is very disappointing.”

She said:” I just hope the Chinese government wouldn’t do this any more. You should allow everyone to have the freedom of expression if you want harmony in the society or the world.”

‘Tourists will lose confidence in our government’Joanne, an executive director in a logistics company, brought her mother from Perak state to watch the Chinese Spectacular.

Joanne, from Port Klang, Malaysia, is the executive director of the Universal Logistic Agency. On the night of the 22nd, she specially brought her mother from Perak to watch the Divine Performing Arts performance. She said in the interview, “As a member of the audience, I am very disappointed to hear what happened. I feel ashamed for Malaysia.”

(photo: Joanne and his mother)

“They arrived from all around the world to watch this show and to explore the tourist sites of Malaysia. Because of the unfortunate events that happened, however, I feel that tourists will lose confidence in our government.”

‘I hope that Divine Performing Arts will return to Malaysia soon’

Mrs. Xu from Petaling Jaya says that she was so mesmerized by the beautiful advertisement for Divine Performing Arts performance that she saw a month ago that she immediately bought tickets. However, she was very disappointed when she found out that the show she had been so longing to see was cancelled. She felt that she could not wait until next year to watch the show.

“I hope that Divine Performing Arts will return to Malaysia soon.” She said. Finally, Mrs. Xu took a few copies of special newspaper issues featuring Divine Performing Arts as souvenirs for her neighbours and herself.

Taken Leave Especially to See the ShowMs. Chitra B. Devnani

A mother and daughter from India flew to Malaysia to attend the Divine Performing Arts performance. Chitra B. Devnani said in her interview, “I came to Malaysia especially to watch the show. I felt that Malaysia was a beautiful place that was worth touring and attending a show at. I had no idea that something like this would happen, and feel deeply heartbroken that it did happen. My daughter even took a leave of absence just for the show.”

(photo above: Mrs. Chitra B. Devnani)

Dutch Family Planning to Attend ShowHeise Family from Holland

The Heises’ are a Dutch family of five. The grandparents arrived from the Netherlands to attend the show with their daughter and two grandchildren on the 23rd. They were deeply disappointed when they learned the show has been cancelled.

(photo: Heise Family from Holland: [R-L] Grandfather, Daughter, Grandmother in front of the ticket refund counter.)

‘This Show is the pride of the Chinese’

Li Ximin is a businesswoman from Kuala Lumpur, who remarked during her interview, “I feel that this would have been a marvellous performance, having learned Chinese dance myself. This is also an example of Chinese tradition and is the pride of the Chinese. I feel that it is very unfortunate that the show has been canceled.”

Malaysian Issues Apology but No Permit

On March 26, the Malaysia Ministry of Culture, Arts and Heritage apologized to the organizer and audiences for the cancellation of Divine Performing Arts Chinese Spectacular shows in Kuala Lumpur. The Ministry published an open statement through the mainstream newspapers, explaining the reasons behind the cancellation.

However, the Ministry refused to issue the performance permit to the organizer despite the apology to the audience members.

For information about upcoming Divine Performing Arts shows, please visit:
www.DivinePerformingArts.org.
The Epoch Times is a proud sponsor of the Chinese Spectacular. For our complete coverage please visit:
http://en.epochtimes.com/features/dpa2008/

Original report from The Epochtimes

Related:
Malaysia Cancelled Chinese Culture Show Under Pressure from Communist China

Posted in all Hot Topic, Asia, China, Chinese Culture, Culture, Event, Incident, News, Politics, Social, the Chinese Spectacular, World | Comments Off on Audiences Regret the Cancellation of ‘Chinese Spectacular’ Show by Malaysia Government

Czech Audience Praises ‘Chinese Spectacular’ Show For Exposing Communist Suppression

Posted by Author on March 12, 2008


By Marco T’Hoen, Epoch Times Staff, Mar 11, 2008-

PRAGUE, Czech Republic—The Chinese Spectacular may be a thorn to the Chinese communist regime, but one audience member at the Prague performance praised the show for exactly what the dictatorship resents.

Susanna Hrotkova, who works at Maitrea, a holistic education company in Prague, attended Divine Performing Arts’ Chinese Spectacular on Tuesday at the Prague Congress Center.

“It is a very nice show, and the performances overall looked very delicate,” said Hrotkova.

“I liked the real beauty of the show. Like the flowers, and the colorful things in the skies, like rainbows and stars. Such wonderful and beautiful things.”

Hrotkova said she also enjoyed the Chinese music, which was often “very gentle sounding.”

“It was very dynamic performance.”

Like in other cities, the Chinese Embassy in the Czech Republic attempted to interfere with the Prague presentation of the Spectacular. The interference included letters to politicians and an ad on the front page of a Chinese newspaper telling Chinese people not to attend the show.

That interference became public knowledge after the embassy sent a letter to the largest television station in the country asking it not to attend the Spectacular. Instead, the host of a popular morning show revealed the letter to the entire country while interviewing two of the Spectacular’s performers.

Hrotkova hadn’t seen the morning show but had no doubts the communist regime would try to interfere with the Spectacular.

“I guess that the current Chinese government doesn’t like good, traditional things,” she said.

“I believe that they would not want other people to see it because of the show’s history. They had the Cultural Revolution in China for the purpose of getting rid of all China’s previous traditions and values. They were against all culture; they wanted people to dress the same as everybody else. This show is completely the opposite. It is so colorful and very nice.”

The Spectacular will hold its final Prague performance Wednesday before continuing the European portion of its global tour with dates in Berlin and Stockholm.

For information about upcoming Divine Performing Arts shows, please visit: www.DivinePerformingArts.org

The Epoch Times is a proud sponsor of the Chinese Spectacular. For our complete coverage please visit: http://en.epochtimes.com/features/dpa2008/

Posted in all Hot Topic, Artists, China, Chinese Culture, Culture, Czech, Dance, Entertainment, Europe, Event, Life, News, People, Politics, shows, Spiritual, the Chinese Spectacular, tradition, World | Comments Off on Czech Audience Praises ‘Chinese Spectacular’ Show For Exposing Communist Suppression

Comment: Profound Inner Meaning of Chinese New Year Spectacular Show

Posted by Author on February 19, 2008


By Wang Yifeng, Secret China (in Chinese), Via the Epochtimes, Feb 13, 2008-Tang Boqiao

Dr. Tang Boqiao, Chairman of China Peace and Democracy Federation saw New Tang Dynasty TV’s Chinese New Year Splendor at Radio City Music Hall in New York City. The following are his thoughts on the performance:

Chinese New Year Splendor by Divine Performing Arts has a very profound inner meaning. The show has emerged in the special contemporary milieu from three major environmental issues—the evil-natured Chinese Communist Party (CCP), its brutal persecution of Falun Gong in China and the morally bankrupt human society.

“The first major issue is the CCP—an evil organization. It is not limited to just the Party, but communism in general. This evil spirit invaded China all the way from Europe; however, it must be disintegrated, yet it must end in China.

(photo: Mr. Tang Boqiao)

“The second major issue involves the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners. Since July 1999, the Chinese regime has applied state terrorism in its genocide of Falun Gong practitioners.

“The third one is the overall descending of moral standards and values in society. This downhill slide isn’t occurring only in China, it also affects the entire world.

“If one can see this show in the light of the prevailing social context, one will be able to appreciate the important message the directors and performers are conveying to human society.”

Infinite Power of Compassion

“The first message the show tries to convey is that the power of compassion is infinite. The wicked CCP possesses a strong military force, atomic bombs, several million armed police. Its judiciary system, including its penal system and its court system, and its persecution over Chinese people has reached an extreme. However, it appears strong but is inwardly weak. When this powerful regime meets with the power of compassion, it will become extremely infirm. The people who have strong belief in the power of good are invincible after all. The power of compassion is unimaginable and immeasurable.

“The past 5,000 years have been a contest between the righteous and evil. With the evil conduct of the Chinese communist regime in the last decade, this struggle has reached a pinnacle. The CCP’s brutal persecution of Falun Gong has resulted in millions of Falun Gong practitioners being unlawfully persecuted to various extents and degrees, including the deaths of over 3,100 practitioners.

“Compared to the CCP, Falun Gong practitioners and overseas pro-democracy activists used to be pretty weak. But now the situation has changed. In the future—in a century or millennium—when people look back, they will be moved by this period of time. Because one will see the history of one winning over 10, one winning over 100, or even 1,000; the weak force winning over the strong force, kindness winning over evil.

“Jiang Zemin once vowed to thoroughly eradicate Falun Gong within three months. At the time, the entire world didn’t think that Falun Gong could withstand such a persecution. After all this time, the world has come to truly respect Falun Gong. In this battle between good and evil, the tide is turning, now is the time for good to thoroughly triumph over evil.

“This is just like the segment of the show titled ‘The Power of Awareness.’ This particular segment made me unable to hold back tears because that was the rally of human hearts. Although the communist side has electric batons and other tools of pain, eventually it becomes powerless in face of compassion.

“You must understand the message the show conveys so as to be able to understand what it truly expresses—the power of compassion. The majority of people can accept this idea of compassion, but perhaps a small number can’t. Those who’ve been too deeply poisoned by the Party culture have difficulties accepting this right away, but it doesn’t matter. I myself went through a slow process of realization as well.

“The power of compassion is the strongest. Once there is compassion, it can pass, spread, expand and grow. This is known as conquering the unyielding with the yielding and overcoming evil with good.”

An Unusual Effect for a Two-hour Show

“I went to see the Holiday Wonders show with a professor from Beijing University. He did not know much about Falun Gong and had a lot of misunderstandings and negative thoughts about it. He said things like, ‘How could Falun Gong contend with the CCP? It is so flimsy.’

“However, after seeing ‘The Power of Awareness,’ which ended with people driving the evil men out of the park, he was profoundly shocked. ‘Wow! Is Falun Gong going to fight the CCP back?’ he asked. He felt the CCP was coming to an end. The two-hour show made him draw this conclusion. Watching the show, he saw Falun Gong’s righteousness and people’s determination to stop the persecution. He truly understood that the CCP would be crushed.

“Two hours can indeed profoundly change a person. He said, ‘Wow! Falun Gong is going to fight back. The CCP will be roundly defeated.'”

The Artistic Expression and Realm are Remarkable

“I also want to talk about the performers. They have combined their moral character, realm of mind and great self-control into their art.

“One important aspect is the sense of beauty revealed by the two-hour show. I felt the power of justice, compassion and the human spirit—elements that society needs for survival. This production reaches a relatively high realm in every aspect, but not merely through talent or artistic training. Once a work of art has reached a certain realm, technique or skill does not mean nearly as much as the moral character and discipline it embodies.

“Judging from the angle of performance, I felt the show was not merely for entertainment. Artistically speaking, the show is a unity of form and spirit.”

The Performers Do Not Intend to Highlight the Individual, but Portray Profound Inner Beauty

“As you watch the Divine Performing Arts performers dancing, you will find a spirit in them. I have examined every performer carefully and was quite convinced of this. You can see they have the same background as if they have received the same education. Being exposed to the same information, their souls are the same. There was no attempt to highlight any individual. Their intention was to express the spirit. It is a sharp contrast to all other performances, in which everyone strives to standout.

“If their intentions were merely for entertainment, they would strive for order and skill, but here they want to express a certain realm of mind. Let me draw an analogy: A Ph. D degree holder and an elementary school degree holder perhaps look the same on the surface, but their words and behavior can reveal the difference of their knowledge, discipline and disposition.

“The Divine Performing Arts possess an inner beauty which is extremely profound. You will never find it in another performing company.”

Report from the Epochtimes

Posted in all Hot Topic, China, Chinese Culture, Culture, Entertainment, Life, Music, News, Opinion, Politics, shows, Social, Spiritual, the Chinese Spectacular, World | Comments Off on Comment: Profound Inner Meaning of Chinese New Year Spectacular Show

The New York Times Parrots Chinese Communist Party’s Line (2)

Posted by Author on February 15, 2008


By John Nania and Jason Loftus, Epoch Times Staff, Feb 14, 2008-

 (cont’dPrevious

Audience Paints a Different Picture

While the criticisms of Splendor gained airtime in the pro-CCP press, they were not echoed by a growing number who came to see the show.

In fact, many were aware of, and critical of, the NY Times piece.

“It certainly did not dissuade us from coming,” said Mr. Ron Sablosky, a banker and executive vice president of Business Outsourcing Solutions. “I don’t think it should dissuade anyone, because it really is highly unfair. And it might even be construed as unethical.”

Mr. Charles Liu, who works at the New York Freedom Times, called the story “terribly one-sided.”

But attendance at the shows after the article ran was not diminished by the critical article. If anything, it was boosted, according to NTDTV.

Ms. Penny Cohn, an account executive and building manager, had read the NY Times article and noted, “In fact, it piqued my curiosity.”

“And not only that, it had a lot of space, too. I was quite intrigued with the amount of space it was given, I have to confess that.”

According to surveys done of the audience, 95 percent gave a positive response, and the shows of Splendor at Radio City Music Hall frequently earned standing ovations.

Ms. Valentina Alexis, a former ballerina with the Moscow ballet company, said, “I am shocked, I am just completely shocked—but shocked in a fabulous way. It amazed me. I think it’s the best show that I ever saw—the best.”

The two dances that portray the persecution of Falun Gong, “The Risen Lotus Flower” and “The Power of Awareness,” were often mentioned by audience members as their favorites.

Mr. Amerigo Fabbri, dean of Pierson College and professor of modernist literature at Yale University, talked about “The Risen Lotus Flower.”

“You have the three women in prison and how one of them gives her life for the other two, these are great, great elements of the culture that are certainly conveyed by the show,” he said.

On his overall impression, Fabbri said, “The show is spectacular, I mean amazing. They’re doing a great job bringing together the history of Chinese culture. The sound effects, the visual effects, the special effects, the singing, and the dancing is just amazing.”

The Epoch Times Web site has a special page for audience response to Splendor, at http://en.epochtimes.com/features/dpa2008/city/New+York.html.

Apparently, the New York public did not believe the article’s portrayal that the show was rejected by its audience. The final performance of Splendor on Feb. 9 was sold out, and Splendor closed New York to another standing ovation.

Attempts to Silence

At each stop on the Divine Performing Arts worldwide tour, the show faces pressure from Chinese embassy and consulate staff who work to persuade advertisers and theaters not to accept the show, and audience members to stay away.

Last year, The Epoch Times obtained a document originating from China’s State Administration of Radio, Film and Television. Marked “highly confidential,” the document outlined the regime’s efforts to derail the NTDTV shows.

“The leadership of the central government has ordered that they [the NTDTV shows] be destroyed by any and all means,” said the document, which was dated Dec. 16, 2003, when NTDTV was preparing its first Chinese New Year show.

If that was not possible, orders were to “minimize their impact,” the document said.

In the United States politicians have received letters from the Chinese consulate pressuring them not to attend shows performed by Divine Performing Arts.

Last year in Seoul the Chinese embassy pressured two theaters to terminate their contracts with the show. A similar incident has taken place this year in Denmark.

The Chinese Embassy in Sweden made a similar effort but Swedish officials staunchly refused to cater to the communist regime. A municipal chairman described the embassy’s request that the show be stopped as “astonishing.”

Last year, when Divine Performing Arts held a Chinese New Year show in Ottawa, Mr. Glenn McGregor, a reporter with the local Ottawa Citizen newspaper, wrote following a very similar formula as the NY Times piece. Although he hadn’t attended the show, McGregor quoted three people who said they attended and were upset with the Falun Gong content. He also gave prominence in the story to the Chinese embassy’s criticisms of the show.

Clearly earning the trust of the Chinese Embassy, McGregor was invited by the embassy on an expenses-paid trip to China to probe allegations of serious human rights abuses against Falun Gong adherents and ended up writing in defense of the regime.

The Epoch Times attempted to reach The New York Times for comment on this story, but representatives from the newspaper did not return the call by press time.

The Epoch Times is a proud sponsor of the Divine Performing Arts tour. For our complete coverage please visit: http://en.epochtimes.com/features/dpa2008/

<<  The New York Times Parrots Chinese Communist Party’s Line (1)

Original report from the Epochtimes

Posted in all Hot Topic, China, Chinese Culture, Culture, Dance, Entertainment, Event, Incident, Life, Media, Music, News, Newspaper, shows, the Chinese Spectacular, USA, World | Comments Off on The New York Times Parrots Chinese Communist Party’s Line (2)

The New York Times Parrots Chinese Communist Party’s Line (1)

Posted by Author on February 15, 2008


By John Nania and Jason Loftus, Epoch Times Staff, Feb 14, 2008-Audience in the Chinese New year Splendor

NEW YORK—The theater was packed, the crowd gave a standing ovation, and audience members raved in interviews after the show. But The New York Times claimed instead in a story last week that as many as “hundreds” were flocking to the exit doors by intermission.

(photo: audience in the Chinese New Year Splendor show)

Chinese New Year Splendor played 15 shows at New York’s famed Radio City Music Hall, ending with a sold-out final performance on the evening of Feb. 9. The response to the show, confirmed by The Epoch Times reporters in over 1,000 interviews with audience members, was overwhelmingly positive.

One of those interviews was with John Wright, formerly with the NY Times own book review department. When asked what he thought of the show, Wright said, “It was very beautiful, very different.”

But the NY Times published on Feb. 6 a peculiar review of Splendor (under the byline of Eric Konigsberg) that did anything but suggest the consensus response. Backed with quotes from all of three audience members who were critical, only one of whom gave his or her full name, the NY Times proclaimed in its headline, “A Glimpse of Chinese Culture That Some Find Hard to Watch.”

The selection of audience reactions was not all that was questionable. Epoch Times reporters on-site saw nothing to support a claim that hundreds had left the show early, and organizers say the claim was not true.

What made the NY Times article even more unusual was that its criticisms mimic the line of China’s communist regime, which has engaged in a behind-the-scenes campaign to have Splendor shut down.

Culture and Persecution

Put on by Divine Performing Arts as part of a world-wide tour, Chinese New Year Splendor presents traditional Chinese culture through dance and music. The show conveys cultural and moral stories of China’s past, as well of recent times, such as those of Falun Gong practitioners’ peaceful response to persecution in China today.

Mr. Li Yong, one of the founders of the Chinese-language newspapers United Daily and World Journal, after seeing Splendor stated that “The show brought us Chinese glory and presented the true China.”

Mr. Eric Shumsky, an accomplished violist and the son of the legendary violinist Oscar Shumsky, called the show “an evening of performance never to forget.”

He singled out the “elegant and artistic” Ms. Xiaoqun Qi, who plays the two-stringed Chinese instrument called “erhu.”

“I know most of the classical string players performing today,” Shumsky said, “and I dare say most of them could take lessons [from Qi] in the essence of expression.”

But the resurgence of traditional Chinese culture, particularly in the context of human rights issues today, has angered Chinese communist officials, who’ve long held a monopoly on Chinese cultural representation. Beijing’s brass have attempted to discredit the show, calling it “political propaganda.”

The audience members quoted by the NY Times largely repeated Beijing’s view, and cited the presentation by Splendor of the persecution of Falun Gong as the reason for their displeasure.

Ms. Carrie Hung, the spokesperson for the show’s producer, New Tang Dynasty TV (NTDTV), objected to the impression the NY Times article gives of the shows contents.

“The New York Times’ quotes from the audience members make Splendor seem to be a show all about Falun Gong,” she said. “It is not. The show is about discovering and reviving authentic Chinese traditional culture and values.

“The performances incorporate elements from Buddhism, Taoism, and Confucianism, as well as Falun Gong, and from various ethnic traditions and different dynasties.”

The NY Times story also quoted University of Nevada political science professor Ms. Maria Hsia Chang. When contacted by The Epoch Times, Chang indicated that she hadn’t seen the show.

“I was interviewed on phone by the Times reporter. I haven’t even read his article, so I don’t know if he misquoted me or quoted me out of context,” she said in an emailed response, adding that she was sympathetic to the Falun Gong’s plight.

Propaganda

Immediately following the publication of the NY Times story, the engines of the (Chinese communist) Party’s propaganda machinery kicked into high gear.

Though Western news outlets like the NY Times are normally censored in China, this story was immediately republished by Xinhua, the official mouthpiece of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), and propagated widely.

Chinese-language press outside China such as China Press, which is funded by the Overseas Chinese Affairs Office, and ChinaNews.com, which like Xinhua is an official regime news agency, similarly gave prominent coverage to the NY Times story.

Mr. Zhang Weiguo, an independent news commentator now living in the U.S. who was editor and reporter of the former Shanghai-based newspaper World Economy Pioneer, said of the state-run press’s decision to pick up the NY Times article, “It would be surprising if they didn’t.”

Zhang continued, ” The New York Times is relatively well-known, and it suddenly carries a report with some negative details [about Falun Gong]. They certainly will make use of it without any reservation.”

Mr. Levi Browde is the executive director of the Falun Dafa Information Center, which reports on the persecution of Falun Gong.

Browde pointed out that “The Chinese Communist Party has always used the charge of being ‘political’ as a way to discredit its domestic opponents.

“The New York Times article neatly fits the Party’s template by suggesting the Chinese New Year Splendor is ‘political’ because it portrays the persecution of Falun Gong.”

Browde continued, “The descriptions of Falun Gong also fit this template. In particular, the article three times in quotes gratuitously uses the slanderous description of Falun Gong that is the basis of the Party’s propaganda campaign. We believe that not even one appearance of this description is acceptable.

“Would The New York Times repeatedly mention in an article the defamatory words used for blacks, Hispanics, or Jews? I don’t think they would. Such words communicate nothing. They are only expressions of hatred. But their reproduction by the The New York Times serves very well the Party’s agenda.

“The The New York Times may not have intended to have this effect, but they have done something the Party has always wanted to do but did not have the ability to do.”…… (to be cont’d)

Original report from the Epochtimes

Posted in all Hot Topic, China, Chinese Culture, Culture, Dance, Entertainment, Event, Life, Media, Music, News, Newspaper, Politics, shows, Social, the Chinese Spectacular, USA, World | Comments Off on The New York Times Parrots Chinese Communist Party’s Line (1)

Chinese Splendor Ends Big 15-show in New York, Heading to Asia and Europe

Posted by Author on February 11, 2008


By John Nania, Epoch Times New York Staff, Feb 10, 2008-15-show conclusion of Chinese Splendor in New York

NEW YORK—The full house at Radio City Music Hall gave a standing ovation to the Chinese New Year Splendor on Saturday, Feb. 9.

It was a fitting conclusion to a 15-show run over 11 days that presented, through dance and music, traditional Chinese culture to a diverse and appreciative audience.

(photo: 15-show Conclusion of Chinese Splendor in Radio City Music Hall, New York/ by Epochtimes)

Jerry Ames, a choreographer and tap dancing master, gave his assessment of the performance aspects of the show. “The talent is very, very lovely, and the music and the setting is just gorgeous,” he said.

“With the color schemes and the way the costumes blend with the setting is very impressive. It’s very elegant, very successful,” Mr. Ames continued. “We’re very impressed, it’s just beautiful … We’re very happy to be here.”

The show, as the hosts mentioned, presents traditional Chinese culture as it cannot be seen elsewhere— especially inside China, where the Chinese communist regime has actively suppressed or destroyed the artifacts and the conduct of traditional culture during its rule.

“Culture is meant to promote peace and harmony with our neighbors. This harmony includes truth, compassion, and tolerance,” said Daniel Lee, a real estate investor with Speed Investment Group in New York City.

Lee was referring to the principles of Falun Gong, the traditional Chinese meditation practice that was portrayed in a couple of the dance pieces. The Chinese communist regime has persecuted Falun Gong practitioners since 1999.

An article critical of the show and of Falun Gong appeared in the well-known New York Times on February 6. The article was mentioned by many audience members who were interviewed.

In a common reaction, Mr. O’Meara said, “We read the article in the [New York] Times yesterday saying the Chinese government didn’t want people to come to this show. We’re rebels.”

Some gave more pointed responses to the article, such as banker Ron Sablosky.

“It certainly did not dissuade us from coming, and I don’t think it should dissuade anyone, because it really is highly unfair. And it might even be construed as unethical.”

Attendance at the shows after the article ran was not diminished by the critical review. If anything, attendance was boosted according to NTDTV, the show’s producers.

Penny Cohn, an account executive and building manager, had read the New York Times article and noted, “In fact, it piqued my curiosity.”

“And not only that, it had a lot of space, too. I was quite intrigued with the amount of space it was given, I have to confess that.”

The two pieces that depict the persecution of Falun Gong, “The Risen Lotus Flower” and “The Power of Awareness” were mentioned by many audience members as their favorites.

Amerigo Fabbri, Dean of Pierson College and professor of modernist literature at Yale University, talked about “The Risen Lotus Flower.”

“You have the three women in prison and how one of them gives her life for the other two, these are great, great elements of the culture that are certainly conveyed by the show,” he said.

On his overall impression, Fabbri said, “The show is spectacular, I mean amazing. They’re doing a great job bringing together the history of Chinese culture. The sound effects, the visual effects, the special effects, the singing, and the dancing is just amazing.”

Audiences outside North America will soon be treated to this unique window on traditional Chinese culture through dance and music, including the telling of stories both ancient and modern. Two companies, Divine Performing Arts of New York and Divine Performing Arts on Tour, combined to present the big Radio City production. The companies will take different routes, as one goes to Asia and Oceania, while the other goes to Europe.

The Divine Performing Arts international touring companies land next in Germany and Japan.

For information on all upcoming shows, please visit: www.DivinePerformingArts.org

Original report from the Epochtimes

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Photos: Audience in The Chinese Splendor 2008 Show, New York

Posted by Author on February 11, 2008


On Saturday Feb. 9, 2008, Chinese Splendor concludes its 11 day 15 shows in Radio City Music Hall, New York City.

Performed by two companies, Divine Performing Arts of New York and Divine Performing Arts on Tour, the show will next tour to the world by two different routes: one goes to Asia and Oceania, the other goes to Europe.

Detail show time and schedule is available on the official website of Divine Performing Arts: www.DivinePerformingArts.org

Audience (3) in the Chinese Splendor 2008

Audience (5) Chinese Splendor 2008

Audience (7) Chinese Splendor 2008 New York

Audience (4) Chinese Splendor in New York

Audience (8) Chinese Splendor 2008 in New York

Performers

Auience in Chinese Splendor show 2008

Audience (6) Chinese Splendor 2008 in New York

Audience in Chinese Splendor 2008

(All photos are from the Epochtimes)

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New York Times Readers ‘intrigued’ by ‘overly critical’ Coverage of Chinese Splendor

Posted by Author on February 11, 2008


By Matthew Robertson and Jason Loftus, Epoch Times Staff, Feb 10, 2008- Penny Cohn (R) and Sheila Chase (L) (Dayin Chen/The Epoch Times)

NEW YORK—An unusual and highly critical New York Times story on the Chinese New Year Splendor playing in Manhattan failed to dampen audience interest in the show— but it made some curious.

The finale of 15 shows at the famed Radio City Music Hall played to a full house Saturday night. New York Times reader Penny Cohn, an account executive and building manager, came with her friend Sheila Chase, a psychology professor at Hunter College.

(photo: Penny Cohn (R) and Sheila Chase (L)/The Epoch Times)

Ms. Cohn said Radio City was an appropriate venue for a show with such large-scale dances.

“I thought the drummers were wonderful,” she said. “I enjoyed that. And I loved the scene at the Buddhist palace; I thought that was excellent, too.”

“Oh, I loved it,” added Ms. Chase, though she had more difficulty naming a favorite performance.

“I can’t tell you … well the first one [a performance called ‘Creation’] was so remarkable. I hadn’t seen anything like that.”

The two also raved about the sets projected on digital backdrops, and about the athleticism of the classical Chinese dancers.

Ms. Cohn found the live orchestra—a combination of Eastern and Western instruments—”wonderful.”

“I always had a different vision of Chinese instruments,” she said. “But it’s tuneful, more so than I first anticipated … I think the combination is really quite good.”

While the two shared much praise for the show, neither seemed able to grasp why a New York Times article published earlier in the week had been so one-sidedly critical of it.

That story drew most of its quotes from a handful of audience members—including one unnamed—who criticized content in the show related to Falun Gong, a spiritual group heavily persecuted in China by the communist regime. The group’s peaceful response to this persecution is depicted in the show.

While the Times story belittled this content, others have responded differently. Audience surveys on this year’s tour have shown 97 percent positive response to the show. Many of those interviewed by Epoch Times reporters have singled out the Falun Gong performances for praise.

Rather than be deterred by the critical article, Ms. Cohn said it made her want to learn more.

“In fact, it piqued my curiosity,” she said. Cohn agreed the story was “overly critical.”

“And not only that, it had a lot of space, too. I was quite intrigued with the amount of space it was given, I have to confess that.”

The Divine Performing Arts international touring companies land next in Germany and Japan.

For information on all upcoming shows, please visit: http://www.DivinePerformingArts.org/

Original report from the Epochtimes

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‘I would give 10 to every category’ of the Chinese Splendor, Says Company Vice President

Posted by Author on February 10, 2008


By Dalia Or and Joshua Philipp, Epoch Times Staff, Feb 09, 2008-

NEW YORK— “I am very impressed with the elegance and the movement of the dancers, and it is absolutely so gorgeous. The choreography is phenomenal, the singing, the voices are absolutely spectacular. The musicians are incredible, everything is absolutely breathtaking. I would give 10 to every category,” said Dennis Hemmerich, vice president of American Mech Tech in New Jersey.

Hemmerich attended the February 8 showing of the Chinese New Year Splendor at Radio City Music Hall with his mother-in-law, Mrs. Mariana. “It’s fantastic. It’s very engaging and beautiful. I have never seen anything like that before. I have seen shows, but nothing like that. It is very, very entertaining, very wonderful from the physical, mental aspect, and from the culture, and the choreography too,” said Mrs. Mariana.

Mrs. Mariana continued by saying, “The background is beyond words. Everything is stirring. Everything in the show is beyond words for me. The girls are beautiful, the boys are talented, the singers were excellent. Whatever, it’s breathtaking. The first time I have ever seen anything like that.”

One segment of the show, “The Risen Lotus Flower,” tells of a story of three women imprisoned for practicing Falun Gong in China. “Falun Dafa Hao,” said Hemmerich, meaning “Falun Dafa is good” in Chinese (Falun Dafa is another way of referring to Falun Gong). He said that Divine Performing Arts is “making a very good message. It appears to me that in China, there are very good people, but they are misled. The message of the show to the younger generation like compassion and love and faith and peace is very good.”

“I really enjoyed it, and I’m so impressed that I’m coming tomorrow with my wife and my mother-in-law. We are very impressed,” said Hemmerich. “We are impressed with everything here. Everything, everything. The dancing, the action, the choreography, the music, and the culture.”

The Chinese New Year Splendor continues in New York through Saturday, Feb. 9. For other shows in the Divine Performing Arts world tour, please visit: http://www.DivinePerformingArts.org/ .

The Epoch Times is a proud sponsor of the Chinese New Year Splendor.

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Communist China Against Traditional Chinese Dance Show in Sweden

Posted by Author on February 2, 2008


BBC News, 30 January 2008-Divine Performing Arts

Diplomatic relations between Sweden and China are said to be threatened by a row over dance performances.

Swedish officials say China is against shows planned for Stockholm and Linkoping because some of the US-based performers have links to Falun Gong.

The spiritual movement is banned in China and accused by the Beijing government of being a cult.

Authorities in the two cities say they have no intention of stopping the performances booked for March.

The Shen Yun – Chinese Spectacular is performed by a troupe of more than 100 dancers, singers, musicians and orchestra from the New York-based Divine Performing Arts.

Performances are based on ancient heroic legends and fables from the Tang, Song and Qing Dynasties, as well as contemporary tales.

The Associated Press news agency says organisers in Sweden include the local branch of the Falun Gong.

Crossed the line

City officials from Stockholm and Linkoping say they received calls from the Chinese embassy saying the troupe was linked to Falun Gong.

“They stepped way over the line. I think they really owe us an apology and an explanation,” Madeleine Sjoestedt, Stockholm Vice-Mayor for Culture and Sports, told the AFP news agency.

A Chinese embassy spokesman told AFP that the only aim was to inform the authorities “of what Falun Gong is”. The spokesman said any decision about cancellation was left up to the city.

– Original report from BBC News: Dance show risks Sweden China row

Related:
– ( Video) On How the Chinese Communist Party Destroyed Traditional Culture

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Best of New York: Chinese New Year Splendor to Start From Wed. Jan 30 (video)

Posted by Author on January 29, 2008


From NTDTV.com-

If you would like to experience the magic and splendor of the crown jewel of ancient Chinese civilization, look no further.

Every year, New Tang Dynasty (NTD) Television, a rising star in global Chinese language media, brings the best of Chinese culture in all its glory to your doorstep right here in the New York City with their unparalleled winter shows: Holiday Wonders at Beacon Theatre and Chinese New Year Splendor at Radio City Music Hall.

Video: Brief of the show and Feedback for the Holiday Wonders

Chinese culture is considered one of the greatest and certainly one of the oldest existing cultures that has left the world a lasting intellectual, social, and artistic legacy. Unfortunately, the social upheaval and political crises of the last 100 years in Mainland China have left this once rich and refined civilization a mere shadow of its former self. Decades of Communist rule have not only destroyed so much of the architecture, art, and social mores but have undermined the very essence of China’s culture – its emphasis on virtue and spirituality.

True Chinese culture was based on a divine connection between heaven and earth and harmony between nature and man. To be truly Chinese was to be honest, loyal, gracious, faithful, and civilized.

The golden age of China, the Tang Dynasty (618 to 906 AD), truly embodied the best of Chinese culture with its reverence for the divine, respect for learning, and its openness. This spirit of pluralism and multiculturalism brought about many brilliant achievements, including the invention of block printing, the perfection of the civil service examination system and the flourishing of Buddhism after it had been brought in from India. The Tang Dynasty was truly sophisticated, cosmopolitan, and prosperous, not unlike the New York City of today.

The artists and performers of NTD have spared no effort in creating truly magical productions that aim to transport the viewer not only to that glorious time and place of the Tang Dynasty but to travel to even more magical realms where dragons dance, heavenly maidens frolic, and giant drums roar. With meticulous attention to every detail, from the costumes and intricate hairstyles to the stunning backdrops, NTD has sought to not only recreate the past glory of the Tang and other dynasties in their genuine and authentic form but also to truly bring the profound essence and ingenerate beauty of the Chinese culture to life through the magic and wonder of the stage.

All the hard work has been worthwhile; audience response to the Chinese New Year Splendor has been most gratifying. WNYC said: “SUPERB!!! Every performance was stunning. Amazing, amazing, amazing!” OperaOnline.us said: “A tantalizing and fascinating evening that made me want to stay and see more. In a word, I was simply captivated!”

Stanley, a young boy in Chinatown, became interested in lion dance at age three because his father was a lion dancer in NTD’s Chinese New Year Shows. Following his father learning and practicing the traditional performance, Stanley enriched himself in the heritage, showed his talent and made into the upcoming Chinese New Year Splendor at Radio City playing a lovely role in a legend.

NTD kicked off the inaugural Chinese New Year Global Gala, later renamed the Chinese New Year Spectacular, at the Hammerstein Ballroom at the Manhattan Center in 2004. NTD’s affiliates in four cities in the U.S. and other countries joined the Global Gala in their cities. The show drew upon traditional tales and featured dances ranging from an exhilarating Mongolian folk dance where the dancers balanced real ceramic bowls on their heads to ethereal dances depicting heavenly beings and divine realms. The scale, spirit and presentation of the shows took both the Western and Chinese communities by surprise. There was no longer any question in anyone’s mind — this upstart television network was not only here to stay but was destined for big things.

It certainly was. By the second year, the Gala had sold out Madison Square Garden and was joined by Galas in six cities and countries. Heartened by the unqualified success at the Garden, complete with a standing ovation at the end of the show, NTD decided to expand to the legendary Radio City Music Hall. As Cable World says, “There’s nothing like doing a show at Radio City Music Hall, one of the best places to stage anything.” To stage not only one but three shows City with a cast of hundreds of singers, dancers, and musicians at Radio City with a total of more than 15,000 seats to fill was truly not a task for the feint of heart. But NTD remained true to its vision and put on a tremendous show making full use of Radio City’s massive new LED screen to create an utterly unique and stunning visual experience.

One woman in the audience attended two nights in a row because she was so enchanted by the whole experience of music, song, and dance: “Oh! I wish I were a writer to describe my delight. I felt like a child unwrapping a shiny present, discovering a colorful picture book that I had been needing all along without knowing it. What magical evenings!”

By 2006, NTD’s show had not only played at Radio City but had grown to 16 cities around the world, making it the largest Chinese community event in the world. NTDTV’s Chinese New Year Splendor had truly arrived.

The 2007 season can only be even better and grander. The choreographers, composers, and costume and stage designers continue to search for inspiration in the vast and profound world of ancient Chinese culture. The dancers and performers are also striving to perfect their technique and their artistry. The 2007 shows promise to be an entirely original, authentic and even more beautiful expression of true Chinese culture.

NTDTV is an independent, not-for-profit, television network founded by Chinese Americans, many of whom emigrated from China and entered professional careers here in the US. Established in 2002 and headquartered in New York City, NTD’s 24/7 comprehensive news, cultural and entertainment programming covers North America, Asia, Europe, and Australia via satellite, and reaches an estimated 200 million people. NTD is also available on channel 32 in lower Manhattan and 15 other metropolitan areas in North America.

In keeping with the spirit of the pluralism, multiculturalism, and innovation of the Tang Dynasty, we at NTD take great pride in showcasing genuine Chinese traditional values and culture to both the West and to the Chinese community. We find it enormously rewarding to help different generations of ethnic Chinese rediscover their cultural heritage and show them there is a lot to be proud of even though so much has been lost in modern times. We believe all our lives can be enriched by programs and events that remind us of our shared values and our common humanity. As Donn Murphy, PhD, President and Executive Director of the National Theatre in Washington, DC says of the NTDTV Chinese New Year Splendor: “This is not only entertainment, but a valuable cross-over cultural event: a strong, gracious gesture toward international understanding, in an all-too-troubled world.”

We invite you come to join us for the Holiday Wonders show at Beacon Theatre ( from Dec. 18 to 26, 2007) and the Chinese New Year Splendor at Radio City Music Hall ( from Jan. 30 to Feb. 9, 2008) Through these shows you will see imperial pageantry, folk customs, spiritual faith, and legends brought to life through art.

Come experience the beauty, elegance, and grandeur of the golden age of Chinese civilization and be a part of the wonder and prosperity of a New Tang Dynasty.

– From http://www.ntdtv.com

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The Chinese Spectacular Shaw “absolutely entertaining but also very beautiful”: U.S. Senator

Posted by Author on January 26, 2008


By Luke Buthman, Epoch Times Minneapolis Staff, U.S. Jan 25, 2008-

MINNEAPOLIS—Of the many distinguished guests attending tonight’s show of the Divine Performing Arts Company in Minnesota, the Honorable Senator Mee Moua was among those in attendance. Accompanied by her husband Yee Chang and her two children Chase and Sheng, Senator Moua’s family found some of the themes “enlightening” and the show to be “colorful and uplifting.”

“I think the performers are great, they’re world class,” said Chang. “This is a part of our community and we are here to ring in the new year and celebrate the new year.”

When asked if his Asian background gave him some connection to the show, Chang replied that “a lot of spiritual themes are similar, the themes of ancestry, culture and tradition and the spiritual world and the physical world being one and the same. That resonates with our culture.”

Senator Moua said “that the costumes were beautiful, the different themes were educational and I learned a lot.”

Chase, her eldest son, loved the drumming, while her daughter Sheng loved the dancing.

Both Senator Moua and her husband enjoyed that the show was great for families. Senator Moua said, “I think some of the messages are more adult but it was done in a way that it made our kids curious. That’s what something like this should be; it should allow both adults and children to be able to ask questions and be curious”.

Senator Moua remembered that “We grew up watching Chinese movies, watching a lot of the Kung Fu movies, the Jackie Chan movies, and the traditional Hong Kong Chinese-style movies where people fly through the sky and they have on these beautiful costumes.

“Hearing the classical music in the background and watching it being performed brought back those visions of the movies that I’ve seen. It was absolutely entertaining but also very beautiful.”

In conclusion, Senator Moua said simply, “It’s a very good show, from the artistry to the beautiful dancing.”

Following this Minneapolis performance, Diving Performing Arts will play three shows in Chicago on January 25 and 26. The Spectacular is also playing January 23-26 in San Francisco. See Bestchineseshows.com for details. The Epoch Times is a proud sponsor of the Chinese New Year Spectacular.

– Original report from the Epochtimes: A Show that ‘Resonates with Our Culture’

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EPIC PROPORTIONS- ‘Chinese New Year Spectacular’: Heavy on history and tradition, in San Francisco

Posted by Author on January 24, 2008


Reyhan Harmanci, San Francisco Chronicle, USA, Wednesday, January 23, 2008-

As if the Chinese New Year parade and celebration weren’t grand enough, this year San Francisco is hosting the traveling “Chinese New Year Spectacular,” an enormous show in its second year that is being billed as “the largest Lunar New Year celebration” outside China. It’s presented by New Tang Dynasty TV, an independent, nonprofit Chinese-language television broadcaster that operates outside of China.

The show’s choreographer and principal dancer, Vina Lee, laughs when asked what her favorite parts of the epic show are. “Oh, there’s so much!” she says. There are 40 separate “programs” in the show, each of which portrays a part of Chinese history or showcases traditional Lunar New Year stories. The Imperial Palace is evoked, warriors clash, goddesses descend from heaven. Modernity hasn’t been ignored in this production either: Lee says that one program deals with contemporary Chinese society and critiques the government’s treatment of Falun Gong practitioners. “Elements of this story,” she notes, “are happening now.”

Lee fled China after the Tiananmen Square conflict and says that one of the primary motivations for this show was to spotlight pre-Maoist Chinese history. “Chinese New Year is a time to celebrate family. It’s pretty much like Christmastime,” Lee says. “We thought about doing it not just to be entertaining but to review our history, to bring back the principles of the country.”

Those principles include “compassion, tolerance, beauty. … These very fundamental principles to Chinese culture have been lost and damaged during the Communist regime,” she says.

Another challenge in plumbing Chinese history was to create a show that would interest Chinese and non-Chinese alike – people who would know the old stories by heart and those who didn’t have a background in the traditional performances. “It is both ways,” says Lee, noting that there will be dialogue and lyrics in English and Chinese throughout the show. “I think people, no matter the background, will find it easy to follow the show’s ideas.”

With 60 performers onstage and an orchestra, there’s much to see and hear during the “New Year Spectacular.” “The opening act, don’t miss the first one,” she counsels. “It’s such a stunning picture. The opening scene is bringing a message from a long time ago.

“Of course, people like the drum dance, it’s very powerful, and some audiences would say they like softer, more traditional parts. … Some people say they like the myth stories, some like the lyrics. And some people, they say they love every single piece.”

8 p.m. today, 2 and 8 p.m. Fri.-Sat. Through Sat. $28-$98. Orpheum Theatre, 192 Market St., S.F. (415) 512-7770. http://www.shnsf.com.

– Original report from San Francisco Chronicle: ‘Chinese New Year Spectacular’: Heavy on history and tradition, show stops in San Francisco

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Chinese New Year Spectacular ‘A Feast for Your Heart’: Los Angeles audience

Posted by Author on January 20, 2008


By Ben Bendig, Epoch Times Los Angeles Staff, Jan 19, 2008- Marta Loera, Martha Fierro-Romero, Sally De La Peza, and Sonia Mir. All are teachers, though Loera is retired. (Mark Zou/Epoch Times)
LOS ANGELES─ The Chinese New Year Spectacular finished its second showing on Jan. 19 at the Nokia L.A. Live Theater in Los Angeles to an enthusiastic audience. The Spectacular is a showcase of China’s 5000-year-old traditional culture, portrayed through dance and music performance.
Marta Loera, Martha Fierro-Romero, and Sally De La Peza, all from Hacienda, CA., and Sonia Mir, from Ontario, CA., saw the show together.

“I loved the costumes, the vibrant colors, and the movements, the gracefulness in which they moved,” said Fierro-Romero, a teacher. “The music was very soothing, to go along with the beautiful vibrant costumes.”

De La Peza, a first-grade teacher, said she enjoyed “the gracefulness, the delicacy, and at the same time strength and power” of the performances. She also said she “enjoyed the differences between traditional ballet and this kind of [dance].”

Mir, an art teacher, said she liked the Water Nymph performance, saying that it was “beautiful, so creative. Our ballet … we could learn something from them.”

De La Peza also said she hoped to make arrangements to bring her entire first-grade class to see the show, “I think it would be great, just to introduce them to this culture.”

Fierro-Romero eloquently stated, “In conclusion, it was a feast for the eyes, a feast for the ears, and a feast for your heart.”

The Spectacular will show again tonight at 8 p.m. in the Nokia L.A. Live Theater, and at 2 p.m. on Sunday before going to Las Vegas on Jan. 21, then to Detroit on Jan. 22, and San Francisco from Jan. 23–26.

Original report from the Epochtimes 

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Ontario’s Education Minister Says the Chinese Spectacular Is ‘Wonderful’

Posted by Author on January 20, 2008


By Matthew Little, Epoch Times Staff, Jan 19, 2008- Ontario's education minister Kathleen Wynne said she is 'very much enjoying the show.' (The Epoch Times)

Ontario’s education minister took in the Divine Performing Arts Chinese New Year Spectacular on Saturday and said she thoroughly enjoyed the show.

“I’m very much enjoying the show,” said Minister Kathleen Wynne during the intermission. “The color, the athletic ability and the precision of the dancers, it’s very compelling and very beautiful.”

“I love the drummers,” she added. “I think that the drums strike a very deep place in all of us. I think it’s wonderful.”

(photo: Ontario’s education minister Kathleen Wynne)

The minister said she enjoyed learning specific Chinese traditions through the spectacular and that she saw connections between the dance and music in the Spectacular and other cultures. “It’s quite interesting.”

“I really believe that experiencing arts happens on a number of different levels. It happens on an intellectual level, but it’s a physical and emotional one as well. I’ve enjoyed it on everyone of those levels.” The Spectacular, a world-class production performed by the New York-based Divine Performing Arts Company, features an international cast of dancers, singers, and musicians devoted to reviving the authentic traditional culture of China and bringing it to new heights of excellence.

The show’s programs draw content from the myths, legends, and other extraordinary stories of China from ancient to contemporary times, spanning China’s 5,000 years of history.

Integral to the extravaganza of aesthetic beauty and grace are themes of courage and righteousness, loyalty and filial piety, honesty and trustworthiness, compassion and faith—themes that are true to the reverent and divinely inspired traditional culture of China.

“I think its very worthwhile seeing. I’m very glad I’m here. It’s just wonderful, said Wynne, and thanked the organizers and everyone involved in the Spectacular.

The Saturday matinee was the second of five shows in Toronto. After Toronto, the Spectacular will continue on its global tour, which includes an 11-day run at the legendary Radio City Music Hall in New York, called the Chinese New Year Splendor.

The Spectacular returns to Canada in the spring to play in Vancouver, Edmonton, and Calgary. By the end of its tour, it will have played to a total live audience of 650,000 in over 60 cities and 14 countries.

The Epoch Times is a proud sponsor of the Divine Performing Arts shows that will perform in over 60 cities worldwide in 2008. To find a show near you, please visit www.bestchineseshows.com.

Original report from the Epochtimes

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The Chinese Spectacular Show Aids ‘Cultural Development’, Says Human Rights Lawyer David Matas

Posted by Author on January 18, 2008


By Cindy Chan, Epoch Times Ottawa Staff, Jan 15, 2008-Prominent human rights lawyer David Matas

After seeing the Divine Performing Arts Chinese New Year Spectacular in Ottawa this year, human rights lawyer David Matas had high praise for the show’s professionalism as well as its important contribution to cultural development.

“It’s a very high-quality show, the costumes were wonderful, the music was terrific, the choreography was imaginative and very pretty to look at. It was a very professional show,” said Matas.

(photo: Prominent human rights lawyer David Matas)

Matas noted “the lessons of faith” portrayed in the Spectacular and “the continuity between the show and ancient Chinese cultural traditions.

It is “a continuation of Chinese culture as a living entity rather than just a museum artefact,” he said. Ethnic Chinese will benefit from the show because it helps them connect with their identity, while non-ethnic Chinese will benefit from the presentation of cultural diversity and the richness of the Chinese civilization.

Matas commended Divine Performing Arts, the company that presents the Spectacular , “for their commitment to continue, preserve, and develop [Chinese] culture.”

“It isn’t just the preservation,” he said, because the show contains elements “that would normally help cultural development and don’t just replicate the past, but bring the past up to the present.”

Matas pointed to the combination of modern instruments and ancient Chinese instruments as an example. “That in itself is an important cultural development—important for the Chinese culture, important for global culture.”

“Culture that is meaningful is going to be insurrectionary, not in a violent sense, but rejecting established cultural norms. Otherwise you just get a regurgitation of the old stuff.”

Keeping Chinese Culture Alive Despite Obstacles

The Divine Performing Arts promotes the Spectacular as a show that revives the authentic traditional culture of China, with its emphasis on moral values and spiritual quest, without any elements of communist party culture.

“That comes across pretty clear,” said Matas, adding that communism is a “controlled system” that thwarts culture.

Communism is “antithetical to culture and spirituality,” he remarked. “The way it relates to Chinese culture is simply by trying to destroy, obliterate, and suppress it, so any continuity of Chinese culture like what we see through the show is something that has no connection to communism whatsoever.”

Each year the Chinese embassies and consulates contact government officials and attempt to discourage attendance at the shows and/or prevent them from taking place. Matas called these attempts “a form of cultural destruction of one of the richest cultural heritages in human history and human civilization.”

He further explained that culture cannot come from a government or political system; it must come from the people. By its very nature, culture is a grassroots phenomenon, he said, whereas a communist society is a “controlled system,” and “any controlled system thwarts culture.

“The whole notion of central control, which is essential to the notion of communism, is antithetical to cultural development from the people.”

It follows that “you can’t have a meaningful Chinese culture while the CCP remains in power in China,” said Matas.

“The community putting on this show is not just providing a lot of entertainment but adding to contemporary cultural diversity and keeping alive this rich and diverse Chinese culture in the face of huge obstacles.”

The Epoch Times is a proud sponsor of the Divine Performing Arts shows that will perform in over 60 cities worldwide in 2008. To find a show near you, please visit www.bestchineseshows.com.

– Original report from the Epochtimes: Spectacular Aids ‘Important Cultural Development,’ Says Prominent Human Rights Lawyer

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Every Child Should See Chinese Spectacular, Says Ontario MPP

Posted by Author on January 17, 2008


By Matthew Hildebrand, Epoch Times Ottawa Staff, Jan 15, 2008-Ontario MPP Lisa MacLeod

The Chinese New Year Spectacular , presented by Divine Performing Arts, drew a full house and a standing ovation at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa last night.

Among the dignitaries who took in the show was Ontario Member of Provincial Parliament Lisa MacLeod, who found special meaning in the lyrics of one of the songs.

“What an inspiring message to start the New Year with, which is truth—when you find it—means renewal, and I think that that’s a great message for a politician to hear, but I wish every kid in Ontario could see this display. It’s absolutely wonderful.”

(photo: Ontario MPP Lisa MacLeod. /The Epoch Times)

MacLeod said she especially found one line in the song to be “most inspiring.”

“If I can ever find the line translated into English again, I would really appreciate it, because it’s absolutely amazing,” said MacLeod. “And it is a real phrase that I think impacts everyone’s life, regardless of ethnicity, gender, culture, whatever—I think it’s just a really nice message to have.”

Would she like to come back?

“I have a small child and I can’t wait to bring her next year when she’s old enough to attend,” she said. “I think it’s just amazing. The dancers, the music, it’s something that every child should see. It’s something that if anyone has the opportunity to see it, should. It’s a great message—a great message for truth, divinity, and sense of purpose.”

The depiction of principles through artistic performance was also remarkable, MacLeod said.

“To do it through artistic means—I think it must be one of the most wonderful skills to have … To see people be able to speak about truth and sense of purpose through music and through dance and other artistic means, it’s very wonderful. I congratulate the organizers and I congratulate those participating in the show.”

“I think that the Chinese-Canadian community must be very proud of this Spectacular New Year special.”

Original report from The Epochtimes

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San Diego Council Member Latest to Make Chinese Consulate Pressure Letter Public

Posted by Author on January 17, 2008


By Gisela Sommer, Epoch Times San Diego staff, Jan 11, 2008-SAN DIEGO CITY COUNCIL MEMBER DONNA FRYE

SAN DIEGO, CA─Yet another U.S. elected official has made public a letter that appears to be part of a nationwide effort by the Chinese Consulates in this country to put pressure on U.S. government officials in an attempt to discredit and interfere with an American business enterprise: the global Chinese New Spectacular show.

On Jan. 4, Council woman Donna Frye (photo at right) of San Diego emailed The Epoch Times a letter she had received from the Consulate General of the People’s Republic of China in Los Angeles. In the letter, dated Dec. 17, the Chinese Consulate asks that the Councilwoman make sure that no congratulations, recognition letters, no attendance or support in any form be given by her to the Chinese New Year Spectacular show to be performed at the California Center for the Arts in Escondido, January 15-17.

“The letter is ridiculous, I intend to just ignore it,” said Frye.

The annual, global Chinese New Year Spectacular and New Tang Dynasty TV (NTDTV) of New York, the media which is co-sponsoring and co-producing the show, have faced repeated attacks by the Chinese communist regime in the past.

NTDTV is an independent, nonprofit Chinese language satellite network known for its outspoken reporting about human rights abuses in China, including the persecution of the peaceful spiritual practice Falun Gong.

In May, 2005, 93 members of the Senate urged President Bush to support NTDTV as it was again faced with immediate dangers of shutdown because of Beijing’s pressure on Eutelsat, the Paris-based satellite company that transmits NTDTV’s signal over Asia. They recognized NTDTV as an important source of uncensored information from the West for tens of millions of private satellite dish owners across China.

The Chinese New Year Spectacular, now in its fifth season, has earned world acclaim for its revival of classical Chinese culture, with depiction of scenes from China’s 5,000 year history, with the exception of its communist influences.

Another letter from the Los Angeles Chinese Consulate went to the chairman of the Orange County Board of Supervisors Chris Norby, asking him not to recognize the upcoming Chinese New Year Spectacular performances at the California Center for the Arts in Escondido and at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles.

According to a Los Angeles Times report of Jan. 3, the letter drew a stern rebuke from the chairman of the county’s Board of Supervisors Chris Norby who said it amounted to “an attempt by a foreign government to dictate to American elected officials what organizations we should support, recognize or associate with.”

Similar letters sent by the Chinese Consulates to members of the U.S. governments have been responded to with differing levels of concern, contempt and outrage.

On Dec. 18, New York Assemblyman Michael Benjamin received a letter warning him not to send congratulatory greetings to or attend the NTDTV Holiday Wonders or Chinese New Year Spectacular shows in New York.

Assemblyman Benjamin said in an e-mail statement to The Epoch Times, “The CCP [Chinese communist party] insists to the world that there is only one China. They seek to drown out alternative voices. They fear that the world will learn the truth of their ‘Animal Farm’ regime.”

On Dec. 20, Congressman Dana Rohrabacher of California stated, “The Chinese regime has again demonstrated that it is not content with just repressing the Chinese people at home, but abroad as well. For the Chinese government to reach into the U.S. to further its suppression of the Chinese people is unconscionable and should not escape the attention and condemnation of the American people.”

Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jim Naugle confirmed that he too received such a letter with similar contents from the Chinese consulate in Houston, Texas, warning him that he might face possible damages to his mayor’s reputation if he sent a congratulatory greeting or attended the Holiday Wonders show in Ft. Lauderdale.

Mayor Naugle said he was familiar with similar interference by the Chinese consulate in Houston and that he would answer the letter and explain to them that in America we allow different points of view. The Mayor signed a proclamation declaring December 27, 2007 as “Holiday Wonders Day” in Fort Lauderdale, and decided to go watch the program.

Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs committee, also voiced her concerns. She said in an e-mail, “I am deeply concerned about reports of Chinese regime interference in the cultural activities of American citizens within the U.S. It would not surprise me given this regime’s record of violating the rights and civil liberties of its people.

If true, the regime must be held accountable for infringing upon the Constitutional protections of freedom of speech and expression of our citizens. I shudder to think what will greet visitors next summer as they gather for the Olympics in Beijing.”

Original report from The Epochtimes

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Chinese New Year Spectacular is ‘Out of This World’: David Kilgour

Posted by Author on January 16, 2008


By Rahul Vaidyanath, Epoch Times Ottawa Staff, Jan 15, 2008-David Kilgour, after watching the Chinese New Year Spectacular

OTTAWA—The Chinese New Year Spectacular presented its final performance in Ottawa on Monday night. Presented by New Tang Dynasty Television (NTDTV), the show features Chinese classical dance and music emphasizing the positive values of freedom, peace, and beauty.

David Kilgour, former Secretary of State for Asia Pacific, attended the Monday show after arriving from Europe. (photo at right)

“I want to congratulate everybody associated with this show. I wish everybody in Canada could see it. I wish everybody could see it everywhere, especially of course in China.”

“Last year, when I saw it in Toronto, I did not think it could get any better. This year, probably everything is a little better,” said Kilgour. “The dancing is absolutely fabulous, the last piece was spectacular.”

Kilgour elaborated on some of the issues currently facing China and pointed to how the show transports the audience to a China before communist rule.

“I’ve been reading a lot of books on China in the last year or so, and I think this is the authentic China, the authentic culture.”

“What is being used now [in China], as somebody says, is imported from Europe. Last time I looked, Karl Marx was not Chinese,” said Kilgour, alluding to the link between the father of communism and the regime that now rules China. “The imported violent philosophy that is still, unfortunately, being used by the [regime in] China is quite foreign to the culture, people, and history of China. This shows what a marvelous culture and tradition the authentic Chinese culture is.”

Kilgour also described how the show makes people feel.

“Uplifted, inspired, dazzled,” he said. “It’s magical what we’re seeing here tonight. I’ve got nothing but respect for the people who’ve done it. They have put in so much time, I gather, to make the show what it is.”

“It’s topically spiritual. It’s not giving any other message, that’s what’s wonderful,” said Frank Scheme, a freelance photographer who also works part-time with Amnesty International, and who attended the show with Kilgour.

Due to his previous role as Secretary of State for Asia Pacific, Kilgour has traveled extensively throughout Asia and is in a strong position to comment on the unique nature of the show.

“It’s absolutely unique, one of the best I’ve ever seen anywhere in the world, and I’ve been in more than 100 countries,” Kilgour added. “The combination of everything, costumes, music, the live orchestra … The moderators are good, they’re funny.

“The dancing is really out of this world, almost everything is out of this world. I would recommend this show to anybody, I have recommended it to many people and I’m glad to see some of them here tonight.”

The Chinese New Year Spectacular now leaves Ottawa to play four shows in Montreal before going on to Toronto next weekend.

The Epoch Times is a proud sponsor of the Divine Performing Arts shows that will perform in over 60 cities worldwide in 2008. To find a show near you, please visit www.bestchineseshows.com.

Original report from the Epochtimes

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Chinese Spectacular Highlights ‘Cultural and Moral Values’, Says Award-winning Writer

Posted by Author on January 16, 2008


By Cindy Chan, Epoch Times Ottawa Staff, Jan 14, 2008- Cyril Dabydeen, an award-winning professor of English at the University of Ottawa, gave enthusiastic reviews of the Chinese New Year Spectacular last year and again enjoyed the show

OTTAWA—Divine Performing Arts’ Chinese New Year Spectacular made the Canadian debut of its 2008 world tour in Ottawa Sunday night.

Cyril Dabydeen (photo ), an award-winning professor of English at the University of Ottawa, gave enthusiastic reviews of the show last year and again enjoyed the show “tremendously” this year.

“The sense of divinity, spirituality, and good values—those things for me were very transcendental, very inspirational,” he said after seeing the show on Sunday evening at Ottawa’s National Arts Centre.

A prolific poet and writer whose work has been published in Canada and other countries, Dabydeen has written over 15 books, including novels and collections of poetry and short stories. He has juried twice for the Canadian Governor General’s award for books of poetry and served as Poet Laureate of Ottawa.

Dabydeen noted that when the sopranos were singing and he looked at the lyrics on the screen, “It was so marvelous; it transported me back in time, in a sense of a beautiful, wonderful, quintessential Chinese culture.”

The production is a world-class showcase of Chinese classical and ethnic dance, music, and song. It combines Chinese and Western music and instruments and blends ancient performance techniques with state-of-the-art technology in the form of dramatic digital backdrops and animation.

“The modern technology and classical techniques, I think they blended wonderfully . . . beautifully,” said Dabydeen. “The Chinese and Western musical instruments, classical and modern Chinese and Western elements, past and present, all blended in wonderful symbiosis.”

Dabydeen commented on the ancient Chinese emphasis on moral qualities and spiritual search for truth portrayed in the programs in the Spectacular .

“Moral qualities are very important, especially when there seems to be moral conflict and confusion because of the influence of popular culture stemming from the mass media. This show emphasizes the importance of time-worn cultural and moral values and traditions — which we should all reflect on seriously in our quickly changing world.”

Noting that the show made him “think of the joy of culture,” Daberdeen added that the “very high standard” of the show “will help everyone focus on the role cultures play in advancing the quality of life of all our citizens.”

Dabydeen was co-winner of the top Guyana Prize for Fiction in 2007 for his novel “Drums of My Flesh.” The novel was also nominated for the prestigious International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award last year and was a finalist for the Ottawa Book Awards in 2006.

He has also been a long-time human rights and race relations activist and is a trained educator who has taught at the junior school, college, and university levels for 20 years.

“I’ve worked in multiculturalism for 15 years,” said Dabydeen. “This high quality of choreography, dance, singing, the sopranos, drumming, the orchestra — it’s an extraordinarily high quality . . . It enhances all of us.”

Dabydeen commended the Chinese community for its “tremendous contribution” that has made Ottawa a “wonderfully enriched city.”

“Very often we think of only certain people, [for example] European Canadians, who can produce works of high, great artistic aesthetic quality, but there you have this event tonight, wonderfully produced and performed.”

Divine Performing Arts, the performing company that put together the show, describes the Spectacular as a showcase of “authentic traditional Chinese culture with pure compassion and pure beauty, without any elements of communist party culture.”

Dabydeen noted the importance of maintaining the traditional sense of the culture. This is because a society should evolve naturally and organically, he said. “That’s the key word—’organic evolution of society and culture.'”

“Political influence tends to be manufactured influence. It’s too contrived, and sometimes they do not lead to our self-fulfillment.”

“What attracted me the most, as last year too, was the sense of history, the wonderful traditions, and how society evolves, because all societies tend to change. Beyond that, underneath it all is a sense of our higher self, moral values, and spiritual values.”

After a second show in Ottawa on Monday, the Chinese New Year Spectacular will move on to Montreal and Toronto, then continue its worldwide tour of more than 60 cities on five continents.

Original report from the Epochtimes

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Canadian Arts Professor Impressed by Harmony of Chinese Spectacular Show

Posted by Author on January 16, 2008


By Olivier Chartrand, Epoch Times Staff, Jan 14, 2008-

OTTAWA—”It makes us discover a new, different cultural universe,” Professor Geneviève Mareschal said after seeing the Canadian premiere show of the Chinese New Year Spectacular on Sunday night at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa.It was Mareschal’s first time seeing the show.Mareschal is Vice-Dean academic of the Faculty of Arts at the University of Ottawa, and an Associate Professor at the university’s School of Translation and Interpretation. “It’s interesting. There was lots of harmony in the movements of the dancers,” she said.

She preferred the performances of the male performers “because it was more energetic and illustrated strength and power.”

Mareschal was also impressed by the quality and strength of the singers’ voices.

The Spectacular is a grand showcase of traditional Chinese dance and music that has been touring the world since 2004, visiting over 60 cities on four continents this year. It features Divine Performing Arts, a company of dancers, vocalists, and musicians of excellence that aims to revive the “pure compassion, pure beauty, and pure truthfulness” of ancient Chinese culture and values without the modern influence of communist party culture.

Because the performances are without any communist party culture, “there is a kind of harmony with nature,” said Mareschal.

“The pieces depicting modern times also reflect the value of compassion and of helping each other,” she added.

“The show gives an impression of peace and calm,” remarked Mareschal.

– Original report from the Epochtimes : Ottawa University Vice-Dean Impressed by Chinese Spectacular

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Principal Cellist: Chinese Spectacular ‘Amazing’

Posted by Author on January 16, 2008


By Jason Loftus, Epoch Times Toronto Staff, Jan 14, 2008- Amanda Forsyth talks about the <I>Chinese New Year Spectacular.</i> (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

OTTAWA—A celebrated Canadian musician had just one word when asked what she thought of the Chinese New Year Spectacular in Ottawa on Sunday night: “Amazing.”

Amanda Forsyth (photo at right) is considered one of North America’s most dynamic cellists. The winner of a Juno award — Canada’s Grammy — she is the principal cellist with the National Arts Centre Orchestra (NACO) in Ottawa.

On Sunday night, she joined her mother — and 2,100 others — to take in the sold-out Canadian premier of the Spectacular at the National Arts Centre, Ottawa’s premier theatre.

“It’s really beautiful that they’re really so proud of their traditions. It’s so poetic,” said Forsyth.

The show, put on by New York-based Divine Performing Arts, has been billed as a renaissance of traditional Chinese culture. Divine Performing Arts says it seeks to convey not only the aesthetic beauty of Chinese culture, but also the values and the inner meaning of the culture, which have been repressed over decades of communist rule.

Forsyth was the youngest principal ever selected by the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra in 1993, where she stayed until joining the NACO in 1999. She also tours internationally with the renowned Zukerman Chamber Players, performing with her husband, violinist Pinchas Zukerman.

Forsyth enjoyed the mix of eastern and western instruments in the orchestra that accompanied the show, and she was particularly pleased that the “erhu” —a two-stringed Chinese instrument with a wide range of notes—was on-stage for a solo in the second act.

“[The erhu] is my favourite,” she said. “I love it.”

“For a musician, it’s nice to see,” she added. “In western music, when we have a ballet company and the orchestra is in the pit, we already know what it looks like . . . I really love to see the erhu on stage.”

Forsyth’s performances have allowed her to travel and take in shows around the world.

“I felt like I was actually in Asia,” she remarked.

But for someone who often uses her travel to satisfy her desire for fashion, Forsyth particularly enjoyed the traditional costumes in the show.

“The fabrics were amazing,” she said.

Would she be back next year? “Absolutely.”

The Epoch Times is a proud sponsor of the Divine Performing Arts shows that will perform in over 60 cities worldwide in 2008. To find a show near you, please visit www.bestchineseshows.com.

Original report from the Epochtimes

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