WASHINGTON—Every year for the last four years, Scott Flipse has attended Shen Yun Performing Arts at the Kennedy Center and has brought a group of friends with him.
“Oh, I love the show,” he said after seeing the final performance in Washington on Feb. 3. Mr. Flipse is deputy director of policy and research at the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, so he lives and breathes some of the themes that Shen Yun touches on in its presentation of 5,000 years of traditional Chinese culture.
“I love the colors in the Chinese culture and the preservation of Chinese culture in dance,” Mr. Flipse said.
“It’s important not only to preserve Chinese culture but to show what present-day China is like, particularly the persecution of the Falun Gong.” He said the Chinese authorities also persecute other groups, including Tibetans, Uyghurs, and Christians.
“It’s important to show that there’s a rich culture of spirituality in China and it’s being persecuted today,” he said.
Shen Yun this year included a dance titled An Unexpected Encounter, which portrays a father and daughter who are on tour in China when they bump into a group of people practicing the Falun Dafa spiritual practice, which is persecuted by the communist authorities.
“Democracy needs to flourish. Freedom needs to flourish in China. It’s important not only for the Chinese people but for world history,” he said.
Mr. Flipse commented again on the rich colors and described the performance as “beautiful dance, athletic dancing, but also with a message.”
“I work on freedom issues, and this is what this show represents—not only the history of China and its diversity, but its diverse spirituality as well. I think that’s the message that people need to take away,” he said.
“It is a beautiful show. There is so much in Chinese history and culture that is represented here,” Mr. Flipse said. “Not only Han Chinese culture, but all the ethnic minority cultures and their dance are represented here.”
Reporting by NTD Television.
New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts has three touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world. For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org
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