ANTWERP, Belgium — The Divine Performing Arts Chinese Spectacular, which has received critical acclaim for its authentic portrayal of China's ancient culture, continues its run at Antwerp's Stadsschouwburg Theatre.
Frans van Martens, advisor to the Belgian Minister of Justice, spoke about the show after attending Wednesday's matinee.
"I find the whole choreography very interesting, the synchronicity of the stories, the stories itself, the going back in time," said van Martens.
"I'm greatly interested in China. I have a number of Chinese friends."
Regarding two acts in the show that depict the suppression of Falun Gong in China, van Martens said he found them "very interesting."
"I think the prison scene hides a cry for help," he said.
Falun Gong is a meditation practice that teaches truth, compassion and tolerance, virtues people lived by in China's ancient dynastic era.
Van Martens said he would like to tell his Chinese friend, who is a member of the communist Party in China, about the Spectacular.
"I would like to promote the show to him but it's tricky because our friendship would probably get a blow because of this. He also belongs to the party apparatus and this makes it difficult towards Falun Gong."
Van Martens said he was aware of an occurrence in Sweden in which Chinese Embassy officials attempted to stop the Spectacular when it was scheduled to play in the city of Linköping.
"I believe that it was in Norway or in Sweden that the Chinese Embassy asked to cancel the show. It's of no interest to me if it is about Falun Gong or not, I just think it's very beautiful."
Chinese Embassy and consulate officials in other counties have also tried to interfere with the show. Letters have been received by a number of politicians, performers, and venues, urging them not to take part in the Spectacular or express support.
"I'm not interested in politics," said van Martens, "But the Spectacular was absolutely fantastic!"
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