NEW YORK—Artist and musician Carmela Tal appreciated the the traditional culture presented in Shen Yun Performing Arts.
“It’s beautiful,” said Ms. Tal after seeing Shen Yun at Lincoln Center’s David H. Koch Theater on April 28. Ms. Tal, who graduated from Bezalel Academy of Art and Design, is a poet, songwriter and interdisciplinary artist.
The company is based in New York because it gives the artists the freedom to revive the ancient culture.
“Such artistic freedom is unfortunately not present in China under the communist regime, which has co-opted and destroyed traditional arts,” according to the Shen Yun website.
“The courage and outspokenness of our artists is one of the reasons why Shen Yun is so well-loved.”
The performing arts company presents traditional culture up to the modern day, where an ancient spiritual practice is being persecuted. Falun Gong, a meditation practice based on truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance, has helped more than 100 million Chinese return to the essence of the ancient culture.
Practitioners of Falun Gong have undertaken a vast resistance effort after the ruling communist regime started a ruthless campaign against the practice in 1999.
“[Falun Gong’s] spirit of compassion and tolerance manifest the very essence of China’s 5,000-year-old divine culture,” explains the website.
Ms. Tal said that she thought the “very sad story” of the persecution told through the dance pieces is important for the public to see and understand.
“Why forbid meditation?” she said. “I believe in resistance through culture,” she added. “It’s good to bring it on stage—it makes the story more valuable and more accessible to people.”
Miron Baron, professor of clinical psychiatry at Columbia University’s medical school, and Ms. Tal’s husband, said that he agreed with everything the artist said.
Mr. Baron said the artists of Shen Yun “are great ambassadors.”
Reporting by Hannah Cai and Ryan Jeffries
New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts has three touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world. The next performances in the northeastern United States are in Philadelphia May 3-5. For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org
The Epoch Times considers Shen Yun Performing Arts the significant cultural event of our time. We have proudly covered audience reactions since Shen Yun’s inception in 2006.