PURCHASE, N.Y.—Ken Koswener saw Shen Yun Performing Arts at the Purchase Arts Center on Dec. 21, 2019. He was accompanied by attorney Barton Slavin, and both of them enjoyed the performance.
For the audience members, what distinguished the New York-based company from others is that not only does Shen Yun provide entertainment, it also educates its audiences on China’s true culture and history as well as issues that are happening in the present day.
Koswener expressed positivity on how Shen Yun showcased history and traditional culture in the program. He said, “It’s good to see the traditions of old-time put on stage because we don’t know them, to a large degree they’ve been erased. And being able to see what happened, how stories were told so many years ago is very enlightening, very refreshing, and very entertaining.”
After the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) gained power during the mid-20th century, much of China’s tradition and heritage was under attack. Movements like the Cultural Revolution were launched to destroy traditional Chinese values and principles that were passed down for thousands of years. To this day, the Chinese Communist regime does everything it can to suppress traditional Chinese culture, which is why Shen Yun cannot perform in mainland China.
On the day of the performance in Purchase, New York, protesters were seen across the street. Koswener said that he did not pay much attention to the protesters and that it did not stop him from coming to see the show.
Koswener said he was interested to have learned about Falun Gong, in addition to China’s culture and history, through the performance. Falun Gong is a spiritual practice that teaches the principles of Truthfulness, Compassion, and Tolerance. The meditative practice is also targeted by the CCP for persecution.
“So now I walk away with a little more knowledge,” Koswener said.
With reporting by Sally Sun and Don Tran.