KANSAS CITY, Mo.—When Tom Angulo took his wife out for the evening in the Great Plains of the Midwest, he never thought he’d be end up in the mountains of ancient China, but that’s exactly what happened when they saw Shen Yun Performing Arts at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts.
A retired CFO of a law firm, Mr. Angulo and his wife Susan, who works at a children’s center for the visually impaired, saw an evening performance of Shen Yun on April 2.
Mr. Angulo was pretty amazed with being able to see traditional Chinese culture first-hand. He called it a “very fantastic show—very good.”
He was also surprised.
Mr. Angulo thought it was very interesting that Shen Yun cannot be seen in China today. He said the performance included dances critical of the communist regime, like a dance that touched on the Cultural Revolution that was responsible for the loss of traditional culture in China. But the performers did it while retaining that connection to its traditional culture.
According to the website, “Shen Yun cannot be seen in China today, where traditional culture has been nearly lost. Yet Shen Yun—a non-profit organization—has become an international phenomenon, bringing the wonders of ancient Chinese culture to millions across the globe.”
Traditional Chinese culture is very different from the China most people know today. China was once known as the Divine Land. “This profound name describes a land where deities and mortals coexisted, and a belief that the divine transmitted a rich culture to the people of the earth,” the website explains.
The couple agreed that the spiritual aspect of the performance was very uplifting. Mrs. Angulo said she loved the divine connection. When the female dancers waved their flowing white sleeves during one particular dance, she said it was just like heaven opening up.
During one of the vignettes that showed divine beings descending from the heavens, Mr. Angulo felt he was transported to the mountain tops and given its vantage point. He felt the interactive backdrops were so interesting and exciting that he was transported back in time. “I feel like I am there,” he said.
Since the communist regime seized power in 1949, it has sought to eradicate any aspects of its traditional culture including the individual’s freedom of religion and/or expression. This has led to discrimination, oppression, and violent persecution of millions.
Several segments of the program depict the brutal persecution of practitioners of Falun Dafa. Also known as Falun Gong, it is a peaceful meditation practice founded on the principles of Truthfulness, Benevolence, and Forbearance. It has been persecuted by the communist regime since 1999.
Mrs. Angulo cannot fathom why any government would be so tyrannical so as to persecute its own citizens for meditating. She said she feels inspired to learn more about the practice of Falun Dafa as a result.
Reporting by Catherine Wen and Andrew Darin
New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts has four touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world. For more information, visit Shen Yun Performing Arts.
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.