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Comment Archives: stories: Arts + Life: Theater

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

Over two thousand Vermonters plus audiences from other States and country saw Shen Yun in the Flynn Theater on March 25. I was one among them. Many of us were moved to tears by the stories of persecution on Falun Gong practitioners by the Chinese Communist regime acted out and danced to music so succinctly and powerfully yet so artistically and tastefully.

Throughout the entire two hours, what I experienced has been nothing but peace and harmony, beauty and goodness, fun and laughter, joy and sadness, and a whole lot more that human words cannot express adequately.

So, it was a shock to my system to read Ken Picards article that purports to be about the show but largely flings dirt at Falun Gong as a cult and its founder Li as evil.

(If an evil cult can produce such a show, Id say: WHAT A CULT!)

Picards article has me wondering what are his and Seven Days motivation and hidden agenda that appear to go all out to smear a show so welcomed all over the world and for the past decade!

(I have to ask: WHY?)

Picards article was published three days before show time. How many people were turned away and missed the rare opportunity to be impacted by a show that has finally arrived at Vermont?

What a great disservice this one man and this one free newspaper have done to the community? I believe Picard and Seven Days owe us an apology, at the least.

7 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by SYFan on 03/29/2017 at 3:34 PM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

If your goal is only to be a millionaire, why bother with a "lavish" and complicated production? It just does't add up. Your not going to go through all that trouble and daily work just to make a few milliion dollars which he was before the show even started because he has been in the US since 1992.

4 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Christopher Jordan O'Neill on 03/28/2017 at 1:41 PM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

Just chiming in as a non cult robot. Thanks for the article Ken!

1 like, 4 dislikes
Posted by Ben Maddox on 03/28/2017 at 9:34 AM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

Dear MaineVIsitor, Austin, Sean Cronin and DeeBEE - The reason some of the people who you see trying to get people to go to the show seem pushy is because they are normal average people with not a lot of experience - just volunteer passion from Chinese folks who have not outgrown their CCP brainwashing yet. Think about it - people are going to be different when they grow up being repressed by the Chinese Communist Party. But their hearts are in the right place.

5 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Christopher Jordan O'Neill on 03/28/2017 at 12:40 AM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

I've enjoyed watching Shen Yun for years, almost from its very inception.

I think this performance does a great deal to heal the world. I am sure our world needs more of this beauty, purity, and inspiration presented by Shen Yun.

Every time upon leaving the theater after the performance, I was amazed by the theatergoers' reactions: their faces glowing with excitement, many had tears in their eyes -- all audience around me was overjoyed.

I want to give just one example of a sincere reaction to the performance given by The Honorable David Kilgour, a retired Member of the Parliament of Canada, Nobel Peace Prize nominee, renowned author and human rights advocate, who was happy to see Shen Yun Performing Arts again, at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts in CA on March 12, 2017.

"It's the best show I've ever seen, said Mr. Kilgour. "The costumes, the dancing, the singing, the technical things were simply the best I've seen."

Mr. Kilgour said he has seen most of Shen Yuns performances over the past seven or eight years, and that the show keeps exceeding his expectations.

I am really shocked that a reporter with a pile of rewords from a very respected newspaper could write a very negative article without even ONCE seeing a performance!

No wonder many people do not trust our media anymore!

I want to ask those who have never seen Shen Yun performance before to not rely on the article above.

If you want to see Shen Yun, please attend the performance and make a conclusion yourself, not based on a biased article with a very obvious agenda behind it.

9 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Nataly on 03/27/2017 at 1:15 PM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

I have seen Shen Yun 5-6 times and Shen Yun is entirely different from what the article seems to suggest. Its mission is to revive 5000 years of Chinese culture, and they do it with absolute elegance. The show exhibits different ethnic dance that are absolutely graceful and different Chinese stories from 5000 years of history. Many of my friends have seen Shen Yun and they absolutely love it. Dancing and music is a form of expression. Shen Yun is just using art as a form to express the real Chinese Culture, the traditional values, which includes contemporary stories. The show is beautiful and it always brings me to tears after watching it. I bought tickets for my grandma to watch this year. She really liked the show. It is so sad to hear that some people can't appreciate the art form that is unique to Shen Yun.

11 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Patrick Tai on 03/27/2017 at 9:25 AM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

I regularly see opera and theater in my hometown of Atlanta, Georgia. When I saw Shen Yun for the first time, I was blown away by the marvelous quality of the performers, the music, the costumes, and the 5000 years of ancient, divinely inspired culture that was magically brought to life in front of me. It was incredibly touching. It is obvious to me that the author has not seen Shen Yun, because his article entirely misses point of the performance, which is to revive and celebrate the higher, universal principles of truthfulness and compassion that exist throughout history, at the core of all societies, and in every human heart.

11 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by John Perry on 03/26/2017 at 11:16 PM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

I totally disagree with this article. Every Shen Yun show I have seen exudes the need for us to be united in goodness and morals....something much needed today. It's a breath of fresh air for anyone who is into true entertainment. The people that I have talked to about it have said nothing but good things about it also. Mostly the beautiful colors and amazing music. But also that it's so uplifting and brings a sense of hope to the world. Nobody should miss it. The reviews (aside from this one) have been amazing. The people who walk away from this show are absolutely amazed by it, like I am. This article was in such stark contrast to what I saw and what so many people have experienced that it was almost odd. But at the least very shocking that they got such negative things from it....weird.

12 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Diana Foley Molovinsky on 03/26/2017 at 11:06 PM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

Hm, I don't agree with this article's stance--I've seen multiple Shen Yun shows, and I feel that the message is always about goodness, and the marketers and performers I've met have always been courteous and kind. I hope people are willing to see the show and make an informed decision for themselves.

11 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Carlen Zhang-D'Souza on 03/26/2017 at 8:23 PM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

Chinese communist party banned many things. I was very frustrated I couldn't use gmail while I toured in China. Looks like they banned facebook, youtube as well. I tend to say what Chinese communist party bans most likely to be good things or just normal. I don't understand why they have to ban so many things in China.

9 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Angela Vetanen on 03/26/2017 at 8:08 PM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

I saw Shen Yun in Boston. You get to see an amazing Tibetan performance, authentic Mongolian bowl dance and other stories that you cannot see due to Communist censorship of the arts. The local reporter quoted the Chinese government, the same government that is known for harvesting organs of living human beings. Everyone knows China lies to justify human rights abuses against Falun Gong. Shen Yun had no signs of homophobia or cult-like behavior. Further, Shen Yun demonstrated acts of kindness and forgiveness. This article has nothing to do with what Shen Yun is about.

14 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Kery on 03/26/2017 at 5:25 PM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

I have seen this show for 7 years because they have a brand new performance every year and I really enjoyed every program. Majority of the pieces tell the stories from ancient China about flying deities in heavens and stories from ancient books. I found the show to be very educational and uplifting. It is quite said that some people nowadays distance themselves from spirituality and thus miss seeing the beauty in traditional and classical show such as Shen Yun. Many times my friends hated a movie at a theater but I actually loved it after seeing the movie. Same thing with Shen Yun, I would highly recommend to see the show in spite of this negative review.

13 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Alexei Sterhov on 03/26/2017 at 5:22 PM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

Did a little bit of research... half of this article is based on lies put out by the Chinese Communist Party.

18 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Joseph8263 on 03/26/2017 at 1:18 PM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

In short, it felt like a Scientology (or, anyone remember Amway?) convention. I should have done my research beforehand, as it wasn't difficult to find the truth about this organization with a quick Google search. We just handed our money over to a prejudiced and oppressive organization, thanks to the Flynn's support of this group. Think about that.

2 likes, 16 dislikes
Posted by Jabbo on 03/26/2017 at 11:12 AM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

I knew something was amiss when I noticed the policing of the audience by troupe members. Wearing earpieces, wrist microphones, and carrying "purses" which were actually recording devices, Shen Yun members communicated back and forth, watching for any potential recording of the performance. There were so many of them, all over the place, I felt like I was in that scene from "The Sound of Music" when the Von Traps escape after their performance. Then the perfpormance. Quickly it became apparent that this was a propaganda tool for the organization, complete with saccharine Mc's, elementary storytelling with heavy-handed political and religious messages. It was all very unsettling and disturbing, and I knew we had been suckered. Frankly, I am stunned that the Flynn Theater participated in this trickery.

5 likes, 15 dislikes
Posted by Jabbo on 03/26/2017 at 11:06 AM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

Wow wow wow....for a community that prides itself on diversity, inclusiveness, and love this article sure expresses a lot of hate. I'm not sure this article is in line with true Vermonters values. After doing some of my own independent research it is obvious Falun Dafa is a peaceful meditation group being wrongly persecuted and slandered by the Chinese Communist Party. The praises Shen Yun has received from experts in the Arts and beyond is astonishing. A little weird that a local paper would take this route to defame such a world class show.... What is the real agenda here?

22 likes, 5 dislikes
Posted by Sean Cronin on 03/26/2017 at 10:30 AM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

I was accosted by one of their marketing evangelists while grabbing a quick bite to eat at Burlington Town Center yesterday. Thanks...this explains why the lady was so pushy.

6 likes, 11 dislikes
Posted by Austin Hornyak on 03/26/2017 at 10:07 AM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

After seeing the performance yesterday I can say with utter certainty that it was political-religious propaganda and nothing less. I have to say I am more than a little surprised the Flynn played along with it. Ugh!

6 likes, 14 dislikes
Posted by MaineVisitor on 03/26/2017 at 4:15 AM

Re: “The Story Behind Lavish Chinese Dance Extravaganza Shen Yun

Thanks for this great, in-depth piece, Ken. This answers many questions I've had about this group and performance -- especially the in-your-face, over-the-top and EVERYWHERE marketing. I am so sick of seeing these ads everywhere I turn!

12 likes, 16 dislikes
Posted by DeeBee on 03/23/2017 at 11:38 AM

Re: “Vermont Pride Theater Looks Back on Politics of Exclusion

The cast includes: Doug Bernstein (Warren), Brett Cox (Roxbury), Gene Heinrich (St. Albans), Andra Krushenick Kisler (Northfield), Susan Loynd (Fayston), Cynthia Seckler (Fayston), and Noni Stuart (Grande Isle).

Posted by Gene Heinrich on 01/19/2017 at 7:41 AM

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