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Shen Yun: Controversy Against The Traditional Chinese Dance

The picture of a Chinese woman soaring through into the air with her dress fanning around her and the statement “Shen Yun – Art That Connects Heaven and Earth” are certainly familiar to anyone who resides in a big western metropolis. The advertisements represent a New York-based business that displays Chinese traditional dances, in which a sizable ensemble executes elaborate, coordinated sequences to a live theatre’s pop-eastern music. 

In anticipation of the company’s tour schedule, Shen Yun’s advertisements appear worldwide, from billboards towering above the interstate in Los Angeles to posters swaying from street lights in Brussels. Shen Yun expertly displays traditional Chinese culture with vibrant costumes, amazing dancing, and various original performances.

What is Shen Yun?

Every year, a new show is presented as Shen Yun. The group performs dance routines that recount Chinese tales and folklore or display classical Chinese dance comprise the core of the performance. Shen Yun’s orchestra, which mixes Chinese and traditional Western components, accompanies the ensemble. A number of the performances also include vocals, two-stringed erhu, and traditional Chinese dance. Between scenes, narration, and an interpretation, explain the background and importance of the various exhibits. 

shen yun controversy

The variety of performances shows how similar the presentation is, but Shen Yun’s extensive dancing starts to seem a little monotonous near the end. It particularly struck out how they combined traditional Chinese dancing with cutting-edge technology.

Shen Yun employs a 3D projection-based dynamic background screen. It provides motion and vibrancy that a conventional background cannot. To the audience’s amazement, the performers leap off backstage with perfect synchronization and suddenly show up on display in the background like they are flying in the air. 

shen yun controversy

The dancers move with ease. Their attractive outfits move throughout the stage in vivid colors. The performers unwind their sleeves and spin the material in the air. Their sleeves move in a captivating pattern, like moving water.

The performance brings to mind the intricate elegance of traditional Chinese dance. The crowd started cheering. Throughout its distinctive and vibrant production, Shen Yun skillfully presents classic Chinese tales and culture, revealing something different in each act. Falun Gong, a Chinese religious group with its main office in New York state, is organizing the event.

Why Doesn’t China Want You To See Shen Yun?

Shen Yun may seem silly, but Falun Gong followers have grown among the Chinese Government’s most vocal critics. So, the Chinese Government has turned its attention to a corny dance display as one of the fronts in the struggle for the minds and souls of Western people and Foreign Chinese.

shen yun controversy

However, the Beijing government asserts that Shen Yun is Falun Gong’s dancing and singing representative, branding Falun Gong as an evil “anti-social cult” that incites its adherents to self-mutilation, suicide, and murder. The Chinese consulate in the USA warned Americans that they might have been persuaded by the posters circulated in the community in 2012.

According to the release, they have recently staged the so-called “Shenyun” plays in the US, intending to highlight Chinese tradition and the allure of the East. In actuality, however, the shows were replete with cult themes and subliminal criticisms of the Chinese Government in conjunction with their awful taste and shoddy aesthetic norms.

The Chinese Government stalks Shen Yun everywhere its ventures. Theatres and city councils have received messages or meetings by Chinese diplomats seeking to stop the performance in Ecuador, Dublin, Germany, and Sweden. The diplomatic envoy from the Chinese consulate visited Jörg Seefeld, the event coordinator of a Stage Theatre on Potsdamer Platz in Berlin, where a Shen Yun concert was set, in February 2014. The envoy attempted to sway events. The program went on Seefeld’s defiance. 

shen yun controversy

Shen Yun lists several sneakier efforts to put the squad on the attack. The organization claims the car wheels of the show’s performers were damaged before their performances at the Tennessee Performing Arts Centre in Nashville. Someone reportedly interfered with a vehicle in Chicago in 2015 by putting “corrosive substances” on the brakes and accelerator pedals. The truck was plastered in Shen Yun advertisements. The group claims that Chinese agents record their phone conversations and take photos of their activities. Travel documents and computers are the only things reported lost during suspected break-ins.

It has become a part of the Chinese defense propaganda over the freedom of the cultural aspect of the Chinese people. The constant pursuit of preventing the freedom of expression, even for the Chinese people residing outside, shows the Chinese Government’s insecurity. 

On the other side, the presentation was mostly complimentary; its hidden messages came off as obtrusive and intrusive. Many of the ideas of Falun Gong, the organization behind Shen Yun, were included in the program. The line underneath atheism and the development of awful specter dwell appear in the show’s vocal number. Shen Yun also criticizes the persecution Falun Gong believers go through under the present Chinese administration. Considering this, the majority of the messages were encouraging and centered on the growth and advantages of Falun Gong.

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