On December 21, 2016, Visaliatimesdelta.com reports Falun Gong's Shen Yun, calling it a Chinese song-and-dance show with some propaganda.
The Chinese consul general in the United States criticized Shen Yun when the touring show visited the United States in 2013. A statement on the consulate’s website called the show a “clumsy, vulgar” form of religious propaganda. The statement built its case with a sampling of criticism from independent blogs and social media.
Some critics and news reports say the show’s ads are misleading because they don’t point out that “Shen Yun” has ties to practitioners of Falun Gong, a spiritual discipline banned in China. The production mixes political messages with the pageantry, they say.
Review blurbs on the print ads for “Shen Yun” gush about the show, calling it “an extraordinary experience,” “exquisitely beautiful,” “so inspiring,” “sweeping and soulful.”
Matthew J. Palm, an entertainment critic for Florida’s Orlando Sentinel newspaper, reviewed a “Shen Yun” in 2014.
“There’s more than a hint of theme-park style magic in the ever-smiling performers and the Day-Glo color scheme of the elaborate, often sparkly costumes,” he writes in the review, published Wednesday online. “That’s what makes it so jarring when suddenly in one vignette, government thugs — with not-so-subtly stylized red hammer-and-sickle emblems on their jackets — attack two tourists taking photos of Chinese practitioners of Falun Dafa, the spiritual movement also known as Falun Gong. … One moment, you’re watching an entertaining Mongolian dance in which beautiful women gracefully sway, balancing bowls on their heads, while their pretty purple yurts glimmer in the background. The next, you’re watching a prison beating set to music.”
He calls the show “an odd mix”.