DES MOINES, Iowa.—The pandemic has made many afraid to get out of their homes for more than the essentials. But Mike and Pam Morrison, a public safety officer and a registered nurse, felt that more people should come out and experience Shen Yun Performing Arts.
“It’s an experience that people are missing because of the pandemic,” Ms. Morrison said.
“But they still need to come,” Mr. Morrison added.
New York-based Shen Yun aims to revive the 5,000 years of Chinese civilization that has been all but lost due to the communist regime in China. Mr. Morrison expressed his support for what Shen Yun is doing to raise awareness.
“We want to support the Shen Yun dancers and their mission against the Chinese Communist Party’s tyrannical rule. And we love the freedom that their dancing represents. And we want to do all we can to help them,” he said.
He felt that Shen Yun is very valuable and quite affordable, too.
“The value is that I feel hope. And I feel that other people can learn more about traditional Chinese culture and what it can be,” Mr. Morrison said.
‘We’re Anxious to Get Back to Living Life’
Bill and Lynn Frank, Steve Churchill, and Christine Branstad were also in the audience this evening.
Mr. Churchill was a former chief of staff at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing and Christine is the wife of Terry Branstad a former ambassador of China and a past Iowa governor. As people who have lived in China, they shared their thoughts on Shen Yun’s presentation of China before communism.
“It definitely portrays China before communism, absolutely. When you look at what the lyrics were for the songs and when it talks about the Divinity, that’s certainly something that we wouldn’t see today,” Mr. Churchill said.
Ms. Branstad said the performance was beautiful.
“You know, we who definitely have faith in this country, it was very nice to see that portrayed because, like Mr. Churchill said, you did not see a lot of religion and faith there,” she added.
Ms. Branstad also shared they were in China when the pandemic began and she is anxious to see life return to normal.
“I mean, everybody is ready to be finished with the pandemic. And so any chance we have to go out and be with people and see a wonderful performance, we’re anxious to get back to living life,” Ms. Branstad said.
Chinese culture is diverse in its ethnic groups and its long and deep history. Mr. Churchill expressed his appreciation of Shen Yun for portraying it so beautifully.
“I loved it. You can see the history in it and the beauty and how delicate it was, but how strong at the same time and the colors. And it was really nothing like I ever saw in China so it was really special,” he said.
Reporting by Kerry, Stacey Tang, and Maria Han.