Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


N Shore Mayor succumbs to China Consulate pressure

Immediate Release:

Monday April 2, 2007

North Shore Mayor succumbs to Chinese Consulate pressure

Chinese officials in New Zealand are exerting pressure on sponsors and VIPs in attempts to block support for Divine Performing Arts – an international cultural show to be held at The Civic, April 5, 2007.

A phone call from the Chinese Consular General's office to North Shore City mayor George Wood is the latest in a series of events plaguing the global tour, from the USA to Canada, Europe and Australia.

During their 4-month tour the organisers have experienced some severe inteference from Chinese officials trying to halt New Tang Dynasty Television's Chinese New Year Spectacular and Holiday Wonders shows – now Divine Performing Arts.

Mayor George Wood was planning to attend the show with his wife, but after the phone call last week he backed out.

“I don't want to get involved in internal People's Republic of China politics but I also want to maintain a reasonable relationship with the People's Republic of China. They said that [the show] was involved in Falun Gong, they indicated Falun Gong, and I don't know what the true impact of that is, but it obviously has some concerns for them.”

Divine Performing Arts are devoted to recreating the original and divine cultures of humankind, much of which was destroyed during the 1960s Cultural Revolution.

The show portrays dances and narratives that span thousands of years of culture from China, Tibet and Mongolia, and also incorporates scenes from China's most recent history - namely the repression of people who practice the Falun Gong spiritual system.

“I had indicated that I probably would go to the show, but I'm not going to cause an international kerfuffle by going to something that I don't know anything about. I don't know anything about the Falun Gong or whatever it means. I am a mayor of a city not an international diplomat and I haven't really got the time to analyze the thing out,” Mr Wood said.

He does not think it is appropriate for the consulate to try and influence what shows he will attend.

“I don't feel comfortable having to make decisions as a result of phonecalls I receive from a consulate office and I actually indicated that to the consul official. But at the same time, as a mayor I don't have time to analyse out what the merits are for and against what is being said.”

Other incidents have occured throughout the week, including a contracted advertisement in a Chinese newspaper being cancelled without notice; two shops acting as ticket-selling points withdrawing their support - one saying from outside pressure; and promotional posters were defaced.

Before last week's Sydney premiere of the show the Chinese Consulate sent a letter to New South Wales' politicians with a stern warning, urging them not to attend the show.

In a media release on March 29 Australian Greens MLC Ian Cohen said, "I was surprised by the reactions of both the Embassy official and Henry Tsang MLC against this celebration, as seen on last night's Lateline programme on the ABC. This has made me even more determined to attend the function."

Mr Cohen added, "This is a peaceful cultural spectacular. What type of government officials would condemn such an event? A controversial scene is said to depict the persecution of Falun Gong practitioners by Chinese police. Such persecution is well documented by human rights groups. Art in the West should be free to depict all aspects of society without fear.”

Michelle Ren Divine Performing Arts Lead dancer and choreographer said the interference was common. “They [the Chinese regime] always do these kinds of things.”

Liu Tong the Director of the Spectacular Planning Committee in Chicago said in an interview with The Epoch Times last month, "The regime had taken all measures at all costs to interfere with the NTDTV Spectacular in Chicago this year. They wrote letters and made phone calls to sponsors, government officials, and even the media, attempting to stop them from supporting the show.”

A document was recently obtained by The Epoch Times from China's State Administration of Radio, Film and Television revealing the Chinese Communist Party's attempts to interfere with NTDTV's Chinese New Year shows since the inaugural performance in 2004.

The document orders that the NTDTV New Year Show should be destroyed by "any and all means", and if not possible, to "contain them and minimize their impact."

--

The show is run by New Tang Dynasty Television, a non-profit independent Chinese language television network broadcasting 24/7 in Asia, Europe, North America and Australia.

The New York-based Divine Performing Arts Group has experienced full houses on the current 2007 global tour from America, Europe, Asian to Australia, with the show travelling to Taiwan and Korea after New Zealand.

The shows have produced thundering success season after season – ranked 7th best selling show in the US by Billboard magazine in February 2006. Reports from sell-out seasons in the US and Europe suggest, 2007 is by far the best.


ENDS


Divine Performing Arts New Zealand 2007 show dates:

The Civic, The Edge, Auckland City

Thursday April 5, 2007

2pm and 7.30pm

Tickets available through Ticketek on (09) 307 5000 or ticketek.co.nz

Or contact Divine Performing Arts hotline: (09) 638 3497

Prices range from $95 to $55 and concessions are available

http://shows.ntdtv.com

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On The Northland By-Election

Supposedly, Winston Peters’ victory in Northland has exposed the simmering dissatisfaction with the government that exists out in the provinces. Yet it remains to be seen whether this defeat will have much significance – and not simply because if and when Labour resumes business as usual in the Northland seat at the next election, Peters’ hold on it could simply evaporate.

On Saturday, National’s electorate vote declined by 7,000 votes, as the 9,000 majority it won last September turned into a 4,000 vote deficit – mainly because Labour supporters followed the nod and wink given by Labour leader Andrew Little, and voted tactically for Peters. In the process, Labour’s vote went down from nearly 9,000 votes six months ago, to only 1,315 on Saturday. More>>

 
 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

Climate: Ministers Exclude Emissions From ‘Environment Reporting'

The National Party Government has today revealed that the national environmental report topics for this year will, incredibly, exclude New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions, the Green Party said today. More>>

ALSO:

No Retrial: Freedom At Last For Teina Pora

The Māori Party is relieved that the Privy Council has cleared the final legal hurdle for Teina Pora who was wrongfully convicted of murder and sent to prison for 22 years. More>>

ALSO:

Germanwings Crash: Privacy Act Supports Aviation Safeguards In New Zealand

Reports that German privacy laws may have contributed to the Germanwings air crash have prompted New Zealand’s Privacy Commissioner to reassure the public that the Privacy Act is no impediment to medical practitioners notifying appropriate authorities to a pilot’s health concerns. More>>

ALSO:

Treaty: Taranaki Iwi Ngāruahine Settles Treaty Claims For $67.5mln

The settlement includes a $13.5 million payment the government made in June 2013, as well as land in the Taranaki region. The settlement also includes four culturally significant sites, the Waipakari Reserve, Te Kohinga Reserve, Te Ngutu o te Manu and Te Poho o Taranaki. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On A Funeral In Asia, The Northland By-Election, And News Priorities

Supposedly, New Zealand’s destiny lies in Asia, and that was one of Foreign Minister Murray McCully’s rationales for his bungled reforms at MFAT. OK. So, if that’s the case why didn’t Prime Minister John Key attend the state funeral on Sunday of Singapore’s founding leader Lee Kuan Yew? More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf Satire: Not Flag-Waving; Flag-Drowning

The panel choosing the flag options has no visual artists at all. Now, I’ve kerned the odd ligature in my time and I know my recto from my French curve so I thought I’d offer a few suggestions before they get past their depth. More>>

ALSO:

IPCA Reports: Significant Problems In Police Custody

In releasing two reports today, the Independent Police Conduct Authority has highlighted a number of significant problems with the way in which Police deal with people who are detained in Police cells. More>>

ALSO:

Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security: Inquiry Into GCSB Pacific Allegations

The complaints follow recent public allegations about GCSB activities. The complaints, and these public allegations, raise wider questions regarding the collection, retention and sharing of communications data. More>>

ALSO:

TPPA Investment Leak: "NZ Surrender To US" On Corporates Suing Governments

Professor Jane Kelsey: ‘As anticipated, the deal gives foreign investors from the TPPA countries special rights, and the power to sue the government in private offshore tribunals for massive damages if new laws, or even court decisions, significantly affected their bottom line’. More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf: The Myth Of Steven Joyce

Gordon Campbell: The myth of competence that’s been woven around Steven Joyce – the Key government’s “Minister of Everything” and “Mr Fixit” – has been disseminated from high-rises to hamlets, across the country... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news