MEDICINE HAT, AB (December 14, 2012): Seven months after abruptly shutting down the Shen Yun performances, the PC government has still failed to apologize and reach a resolution, Wildrose Culture Critic Blake Pedersen said today. In May, Culture Minister Heather Klimchuk pulled the plug on Shen Yun performances at the provincially operated Jubilee Auditoriums in Edmonton and Calgary after Falun Dafa had publicly raised concerns for privacy and safety.
In a letter sent to Minister Klimchuk, Pedersen said that an effort needs to be made to ensure that this world class performance by the Falun Dafa Association is allowed to perform in Alberta. “The Falun Dafa have a proud association with Alberta’s cultural scene since 2007, and to cancel their performance altogether without a resolution is irresponsible,” Pedersen said. “The Shen Yun is a beautiful and skillful display of the Chinese cultural arts scene, and it is a shame that this Minister has failed to make an effort to come to a resolution for over the past seven months.” Pedersen argued that without a real resolution in place, the decision by the Culture Minister threatens Alberta’s proud tradition of being welcoming and tolerant from those from different backgrounds, and from promoting a world-class performance. “This show has received rave reviews from across North America in a variety of venues, but Alberta is the only place insisting on imposing such restrictive actions,” Pedersen said. “We should be respectful, tolerant, and understanding of their practices and beliefs, and we must never limit their right to free speech or their freedom of assembly.”