Ecuador: Dance performance cancelled under pressure from Chinese embassy
On 22 May 2015, Falun Dafa – an organisation responsible for bringing the dance show “The Monkey King” by the Shen Yun Performing Arts Company to Ecuador, reported it had been the victim of censorship, following the decision of the Ecuadorian House of Culture to suspend activities at the National Theatre, affecting performances of the show planned for 23 and 24 May 2015.
Alejandro Nadal, a spokesman for the Falun Dafa, said in dialogue with Fundamedios.org that the suspension of activities was completely illegal, as they had all the relevant permits. He also noted that the incident was part of an explicit goal by the Chinese embassy in Ecuador to cancel the show.
The embassy had allegedly been looking for ways to get the event cancelled for the last month. “We have tried telling them in every possible way that they are violating the freedom of expression of the Ecuadorian people, that they are censoring culture in a democratic country and are doing so through a foreign country”, said the organisation’s spokesman.
According to Shen Yun Performing Arts, pressuring theatres is a standard practice of Chinese embassies every time the company presents a show. This is the first time one of their shows has been cancelled in Latin America.