Australia: ABC-TV Reports on New Tang Dynasty Television's Chinese New Year Spectacular Show (Photos)
(Clearawisdom.net) On the evening of March 28, 2007, ABC-TV's flagship current affairs program "Lateline" reported in prime time that the New Tang Dynasty Television's (NTDTV) Chinese New Year Spectacular shows would be staged in Sydney on March 29. The program also exposed the Chinese Communist Party's (CCP) Consulate-General in Sydney interfering with the show.
Lateline host Tony Jones introduced at the beginning of the program that the NTDTV's Spectacular shows would be staged in Sydney beginning March 29 and showed footage of the "Divine Performing Arts" performers applying makeup backstage. The footage was shot by ABC-TV when it covered the event in Canberra. He also played a TV commercial for the NTDTV program and clips from last year's show.
Tony Jones said that the CCP's diplomats in Australia had urged Australian politicians not to attend the Chinese New Year's stage performance. The letters to New South Wales' politicians from the CCP's Consul General in Sydney were shown on TV.
Tony Jones said that, despite the CCP diplomat's efforts, there were still politicians who saw the performance, such as Australia's Attorney-General Phillip Ruddock. The program then played part of Ruddock's interview with NTDTV during the performance in Canberra. Ruddock said, "Often people don't understand the diversity of China and I think a lot of that has been brought out in the different dances and presentations that we have seen."
Australia's Attorney General Phillip Ruddock is interviewed by NTDTV
The program also showed an interview with the artistic director of the New Tang Dynasty Art Center, lead dancer and choreographer of the "Divine Performing Arts" Vina Lee. She said that she wanted the audience to rediscover Chinese history through the performance. She also said that this part of history was erased by the CCP during the 1960s Cultural Revolution.
Artistic Director of the New Tang Dynasty Arts Center and lead dancer and choreographer in the Divine Performing Arts Vina Lee
She continued, "It's very easy to rebuild a material world, but it destroyed people's soul--the culture of their mind. It destroyed almost a whole generation."
While Vina Lee spoke, TV scenes were inserted of Red Guards and Criticism Meetings during the Cultural Revolution. The scenes then turned to Vina Lee applying makeup backstage, being interviewed, and the NTDTV program. From violent struggle to quiet and beautiful dance performances, the scenes showed quite a contrast.
The program also interviewed Australian singer Christian Bischoff who took part in the 2004 Inaugural NTDTV's Chinese New Year Global Gala, and played the footage of his singing at the gala in New York.
Christian Bischoff in the NTDTV's 2004 Inaugural Chinese New Year Global Gala
Christian said in the interview that just before he left Sydney for New York, he got a call from the local Chinese Embassy. He said, "It was only three hours before I got on that plane. This guy said, 'Look, we just don't want you there.' He kept on with me for about 10 to 12 minutes, and I just said in the end, 'Look, I've got to go. I've got to get on this plane.'" As a result, the singer was put on a watch list. When he arrived at the Sydney Airport to check in, he was immediately stopped for an additional check. Later, he found that the blacklist was not only in Australia, "Wherever I went, I was searched before I got on the plane. Then, even after they checked all my luggage, they wanted to check it again."
Christian apparently still feels angry about this to this day.
At the end of the program, it once again cited the words in the NTDTV's commercial, "Together, once again, we will see the time honored traditions of Chinese culture flourishing in this modern world."
Right after that, the program commented, "Not if Beijing has it way. The battle over competing versions of Chinese history is set to continue as the show moves to other countries, including New Zealand."
After the program, "Lateline" reported in its news portion that Wang Ning [Nick Wang], editor-in-chief of New Zealand's Capital Chinese News, was barred from having an interview with member of the CCP's Politburo Deputy-Premier Zeng Peiyan.
"Lateline" is one of Australia's most famous current affairs television programs and is known for its outspokenness. It once made detailed reports on the defection incident of Chen Yonglin from the Chinese Consulate in Sydney. Last August, when former Canadian MP David Kilgour and Vice-president of the European Parliament Edward McMillan-Scott visited Australia, "Lateline" made interview reports on three consecutive nights with Kilgour and McMillan-Scott, who exposed the CCP's harvesting of organs from living Falun Gong practitioners. The reports caused tremendous repercussions in the Australian community. Within several days, the ruling and opposition parties reached a cross-party agreement to launch an independent investigation over the allegations of organ harvesting from living Falun Gong practitioners.