-- Kai Chen Interview on Divine Performance
Ex-National Basketball Player: ‘A renaissance for conscience’
By Helena Zhu
Epoch Times Staff Jan 2, 2009
Kai Chen, former Chinese national basketball team player, sees the show as a spark and a beginning for developing humanistic culture. (Jian Li/The Epoch Times)
PASADENA, Calif.—On New Year’s Day at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium in Pasadena, Divine Performing Arts’ (DPA) ‘Chinese New Year Spectacular’ consummated its third out of eight performances in the city.
Among the diverse audience was Kai Chen, arguably the best forward on China’s national basketball team in the late 1970s, now a political and human rights activist.
Chen came to see the “essence” of the performance where he found “a new renaissance, you know, it’s what I call a renaissance for conscience.”
“The most important thing for me today, you know, to come here and support, it is to see a new development in the Chinese community—trying to really reconnect the Chinese speaking population with each individual's conscience," he said.
Chen, who came to America in 1981, said that most Chinese people under the Chinese Communist Party (CCP)’s influence, lack the ability to freely express their humanity.
Chen saw the show as “a spark” and “a beginning” for developing humanistic culture.
“From that spark, you can start developing a new healthy humanistic culture and because that will take a long time, but that spark has to happen," he said, "This is only the beginning of it. So this beginning I hope is a beginning for everybody to start to reconnect yourself with your own humanity.”
Chen said that people of all different faiths should experience this “spontaneous occurrence.”
He continued, “That is, to have this type of performance in your own way to show that I am connected with my conscience, I am connected with my soul.”
A year before the Olympics began, Chen initiated a Global Olympic Freedom T-shirt Movement to “express the true spirit of the Olympics—the spirit of freedom.” He traveled to ten cities across four continents, including Berlin, Vancouver, Taipei, and Washington, D.C.
As the show includes programs depicting the CCP’s persecution of Falun Gong, the CCP has repeatedly interfered with the performance over the years. Methods such as threatening the theaters not to play the show, and calling up officials of other countries not to attend all have been common.
Chen said that if this show can eventually be played in mainland China, “when that happens, you know, that's about the time when the Communist regime will collapse. The purifier will reach China, and eventually you know at that time a free Olympics will happen. I'll go back and help them. When that regime is there, I just don't want to go back and support them. That's it. That's my point.”
The Epoch Times is a proud sponsor of the Divine Performing Arts.