United States: Falun Gong Marching Band Impresses at the Flushing Chinese New Year Parade

January 28th is Chinese New Year's Eve, and more than 80 Asian groups staged a grand parade to celebrate the New Year with tens of thousands spectators. The Falun Marching Band formed by more than 100 practitioner performers made its first-ever public performance and drew great attention. The band gave the spectators a pleasant surprise and many Chinese along the parade route applauded and cheered.

The Falun Gong Marching band makes its first appearance in New York

Members of the Falun Gong Marching band performing

Members of the Falun Gong Marching band performing

The traditional parade was jointly organised by the Flushing Chinese Association of Business and the Korean Community. The parade started from Union Street, via Sanford Avenue, and finished at the Flushing Shopping Centre. A presiding stage was set up in front of Flushing Library. Along the parade route, tens of thousands of spectators watched the parade. The parade was led by several police vehicles and a group of mounted policemen, followed by a police marching band. Many elected officials walked in the parade to send New Year greetings to their constituents.

Apart from more than 40 Chinese and Korean groups, there were also Philippine and Malaysian groups. Many people dressed up in their cultural attire and performed their best programmes. The Falun Gong group was one of the most outstanding. The Falun Gong procession, which went four blocks, had a marching band, a celestial maiden dance group, a Falun Gong exercise demonstration group and a waist drum troupe. The first public appearance of the Falun Gong Marching Band was warmly received. Many Chinese applauded and cheered at the sight of the band. Some raised their thumbs to show their support. There were also some excited Chinese spectators who raised their hands above their heads to applaud. One Chinese person said to us, "In the past several years, Falun Gong has gone through much hardship. However, they have done so well and have been very peaceful."

The band, called "Band of Heaven", was formed about two and a half months ago with more than 100 Falun Gong practitioner performers who play 13 types of instruments. The youngest member is only 10 while the oldest is more than 50. The marching band has Chinese and Western practitioners alike.

The "Band of Heaven" performed "Falun Dafa is Good," "America the Beautiful" "Drumming of the Fa Shakes the Ten Directional Cosmos." The performance received warm applause from the spectators. A policeman on duty said that he likes the "Falun Gong Marching Band" very much. When the Falun Gong procession passed by the presiding stage, it received many compliments. A tourist from Mainland China watched the whole parade, and with a smile he said, "I hope they could perform a few more."

A high-spirited waist drummer

The Chinese Communist regime's brutal persecution against Falun Gong practitioners has lasted more than 6 years. Facing the violent persecution, practitioners have been tirelessly clarifying the truth with great compassion and forbearance. Practitioners have not wavered in their faith or responded with hatred. With their wisdom and compassion, they have won the public's understanding and respect.

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