SAN FRANCISCO—Shen Yun Performing Arts graced the stage at the War Memorial Opera House on Tuesday evening, Dec. 28, and earned the respect of one of the city's most veteran singers. Claudia Siefer has been singing in the chorus of the San Francisco Opera for more than 35 years, much of it on the very same stage.
She was particularly amazed by the voice of contralto Jiansheng Yang. "I cannot express my wonderment for the contralto, it's very special, her voice is very special," Ms. Siefer exclaimed. "It’s really an extraordinary gift."
She felt that all of the featured singers in the Shen Yun show have highly cultivated technique. "I admire all three of them," she added.
Shen Yun’s one-of-a-kind orchestra, with its all-original compositions, blends East and West like no other. The distinctly Chinese sound of ancient instruments like the erhu and the pipa are bathed in a rich sea of Western strings, percussion, woodwinds, and brass.
Ms. Siefer could certainly appreciate the unique live orchestra: "I love it, I love this hybrid, hearing the oboe, the cello, the violin, with the Chinese instruments, it's really working," she remarked.
Ms. Siefer also commented on soprano Haolan Geng, saying, "I can’t sing like that, no way. … It's fantastic. It’s like something going—her voice is going to heaven. You can see when she sings, at the end of the song, her body just releases all this beautiful energy."
Ms. Siefer was also able to perceive a deeper meaning of the show. She expressed it as: "I have an idea that the performers and the show are bringing us all together to a higher existence, elevating our existence from day-to-day to a higher understanding."
Reporting by Ma Youzhi and Dean Tsaggaris.
Shen Yun Performing Arts will perform at the San Francisco War Memorial Opera House until Thursday, Dec. 30. For more information visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org