LONDON—On March 9, 2013, Mr. and Mrs. Cheng from Shandong, China saw Shen Yun at London’s Barbican Theatre.
The couple said that the performance was extremely captivating, and that they heard gasps all around them as the curtains rose.
“My first impression was that these dance actors were technically phenomenal and that they had trained very hard,” said Mrs. Cheng. They said that they had never watched such a beautiful show before, and that classical Chinese dance was very unique.
The couple expressed amazement at the dance performers, who, despite having grown up overseas, were able to bring historical characters to life and convey the traditional essence of Chinese culture. “We were able to sense reverence to the divine in traditional Chinese culture, expressed in the show.”
Mr. and Mrs. Cheng said that the program about Falun Gong moved them to tears. “When you’re in China, you become indifferent from frequent exposure to these things. But after being in a foreign country for some time and watching this situation conveyed through a dance performance, we almost cried.”
“If Shen Yun continues to perform on a large scale, they will have a great influence; those [Chinese people] who watch the show will realize how long they had been paralyzed. We are able to understand, and I believe westerners are able to understand it, too. The performance was extremely intricate.”
“Atheism is not going to really survive among the Chinese people,” said Mr. Cheng. “I believe that many people believe in the divine. Although they are brainwashed with atheism at school, Chinese people are rooted in divine culture.”
“I believe that divine belief is essential to a nation’s moral integrity,” said Mrs. Cheng. “Without beliefs, people will become immoral. Look at China today; no one steps in to help when children are run over by vehicles or when elderly people suffer a fall.”
Mr. Cheng added, “Look at the news in Northeastern China, where the child was taken and strangled to death. I’ve seen similar news in the west; someone stole a car and found a two-year-old child in the back seat. He parked the car and called the police, telling them to come and pick up the child. The difference between the two situations indicates the crumbling morality of the Chinese people.”
Mrs. Cheng agreed, “Westerners with religious beliefs are able to retain their morality. Although China has laws, people still act within their own morality. Without morality, laws can do nothing.”
“Shen Yun’s world tour holds great meaning,” said Mr. and Mrs. Cheng. “This is cultural communication. We can’t even see this at home [China].”
Reporting by Shao Yan and Virginia Wu
New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts has three touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world. For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org
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