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Chinese Scholar: Shen Yun’s Dancing Is Exquisite


Epoch Times Staff
Created: March 31, 2013 Last Updated: April 1, 2013
Related articles: Shen Yun On Tour » Special Section
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Shen Yun Performing Arts Touring Company's curtain call at Taoyuan County Performance Center Performance Hall. (The Epoch Times)

Shen Yun Performing Arts Touring Company's curtain call at Taoyuan County Performance Center Performance Hall. (The Epoch Times)

TAOYUAN, Taiwan—With three equal-sized companies touring on five continents, Shen Yun Performing Arts has brought its world-acclaimed performance to the city of Taoyuan, where the local cultural extravaganza attracts both local Taiwanese and mainland Chinese alike.

Mr. Wang, who is from China and currently teaches in Taipei, raved about the performance he had just witnessed. “The reputation of Shen Yun indeed precedes itself,” he said. “The dancing was absolutely exquisite! Perfection! It also incorporated some ancient wisdom from Confucianism, Buddhism and Daoism.”

“However, all these are gone in China; atheism is what’s left of China,” he added.

According to Shen Yun’s website, over the past 60 years of rule, the communist regime has decimated traditional Chinese values. And through its systematic campaigns like the Cultural Revolution, it has uprooted traditional beliefs and destroyed ancient treasures—bringing 5,000 years of traditional civilization to the brink of extinction.

As for his take on traditional culture, Mr. Wang reflected on his own experience. “During the Cultural Revolution, ancient culture was destroyed from its roots. I may not know much, but I see a lot during the Shen Yun performance,” he explained. “A good example would be the journey to the west to obtain Buddhist scriptures.”

One show in particular caught Mr. Wang’s attention. “I especially loved the Mongolian Bowl Dance,” he said. “I kept on listening intently to the being music played, searching for all the bits of melody that might be played by the morin khuur.”

“I, myself, am a not fervent theater-goer,” he concluded. “However, today’s performance by Shen Yun is totally worth it. I enjoyed it very much.”

“Now I have another option besides going to the movies.”

Shen Yun ‘Brings out people’s inner goodness’

Receiving great acclamation from across the ranks of the Taiwan government, Shen Yun Performing Arts Touring Company staged its final performance in Taoyuan before traveling to Taiwan’s southern city of Changhua.

Chen Heshan, a councilor from Yunlin County, rode a tour bus with fellow Yunlin residents to see Shen Yun at the Taoyuan County Performance Center on the afternoon of March 30.

After the performance, Mr. Chen said that he enjoyed it immensely. With the exception of last year, Mr. Chen has seen the performance every year since Shen Yun was established in 2006.

Greatly moved after the performance, Mr. Chen quoted a poem by renowned poet Li Bai from the Tang Dynasty to express his feelings: “People in this generation do not get to see the moon at ancient times. But the bright moon of this generation once shone upon the people in the past.”

“Shen Yun portrays the cultural essence of 5,000 years of Chinese history,” said Mr. Chen. “It provided us with the excitement and surreal feeling of seeing the past in the present day. Not only were we able to see the cultural essences, the teachings of [Falun] Dafa were also presented as well.”

“The compassion and teachings … are imperative to awakening inner goodness within people. What [Shen Yun] is doing is very meaningful—bringing out people’s inner goodness through dance.”

The enjoyment Mr. Chen experienced from watching Shen Yun was written all over his face. On the tour bus going home, he remained ecstatic as he shared and exchanged his excitement and joy with fellow Yunlin residents.

“The fact that we came all the way from Yunlin to watch this performance brought an additional level of excitement,” said Mr. Chen.

‘A tingling-hot sensation ran up my spine’

Having common ancestral roots, local citizens in Taiwan and mainland Chinese were all eagerly anticipating the performance by Shen Yun Performing Arts on the evening of March 30.

In the packed attendance was Mr. Chen (an alias), a businessman from China, who was completely overwhelmed by what he had just experienced. “The performance was of such grandeur,” he said. “I was absolutely stunned. A tingling-hot sensation ran up my spine. This was truly part of our culture.”

According to Shen Yun’s website, Shen Yun performance is a presentation of traditional Chinese culture as it once was: a study in grace, wisdom, and the virtues imbedded in the five millennia of Chinese civilization.

“The entire performance was such a delight for my eyes,” he added. “The myriad of colors was just dazzling. I thought some heavenly secrets and mystery were being revealed to me. Then, I thought it must be part of the performance’s inner meaning.”

Shen Yun utilizes the universal language of music and dance to take its viewers on a journey through 5,000 years of divinely imparted culture. The performances seek to leave those in the audience uplifted and inspired.

“From the artistic perspective, the creativity, the design, the backdrop, and the dances were all brilliant,” Mr. Chen said. “Between the animated backdrop and the dancers, the coordination was exceptional. It was a stunning surprise when traditional culture and stories were tied together by the animated backdrop.”

“With state-of-the-art graphics technology, Shen Yun’s digital-backdrop team creates vividly animated settings, extending the stage and transporting the audience to a world where heaven and earth are one,” reads Shen Yun’s website.

Finally, he asked himself a very simple question: “What is the main theme behind a Shen Yun Performance? Shen Yun is much more than just its artistic elements. I am still guessing—I am still contemplating.”

Read the original Chinese articles.[1]  [2]  [3]

Reporting by Feng Changle, Su Xiqiao and Frank Fang

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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