MESA, Ariz.—Shen Yun Performing Arts delighted audience members at the Ikeda Theater in the Mesa Arts Center during its evening performance March 1.
Greg Knowlton, president of Pyrogetics, LLC, watched the performance with his wife Wlatka, who is the diabetes coordinator at Carl T. Hayden VA Medical Center.
Mr. Knowlton, who is the former chief scientist at Nammo Talley, a company in the defense and space industry, is also the owner of 16 patents, according to his LinkedIn site.
A Shen Yun performance includes a collection of brief pieces, each less than 10 minutes, that transports audiences through China’s 5,000-year history, told through classical Chinese dance and set to music played by a orchestra.
“I love the dance,” Mrs. Knowlton said.
She also enjoyed the costumes, referring to the long, silken sleeves worn by the female dancers, saying they were “very magical.”
“The change of costumes and the weapons—so many different things altogether. It’s not easy to do,” she said.
Mrs. Knowlton was referring to the multitude of costumes seen throughout the performance. Each piece is its own story and includes different costumes, so the performance, in its entirety, includes hundreds of handmade pieces.
Mr. Knowlton agreed with his wife, “The costumes are impressive,” he said.
Shen Yun is a New York-based classical Chinese music and dance company that tours to 100 cities worldwide with an all-new production each year with its mission to revive traditional Chinese culture. Currently in the midst of its 2013 season, Shen Yun has three companies that are performing simultaneously in North America, Europe, and Asia.
A major feature of Shen Yun is its state-of-the-art graphic projections. Each piece, along with having different costumes, includes a different backdrop that provides vivid imagery.
In addition, the performance seamlessly integrates the backdrop and dancers on stage; they descend from the screen and suddenly appear on stage as well as disappear from the stage and reappear on the screen.
Mr. Knowlton said the backdrops were interesting.
“And the background going into and out of the screen, that is unique,” Mrs. Knowlton said.
After seeing Shen Yun, Mrs. Knowlton said she wanted to learn more about Chinese history.
Reporting by Flora Ge and Albert Roman.
New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts has three touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world. Shen Yun Performing Arts International Company is performing at the Ikeda Theater in the Mesa Arts Center in Mesa, Ariz., March 2–3, and the Orpheum Theatre in Phoenix, Ariz., March 10. For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org
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