KANSAS CITY, Mo.—Looking over the events offered at the new Kauffman Center, Russell and Debbie Welsh decided to attend the Shen Yun Performing International Company performance on Jan. 23 and liked it very much.
“The dancers are wonderful and the costumes are beautiful,” said Mrs. Welsh, a marketing consultant. “And the costumes, of course are really magnificent.”
Mr. Welsh, a business corporation lawyer, added that the dancers are very athletic, too, with the jumping and tumbling.”
Shen Yun is based in New York with the mission of revitalizing 5,000 years of divinely-inspired culture. To do so, the company relies on classic Chinese dance, and a unique orchestra with instruments from both the East and West. With the freedom that comes from being outside of China, Shen Yun can display beloved myths, legends, and virtues of its traditional culture.
“Both traditional and modern at the same time” is how Mr. Welsh described Shen Yun. “I think it gives a good perspective of the Chinese culture and the Chinese people. The traditional and historical [displayed] with the stories and the dance.”
It is a different type of experience states Mrs. Welsh: “It’s a very different because a lot of it is traditional classic dancing, and you get to see a different type of dance that you’re not used to seeing.”
She continued: “It doesn’t fit the normal framework of ballet … it is athletic, it has a lot of leaps and jumps.”
Classical Chinese dance has a comprehensive system of training that requires specific postures, embodies the deeply felt spirit of the dancers through their bearing, and thrills audiences with its leaps, spins, and aerial jumps and tumbling.
“China’s deep cultural traditions are contained in classical Chinese dance, allowing its movements to be richly expressive, such that the personalities and feelings of characters can be portrayed with unparalleled clarity. It is therefore capable of depicting scenes from any time period, whether ancient or modern, Eastern or Western, in a strikingly vivid way,” the website states.
Reporting by Stacey Tang and Cat Rooney.
Shen Yun Performing Arts, based in New York, tours the world on a mission to revive traditional Chinese culture. For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org
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