PITTSBURGH—The movement in Shen Yun Performing Arts—as well as the profound combination of different artistic elements—fascinated Jennifer Lindsay, who for decades has developed movement education.
“I’m engrossed,” she said.
Ms. Lindsay developed the movement education program for Slippery Rock University and taught there for 31 years. She’s originally from Scotland.
New York-based Shen Yun combines a base of classical Chinese dance and ethnic and folk dance with digital backdrops, handcrafted regalia, and an orchestra the melds classical Western and traditional Chinese instruments.
The harmonization between the different elements enthralled Ms. Lindsay.
“The combination is quite spectacular,” she said. “It pulls the person from the seat into it, and then back to the seat again, which I’m loving.”
Stories and legends that draw from the deep lore of Chinese culture—one which is 5,000-years-old and formed on a basis of the three religions of Confucianism, Buddhism, and Taoism—are presented in mini-drama dance pieces, less than ten minutes each.
“Shen Yun dances recount ancient myths, bygone heroes, or celestial paradises,” states the company’s website. “Whether set in the past or in contemporary China, every dance embodies traditional Chinese values. Ideals of loyalty, filial piety, and veneration for the divine are cherished and celebrated. Heroes are extolled for their compassion and tolerance as much as their courage or determination when facing adversity.”
This was the first time Ms. Lindsay had seen classical Chinese dance or ancient culture and it was a favorable experience for her.
“There’s a simplicity and a depth to it at the same time that I’m thoroughly enjoying,” she said.
With reporting by Pamela Tsai and Zack Stieber
Shen Yun Performing Arts International Company will perform in Pittsburgh until Feb. 3. 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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