NASHVILLE, Tenn.—Music industry luminary Anastasia Brown beamed after seeing Shen Yun at Tennessee Performing Arts Center on Feb. 17. “I think that the show is a combination of music, dance, history, and spirituality packaged in one of the most beautiful experiences of my life,” she said.
Ms. Brown helped launch singer Keith Urban when she co-managed him in 1994, won an Emmy, was nominated for an Oscar, led projects, acted, wrote a book, columns and articles, and supervised music and sound tracks for many television shows and films. She has one more extraordinary attribute: Shen Yun Orchestra conductor Antonia Joy Wilson is her cousin.
“I thought the music was divine. I’m quite proud of her,” she said.
Ms. Brown’s mother Katrina Brown was also proud of the conductor, who is her eldest niece. “She’s very good. She’s just one of these talented young composers,” Mrs. Brown said.
Mrs. Brown said she has an affinity for Chinese spirituality. Her husband is an Episcopal priest whose godmother was a missionary in China “before the wars.”
“I knew there had been a persecution of faiths in China. What they portrayed is good for the world to see,” she said.
She shared the Shen Yun artists’ wish: “I hope someday they will be able to put this on in China.”
“It is outside of China that Shen Yun’s artistic creators have the ability to freely express themselves and their ancient culture,” the Shen Yun website says.
Spirituality is a big, important focus of her family’s life because of her father’s vocation, said Ms. Brown. To her, Shen Yun gave her a chance to learn about a spiritual journey. “I think if more people spent time on their spiritual journey, the world would be a more gentle place,” she said.
The total experience of seeing Shen Yun International Company was a respite.
“The dancers and their costumes, it was such beauty, such innocence,” Ms. Brown said.
She thinks everyone should experience it.
“This is a nice escape that is positive, beautiful, informative, a must-see for everybody,” Ms. Brown said with a radiant smile.
Ms. Brown’s last thought was that she wants to buy “those twirly things,” meaning the handkerchiefs dancers spin and throw in An Early Spring. She laughed and said, “Where is the merchandise? I want to buy them as gifts!”
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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