Artist Robert Guillen would like his family and friends to see Shen Yun, “In here, in my heart, they’re all here with me. If I could buy out the whole theater I would bring all my family and friends.”
PHOENIX, Ariz.—Artist Robert Guillen attended the Sunday, March 10, first showing of Shen Yun Performing Arts International Company at the historic Orpheum Theater. He said that he thought the performance was “visually stunning.”
Mr. Guillen is a painter, and has a commitment to helping with his time and art to fundraise for The Joshua Tree Feeding Program, a community program serving the Phoenix area.
The costumes in Shen Yun are vibrant, exquisitely beautiful, and represent attire from various dynasties, ethnic groups, and heavenly realms. The flowing costumes complement the delicate dance movements to create a visually stunning spectacle. Mr. Guillen was “amazed.”
“I didn’t come here with any expectations. I think that all of the performers, artists, designers, the tailors, and everyone [deserve credit], it’s very well put together,” he said.
“Visually stunning. I was sitting there and just thinking of refinement, elegance, mastery, fluidity. It’s invigorating,” he said. “Invigorating and refreshing. I’m grateful to be allowed to see something as wondrous as this.”
Shen Yun can be translated as meaning “the beauty of divine beings dancing,” and at the heart is classical Chinese dance—an art form with ancient roots and its own system of training in both physical expression and specific postures.
Mr. Guillen was mesmerized by the performance: “I’m just so enthralled by their movement that I kind of got lost.”
However, one vignette was special to him, An Unexpected Encounter, in which a father and daughter are arrested during a tour in China due to a misunderstanding. The events that follow allow the father and daughter to learn about and fulfill their predestined relationship with Falun Dafa, a meditation practice that has been persecuted in China since 1999.
“The particular story about the injustice that China is facing it’s something that I think we all share across the board. … Everybody struggles against diversity,” he said. “But through that there’s something within you that helps you strive for better, for more. To know that we are all valid and all have a purpose here.”
He would like his family and friends to see Shen Yun, “In here, in my heart, they’re all here with me. If I could buy out the whole theater I would bring all my family and friends.”
He strongly recommends, “I hope that anyone who is able would be able to come and enjoy this, and learn about this culture, that although sometimes lost, it can be reinvigorated and brought back to life, as long as we remember where we come from.”
Reporting by Albert Roman and Cheryl Casati.
Shen Yun Performing Arts International Company is scheduled to perform at the Smith Center for the Performing Arts, Las Vegas, March 15–17. For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org.
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