BOSTON—Salem State University professor Thomas Billings and his wife, Sheila, a retired art teacher, were in the audience on Tuesday, Feb. 12, for Shen Yun’s closing performance at the Boston Opera House.
Mr. Billings gave tickets to his wife as a Christmas present. “This is a great present,” she said. Her husband agreed, saying, “It’s a real treat.”
Mr. Billings thought the performance had a lot of diversity and a lot of culture. “I get real appreciation of a culture that I knew about, but it makes it come to life,” he said. “This really makes it come to life. That’s why we enjoy it so much.”
With a mission to revive 5,000 years of divinely inspired culture through the universal language of music and dance, as the company’s website describes, New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts has three touring companies, each with a live orchestra that blends East and West. This is the seventh annual world tour for the premier classical Chinese dance and music company.
“I love the screen in the back with all the beautiful views,” Mrs. Billings said, referring to the state-of-the-art digital projections used as backdrops.
“From vast open grasslands in one dance to the stately elegance of Tang Dynasty pavilions in another; from dusty yellow battlegrounds to tropical beaches to Himalayan peaks to picturesque scenery of the Yellow River Delta—the digital projection infinitely expands and transforms the stage,” the Shen Yun website explains.
Having taught art, Mrs. Billings especially enjoyed the costumes and colors. “It’s so beautiful. It’s Just like a painting. It’s a beautiful show to look at. I love it,” she said.
“And I like the dancers—the grace,” Mr. Billings said.
“I’m really taken right now about how very seldom do the men dancers and the women dancers dance together. They do different dances, and it’s really something to see the power of the men and the grace of the women,” he said.
Reporting by Hua Chang and Connie Phillips.
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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