WATERBURY, Conn.—Shen Yun Performing Arts dazzled theatergoers in Connecticut on Wednesday evening, displaying thousands of years of Chinese culture.
Business owners Jim Pinto and Debbie Lombardi both lauded the performance at the Palace Theater, saying Shen Yun gave them a deeper insight into the Chinese people.
Ms. Lombardi enjoyed seeing the grace of Chinese people and the cultural side of China through Shen Yun.
“I’ve never, ever had this experience before. So, it’s really nice to have that,” she said. “We all think like that in different ways. It’s nice to see that all the different cultures do.”
Based in New York, Shen Yun aims to revive traditional Chinese culture through performing arts, the company’s website says. Much of Chinese culture has been suppressed under decades of communist rule.
Mr. Pinto, who owns a boat repair business, described the dancers’ performance on stage as “exciting.”
Shen Yun’s dancers are primarily trained in classical Chinese dance—a system that has been passed down for thousands of years and is said to be capable of embodying the culture of China, the company says. The dance has its own set of movements, postures, and forms, according to the company’s website.
Ron Magrino, an office manager, praised Shen Yun’s depictions of Chinese spirituality, saying that he liked “the theme of … a higher being” contained within the performance.
Shen Yun’s website says that essence of Chinese culture lies in Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism, which is reflected in the performance. And despite it being a cultural show, Shen Yun cannot be performed in mainland China.
“It was … a nice form of art with the dance and the music,” Mr. Magrino said of the overall effect Shen Yun gave to the audience. “It was well-rounded. It was serious, it had some humor in it—a little bit of everything.”
Mr. Magrino also praised the use of a digital backdrop and music to enhance each performance. The backdrop is full of color and movement—allowing the dancers to interact with it, while the orchestra joins Western and Chinese musical traditions.
“I loved the music. I could hear the hint of the Western music in there quite a bit,” he said.
With reporting by Stephanie Lam, Hannah Cai, and Jack Phillips.
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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