MINNEAPOLIS—Capturing the spirit of a culture long lost, on Feb. 23 at the Orpheum theater, New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts continued its mission to revitalize ancient Chinese culture through Classical Chinese Dance.
Patrick Thielen, chief financial officer for Innovize Inc, a local medical manufacturing firm, and his wife Jane, who works in the Bethal University business office, were among the many theatergoers this evening.
After seeing the show Mrs. Thielen said, “I thought it was very interesting, … presenting history in a wonderful way, it was great, it was a joy to watch.”
Mr. Thielen said, “I certainly liked all of the costumes. I thought they were just gorgeous. It seemed to be like fluorescent, very colorful.”
“One of the things I thought was really neat was the way the female dancers, the way they moved,” Mr. Thielen explained. “I think they were not bending their knees as they kind of danced which made them look like they were floating, which I thought was very unique.”
“I don’t know if you would call it a transcendent culture or just that it is a timeless culture,” Mr. Thielen said, as he related what he learned about Chinese culture from the performance.
In trying to grasp why the dancers seemed to float, “That, I believe, someone said, they may think its part of enlightenment,” he added. “They are just very light and … I like the way they try to project the fact that they are a very peaceful culture, and that they are always.”
Mr. Thielen also got from the performance that “Even though there was evil out there, … that goodness would prevail over evil.”
“I thought it was enlightening in a way,” he said. “I mean I don’t know a lot about the history of China’s culture, but today it’s very different. It’s not a religious culture. It’s just the opposite, it’s more of a military culture.”
Mrs. Thielen agreed with her husband. She added, “And so, it really is, it occurs all the time, the oppression, and I’m really happy that they brought that up.”
She said, referring to some of the dances that depicted courage in the face of oppression today.
“We are so glad that they brought that out because I think when we live in America we can’t even, like our children, cannot even comprehend that that happens,” she said.
Reporting by Valerie Avore and Andrew Darin.
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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