MISSISSAUGA, Canada—Shen Yun Performing Arts kicked off its North American tour Thursday night at Mississauga’s Living Arts Centre. The New York based company, known as the world’s premier classical Chinese dance and music company, wowed a sold-out house with a brand new 2013 show.
“I thought it was spectacular,” said Susan Gyopar who works as a director in manufacturing for a packaged goods company. She said she was impressed by the costumes, presentation and music alike.
Established in 2006, Shen Yun has set out to revive 5,000 years of Chinese culture. Since then, Shen Yun has grown to have three equally large companies with accompanying orchestras that tour the world simultaneously.
Ms. Gyopar was particularly impressed by the dancers’ skill.
“They were just like feathers in the air. Unbelievable. Such flexibility,” she said.
To achieve such superior artistry, Shen Yun’s dancers strive to follow the ancient Chinese belief, “that to create true art there must first be inner beauty and purity.” In ancient times, members of most professions believed that the practice of meditation and inner cultivation were needed to achieve a high degree of skill. As such, alongside technical training, Shen Yun artists also emphasize their moral character.
Among the dancers of the Shen Yun Performing Arts New York Company now in Mississauga are several winners of international dance competitions.
In addition to the dance, Ms. Gyopar was also struck by the costumes.
“They were fabulous,” she said.
With hundreds of tailor-made costumes, Shen Yun presents a spectacular display of Chinese fashion, spanning the origins of Chinese civilization to contemporary China today, alongside heavenly realms.
In an ethnic Tibetan dance, the dancers extend their white khata sleeves as part of a ceremonious offering to the divine. According to the program book, “The dancers’ crisp footwork and waving sleeves showcase the energy, power, and grace of traditional Tibetan dance, expressing a spirited beauty in the face of adversity.”
Ms. Gyopar said Shen Yun was a beautiful, musical presentation of a new culture she was not familiar with.
“It was really impressive.”
Reporting by NTD Television and Madalina Hubert.
New York-based Shen Yun has three companies that tour the world each year on a mission to revive 5,000 years of traditional Chinese culture. For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org
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