CALGARY, Alberta— Ms. Twitty is a soprano who came with her husband to the Shen Yun Performing Arts opening show on Easter Sunday afternoon at the Southern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium in Calgary.
The couple learned about the show, which played to a full house, from a friend they met through their involvement with the Calgary Stampede marching bands.
“She asked us to come, so we’re here and we’re really enjoying this. I’ve never seen anything like this before,” said Ms. Twitty’s husband during the intermission.
“I am a coloratura soprano, one of those ‘squeaky’ ones, way up high, about a high C,” Ms. Twitty explained.
She found both the music and dance performances at the show “really, really good; really, really wonderful.”
Ms. Twitty was impressed by the different musical instruments, in particular the erhu, a traditional Chinese two-stringed instrument featured in a solo performance by Qi Ziaochun playing a number entitled “Hope.”
The name erhu literally means “two string of ancient non-Han Chinese.” It has since become one of the most popular and recognizable Chinese instruments with a sound that is distinctively melancholic and beautiful.
Ms. Twitty also enjoyed the colours and costumes. “They’re beautiful. The whole atmosphere just creates a wonderful feeling.”
She noted the grace with which the dancers performed each program.
“All the people up there and the way they move—I keep thinking, 'Oh! The practice and the wonderful smoothness of what they’re doing is just really, really marvellous.'"
“They way they flow across [the stage,] back and forth. … And the way they bring the people off the screen, and they come out the back—that is really something, [that] really, really impressed me,” said her husband, referring the backdrops.
Shen Yun performances feature state-of-the-art digital backdrops that add animation, depth, and grandeur to each scene. Each backdrop is custom-designed to coordinate with the costumes, storyline, lighting, and even the choreography of each dance.
Ms. Twitty’s husband described the opening scene as “amazing” and “tremendous,” particularly “the costumes and the history. You could see the history.”
The Five Millennia Begin told the story of divine beings assembling in heaven to prepare for their descent to earth, where they were tasked with imparting the gift of culture to humanity. The magnificent scene spoke to the ancient Chinese belief that China’s classical culture was semi-divine—bestowed by a higher source.
“It’s just wonderful to know the heritage that [the Chinese] had, and that it’s being preserved. I think that’s very important, because so often the heritage is shoved to one side, and people forget it. I think that’s really wrong,” said Ms. Twitty.
“We’re just really glad that we had a chance to come today,” said her husband.
The Shen Yun 2009 World Tour is expected to reach a live audience of 800,000.
After its three-show run in Calgary, Shen Yun will play in Edmonton on April 15 and April 16 and in Regina on April 19.
The Epoch Times is a proud sponsor of the Shen Yun Performing Arts 2009 World Tour. For more information please visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org