WELLINGTON, New Zealand—The opening performance of Shen Yun Performing Arts at St. James Theatre on Feb. 16 was a ray of sunshine on a cloudy day for the audience. David Montgomery was delighted with what he experienced.
“Illuminating, enlightening and beautiful,” Mr. Montgomery, a web designer, said.
He felt Shen Yun was more than music and dancing; he said it gave him an inner glow in his heart.
“It’s got a sense of wonder and spiritual essence … a warm fuzzy feeling,” he said, that made him feel “happy, very happy. Excited and quite warm [inside].”
Based in New York, Shen Yun has classical Chinese dance at its heart. But audience members soon realize the performance is so much more.
“Sophisticated dance techniques, an orchestra joining instruments from both the East and West, beautiful costumes, and a stunning back drop—this is Shen Yun at first glance,” the website states.
“But digging deeper, one discovers a sea of traditional Chinese culture. Mortals and divine beings merge on stage as one. Principles such as benevolence and justice, propriety and wisdom, respect for the heavens, and divine retribution, all come to life, washing over the audience.”
Mr. Montgomery really enjoyed the whole experience of Shen Yun and felt there was an inner beauty, an energy emanating from the dancers.
“It was wonderful! I loved it! I was smiling the whole time,” he said. “I could feel the dancers were projecting their beauty, energy and beauty.”
He felt it was best summed up as the “spiritual essence” of the culture that was coming through, because of the energy of the dancers.
Mr. Montgomery also enjoyed how Shen Yun brought this ancient culture to a modern stage.
“It was a good combination of technology and modern, or traditional dance. It just went really well together,” he said, referring to the state-of-the-art digitally animated backdrop.
“I loved it, I couldn’t stop smiling every time they would take off into the distance. I thought it was fantastic. Amazing!” he said.
The Shen Yun website states, “Shen Yun’s digital backdrop team creates vividly animated settings, extending the stage and transporting the audience to a world where heaven and earth are one.
“These digital backdrop designs complement and synchronize all aspects of the performance: the characters, colour of the costumes, specific dance movements, props, lighting, the story being told, particular notes played by the orchestra, and special audio effects.”
Mr. Montgomery felt the backdrops added an extra dimension to the performance. “It definitely enhances it, I think it’s a wonderful thing to see and it makes it interesting, I loved it,” he said. “Beautiful, absolutely beautiful.”
Reporting by NTD Television and Leigh Smith
New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts has four touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world. For more information, visit Shen Yun Performing Arts.
Epoch Times considers Shen Yun Performing Arts the significant cultural event of our time. We have proudly covered audience reactions since Shen Yun’s inception in 2006.