SALZBURG, Austria— “This performance, which is too precious to be called a show, because shows are like a dime a dozen, spoke to my soul. It is well worth seeing,” said Sister Bernadette, a nun from the Salzburg Kloster (Convent) Goldenstein.
Sister Bernadette and her brother Bruno were in the audience at one of the largest opera houses in the world, the Grosses Festspielhaus. This venue is one of Salzburg’s most impressive and took four years to be built. It opened its doors in the mid-1960s.
“I was deeply shocked when I realized that these young people are prohibited from visiting China, their ancestral land,” she said.
The performers follow the spiritual practice Falun Dafa and the principles of Truthfulness, Compassion, and Forbearance. China’s Communist Party banned this practice in 1999 because its adherents’ numbers had surpassed those of the Party itself.
“These youngsters are devout,” said Sister Bernadette. “They and their escorts spare no effort. They gave up all their leisure time to bring their culture, the true Chinese culture, to the rest of the world.”
According to the Shen Yun website, “For 5,000 years divine culture flourished in the land of China. Humanity’s treasure was nearly lost, but through breathtaking music and dance, Shen Yun is bringing back this glorious culture.”
Food for the Soul
Sister Bernadette shared that “any question as to how one liked the show was unnecessary, because this performance is food for the soul. One can only say that it is most incredible.” Every scene gave her so much that it is beyond words.
She expressed amazement at the scene “Monks and the Red Guards.” As the program notes explain, the Chinese Communist Party wanted to destroy traditional beliefs. For this, they forced teenagers to join the Red Guard. These youngsters had to travel throughout China, burn books and raze temples. In this dance, the Red Guard wanted to drive out the monks from their monastery. However, this was impossible because of the monks’ supernatural martial arts skills.
Sister Bernadette said, “I was greatly shocked that the monks through prayers and their attitude changed the mind of the Red Guards. Most of all, I was amazed by the courage displayed by the monks. They taught those misguided youngsters that there is another life than the one they lived.”
Music Plays an Important Role
Ms. Renate Kirschke, a former lecturer in Salzburg, who taught communication, psychology, and sociology needed for a group environment, was in the audience during the closing show.
She was fascinated to see a large orchestra, especially since she plays the violin. During intermission she watched the musicians tune their instruments.
“I was amazed at the concentration of these young people. The music plays an important part in opening people’s heart,” she said. Therefore, the concentration helps the musician fulfill that role.”
The performance “was at a high level and totally removed from anything commercial”, she said.
Unforgettable Music and Performance
Emma Holzleitner, 10 years old, could not take her eyes off the stage. “When one concentrates on what is happening on the stage and listens to the music, one feels the love for life and the love for everyone. It was marvelous,” she said.
“The music is still in my mind and will be there for some time to come. I listened to wonderful melodies, which I will never forget,” she said.
Reporting by Wang Jing and Heide B. Malhotra
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.