AARHUS, Denmark—Television producing husband-wife duo Ms. Thera Hoeymans, a journalist and TV host, and Mr. Jorgen Vang, a videographer and film producer, know their Chinese history. There was 5,000 years of civilization, said to be divinely inspired, and they saw it brought to life in Shen Yun Performing Arts. In the performance at Music House Aarhus on April 12, the couple said they’d seen absolute beauty.
In fact, Ms. Hoeymans described a sort of elation elicited in her by the performance.
“The very lightness, and the elegance and the musical and the body expression, made me feel like everything was very … It seems like everything was so light and joyful, and very emotional, very spiritual, and you got the feeling that you were lifted up by the universe,” Ms. Hoeymans said. She felt this from the depth and beauty she saw in each and every performance.
The couple had done a lot of reading and knew of China’s divinely inspired past. They knew of China’s communism in the present as well, and that New York-based Shen Yun puts on a performance the Chinese Communist Party does not want you to see.
In 20-some vignettes of music and dance, of folklore and myth and legend, these artists aim to share with the world China’s authentic traditional culture. The culture was nearly lost in recent decades under communist rule in China, when temples were razed and books burned during the Cultural Revolution.
But here in Denmark, Manchurian princesses danced in elevated ‘flower pot’ shoes and elaborate headdresses. Buddhist monks displayed supernatural powers and moments of whimsy.
Change’E, the goddess of the moon, is separated from her husband Hou Yi in a heartrending but popular Chinese tale that brought tears to Ms. Hoeymans’s eyes. Tibetan female dancers celebrated the divine atop the Himalayas. Fairies twirled between the sea and sky, bringing the audience a feeling of otherworldly peace.
To see this sort of cultural revival, the couple felt a connection to something greater.
“I believe that there is something greater than us, and I believe that there is some universal spiritual force … The spiritual force is US, before landing here, and when we die we get into the big spiritual or the universal spiritual force again,” said Ms. Hoeymans.
“I feel a peace, I do. I’ve had a lovely experience, and I feel lifted of something, yes,” she said.
Mr. Vang said his medium is in images, not words like his wife, a singer and television host. He was brief but sincere in his deep appreciation for Shen Yun’s connecting people to the belief of the divine so prevalent in the past: “I think there is some truth to it, and I think it’s a good thing to believe in. You have to believe in something.”
He felt the performance brought universal understanding, connecting the traditional Chinese culture with Denmark. It let people see that there was not such a big difference between the two cultures.
All of this had been presented to him through beauty: the movement of the dancers, the music accompanying it, and the people themselves.
“So I enjoyed it,” he said. “Beautiful.”
Reporting by Pirjo Svensson and Catherine Yang
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.