NEW YORK—Retired screenwriter Tom Caccamo noted the interesting storytelling of Shen Yun Performing Arts on Saturday at Lincoln Center’s David H. Koch Theater.
“I enjoy that I can see the whole 5,000 years [of] civilization,” he said after watching the matinee performance. He said it was unlike anything he had seen before. “It all seems really authentic.”
The New York-based company revives the ancient Chinese culture through story-based classical Chinese dances. The Shen Yun website explains: “In less than ten minutes each, Shen Yun dances recount ancient myths, bygone heroes, or celestial paradises. Whether set in the past or in contemporary China, every dance embodies traditional Chinese values. Ideals of loyalty, filial piety, and veneration for the divine are cherished and celebrated.”
Mr. Caccamo’s wife, who was a school principal in Westchester before she retired, attended the performance with him. Karen Caccamo said: “It’s so nice, so fine, so delicate. They are dancing on the air.”
Classical Chinese dance has soaked up “profound wisdom from every era and dynasty, it has become a complete system of dance, embodying traditional aesthetic principles,” states the website.
Enhancing this ancient form, a state-of-the-art digital projection system provides a brilliant backdrop. Mr. Caccamo was impressed with this unique attribute; dancers are able to interact with the animated backdrop, and it brings to life detailed and intricately designed scenes from China’s past and present.
“The dancers are very talented and authentic,” Mr. Caccamo said. “It’s very interesting, I got to know more about the history.” Mrs. Caccamo said she is happy Shen Yun is bringing ancient Chinese culture to audiences around the world, though it cannot be seen in China where the communist regime has long suppressed the essential elements of traditional culture.
Reporting by Alec Wang and Tara MacIsaac
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.
The 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.