TORONTO—A few days before the launch of her new album, recording artist Real Sun took some time to take in Shen Yun Performing Arts at Sony Centre.
The singer and poet attended the Jan. 25 performance with non-profit founder Mike Labbe and said the classical Chinese dance was inspiring.
“The show is amazingly beautiful to watch. There is a lot of strength and grace in the movement of the dancers and the visual colours and costuming is beautiful,” she said.
Sun has performed on stages across Ontario, the U.S., Korea, Japan, and Singapore. She released her first album, “Rise,” in 2008 and will launch her second, “Horizon,” on Jan. 31. She also recently published a poem titled “Letter to Father” in the anthology “Rattling the Stage: A Collection of Canadian Monolgues, Spoken Word, and Short Plays,” published by McGraw-Hill Ryerson.
She was mesmorized by the movements and props in Shen Yun’s story-based dances, and admired the creativity.
“The range of movement is really beautiful and the range of styles too, from [using] chopsticks to fans [in the dance],” she said, adding that the dancers’ skills were impressive.
“You can tell that they train very hard and very intensively.”
The New York-based classical Chinese dance and music company was formed in 2006, with a mission to revive 5,000 years of divinely inspired culture.
Mr. Labbe, founder and President of Options for Homes, a non-profit that works to make housing affordable for all income levels, was also enamoured with the props and costuming in Shen Yun—particularly the female dancers’ long, silken sleeves.
“I like the way that they use their outfits to add to it, their long sleeves,” he said.
“By using their clothing they are covering so much more of the space that you’re looking at, which is really quite wonderful.”
He was also impressed with the digitally animated backdrops, which provide vivid context to each dance and act as an interactive extension of the stage.
“I love the connection with the animation, that’s fun,” he said.
“It gives you a lot more choices in terms of what you choose to do with the stage.”
He appreciated the split-second timing between the dancers, orchestra, and backdrops, which combined to create the illusion the performers could jump in and out of the screens.
“The music must be blended in really well with the dancing,” he said, adding the dancers seemed to glide effortlessly across the stage.
“I’ve been watching their feet and I can’t quite figure out how they are doing it.”
Reporting by Sound of Hope Radio and Justina Wheale
New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts has four touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world. For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org
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.