KAOHSIUNG, Taiwan—As Shen Yun illustrates the grandeur of celestial world, legends of ancient heroes and contemporary stories through a traditional artistic form, its program can make an audience feel exhilarated in the bottom of their hearts.
On the evening of March 5, City Councilor Zhang Wenrui was of one of the audience members captivated by the seventh performance staged by Shen Yun Performing Arts International Company at Kaohsiung City Cultural Center. He said, “The program was really so lifelike and vivid that it indeed touched the bottom of my heart.”
Seeing Shen Yun show for the first time, Zhang Wenrui marveled at the extraordinary exquisiteness and gracefulness of the Chinese culture demonstrated by Shen Yun. In particular, he was deeply moved by the program The Steadfast Lotus depicting the story about Falun Gong practitioners’ steadfastness while being severely persecuted.
Speaking of the high-tech digital backdrops that can make audiences feel as though they are transcending time and space and really experiencing what they see onstage, Mr. Zhang described his feeling, saying, “Though I have been to many performing arts shows, I’ve never seen any of this kind of dance. The backdrops were so superb. Their (dancers’) body movements and hand gestures were in great unison.”
He stressed, “I can’t figure out how they (dancers) jumped out of the animated digital backdrops. I thought it over again and again, but I still don’t know how they did it.”
Some people say that seeing Shen Yun’s performances with their rich connotations of goodness and sacredness is just like a spiritual purification of our minds. Zhang Wenrui said, “What Shen Yun demonstrates can make people feel that the world is very immense, and that it’s great to have freedom, or life will be very sad. From the overall performance, we can think of the importance of freedom in the society.”
Deeply amazed by the superb performance, he expressed that he couldn’t wait to introduce Shen Yun to others: “Before coming to watch the show, I didn’t know that it’s so wonderful. Not until I saw it did I know that it was so lifelike and vivid. Therefore, I was deeply moved at the bottom of my heart. If there’s another opportunity, I would like to see it again, and take my relatives and other people around me to see the show.”
Shen Yun Promotes the Power of Justice
After seeing Shen Yun Performing Arts’s performance on March 5, Chen Yung-Cheng, assistant professor of the Arts and Crafts Department of Tung Fang Design University, believed that Shen Yun conveys the message of justice through entertainment.
“Shen Yun promotes the idea that righteousness always conquers evil. It promotes the sense of justice and tells people of the world that one belongs to heaven only after he cleanses his soul,” he said and very much agreed with the idea.
The New York based company aims to restore the 5,000 years of divinely inspired civilization through classical Chinese music and dance.
Looking at the Artistry
Chen especially adored the design and color of the costumes: “The costumes are dazzling with great texture. When the clothing waves as the artists move, it truly looks like celestial maidens are on stage and they are absolutely beautiful.”
“The colors are very bright and dazzling. Bright colors aren’t easy to mix and match and hence Shen Yun uses white color as buffering, which makes the overall presentation very comfortable and pleasing to the eyes. Brilliant!”
Chen was overwhelmed by the choreography of Ne Zha Churns the Sea “The scene when Ne Zha peels off the dragon king’s tendon, I thought it was real. I can’t believe that it was animation. It was so vivid! The choreographer did a superb job presenting the entire story in such a short time,” he said.
“The girls’ movements are so soft and gentle and as smooth as water flowing. When the men dance, it is like a big, surging wave, so powerful and so stunning.”
“In the program High Spirits at the Yellow River, it is not easy for men to master celadon ribbons. The contrast of the colors makes the motions of the ribbons eye-catching,” he said.
‘Feel you are like in heaven’
“Thank Shen Yun for fulfilling my long-cherished wish: experiencing the beauty of Shen Yun,” said former director of the Department of English in National Kaohsiung Normal University, Pi-chong Su, who saw Shen Yun Performing Art’s last performance in Kaohsiung on March 6, 2014.
“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,” the website says.
Having heard of Shen Yun for many years, Ms. Su did not have a chance to see it until today. She expressed her gratitude and feelings with high spirits, “I was deeply touched … its radiating vitality.”
Ms. Su also appreciated the orchestra of Chinese and Western instruments.
“The orchestra is just marvelous. You can feel that it really captured the essence. When the dance was with a high spirit, all instruments coordinated so well that you felt you really caught the high spirit. How can there be such a great orchestra that it can coordinate with all movements of the dancers so well! And the sounds made were so perfect that you really really wanted to cry out—Just really great!”
According to the Shen Yun website. “Every costume in a Shen Yun performance is presented with brilliant colors, displaying a splendid spectacle—from the Tang Dynasty’s “Raiment of Rainbows and Feathers” to imperial dragon robes, phoenix coronets, and cloud capes; from the civil official’s headdress and robes to the warrior’s helmet and armor.”
“The colors were very brilliant and beautiful. I kept wondering who designed these costumes. They were so beautiful! The ribbons and the ornaments around the waist, or even the small bows tied [on the costumes] made you feel: Wow! Who is the designer? How can they have such great artistic sense! All colors are very soft and pleasant,” Ms. Su said.
“Their skirts flashed with brilliance when the dancers were walking, which made you feel they were very graceful. The posture of the dancers’ movements and turns were so beautiful!”
“[Shen Yun] manifests these good things for us to appreciate. The dancers not only showed their talents in dance, but also their whole life, the beauty of life. We are always busy in our daily life, but in the two hours, you will feel you are like in heaven.” Ms. Su said.
Ms. Su said she would encourage others to attend Shen Yun “to feel the beauty of our Chinese [traditional] culture. And to experience the dancers’ jumping, whirling, and flipping. They are very agile. There was no sound when they landed from the jumps. I have seldom seen that kind of easiness and freeness. Seeing the whirl of the dancers, you feel the beauty was … It was the first time I felt that kind of beauty.”
Ms. Su was deeply inspired by the message Shen Yun delivered. “Mankind should develop towards truthfulness, goodness, and beauty.” She said she also hoped that Shen Yun can perform in China in the near future
Reporting by Dong Huiling and Bill Xu, Hui-Min Chien, Hsin-Yi Lin and Lisa Huang
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.