CHICAGO—Terry Henderson, Engineer and President of Henderson Engineering Co. and wife and grandmother Judy Henderson, attended the opening night of Shen Yun at Chicago’s Civic Opera House.
“I think they are exceptionally well trained!” added Mrs. Henderson. “They are in wonderful condition, the costumes are ethereal, beautiful, costumes.”
“The costumes, they are very colorful and bright and fluid,” added Mr. Henderson.
Many theatergoers are deeply impressed by the backdrop of the performance, which incorporates digital imagery in a way that animates and integrates the dancers making it very unique and entertaining.
“I think it’s very, very entertaining,” continued Mrs. Henderson. “Along with the background, which is the film, I’ve never seen that before. I think that is very clever, I think that is awesome. I’m enjoying it very much!”
The dancers practice long hours and work very hard to perfect their technique which can often appear to the public as if they are gliding accross the stage.
“How did they walk without seeming like they are walking? I don’t look like that when I walk that way,” said Mrs. Henderson laughing. “I was in awe of how much training it took to do that, to dance the way that they do.”
“I really loved the drum part too,” continued Mrs. Henderson. “When they were doing the drums, that was really, really nice.”
“Years ago we saw the Kyoto drummers and I’ve always had a lot of respect for everybody beating together,” added Mr. Henderson. “It’s almost like one drum beat instead of ten. They are very good!”
A variety of pieces and stories are portrayed in Shen Yun.
“Yes, the story of China, from the beginning of things,” commented Mrs. Henderson. “It is real interesting to see their take on how everything happened, and what they remember or what they have been told through folk lore or whatever. It’s real interesting; I’m enjoying it very much.”
For many Americans, Shen Yun is their first taste of traditional Chinese culture. Mr. Henderson, who has visited China in the past, already somewhat expected some of the cultural aspects of the show.
“I think it is very nice,” added Mrs. Henderson. “I appreciate how they are making us understand what their spirituality is and how they see it in relation to them and other generations. I think it is great!”
“It points out what a sad shame it is that since WW II communism had destroyed the culture, stifled it, kept it down, and trying to cause people to forget their history, it’s sad,” added Mr. Henderson.
In today’s China, a show like Shen Yun wouldn’t be able to perform and other traditional cultural heritages are too repressed.
“Don’t ever forget their history,” added Mrs. Henderson. “It’s long and it’s revered and it’s beautiful! It’s been fought a lot too; they wouldn’t be who they are today if they hadn’t survived a long, long time.”
“The Cultural Revolution took so much history away,” added Mr. Henderson. “It’s sad.”
“I think this [Shen Yun] is bringing some back,” added Mrs. Henderson. “I really appreciate that.”
Reporting by Teresa You and Sharon Kilarski
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