NORMAL, Ill.—“It’s very beautiful,” said Mr. Jay Ansher, a physics research collaborator at Illinois State University. “It’s visually very appealing.” He is referring to Shen Yun Performing Art’s presentation of 5,000 years of divinely inspired civilization.
Mr. Ansher saw the premier classical Chinese dance and music company with his wife, Becky, at the Branden Auditorium on April 13.
“Wonderful,” is the word Ms. Ansher used to describe Shen Yun.
Shen Yun’s mission is to restore traditional Chinese culture and associated values and morals through the performing arts. The primary form of expression is through folk dance and classical Chinese, the latter telling stories about different dynasties, legends, myths, and past and current history.
“I know a very little about the history, so it was nice to see the performance to learn a little bit more about the history,” he said.
Several of the 20 or so mini-dance presentations are about the persecution of Falun Gong, a mediation practice embracing truth, compassion, and tolerance.
“I didn’t realize it was so oppressed now [in China] when it comes to some of the religions still. It is very sad to realize that that’s still going on,” Ms. Ansher said.
“I cried at one point,” she said during the dance story, The Steadfast Lotus. According to the program book this dance is about a mother and daughter torn apart in modern China due to persecution of their belief in Falun Gong, a spiritual meditation discipline.
Traditional culture is steeped with spirituality; a belief in the harmony of man, earth, and the heavens and respect for the divine.
Mr. Ansher described the spirituality of the program as beautiful. “Each culture has its own history, its own message, and it’s just, I enjoyed being able to see this particular one,” he said.
The heart of Shen Yun is classical Chinese dance, used to express stories. According to the Shen Yun website, “Classical Chinese dance has become a complete system of dance embodying traditional aesthetic principles with its unique dance movements, rhythms, and inner meaning.”
Mr. Ansher was also in awe of “the fluidity of the dance, the form. They’re very smooth. It’s very beautiful.”
Another impressive aspect of the performance is the use of the animated backdrops which interacts with the performers. “I enjoyed the mixture of live dance on stage with the video behind them and the way they were able to transfer back and forth. That was very clever,” said Mr. Ansher.
Reporting by Stacey Tang and Cat Rooney
New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts has four touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world. There will be two performances in Columbus April 15-16. 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 reactionssince Shen Yun’s inception in 2006.