MADISON, Wis.—Barbara Berben felt that Shen Yun Performing Arts’s mission to restore the traditional arts and values of ancient China was admirable. “I wish them well in their attempts to get their message out to the world, and to … create a greater awareness of the Chinese culture,” she said. She and her husband, Norm, attended the performance at Overture Center for the Arts on April 10.
Shen Yun, based in New York, travels the globe presenting classical Chinese dance, an orchestra comprised of both Western and Eastern instruments, award-winning vocalists, and vibrant costumes and sets. These all appealed to the Madison couple.
“Just very haunting and lyrical,” Ms. Berben, a retired association executive and legislative speech writer said of the music, as mentioned how much she enjoyed the melding of the Western and Chinese music.
The music supports 20 or so song and dances programs, many of which retell ancient legends, myths and literary classics; a few tell stories of modern China.
One particular dance depicted the persecution of people of faith in China, and this dance Ms. Berben found “very moving, very touching, and you can see you know the repression that they have suffered.”
Professor Emeritus Norm Berben of rehabilitation psychology, enjoyed the whole production. “Just a really beautiful, beautiful performance,” he said.
Nothing in particular impressed professor Berben because “it’s just absolutely beautiful and the way it’s all integrated. I think it’s all really wonderful.”
“So colorful, and the athletic ability of the performers is just absolutely incredible,” Ms. Berben said.
What stood out for Ms. Berben was the digitally animated backdrop behind the dancers: “I love the way they’re mixing the animation with the reality of the dance. It’s magical how they make that happen with the screen in back, and the performers appearing just as the animated character disappears behind the backdrop and then the real performer jumps out. It’s really fabulous how they choreographed that.”
Professor Berben concluded that Shen Yun’s performance was wonderful and its cultural message effectively delivered.
Reporting by Cat Rooney 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