CHICAGO—Brent Terry came to the Shen Yun performance with an existing appreciation of Chinese culture and Ginny Leamy of dance, and they left having enjoyed all of what Shen Yun offers in traditional culture, dance, and music.
"When I first saw the ad [for Shen Yun] … I knew she would like it because of the dance and everything else, and for me it was a little different because I enjoy more of the culture side of it.
They attended the May 10 evening performance of Shen Yun Performing Arts New York Company at Chicago's Cadillac Palace.
Shen Yun is the world's premier classical Chinese dance and music company. Its mission is to revive 5,000 years of divinely inspired Chinese culture through dance-based storytelling of beloved myths, legends, and ancient and current history.
"I just love the dance of it, the color. I love the music of it," said Ms. Leamy a realtor for Coldwell Banker.
Mr. Terry agreed: "I love the music."
"It was beautiful production," he said. "The timing of it all, the precision was amazing. The way the dancers integrated with the music and the [stage backdrop's] video, I've never seen anything like that."
Ms. Leamy noted that Mr. Terry knew more about the history.
"She was laughing at me because I knew the story of the Monkey King," said Mr. Terry, a private practice attorney for 25 years and now with Coldwell Banker Burnet Corporate.
"I just really more enjoyed the dance and the beauty of it," she explains.
"The color was amazing," said Ms. Leamy. "I was in dance when I was younger. So I thought the dance was beautiful. The theatrics were beautiful, and the song was beautiful. I mean the voices were amazing."
In the dance program An Unexpected Encounter , a father and daughter become caught up in the persecution of Falun Gong in China. They encounter Falun Dafa practitioners bravely holding a banner which reads, "Truthfulness Compassion, Tolerance," the tenets of their persecuted practice.
"I first heard about Falun Gong, and I became aware of the oppression and things like that. So it was actually kind of neat [to see the dance program]," said Mr. Terry. "… I think it raises awareness, 'cause it is a serious thing, you know. …It's something that I have really been in tune to for quite a while."
As for Shen Yun's portrayal of traditional Chinese culture, Mr. Terry said: "I enjoyed the interpretation of it all, and the way it was presented through this kind of medium."
"What was cool about it was that for someone who hasn't been exposed to it. It's an easy way to talk about it and kind of share what you know about it."
Reporting by Stacey Tang and Cat Rooney
Shen Yun Performing Arts is performing at Cadillac Palace Theater, Chicago through May 12.
Shen Yun Performing Arts, based in New York, tours the world on a mission to revive traditional Chinese culture. 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.