SAN JOSE, Calif.—Rolf and Carol Medal had a lot to contemplate after attending the Shen Yun performance of classical Chinese dance at the San Jose Center for Performing Arts on Jan. 3.
“I think the spirituality that they’re bringing into it, I really haven’t had a chance to think about that before,” Mrs. Medal said.
“There’s a lot of things that I never learned or knew before,” agreed Mr. Medal, CFO of the nonprofit School Health Clinics of Santa Clara County.
“I’m really enjoying it,” he said. “Seeing a lot of history is very interesting, too, to see how things have progressed in different areas and different ethnic cultures within China itself. Such a huge country and so many diverse population segments.”
“It seems to be very common in a lot of different cultures—recognition for a Creator and living a good life in Heaven,” he added.
They both found The Fable of the Magic Brush particularly captivating.
“It had a lot of cute humor in it, and I enjoyed that,” Mrs. Medal said.
“That was very, very entertaining,” Mr. Medal agreed.
“I really enjoyed the sopranos,” added Mr. Medal, who is a singer himself. “They’re very well-trained.”
Shen Yun’s costume artists collect countless designs of traditional attire, ranging from those of emperors, ministers, and generals to the everyday clothing of the common people.
“Water sleeves” are used in dances to accentuate the mood the dancer is trying to portray.
“I felt that it was almost an extension of who they are, or their spirit,” Mrs. Medal said of the sleeves. “The way they were maybe worshiping Creation or their Creator, that it was an expression of who they were to the beauty around them.”
Rolf summarized the evening: “I think [Shen Yun] is something that is very, very enjoyable. Lots of beauty, grace, athleticism, costuming—and it’s just very interesting history.”
Reporting by Zhang Qian and Laurie Gorham