TAMPA, Fla.—Clothing manufacturer Kenneth Jennings attended the opening, sold out performance of Shen Yun Performing Arts Touring Company in Tampa with his wife, Linda. Mr. Jennings was impressed by Shen Yun’s gorgeous, hand-made garments that depict China’s dynasties, regions, and ethnic groups.
“[The] costumes are stunning,” said Mr. Jennings. “I love the silk sleeves. And the lotus flowers, yeah—beautiful. Absolutely magnificent.”
“Well, it’s not just the costumes, it’s the way they move,” added Ms. Jennings, a librarian. “It’s the way they’re moving. The dancing is just unbelievable. They’re so talented,” she said.
Classical Chinese dance, which has a history of thousands of years, incorporates the profound aspects from every era and dynasty of ancient China. It is a complete system of dance that embodies traditional principles, unique dance movements, and inner meaning.
While the Jennings found the movements “delightful,” Mr. Jennings reflected on the inner meaning Shen Yun was able to convey about life in modern China under communist rule because Shen Yun is based in New York, and how artistic expression of such truths would be suppressed in China.
“I was very surprised when I saw that piece about the Falun Dafa. How can they put that in here? They’re going to be arrested,” he said. “Then, I realized when [Shen Yun] said it, it’s based in New York. I realized that’s why.”
From the ancient philosophies of Confucianism, Buddhism, and Taoism, to the practice of Falun Dafa today, the ideals of benevolence, propriety, wisdom, and justice embodied in these traditional disciplines represent the essence of traditional Chinese culture. Shen Yun’s mission is to revive the thousands of years of divinely inspired Chinese traditional culture and bring it to the people of the world.
“It’s all very spectacular. I mean, beautiful, lovely,” said Mr. Jennings. “We loved it—actually loved it.”
Reporting by Linda Li and Michelle Brazeau.
Shen Yun Performing Arts, based in New York, tours the world on a mission to revive traditional Chinese culture. Shen Yun Performing Arts Touring Company will next perform in Memphis, Tenn., at the Cannon Center for the Performing Arts, on March 6 and 7.
For more information visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org