Technical IT Writer: ‘The Opening is an ‘Oh, wow!’

January 16, 2009 Updated: January 16, 2009

CUPERTINO, Calif.—Ms. Beckman, a computer technical writer, was in the audience at the Flint Center for the Performing Arts for the Chinese New Year Spectacular on Jan. 14.

“I’ve always been a big fan of Chinese culture so it’s nice to see all of the classical forms. sort of explored and reworked. It’s been, really, very amazing because there’s so much variety here.

"This is really quite an extravaganza," said Beckman. "I think it’s got some amazing dance numbers. I’ve never had an opportunity to see anything quite on this scale."

It was to hard for her to select a best act. "I really liked the opening number [The Five Millennia Begin] with all of the dance and drums. and everything. That was just an ‘Oh, wow!’

“This is like going to grand opera. It’s wonderful. They’re so, so talented. I’ve heard enough opera to know just how well-trained they are in voice."

Ms. Beckman felt the spirituality of the songs. “It’s nice because it has a good strong spiritual background, which really plays into it well."

The show gave her a special appreciation for Chinese culture as she grew up knowing many of her father’s Chinese friends. For years she has deplored the communist rule in China. “I think it’s great that you’re reviving traditional culture too. Because there was so much culture and tradition that was lost under the whole Maoist experiment. I was actually especially interested in coming to see this, because you hear about things, like some of the communist dance troupes … that have come through. I like seeing things that are more in the style of what existed before everything that they did became a political movement.”

Tears came to her eyes at the mention of Heaven Awaits Us Despite Persecution, in which a little girl’s father is persecuted in China. “See, I get emotional. … I’ve read enough. Things need to happen differently. I was actually finding it was a very, powerful moving piece."

“I keep up with a lot of what goes on with the whole Chinese situation. I’ve worked with a lot of Chinese refugees who have told me some of the conditions.”

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