EUGENE, Ore.—Shen Yun Performing Arts drew a big crowd of enthusiastic theatergoers when it performed at the Hult Center of Eugene, on Wednesday, Feb. 1.
Based in New York, Shen Yun Performing Arts was established in 2006 with the mission of reviving 5,000 years of divinely inspired Chinese culture.
“Eugene was founded about 150 years ago. So that’s very new compared to cities in China, but for the West, it’s a fairly old city, well established,” said Dan Neal, an attorney from NEAL & ENG Attorneys at Law, who has been practicing law in Eugene for more than 30 years.
Mr. Neal was impressed by the performance and said at intermission: “It’s wonderful, it’s so enchanting: the talents, and the artistry of the performers, from the dancers to the singers, to the musicians in the orchestra.”
“The dancers are so well choreographed, their movements are so perfectly synchronized, their coordination, their athleticism—these things are remarkable. The leg lifts are so high! At times, when they are supposed to be still, they are amazingly still,” he marveled.
According to company’s website, classical Chinese dance entails systematic training in movements and postures. Technical skill in classical Chinese dance refers to a series of highly difficult techniques, including jumping and leaping, turning, and flipping.
Mr. Neal said that it was evident that such a high level of skill and talent requires dedication. “These things don’t come without tremendous amount of work. So we gain just a little glimpse of that here tonight,” he said.
“It is also very interesting and clever the way they have combined the back screen animation with the artists on the stage. I have not seen the performance such as that before,” he added.
“It’s wonderful that Chinese culture is being brought to our community so that we can have a chance to get a deeper understanding of the wonders of Chinese culture. I think everybody should have a chance to see this performance because it is quite remarkable,” he concluded.
Also in the audience was lawyer Lisa Ponder, who was also eager to share her impressions. “Oh, the beauty of the colors of the costumes, the music, and the story telling—all beautiful together,” she exclaimed.
Ms. Ponder praised “the ensemble, the camaraderie of the dancers, the beauty of the group and flowing fabric, and a way the bodies and faces convey beautiful stories.” She said that a story of friends was “very well told and was very touching”.
Ms. Ponder was referring to the dance The Choice, in which, according to the program, a “police officer forgoes his official duty to protect followers of Falun Dafa, a spiritual practice of Truth, Compassion, Tolerance that became outlawed in China.”
She remarked that the artists, through the costumes and facial expressions, beautifully described the story of people who want to be free to speak the truth.
Ms. Ponder was also taken by Shen Yun’s animated backdrop.
“I was delighted to see the technology of the back [drop] and the characters come down and then pop up on stage, and the seamlessness of the action on the stage,” she said.
With state-of-the-art graphics technology, Shen Yun’s digital backdrop team creates vividly animated settings. These digital backdrop designs complement and synchronize all aspects of the performance: the characters, color of the costumes, specific dance movements, props, lighting, the story being told, particular notes played by the orchestra, and special audio effects, says company’s website.
“Beautifully done,” concluded Ms. Ponder.
Reporting by NTD Television and Nataly Teplitsky
Shen Yun Performing Arts has three touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world.
For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org.