Film Director Gurinda Chadha: Shen Yun Has ‘A great spiritual core’

April 6, 2011 Updated: October 1, 2015

Celebrated film director Gurinda Chadha at Shen Yun Performing Arts in London (Max Lin/NTD Television)
Celebrated film director Gurinda Chadha at Shen Yun Performing Arts in London (Max Lin/NTD Television)
LONDON–Celebrated film director Gurinda Chadha said that Shen Performing Arts had a "great spiritual core", and had a "beautiful, calming, meditative quality," after attending the Shen Yun performance at The London Coliseum on Tuesday, April 5.

Mrs. Chadha is perhaps best known for the multi-award winning film Bend It Like Beckham, and has been awarded an OBE for her services to the film industry.

"I am absolutely loving the show," she said. "I think it’s marvellous the way the performers become all the different characters."

New York-based Shen Yun's hallmark is Chinese classical dance, accompanied by a live orchestra that combines Chinese and western instruments.

"The combination of the music and the flowing movements is incredibly relaxing, and I find it quite meditative actually," Mrs. Chadha said.

"I love the fact that there’s magic interwoven with the dancing."

She said she particularly loved the piece Herding on the Grasslands, in which male dancers evoke the galloping of horses and movements of eagles in flight.

Conjuring up scenes of traditional China and sharing ancient legends and historical stories, Shen Yun's programme also includes dances that tell contemporary stories, such the persecution of followers of the Falun Gong discipline in communist China.

Mrs. Chadha said this aspect impressed her the most. "I thought that was done quite sensitively and [was] quite magical in the resolution of that."

"It showed that there is a deep spiritual side to Chinese culture and Chinese belief that we don’t often hear about," she said. "What I think this show really has is a great spiritual core."

"I think in this performance there’s a lot of wonderful spiritual moments," she added.

Mrs. Chadha is famous for her comedy films depicting the lives of Indian families in Britain. Her 2002 film Bend it like Beckham was the highest-grossing UK-financed and distributed film in the country at the time. She also directed Bride and Prejudice, and more recently It's a Wonderful Afterlife.

Reporting by NTD Television and Simon Veazey.

Shen Yun Performing Arts Touring Company will be at The London Coliseum from April 5–10. For more information, visit