KITCHENER-WATERLOO—Shen Yun Performing Arts brought ancient Chinese culture into the lives of Pastor Steve Weber and his two children during a matinee performance at Centre In The Square Theatre Sunday afternoon.
"I think the show's fantastic. The music is great, it's a real spectacle," he said.
Mr. Weber said he appreciated how the New York-based Shen Yun offered a variety of dances from different cultures and times in China's long history and from its many ethnicities.
"They mix it up, it's one window at a time. It's tremendous," he said.
His young son agreed.
"It's good, I like the tricks and stuff," said the boy. Many of those tricks are classical Chinese dance's advanced jumping and tumbling techniques, moves that most people think come from gymnastics but actually originate in classical Chinese dance.
"They're pretty fancy dancers aren't they," said Mr. Weber to his son.
"I'm wondering how they do that little screen and how they float in the air," said the boy.
That floating comes from Shen Yun's unique animated backdrops which interact with the dancers on the stage in many of the pieces and provides static or moving scenes in which other dances take place.
Mr. Weber's daughter was also impressed.
"It's good, I like the colours and the dancing," she said.
Mr. Weber said he appreciated Shen Yun's mission to revive China's traditional culture. Much of that culture has disappeared from China under the current authoritarian regime, and the spiritual beliefs that formed the foundation of Chinese society and its performing arts were systematically eliminated during the tyranny of the cultural revolution.
"I think it is terrific to keep the culture alive," said Mr. Weber. "It's an amazing, long history and culture—it's fantastic that way."
Shen Yun Performing Arts will stage two more shows in Kitchener-Waterloo before going on to Montreal and Toronto
For more information, visit www.ShenYunPerformingArts.org .