KITCHENER-WATERLOO, Canada—Danielle Rockola's 16 years of formal ballet training and competition gave her some perspective on what it took to stage the Shen Yun Performing Arts show that played at Centre In The Square Theatre Sunday afternoon.
“The technique was amazing,” she said. “It just worked perfectly—timing—It was fantastic. It was just totally amazing. I’ve really, truly enjoyed it.”
Danielle said she didn't know much about Chinese classical dance but that the jumping and tumbling techniques—moves that most people think come from gymnastics but actually originate in classical Chinese dance—were “amazing.”
“It was really great and spectacular. Absolutely loved it,” she said.
Danielle brought her mother, Nancy Rockola, to Shen Yun as a Christmas present. Nancy said the gift was among the best she had ever been given.
“It was right up there. I liked it,” she said.
“It was excellent. I’ll recommend it to everybody I talk to. I love the costumes, I love the music. It’s just beautiful, spectacular.”
Danielle echoed her mother's comments, also praising Shen Yun's unique orchestra which combines classical Western and traditional Chinese instruments.
“That was incredible as well. It was beautiful, the whole show. The music, everything, it was just amazing,” she said.
“The colours, costumes, the set, the way they integrate with the backdrop—it was fantastic.”
That integrated backdrop is one of Shen Yun's signatures. The scenes on the backdrop provide the landscape within which each dance unfolds, sometimes interacting with the dancers in fantastical ways.
“I’ve never seen anything used like that. Usually it’s like a set, but not with the computer-generated images and the way they carried it onto the stage and then off the stage,” said Danielle.
“I loved it. It was wonderful,” added her mother.
Shen Yun will present two more shows in Kitchener-Waterloo before staging shows in Montreal from January 7 – 9 and then Toronto from the 13 – 16. For more information visit www.ShenYunPerformingArts.org