Former Professional Folk Dancer Gives Shen Yun Standing Ovation

January 18, 2015

NEW YORK—One of Nilufar “Nellie” Usmanova’s New Year’s resolutions for 2015 was to watch Shen Yun Performing Arts. Ms. Usmanova just caught the performance with her mother on the last day of its run at Lincoln Center.

Ms. Usmanova gave the performance a standing ovation.

“For the rest of the week, I’m going to be flying, with positive thoughts,” she said of the impact of the performance.

Ms. Usmanova graduated from a top ballet school in the former Soviet Union and represented her country, Uzbekistan, as a solo artist. Then at age 23, Ms. Usmanova retired from professional folk dance to pursue finance and is now a senior financial analyst for a Hong Kong company, Li & Fung.

“The way the girls … danced—I loved it,” she said, noting the traditional nature of the dance pieces.

Her mother, a former singer, suggested they watch Shen Yun after Ms. Usmanova had seen many advertisements for the independent, New York-based company.

The latter was left intrigued by the different ethnic dances displayed during Shen Yun.

One of Shen Yun’s pieces, In a Village of the Hmong, features young ladies dancing in elaborate silver jewelry in the flowery fields of southern China to cheerful drumbeats.

“This was something new for me to discover,” she said. Through classical Chinese dance, 5,000 years of history and culture have been passed down and retained. The dance form involves combinations of leaps, turns, flips, spins, and other aerial and tumbling techniques, according to Shen Yun’s website.

“It was unusual and amazing,” said Ms. Usmanova, adding that she would recommend her friends and co-workers to go see it.

Very positive! Magical.
— Ms. Nellie Usmanova
“Very positive! Magical,” she said.

The retired dancer said that her mother enjoyed the performance and that they would make a resolution to watch it again next year. Her mother nodded in agreement, beaming.

New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts has four touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world. For more information, visit

The Epoch Times considers Shen Yun Performing Arts the significant cultural event of our time. We have proudly covered audience reactions since Shen Yun’s inception in 2006.