Former Venice, Fla., City Manager Describes Shen Yun as Perfection

February 6, 2016

VENICE, Fla.—The classical Chinese dance company that has become a global sensation gave its first of three performances in Venice, Florida, at the Venice Performing Arts Center on Saturday, Feb. 6.

Among those attending the performance was former Venice city manager Dale Rieth.

“Everything was perfection,” Mr. Rieth said after watching the performance. “I expected a lot, but it was even greater than that.”

Mr. Rieth served as Venice city administrator from 1972 to 1976, and as Venice city manager from 1976 to 1986. Currently he serves on the board of directors of The Sarasota Ballet company.

“I’ve been in China a couple times in the last two or three years, but I never saw anything like this. This was wonderful—just in every way. It was so artistic. Everything was exactly as it should have been. It was perfection,” he said.

Shen Yun was founded in New York in 2006 with the mission to revive 5,000 years of divinely inspired Chinese culture. Since its inception, the company has performed around the globe, introducing the beauty of traditional Chinese culture to millions.

The hallmark of Shen Yun’s performances is classical Chinese dance, an ancient art form that requires an extremely high skill level. Chinese dance is able to express profound emotions through its movements.

“It made me cry,” Mr. Rieth said after watching the performance and added that it left him with a good feeling.

“I was right in step with them all the way. It was if I was there. I just felt I was part of the story.”

Every Shen Yun performance includes the company’s own orchestra, which is unique in that it combines both classical Chinese and Western instruments, creating a seamless and harmonious balance between the Eastern and Western musical systems.

The performances also feature solo vocal pieces. Shen Yun singers are unparalleled in the world in their ability so sing Chinese lyrics while using bel canto technique.

Mr. Rieth said that in the past, he didn’t care for Chinese music or singers, but that the performance achieved a balance between the two cultures.

While Shen Yun has performed in over 100 cities around the world, the company is currently unable to perform in China, as the Chinese regime continues to persecute those who showcase China’s true traditional culture and values.

“It’s sad because I know that there are many Chinese who have just the opposite feeling that’s being expressed by the [Chinese] government,” Mr. Rieth said.

“I would urge everyone who hasn’t ever seen this to come as soon as possible because they’ve never seen anything like it before.”

Mr. Rieth added that he would definitely come again next year if there’s a new program. He can be reassured that Shen Yun presents an all-new program each year.

Reporting by Edie Bassen and Jasper Fakkert

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

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.