Fortune 500 Company VP of Technology Says Shen Yun ‘Innovative’

February 25, 2015

ESCONDIDO, Calif.—When Steve Ciccarelli took his wife, Renee, and their two children, Sophia and Christopher, to see Shen Yun Performing Arts Feb. 22 at California Center for the Arts, it wasn’t what he expected.

“That was innovative,” he said. “I’m pleasantly surprised.”

Mr. Ciccarelli, VP of technology for Qualcomm, was referring to Shen Yun’s state-of-the-art, digital projection that serves as the backdrop of each vignette throughout the performance. They create a vivid setting for each dance piece, whether it be lofty Tibetan peaks, fertile river valleys, or even celestial paradises, and they “infinitely expand and transform the stage,” according to Shen Yun’s website.

Shen Yun is a New York-based, non-profit, dance and music company that tours the world each year as it seeks to revive the beauty and richness of traditional Chinese culture through performing arts.

While classical Chinese dance has a history of thousands of years, Shen Yun combines the old with the new by incorporating the digital, animated backdrops.

In several pieces that dramatize ancient Chinese legends, the dancers interact with the backdrop by leaping from the back of the stage and appearing suddenly as animations in the backdrop, flying about, and suddenly disappearing and emerging again onto the stage.

Mr. Ciccarelli wasn’t the only one enjoying the creativity.

His wife noticed that the children were captivated by the performance. “Every time I would look over at them, they were just staring,” she said.

Mrs. Ciccarelli enjoyed the different ethnic and folk dances from various regions throughout China, as well as a soft, graceful dance entitled Sleeves of Grace, in which the dancers used long, silk sleeves as props.

“It’s a wonderful show. It’s beautiful,” she said.

Mr. Ciccarelli agreed. “It’s very polished.”

‘The color and the life is outstanding’

John Brady enjoyed the color and life in Shen Yun Performing Arts at the California Center for the Arts, on Feb. 22, 2015. (Courtesy of NTD Television)
John Brady enjoyed the color and life in Shen Yun Performing Arts at the California Center for the Arts, on Feb. 22, 2015. (Courtesy of NTD Television)

John Brady, the director of a non-profit health foundation that serves over 15,000 doctors, also attended the Feb. 22 performance.

“The color and the life that’s being brought to the show is outstanding,” he said. “I’m enjoying the show very much.”

A Shen Yun performance includes approximately 20 different vignettes, each with distinct, richly colored backdrops and dancers wearing a variety of costumes from China’s divinely inspired traditional culture, creating “a consummate stage effect,” according to the company website.

Mr. Brady noted that Shen Yun’s dancers are well-trained, “very talented young ladies and young men.”

He was also pleased with Shen Yun’s live orchestra, which combines classical Western and traditional Easter instruments. “It’s outstanding,” he said. He added that the acoustics at this venue were among the best in the country.

Mr. Brady wanted to thank Shen Yun’s performers for bringing their talent to San Diego.

Reporting by NTD Television, Sophia Fang, and Albert Roman

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

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