BUFFALO, N.Y.—Dance is an art form that uses the human body’s natural abilities to communicate ideas, feelings, and experiences. Each dance style has its own techniques and skills that allow the dancer to express emotions to the audience.
When Mark Tedorous, a healthcare administrator who studies developmental disorders, saw Shen Yun Performing Arts’ classical Chinese dance form, he appreciated watching how the dancers made natural movements look beautiful.
“It was like they were floating instead of walking, because they move so perfectly,” he said.
Mr. Tedorous, who saw Shen Yun at Shea’s Performing Arts Center in Buffalo, N.Y., studies the human body everyday in his work with children stricken with cerebral palsy. He regularly sees spasticities and gait problems that make walking difficult for them. So he knows how the human body is naturally supposed to be able to move.
Watching the New York-based company on Sunday afternoon was a pleasant change to what he normally sees. “It makes you feel very happy, I feel very happy,” Mr. Tedorous said, “I felt so free.” He said he didn’t realize that classical Chinese dance could make him feel so good.
Classical Chinese dance, one of the most rigorous and expressive art forms in the world, started in ancient China and has been refined over thousands of years. According to Shen Yun, this dance form uses the body’s natural abilities, rather than training muscles that would only be used in the dance form like other athletic sports can require.
The Shen Yun website states that China’s deep cultural traditions are contained in the dance movements allowing the dancers to clearly capture the personalities and feelings of the characters.
“They would tell you what the sky looked like, or how the emperor was defending himself,” said Mr. Tedorous about how the movements had meaning. “I think that has much more impression on me than just hearing words or just hearing music,” he added.
Although classical Chinese dance is rich and expressive in its own right, extra-added features during the performances enhanced the performance even more. Mr. Tedorous marveled at how an animated digital backdrop provided additional layers to the performances. “You have the backdrop, then you had the movements on the screen, and then you had lighting, and then you had people walking out from the screen,” said Mr. Tedorous incredulously.
Shen Yun uses state-of-the- art technology to create vivid settings inspired by China’s 5,000-year history. The multi-dimensional nature of the effects help the audience to feel as if being transported to another place and time.
“This is what art is about today,” Mr. Tedorous said. “It’s not just about still life, it’s the whole thing.”
Reporting by Sally Sun and Arleen Richards
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.