Jewelry Designer Says Shen Yun ‘Beyond Imagination’

April 22, 2012 Updated: April 23, 2012
Sonya Contractor praising Shen Yun
Sonya Contractor praising Shen Yun after the performance. (Courtesy of NTD Television)

NEW YORK—Jewelry designer and Indian dancer Sonya Contractor had high praise for Shen Yun Performing Arts after watching the performance on Sunday afternoon at Lincoln Center.

“The show was beautiful, wonderful—especially the costumes,” Mrs. Contractor said. She came with her husband, Kuldip Contractor, owner of a Long Island wholesale and manufacture company. “It was nice and it was very wonderful,” agreed Mr. Contractor.

Kuldip Contractor sharing his Shen Yun experience
Kuldip Contractor sharing his Shen Yun experience at Lincoln Center's David H. Koch Theater. (Courtesy of NTD Television)

The costumes are all handmade, from the long silk sleeves that flow beyond the dancers’ arms as they move, to the white, sequined handkerchiefs twirled by the dancers in Snowflakes Welcoming Spring.

“It is beyond imagination,” said Mrs. Contractor.

The New York-based company revives 5,000 years of Chinese civilization through classical Chinese dance and ethnic folk dances from the region. The performance brings ancient legends to the stage, but it also includes modern scenes in China. Its historical content is augmented by the modern technology of a digital backdrop.

“It is beautiful, very unusual—especially the back screen and the way the people come [forward from it],” said Mrs. Contractor. Fairies, Buddhas, and other figures prominent in traditional Chinese culture float down on the screen to the stage, where dancers emerge, creating the illusion that the figure has jumped right off the backdrop. This technique drew “ahs” from the audience at multiple performances over the weekend.

Beautiful Experience

Retired psychotherapist Gary Golub at Shen Yun
Retired psychotherapist Gary Golub at Shen Yun Performing Arts in New York. (Courtesy of NTD Television)

Retired psychotherapist Gary Golub, who frequently attends theatrical performances, echoed Mrs. Kuldip’s words, “The beauty is something very unusual.”

He commented on the unique mix of history, athleticism, music, and dance.

“It feels very rich; it feels very deep, in ways I don’t really understand, but I can feel,” said Mr. Golub. “The grace, the beauty, the power, and the history all come through the music, very easily. It is a beautiful experience to be a part of.”

Reporting by NTD Television and Tara MacIsaac.

Shen Yun Performing Arts, based in New York, has three touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world, with a mission to revive traditional Chinese culture. Upcoming performances in the United States include Chattanooga, Tennessee, on April 24, and Columbus, Ohio, on April 26 and April 27.

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