VANCOUVER—As the chairman of Miss World Canada, Ike Lalji is accustomed to being around talented people. But he was blown away by the skill level of the performers at Shen Yun’s opening show at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre on Thursday night.
“It was an excellent show, more than I expected,” he said.
“We have shows, we have all kinds of talent, but what I saw tonight was the best I have ever seen. The other thing, too, is that it makes me curious to go and learn more about China, the history of China.”
Mr. Lalji said he liked everything about Shen Yun, which takes stories and legends from China’s 5,000-year history and presents it to audiences through music and dance.
“It’s a very classic thing—the music, the movements, the choreography, and no matter what angle you look at this show from, it’s a very high-class show,” he said.
He also praised Shen Yun’s high-tech digital backdrops, which for some of the pieces are animated to enhance the story being played out on stage.
“Amazing. The real human beings went there and then they show it on the screen. The transition was done very well,” he said.
Shen Yun presents mostly classical Chinese dance, an ancient art form that is one of the most comprehensive dance systems in the world.
“The thing that really touched me about the dances, I understand the choreography and everything.
Every movement was very graceful,” said Mr. Lalji.
“This is the first time I’ve seen a Chinese dance. They’re very graceful. Every movement is graceful, right. So it brings some special meanings to it.”
Mr. Lalji’s companion, Seraya Zhang, is a Chinese national who has lived in Canada for three years. She was also highly impressed with Shen Yun.
“I thought it was great. Particularly the costumes and the movements were incredibly beautiful. It was the best I have seen,” she said.
“[Shen Yun’s] traditional and cultural portrayal has attracted many locals to come out as well, to pay attention to our Chinese culture. I think it was very useful. [The show] is one of the most effective ways I have seen in presenting Chinese traditional culture.”
She was also taken with the Shen Yun Orchestra and its unique blend of Chinese and Western instruments.
“I thought it was great. The orchestra created the right atmosphere for the dancing,” she said.
Both Mr. Lalji and Ms. Zhang were taken with Grand Descent of the Deities, which depicts deities descending to earth where they reincarnate as human beings to guide China’s 5000 years of civilization.
“I think the colours and the music and movement and everything was so nice,” said Mr. Lalji.
Reporting by NTD Television and Joan Delaney
New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts has four touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world. For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org
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.