FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla.—Shen Yun dancers move, leap, and tumble on stage to the tune of the score played by the orchestra underneath.
The impeccable integration between the dancing the musical composition impressed Rodolfo Valederrey, himself a composer of Latin-style music arrangements.
“I think it’s all … very well integrated, amazingly integrated,” Valederrey said.
The success of the music, however, did not only come from its perfect matching with the choreography, he said.
“The greatest challenge also is to compose the music [to go with the] dancing, but also for the music to have that composition value to standalone, to be of value just as a symphonic concert. I think this is something very good about this.”
Valederrey, who is also a software developer, saw the performance with his girlfriend Dora Tentolouri, make-up artist, at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on April 21.
The classical Chinese dance company is currently touring the world, showcasing a program rich in dance, music, and storytelling, encapsulating the soul of a 5,000-year-old civilization.
Valederrey naturally was drawn to Shen Yun’s unique orchestra, which blends both classical Chinese and Western instruments.
“I’m very, very impressed with the music, especially the composition,” he said.
Having received classical training in Western music theory and in piano, Valederrey especially appreciated how the composition incorporated the sound of a classical Western orchestra.
“That’s why Shen Yun’s orchestra is very … particular. I like how they employ the symphonic orchestra, and at the same time they mix the traditional Chinese music with use of Chinese instruments,” he said.
“The harmonic possibilities of this [mix] are just great.”
“I think it really takes the visual show to another level, it allows more depth.”
The composer loved how the combined effect of the music with the dancing allowed people to understand and feel the stories depicted by the company without the utterance of a single word.
“I am very impressed by the way … it’s communicating the story not really through words, but it’s the feeling what the story might be about,” Valederrey said.
“I get the feeling from the music. But it is the music in combination with the gestures that they do, and the theatrical part, and also dance, that they’re able to convey the story without saying the story.”
“And they convey the values, the compassion, the love, the passion for doing something.”
Meanwhile, Tentolouri was mesmerized by the artistry of the dance itself, such as how the dancers seemingly floated around the stage with their small, but quick, steps.
“That gives them [an] ethereal, almost heavenly, otherworldly aspect,” she said.
On a deeper level, Tentolouri was also moved by the messages in the vocal performances, which touched upon values and beliefs treasured in traditional Chinese culture.
One part in the song sung by the baritone particularly resonated with Tentolouri. It spoke of the faithful growing stronger with suffering.
“This is about really surpassing,” she said.
“You have to suffer, this is a catharsis, this is [a] purification aspect [behind] suffering … because it will make you better, because it will exalt you. I think that’s very beautiful!” she said.
For Tentolouri, the wisdom in the message was profound.
“The goal is to use that [suffering] to go higher!”
With reporting by Nancy Xia.
The Epoch Times considers Shen Yun Performing Arts the significant cultural event of our time and has covered audience reactions since the company’s inception in 2006.