BRISBANE, Australia—Clinical psychologist El Raj is not easily engaged, but the dance movements of the Shen Yun Performing Arts World Company’s artists, held her attention.
Ms. Raj, who is quarter Chinese, was at the Queensland Performing Arts Centre’s Lyric Theatre’s Sunday matinee taking in the classical Chinese dance and music presentation.
“Breathtaking, emotional, powerful, graceful, and energetic. I love it. I cannot describe the feeling. Lovely costumes, lovely colour combinations. Amazing,” she said.
Whenever Ms. Raj becomes engaged in something, she loses herself, she said.
“I’m in my own world, but I’m connecting with the movements, and with the dancers. That is the best feeling in the world, the best drug in the world. And that’s what they [Shen Yun] produced today. And I love that.
“The movement, the coordination, I love the costumes. I think it’s absolutely beautiful.”
Based in New York, Shen Yun is renowned for portraying mini-dramas that depict ancient legends, folkloric stories, myths and contemporary stories that bring to life China’s divinely-inspired 5,000 year-old cultural heritage into the 21st century.
An orchestral ensemble that mixes Eastern and Western instruments, sopranos with piano accompaniment, an erhu virtuoso[ancient two-stringed Chinese violin], astounding backdrops and lavish costuming come together to create one remarkable performance.
“I’m a quarter Chinese. So coming here today is very special for me because I’m actually connecting with my own culture in my own small way. And to see something like this alive today is very special and spiritual for me to connect,” Ms. Raj said, proudly.
Shen Yun, with four companies, visits over a hundred cities and performs hundreds of shows on prestigious stages—but not in China.
Since the Chinese Communist Party took control in 1949, traditions have been systematically destroyed in the mainland by waves of state-sponsored persecution against religious believers, intellectuals, and campaigns to destroy ancient relics, the company website says.
“You know, it doesn’t matter whether the show goes back to China or not. The most important thing is that the world enjoys the show. The rest of the world enjoys the show, and we do, we did, I did, so it doesn’t matter,” Ms. Raj said. She will definitely be back to watch this show again, she said, repeatedly.
She learned through Shen Yun to always be herself and keep fighting for what she believed in, she said.
“People need to keep their identity, and not be afraid of other people’s beliefs and values, so for that, I respect them [Shen Yun].”
She would tell her friends and family that Shen Yun is “nothing like they’ve ever seen before and I would recommend them to watch it”.
And if she could speak to the Shen Yun dancers and musicians themselves, she would tell them they are “magnificent and magical at the same time.”
“I really loved every moment. I was actually connected every moment … . So for me, to be there with them, is an amazing, amazing experience.”
Reporting by NTD Television and Raiatea Tahana-Reese
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.