REGINA, Canada—The multi-talented Jean Freeman left The Conexus Arts Centre wishing more Reginans had the chance to see Shen Yun Performing Arts.
“It’s a wonderful, wonderful show. It’s so beautiful and it’s something we don’t get a chance to see very often,” said Ms. Freeman.
She said the audience enjoyed “every minute” of the performance.
“It is a marvellous thing … we’re really happy that they [Shen Yun] came,” she said.
Jean Freeman is a writer/performer/director/stage hand who played the mayor Fitzy Fitzgerald’s grandmother on 26 episodes of Corner Gas.
In the past, Ms. Freeman was community programming director at Cable Regina and writer/producer at CTV Regina.
She had minor roles in several movies including Sleepwalking, The Greening of Ian Elliot, The Dinosaur Hunter, Painted Angels and Conquest. Her TV work included roles on Incredible Story Studio, Mythquest, and a couple of scenes on Little Mosque on the Prairie.
More recently, she has been publishing children’s books, directing, writing, and playing other roles at Regina Little Theatre, a community theatre that stages five full-length plays a year.
Ms. Freeman said she enjoyed each of Shen Yun’s dances.
“They were all so beautiful … All of the costumes in particular,” she said.
“One thing I really, really like is the integration of the visual/video with the dancers. They do that so well. Children would love that particularly, to see the Monkey King disappear and appear. Very beautiful, there’s a lot of high-tech but also very classical, very traditional, and very beautiful.”
New York-based Shen Yun stages performances of mainly classical Chinese dance, with some of the pieces telling stories from China’s long history or classic novels like Journey to the West. Each dance is enhanced by the company’s digitally projected backdrop, a high-tech addition that sometimes interacts with the performers on the stage.
Ms. Freeman said it was her first time to see Shen Yun and classical Chinese dance. She saw ads and brochures promoting the performance and decided to come when a friend bought a ticket and suggested she do the same.
Ms. Freeman, who has published two children’s novels so far, with more to come, said children would have also enjoyed the performance. It was unfortunate children from schools were not brought to the show, she said.
“They certainly would have loved every minute of it,” she said.
With reporting by Sonia Wu.
Shen Yun Performing Arts has three equally large companies touring the world. Shen Yun Performing Arts Touring Company will next travel to New York to perform at the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center from Apr. 18 to Apr. 22.
For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org.