RALEIGH, N. C.—The Shen Yun Performing Arts Touring Company brought enjoyment, amazement and curiosity to the audience on Feb. 8 at the Raleigh Memorial Auditorium.
Katie Hendrick, a marketing consultant, and Brian O’Haver, a landscape architect, both from Raleigh, thoroughly enjoyed the show.
“I enjoyed it a lot. There’s a lot of pageantry. I like the orchestra,” said Mr. O’Haver. He is a manager at a private firm, and specializes in land planning, landscape architecture, civil engineering and urban design.
Ms. Hendrick said she admired the orchestra. She said the instrumentals were amazing.
Mr. O’Haver agreed, and said the Shen Yun orchestra did a good job combining Eastern and Western musical styles and sounds.
Ms. Hendrick said she was also impressed with the dancers.
“I think they are amazing athletes. Their conditioning is incredible,” she said. Mr. Hendricks was a professional soccer player with the El Paso Patriots.
Mohsem Mahmoud, a karate teacher, and his wife Jennifer Mahmoud, a speech language therapist, both from Durham, also said they enjoyed the show.
Mr. Mahmoud without hesitation said that Shen Yun is his most favorite show ever, and he loved it.
“It’s my first time to see Chinese dance. It’s perfect. It’s very good,” he said.
Mrs. Mahmoud said she thought it was visually stunning and captivating.
“The costumes were very intricate and very beautifully done. [It was] very visually captivating … and lots of colors,” she said.
Mrs. Mahmoud said said she studied dance and has learned many dance styles including tap, ballet and flamenco. She aid she learned something new about Chinese classical dance.
“I thought it was interesting how [they] incorporated a little bit of history. I didn’t realize some of the acrobatics came from classical Chinese dance.”
Mr. Mahmoud, as a serious karateka, naturally loved the martial arts aspects in the dances.
“I think it’s beautiful and I’m glad you guys are bringing it to this country and all over the world,” said Mrs. Mahmoud.
‘Somehow we want to conform to that higher law’
Dr. Bryan Koon, head of the radiology department at a hospital in Durham, came to the show with his wife, Vicky.
He said they were impressed with the tremendous skills, amazing precision, and grace of the Shen Yun dancers.
“It seems to be there must have been a tremendous amount of years of training involved to get all the dancers to be able to perform in that fashion,” Dr. Koon said.
Dr. Koon also admired the choreography and production of the performance.
“We thought the colors, the set, the lighting, and the integration of the action on the screen with the people on the floor were really interesting and nice,” he said.
Both thought the music from the live orchestra was good and enjoyed it, according to Dr. Koon.
He spoke in a philosophical way about the spirituality behind Chinese culture that Shen Yun portrayed on stage. “They [ancient Chinese] believed in a higher spiritual being or world, and law, and somehow we want to conform to that higher law,” he said.
For Dr. Koon and his wife, one word summed up the Shen Yun performance: splendid.
Shen Yun Performing Arts has three touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world. Shen Yun Performing Arts Touring Company will be next in Fort Lauderdale from Feb. 10 to Feb. 12.
For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org.