CINCINNATI—Attorney Mike Riley and his wife Helga Riley saw Shen Yun Performing Arts for the first time at the Aronoff Center for the Arts in Cincinnati on Jan. 29.
“I thought it was beautiful … breathtaking,” said Mr. Riley. “I really appreciate the theme and the material presented.”
“Everyone should come see it!” he said.
Mrs. Riley said Shen Yun exceeded her expectations.
“The whole show was just very impressive,” she said, “It was much more than I’d expected actually … I was very, very impressed.”
Based in New York, Shen Yun Performing Arts is the world’s premier classical Chinese dance company. Along with folk dances and solo performances, the production depicts story-based pieces that tell tales from ancient times to the modern day.
Shen Yun also features a one-of-a-kind orchestra that blends traditional Chinese instruments into a classical Western orchestra, a patented animated backdrop technology that allows for seamless interaction between the dancers on stage and the background scenery, and colorful, detailed costumes.
“The talent, the complexity of the dancers, the costumes … the orchestration … and the piano—it was just fantastic,” she said.
The Rileys were very impressed with the costumes of the Shen Yun dancers and how they correlated to each particular dance story and dynasty.
Shen Yun’s mission is to revive China’s 5,000-year-old traditional culture. The age-old culture has been on the brink of extinction since the Chinese communist regime seized power in 1949. Shen Yun says its performance demonstrates “China before communism.”
“It was very comforting to see the show,” said Mr. Riley. “It impressed me that the values, the old values in China, correspond very closely with what I consider to be the proper values.”
“It was apparent in the songs where they talk about the Creator … and that relates to our moral values here,” he added.
“Of course, that is quite different to what is in communist China today, and so it’s very impressive to see this because I know [Shen Yun] faces a big headwind in putting something together like this … I think it’s great!”
Reporting by Stacey Tang and Jennifer Schneider.
The Epoch Times is a proud sponsor of Shen Yun Performing Arts. We have covered audience reactions since Shen Yun’s inception in 2006.