Variety’s marketing manager Kathrin Norton was at the Sunday matinee performance to witness the grandeur of China’s 5,000-year-old culture being presented through classical Chinese dance and music.
Integral to the New York-based company’s performances are story-based dances adapted from ancient legends, folkloric and ethnic traditions, to modern day, depicting China’s divinely inspired culture, which was almost lost to six decades of communist rule, says the company website.
Ms. Norton was particularly impressed by the dance Sleeves of Silk. Acting as extensions of a dancer’s arms, these sleeves linger in the air long after a movement is finished, describes the program booklet.
“They were beautiful, the silk sleeves I think were absolutely stunning,” she said.
One of the features that strikes audience members most is Shen Yun’s colorful costumes. These hundreds of gorgeous, hand-made garments span China’s dynasties, regions, and ethnic groups.
“The costumes [are] definitely amazing,” said Ms. Norton. “Amazing colours.”
She was also impressed with the dance Khata for the Gods performed by the male dancers, in which the dancers step and stomp, spin and soar with joyful, vibrant energy. In their hands they hold the Khata, a traditional scarf presented to guests. Here they offer it to the gods as a sign of reverence and devotion, according to the program booklet.
“It was amazing how in sync they are, just incredible … like they are dancing as one,” she said.
In conclusion, Ms. Norton said the performance was “amazing,” calling it “very, very exquisite.”
Reporting by April Tian and Raiatea Tahana-Reese.
Shen Yun Performing Arts, based in New York, tours the world on a mission to revive traditional Chinese culture. Shen Yun Performing Arts New York Company will next perform at the Canberra Theatre on April 17 and 18.
For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org.