SYDNEY—Resounding applause filled Sydney’s Capitol Theatre on Sunday afternoon, May 6, as the final curtain was about to close on Shen Yun Performing Arts New York Company’s 2012 Oceania tour. The company will next perform in Honolulu, Hawaii, before returning to New York.
Joseph Pastor and his wife were visiting family in Sydney. They had just flown in from Montana in the United States, where Mr. Pastor is a builder and hotel owner. The couple were seeing Shen Yun with their two daughters, son-in-law and grandson.
Mr. Pastor said Shen Yun was fantastic. “It reminds me of an artist’s version sometime of eagles flying and diving. It’s just wonderful. It’s fantastic.”
He particularly enjoyed the opening dance, but added that “everything else was fantastic” too.”
This year’s show opens with An Era Begins, revealing China’s glorious civilization and a regiment of celestial soldiers preparing for a battle between good and evil, according to the program.
The heart of a Shen Yun performance is classical Chinese dance, an ancient system that is one of the most comprehensive in the world. “Classical Chinese dance is rich with expressive power,” states the company’s website.
Mr. Pastor said the dancing was beautiful. “When they move they just float. They hardly touched the ground,” he said.
The company also includes award-winning solo vocalists, something Mr. Pastor thought was “wonderful.”
“Their voices were so fine … I think someone could almost feel it in their bones. They didn’t have to hear it. They could feel it,” he described.
Overall, he said that he “would recommend [Shen Yun] to anybody with heart and feeling.”
Son-in-law Daniel Hollis, an Australian Architect, was also enjoying the performance, saying Shen Yun was “awesome.” “Very colourful, very vibrant, pretty cool!”
Mr. Hollis particularly enjoyed the dance How the Monkey King Came To Be. The Monkey King is the central character in China’s classic novel Journey to the West. He said he was impressed with the colours and enjoyed the humour: “It’s very funny.”
He also enjoyed the Shen Yun Orchestra, which combines classical Western and Chinese instruments. He said the 40-member orchestra was “really good,” complementing the dance “very well.”
Mr. Hollis said Shen Yun was “very well put together,” from the animated digial backdrops that expand and transform the stage, to the dance, to the orchestra.
He was excited about seeing the performance, saying it was a “very enjoyable show.”
Reporting by Rachael Yao and Leigh Smith.
Shen Yun Performing Arts, based in New York, has three touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world, with a mission to revive traditional Chinese culture. The season concludes this month with performances in Philadelphia, Honolulu, San Antonio, and Buffalo.
For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org.
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