Shen Yun Helps Dayton Interim Director Connect to Chinese Culture

'Helps forge connection to understanding cultures,’ says interim director
February 26, 2014 Updated: February 27, 2014

DAYTON, Ohio—“I love the show so far,” said Mandy Schrank at intermission of the Shen Yun Performing Arts, on Feb. 25, at the Mead Theatre in the Benjamin and Marian Schuster Performing Arts Center.

“I’m looking forward to the second half,” explains the University of Dayton MBA program acting director and adjunct instructor . “The first half just gives you a better viewpoint of where people are coming from so that we can all understand each other better.”

Shen Yun mission is to revive 5,000 years of divinely inspired Chinese culture. It does so through dance, music, and singing as the medium for storytelling of beloved myths, legends, and ancient and current history.

Ms. Schrank found Shen Yun to be most insightful in connecting with the traditional culture of the large number of Chinese international students seeking a Master’s degree in business administration at the university.

“It’s been very enlightening. … It’s helping me make the connection in terms of culture,” she said. “It just helps forge that connection to understanding cultures, so that we can all work well together.”

Ms. Schrank explains, “It helps us to understand how to better connect between cultures, and respect each others’ cultures a little bit more. The more you understand, the better you connect, the better you are able to work together.”

The heart of Shen Yun is dance, classical Chinese dance and traditional folk and ethnic dance. “Classical Chinese dance has its own training in basic skills, physical expression and postures, leaps, flips, spins and other difficult tumbling techniques, forming an extensive and independent dance system,” explains the Shen Yun website.

“I just think [Shen Yun] is beautiful,” she said. “Its wonderful to experience other cultures that have a whole different perspective on dance, and representing your culture within dance is just beautiful.”

“I would recommend [Shen Yun] to our students, but I would recommend it more so to our faculty and administrators on campus. So, we can all figure out a better way to learn from each others’ cultures.”

Ms. Schrank also encourages “not only the international students, [but also the] Chinese students [to come] because it helps them to be connected to back home. It is difficult to be in another country for a year or three years or however long they are here to complete their studies, so it helps them to connect.”

Reporting by Hu Chen and Cat Rooney

New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts has four touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world. For more information, visit Shen Yun Performing Arts.

The Epoch Times considers Shen Yun Performing Arts the significant cultural event of our time. We have proudly covered audience reactions since Shen Yun’s inception in 2006.