NEWARK—Shen Yun Performing Arts dancers grace the stage, spinning, kicking, and flipping with the utmost poise and precision.
Personal trainer and martial artist James Foody was astounded to see that it wasn’t only one dancer who was able to achieve this level technical perfection, but all of them.
“It was magnificent,” he said. “Being able to see everybody so in sync all at one time, and you see that everyone was such top quality. There was no one person falling behind. Everybody was exactly in sync in the same quality performer, and that was absolutely beautiful to see.”
Foody attended the performance with his parents, James Sr. and Nancy, at New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark on April 28. James Sr. had bought tickets to celebrate his 31st wedding anniversary with Nancy.
“So beautiful, it brought me to tears and it still is,” Nancy said. “Magnificent colors and dance was just terrific.”
The classical Chinese dance company was founded with a mission to revive China’s ancient culture through performing arts. Its program consists of about 20 stand-alone pieces including classical Chinese dance vignettes and stories told through dance.
James Sr., realtor and former president of West Milford Board of Education, was grateful to learn about China’s 5,000-year history through the stories, music, and dance presented onstage.
“It was very enlightening to learn about the culture and history of China,” he said. “That, I think, to me is important.”
The younger James, who has competed in national competitions for various forms of martial arts, was gratified to see other professionals perform at such high levels.
“It’s absolutely magnificent,” he said, “[Such as] the movements, how circular they were, how everything was just so expressive.”
“It was almost like watching poetry in a way, live in person.”
It wasn’t only the movements that impressed Foody, there was something behind the expressions that gripped his inner being. In particular, he felt this come through in the opening piece depicting the Creator calling divine beings to descend to Earth to establish the Chinese civilization.
“Everything was depicted at a very divine sort of level, very heavenly sort of feel,” he said.
“You could tell … that the dances were connected to [a] source … like a universal energy.”
“It was very much that sort of depiction, coming from … a universal source of energy.”
The martial artist felt an important message coming through such scenes.
“That everything comes from within,” Foody said.
“As long as you’re connected to [this] source, you’re abundant.”
“Everything is connected a higher power and you create your own sort of image of that, and destiny.”
James Sr. perceived another powerful theme stemming from the performance.
“If you lived your life well, and you treat people fairly, that’ll come back to you,” he said.
The theme of good versus evil also left a deep impression on the realtor.
“And I got out of that that, you should always be good. And that’ll always win out over evil.”
With reporting by Sherry Dong.
The Epoch Times considers Shen Yun Performing Arts the significant cultural event of our time and has covered audience reactions since the company’s inception in 2006.