NEW YORK—It is an elegant, uplifting gift—tickets to attend what promises to be another sold-out performance of Shen Yun Performing Arts in New York, Jan. 10–19 at Lincoln Center. Shen Yun, pronounced Shen Yoon, means in Chinese, “the beauty of divine beings dancing.”
“This is the opportunity to give loved ones something very unique and a memorable gift,” said Pia-Maria Norris, spokeswoman for Shen Yun Promotions International. She said the New York-based Shen Yun is winning the hearts of people due to its beauty, and is increasingly becoming a yearly tradition whereby those who have seen Shen Yun return with friends and family.
At the core of Shen Yun is classical Chinese dance with its “explosive techniques, synchronized movements, and expressive powers,” according to the company’s press release.
MSNBC remarked of Shen Yun, “Incredible … Groundbreaking … the number one way for New York families to celebrate the New Year!”
Legends and Courage
Shen Yun’s large-scale dance performances are accompanied by “large animated backdrops and exquisitely crafted costumes [that] transport audiences from the Himalayas to tropical lake-filled regions; from the legends of the culture’s creation over 5,000 years ago to contemporary tales of courage; from the highest heavens down to the dusty plateaus of the Middle Kingdom,” according to the company.
Because the artists are based in New York, the nonprofit Shen Yun Performing Arts Company can freely present traditional Chinese culture on stage. Shen Yun cannot be seen in China due to the devastation of authentic Chinese culture under 60 years of communist rule.
Those who experience the 2014 performance can expect Shen Yun’s signature East–West orchestra, performing original Shen Yun compositions that highlight the exquisite beauty of Chinese melodies with the grandeur of a full Western symphony orchestra. “Beautiful sound … strikingly intricate melodies,” reported NYTheatre.com.
Actress Cate Blanchett has called Shen Yun “exquisitely beautiful.” Designer Donna Karan described it as “a mesmerizing performance … reclaiming the divinely inspired cultural heritage of China.”
“The audience feedback has been amazing, with many people saying it is the best, the best, the best,” said Norris.
The artists’ world tour begins Dec. 23 in Houston, and ends in May. Four companies will travel to over 100 cities in 30 countries in Europe, Asia, Australia, South America, and North America.
Shen Yun will perform 10 shows Jan. 10–19 at David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center. The American businessman and philanthropist for whom the theater is named, David Koch, saw Shen Yun in 2013, and said he loved it.
Each year new cities invite Shen Yun to perform, said Norris. After people see it, news of the show’s quality spreads by word of mouth.