DENVER—”I’m there. I’ve never been to China but I’m there,” said acupuncturist Troy Gamez seeing Shen Yun Performing Arts for the first time.
Shen Yun Performing Arts, based in upstate New York, specializes in classical Chinese dance, a highly expressive and technically challenging ancient art form that developed alongside martial arts. Typical performances last around two hours and include about twenty pieces. Through dance and music, Shen Yun aims to revive 5,000 years of Chinese civilization.
Mr. Gamez is a frequent theatergoer, and had the highest praise for what he saw at The Buell Theatre on March 5.
“Some of the moves they’ve done—it takes a lot of discipline, it takes a lot of motivation,” he said.
“When you see them, they’re so humble,” Mr. Gamez noted. “You can just sense it. They’re very genuine in their approach.”
Aside from dance pieces, Shen Yun performances feature singer trained in the ancient bel canto technique. Soprano Yu Ming had astounded him—also one of the principal dancers, the powerful sound she carried with her slight figure had surprised him.
“For her to project that kind of sound out of that body is beautiful, it was clear as could be,” he said.
Mr. Gamez said he also saw a powerful message of revival.
Shen Yun “gives us … an opportunity to be who we need to be, let us express the classics without condemnation and everything else,” Mr. Gamez said. … And so for me I’m getting a very genuine, very genuine spirit.”
According to the official website, Shen Yun, in depicting genuinely the traditional Chinese beliefs and art forms that were destroyed or repudiated under decades of communist rule, is bringing back authentic Chinese culture.
Though well-received across the world from North America to East Asia, Shen Yun is barred from performing in mainland China.
Mr. Gamez said this came through in the choreography, “so you can tell it’s bringing back some things. And for them, they’re portraying it in the best way they can.”
He read rave reviews, but they did not do what he saw justice. “I guess you have to see the show.”
Reporting by Youzhi Ma and Leo Timm
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.
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.