FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla.—Ginger Kane couldn’t restrain her emotions after seeing Shen Yun Performing Arts, a company that brings the traditional music and dance of China to the world. She cried during almost the entire interview after the performance, yet she still graciously agreed to speak.
“Oh, it was beautiful. I really enjoyed it,” Ms. Kane, a banker, said. “The show was quite a performance. I had no idea what to expect,” she said, at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts.
A co-worker saw Shen Yun two years ago and enjoyed it. “She was very excited I was coming, and I’m really excited to tell her about it,” said Ms. Kane, who attended the matinee with her mother on Jan. 10.
“It was just a good experience—so colorful and so energetic and spirited,” she said.
She mentioned the brilliant colors of the costumes, the spectacular dancing, and the amazing digitally animated backdrops that seamlessly coordinated the projections of moving characters with the live actors onstage.
“You can’t even see a transition between the two,” she said.
She mentioned the magnificent voice of the soprano and the beautiful song she sang. She mentioned, too, the “erhu.” Her voice quivered as she remembered the beautiful sound the two-string instrument made. It is known for its emotionally stirring quality.
So many things surprised Ms. Kane. She hadn’t known that the musicians in the orchestra—which combines both Western and traditional Chinese instruments—had come from all over the world.
She didn’t realize there were so many performances and that Shen Yun has four companies touring simultaneously.
But perhaps what impressed, surprised, and touched her most deeply was Shen Yun’s spirituality.
Beneath the beauty of the dazzling costumes and projections, the the classical Chinese dancers, and the East-meets-West orchestra, Shen Yun intends to bring the wonders of ancient Chinese culture to millions across the globe, according to its website.
Five thousand years of Chinese civilization are presented through story-based dances. Each in some way touches on cherished values like honesty and compassion, or shows the bond between humankind and the divine realm.
Ms. Kane mentioned that she responded emotionally to each story, even though they were new to her. “You can feel it, what comes out of it. … It’s very moving, very spiritual, and I really, really enjoyed it.”
She learned that the Chinese Communist Party still suppresses spiritual traditions. “I don’t think I had a complete understanding of the Chinese culture and everything they’ve gone through. So it was enlightening as well, to learn that they aren’t able to worship like they want to or meditate … You never think about that. You think everyone is exposed to the same things we are,” she said.
The atheist Chinese communist regime has systematically suppressed traditional beliefs in the divine for decades.
But what moved Ms. Kane most deeply was that Shen Yun portrayed good triumphing over evil.
One dance set in contemporary China, “The Steadfast Heart,” tells the story of a group of people of faith who are about to meditate. Police attack them. In the end, however, heaven intervenes.
It was the victories, “the perseverance that people have” that brought tears to her eyes.
Ms. Kane hopes to see Shen Yun again. Each year the company composes new music, stages new dances about different legends and stories, writes music, and designs new costumes and animation.
“I would love to see it again,” she said, smiling through her tears.
Reporting by NTD Television and Sharon Kilarski
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.