Shen Yun Symphony Orchestra ‘Uplifting’ and ‘Terrific’

October 20, 2013 Updated: December 27, 2013

COSTA MESA, Calif.—Shen Yun Symphony Orchestra connected with an engaged audience at the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall on Saturday, performing four encores and receiving a standing ovation.

David Millikan, a retired director of sales for American Express, attended the concert with his wife, Rebecca.

Millikan said the orchestra and singers were “terrific” and “uplifting” and that he wasn’t expecting to see four different conductors during the evening.

The orchestra brings together four orchestras which are part of world renowned Shen Yun Performing Arts, and the audience was treated to four different conductors throughout the evening, each with their own style and charisma.

Shen Yun Symphony Orchestra’s ” all-original works combine Chinese and Western instruments and draw upon the rich culture of China’s 5,000 years,” according to its website.

“A remarkable achievement, the orchestra melds the spirit and distinctiveness of Chinese music with the precision and power of the Western symphony orchestra,” it adds.

Mr. Millikan noticed that the orchestra contained many instruments that are not typically found in orchestras.

“I really enjoyed the different sounds,” he said.

Shen Yun Symphony Orchestra world’s only orchestra that combines both classical Western and Chinese instruments as its permanent members, according to its website.

Classical Chinese instruments such as the two-stringed erhu, or Chinese violin, and the pipa, or Chinese lute, meld with instruments from a classical Western symphonic orchestra, such as woodwinds, strings, and percussion.

Mrs. Millikan also enjoyed the blend of Eastern and Western instruments. “I have never seen a symphony that [used] this combination; that is interesting,” she said.

Shen Yun Symphony Orchestra will end its seven-city tour in San Francisco Oct. 22.

Reporting by Teresa Liu and Albert Roman

Shen Yun Symphony Orchestra is on a seven-city tour with performances in Washington, D.C.; New York; Boston; Houston; Dallas; Los Angeles; and San Francisco, from Sept. 27–Oct. 22. For more information, visit