LAS VEGAS—”We couldn’t possibly miss this show,” said Mandarwyn, who drove from San Diego to see Shen Yun Performing Arts at Reynolds Hall in the Smith Center for the Performing Arts on Wednesday evening.
Mandarwyn said he and his friend didn’t get a chance to attend Shen Yun while the company was in San Diego last month. And even though they had just been to Las Vegas recently, they decided to come back for Shen Yun.
“We are really happy to be here this evening,” he said. “We love the show.”
New York-based Shen Yun was founded in 2006 with the goal of reviving the true, divinely inspired culture of China and sharing it with the world through the universal language of music and dance, according to the company website.
“Sophisticated dance techniques, an orchestra joining instruments from both the East and West, beautiful costumes, and a stunning back drop—this is Shen Yun at first glance. But digging deeper, one discovers a sea of traditional Chinese culture,” states the website.
“Principles such as benevolence and justice, propriety and wisdom, respect for the heavens, and divine retribution, all come to life, washing over the audience,” continues the site.
Mandarwyn currently works in real estate, but he studied ballet, modern dance, and jazz when he was younger. He said every Shen Yun dancer impressed and fascinated him with how much character they brought into their performance.
“Every movement that the dancers made I was really awestruck,” he said. “How much intensity and strength, but the grace is really the most important.”
Mandarwyn thought the interactive backdrops behind the dancers were “incredible” and “phenomenal,” especially as they allowed the artists to appear to jump directly into the background and fly into the sky, only to come back and reappear later on stage. He was grateful to have seats close to the front, which he said made the experience more impactful.
“I felt that I was really transported there,” he said. “The backdrops were really beautiful and not overwhelming with color or intensity, so that I was allowed to really focus on the dance.”
Through the performance, Mandarwyn said he felt a close connection with China, and even felt like he was a part of the dance group.
“I felt lifted up, and I felt guided, and I felt that I was one with them,” he said. “I really felt in good company.”
Overall, he felt happy for the chance to experience Shen Yun and said the performance was really perfect for him. He picked up a few extra programs for his other friends.
“When it comes to commitment and dedication, and compassion and love, that really was shared with all of us,” Mandarwyn said. “I don’t think that anyone could be feeling more welcome anywhere this evening, or perhaps even in the world, but especially in times like these right now. I think it gives us a sense of identity of where we are coming from and where things are definitely going.”
Whenever Shen Yun Comes, ‘We will be here’
Also in the audience Wednesday was Warren Hall, a retired president of a printing company, and his wife Merleen Hall, a retired school teacher, who said this was the second time they have attended Shen Yun.
“They are just wonderful,” said Mrs. Hall said of Shen Yun. “Whenever they come, we will be here.”
“The performance was wonderful,” said Mr. Hall. “The precision and the color was just outstanding.”
Mr. and Mrs. Hall especially enjoyed the stories behind the dances and the spiritual values the artists demonstrated through the ancient and modern tales.
“It really was just a universal message, and we were just so thrilled to be able to see this,” said Mrs. Hall. “It was just outstanding.”
Although Shen Yun celebrates true Chinese culture, it is not able to perform in China, which was once known as Shen Zhou, or The Divine Land.
“This profound name describes a land where deities and mortals coexisted, and a belief that the divine transmitted a rich culture to the people of the earth,” according to the website.
Unfortunately, decades of communist rule and systematic campaigns such as the Cultural Revolution have brought China’s 5,000-year culture to the brink of extinction.
“Entirely non-profit, and independent of the Chinese regime, Shen Yun enjoys the artistic freedom of New York, enabling it to now bring these ancient traditions to the stage,” states the website.
“A wonderful message,” said Mr. Hall. “Talking about eternity, and goodness, and truth, and not oppression or tyranny.”
The couple encouraged everyone to see Shen Yun.
“Everyone should see it,” said Mr. Hall.
“Very much so,” said Mrs. Hall.
Reporting by NTD Television, Jenny Liu, and Sarah Le
New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts has four touring companies that perform around the world. For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org.
Epoch Times considers Shen Yun Performing Arts the significant cultural event of our time. We have proudly covered audience reaction since Shen Yun’s inception in 2006