Shen Yun: ‘You have to see it in person,’ Says Troy Mayor

February 7, 2014

DETROIT—Dane Slater, mayor of the City of Troy, Michigan, was blown away by Shen Yun Performing Arts’ depiction of 5,000 years of traditional Chinese culture at the Detroit Opera House on Feb. 6.

“It’s wonderful. I appreciate the culture, the dancing, and the singing. It is just outstanding,” Mr. Slater said during the intermission.

“I’m looking so forward to the second half after the intermission. It’s just wonderful,” he added. “My wife is [also] enjoying this immensely, and she is looking forward very much to the second half.”

New York-based Shen Yun’s mission is to revitalize the Middle Kingdom’s divinely inspired civilization and its virtues through the universal language of dance and music.

The production includes mini-dramas from China’s history told through the medium of classical Chinese dance, folk and ethnic dances depicting the country’s diverse regions and peoples, renowned opera-style vocalists, unique animated backdrops, and a live orchestra.

Mr. Slater said the performance brought the culture to life for him.

“You can read about it but till you see it—it really comes to life for you when you see it in person. You have to see it in person,” he said.

“You can read about it and you can talk about the 5,000-year history, but to come here and really experience it, that’s what you really need to do—unbelievable!”

The City of Troy proclaimed February Shen Yun Performing Arts Month.

“Our city gave the proclamation because we embrace the cultures,” said Mr. Slater.

“We embrace the diversity that [Shen Yun] brings to us and we think it’s such an important part of the community that we needed to recognize it as being a part of our community.

“This is a way to bring the culture and bring the history to the people here, especially in the United States.”

Mr. Slater was also highly impressed by the powerful voices of Shen Yun’s bel canto soloists.

“It’s breathtaking the sound that they make. The opera is just wonderful to listen to, and being in the opera theater it makes it sound so much more wonderful for all of us,” he said.

At the heart of Shen Yun’s performances is classical Chinese dance, a diverse and distinct system of dance known both for its spins and flips as well as its gentle elegance. “It is one of the most rigorous and expressive art forms in the world,” states the company’s website.

Mr. Slater enjoyed the dance—particularly the synchronization in the large-scale dances.

“The synchronization with the dancers is really incredible, that they move as one altogether … and it looks like they’re all one. That’s the part that I like the most,” he said.

Shen Yun’s vividly animated digital backdrop, which extends the range of the stage to bygone eras and heavenly realms, sometimes interacting with the dancers onstage, also caught Mr. Slater’s attention.

“It’s just incredible how the people come to life out of the [animated] screen, and then they go back into the screen. The backdrops are outstanding and the colors are just breathtaking. They bring everything to life,” he said.

Shen Yun tours internationally each season with an all-new program, playing in about 100 cities on four continents.

“It’s an education for everyone,” said Mr. Slater. “It’s breathtaking.”

Reporting by NTD Television and Joan Delaney

New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts has four touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world. For more information, visit

The 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.

Detroit, United States
Shen Yun World Company