MISSISSAUGA, Canada—Tenor Marcus Saroop, attended Shen Yun Performing Arts at the Living Arts Centre on Dec. 22. Mr. Saroop, who has been involved in opera and the performing arts since childhood, said Shen Yun was among the best productions he had ever seen.
“I haven’t experienced anything like [Shen Yun],” he said. “I’ve experienced a lot of different operas, a lot of different shows, but nothing so wonderful.”
Mr. Saroop noted that he has sung with live orchestras worldwide, and this year he sang with world-renowned Spanish tenor and conductor Plácido Domingo on tour a number of times, mainly in North and South America.
He said Shen Yun’s vocal and instrumental performances were “perfect” and some of his favorite moments of the show.
“It’s been gorgeous. The messages, the sound, everything’s been perfect and it’s been glorious,” he said.
New York-based Shen Yun is a classical Chinese dance and music company, formed in 2006 to revive 5,000 years of divinely-inspired Chinese culture.
The performance features a collection of stories told through classical Chinese dance as well as ethnic or folk dance, and vocal soloists.
Mr. Saroop praised Shen Yun’s tenor, Yuan Qu, and soprano singers, Pi-ju Huang and Haolan Geng.
“They have great skill,” he said. “The Chinese singers have been incredible.”
“They were ‘A’-class, the music [was] excellent.”
According to the Shen Yun website, the vocalists use bel canto vocal technique while singing Chinese lyrics, a feat that is “highly-difficult” and “unparalleled” in the music world today.
Though the songs are sung in Chinese, Shen Yun’s digitally animated backdrops project the lyrics behind the performer in English, to allow diverse audiences a deeper understanding of the song’s meaning.
All music and lyrics are also original compositions written by Shen Yun artists, according to the website.
“I don’t know how they got all this great production value,” said Mr. Saroop. “It’s just gorgeous. Everything works so well together—how they sing live and also with the graphics—the graphics are just incredible.”
Shen Yun performances are also accompanied by the company’s original unique orchestra, which blends traditional Chinese instruments with a philharmonic orchestra.
Mr. Saroop adored the orchestra’s music, which accompanied each dance performance.
“The continual music, the orchestration, I enjoyed that a lot,” he said.
“The show was presented beautifully, the music was wonderful and all the different cultural dances [were] spectacular.”
Mr. Saroop said everyone should see Shen Yun because its beauty has a universal appeal that transcends culture and race.
“Just to share that culture, share that wonderment and the beauty of it, the beauty of the whole presentation.”
With reporting by NTD Television and Justina Wheale.
New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts has three touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world. Shen Yun’s New York Company will be in Mississauga until Dec. 23 before going to Ottawa and Montreal and other dates in Ontario, Quebec, and across Canada. For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org
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