Sister Maria: Shen Yun ‘It was all stunning’

May 2, 2012 Updated: October 1, 2015
Epoch Times Photo

SYDNEY—Shen Yun Performing Arts New York Company graced the stage at Sydney’s Capital Theatre for a matinee performance on Wednesday, May 2.

The New York-based company fosters the belief that the divine, through various dynasties, transmitted a rich and abundant culture to the Chinese people. Chinese culture is thus know as “divinely inspired” and the only culture in the world to have a continuous recorded history of 5,000 years, states the company’s website.

Three sisters, Maria, Mary and Bernadette, of the order of “Our Lady of the Sacred Heart” in Kensington were prompted to attend the Shen Yun performance after a Chinese sister in their order had taken two other sisters to see the performance the previous night. They liked it so much that the trio decided to come along tonight.

Sister Maria said she “liked the costumes, they were so bright, and the dances and the music.”

Every year, Shen Yun unveils an entirely new lineup of dances, songs, and musical scores. At the core of Shen Yun’s performances is classical Chinese dance with China’s numerous ethnic and folk dance styles, according to the company’s website.

Sister Maria did some pondering on the deeper meaning of the opening act, “An Era Begins”.

The curtain opens to reveal a regiment of celestial soldiers, preparing for a battle between good and evil. Their enemy, a demon horde, abruptly combines to form a sinister red dragon. The dragon is conquered by Lord Buddha’s divine might, and flees to Earth, assuming human form. There, China’s glorious civilization is flourishing. Little do the members of the imperial court realize, however, that a contest of good and evil is about to ensue in the human world, states the company’s website.

“When there is an evil spirit [red dragon] in the world,” said Sister Maria “it affects the whole world, not just those people in China, that’s why it’s the responsibility of all of us to get rid of it.”

Sister Bernadette also enjoyed everything about the performance. “The athleticism and skill of the dancers and the music, it was all stunning,” she said.

She liked as well that “other cultures and religions also shared a belief in the divine and how important that is for the world.”

Reporting by Luke Hughes and Ron Champagne.

Shen Yun Performing Arts, based in New York, has three touring companies that perform simultaneously around the world, with a mission to revive traditional Chinese culture.
Shen Yun Performing Arts New York Company will perform at Sydney’s Capitol Theatre through May 6.

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