Standing Ovations for Shen Yun in Atlanta

By Mary Silver, Epoch Times
January 2, 2014 Updated: January 3, 2014

ATLANTA—Enthusiastic standing ovations were the order of the day after all five performances by Shen Yun Performing Arts at Cobb Energy Centre, Dec. 27–29. Audience members cheered and shouted for an encore after the vocal solo by Min Jiang, “This Music is Truth.”

From scholars to CEOs, dancers to investment brokers, politicians to psychologists, a diverse audience filled the theatre.

Historian, professor, author, and former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich said, “It has been very enjoyable, and I think it introduces thousands of people to a better understanding of Chinese civilization.”

Jacqueline S. Laures-Gore, an associate professor at Georgia State University, said she was touched “when the announcers were commenting that meditation—you know, you can get in a lot of trouble in China for practicing meditation or any type of spiritual experience. That was really poignant to think about that.”

One woman, a manager for a Chinese-owned company, was also moved by the artist’s efforts to describe contemporary Chinese issues.

She said she learned more from Shen Yun about what her colleagues experienced in their home country, China. “Watching this part about the no meditation, it really makes you say, ‘wow,’ even though you know it turns pretty. That’s, wow, how it really is. I love it.” She was speaking of the dance, Buddha’s Compassion Shines Forth, in which “kindhearted people’s goodness is rewarded,” according to the program.

It gave her a new empathy for Chinese people, she said. “This is great because being at work I am surrounded by people from China. I thought it was beautiful … I loved it. Seeing culture, watching the people around me and hearing a couple of oohs and ahhs around me, it’s really good.”

Her husband brought her to the performance as a Christmas gift, she said, and the experience made them both happy. He said the projected, animated backdrop “also engages you and you use your imagination. You really become a part of the show. It was awesome.”

Radio host S.C. Polite said he would like members of the Shen Yun Performing Arts International Company to know that “the singers, the dancers, and the orchestra have done a magnificent job. You have done a wonderful deed telling outsiders … of the wonder of the Chinese culture … It’s to the world’s benefit because we got to embrace it.”

Mr. David Shepherd said he felt grateful to the artists for “sharing the beauty of their culture … they are sharing it with us, and otherwise we wouldn’t have an opportunity to share that beauty, and so it’s just, it’s a privilege!”

Mr. Gerald Vaughn, an investigator for the federal government, said he has a strong affinity for Chinese culture, and “The choreography is wonderful. I love it.” He is interested Tai Chi, and the dance Tai Chai Flow fascinated him. “I was very intrigued by that aspect of it.”

He also said that the orchestra is remarkable: “They are very good. Very good.”

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

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.