TEMPE, Ariz.—Shen Yun Performing Arts New York Company graced the stage of ASU Grady Gammage with four magical performances from March 7 to March 9.
A wide cross-section of theatergoers were drawn to the Shen Yun performances, from the business, arts, and political sectors of the larger Phoenix, Ariz., population.
Mr. Rod Chandler, a former member of the U.S. House of Representatives from the State of Washington, District 8, said that it was his first time watching Shen Yun, and that the performance very much exceeded his expectation. “Oh, I loved it. This is beautiful!” he exclaimed.
Bonnie Kline, publisher of Vista Magazine, also “loved it.”
“[This] was really fantastic,” added Ms. Kline, showing her admiration for the performance’s mini-drama pieces.
“I’d like to learn more about the stories behind some of the dances and the songs,” she said.
Brigadier General James Lewis, U.S. Army, Retired, said his wife had decided for them to see Shen Yun when she first saw the advertisements.
Brig. Gen. and Mrs. Lewis were impressed with the digital backdrops, especially how the dancers leapt from the stage and appeared on the screen in flight as animated characters, then back from the screen to the stage.
“Beautifully done!” said Mrs. Lewis. “Fantastic!” She couldn’t praise Shen Yun enough. “It was just absolutely magnificent. Totally loved it!”
Ms. Moore, owner of Moore Chrysler Jeep and Subaru Automotive Group, and Moore Chrysler Jeep dealerships, said, “I love the dance, and I love the fluidity. They’re very trained dancers, and they’re so graceful, and they’re so fluid.”
Struck By the Art of Storytelling
Miss Pennell is a student at Arizona State University, and is the 2013 Miss Ladera Heights in California, and 2013–2014 Miss Black Arizona. She was also a contestant in the 2013 Miss California event.
Miss Pennell was struck by the unique “art of storytelling” woven into the ancient Chinese culture.
What amazed her was “how it is so prevalent in the culture and how they use that to communicate [the spiritual] messages that are held true even to this day.”
Former professional musicians Solitaire and Brandi Parke were both captivated by Shen Yun.
“I really enjoyed that. I thought they did a fabulous job telling the stories, and the costumes—everything—just really lent itself to telling the story and they were beautiful,” said Mrs. Parke.
One of the many standing amidst the thunderous applause was Nancy Greene, a former dancer at the prestigious Victoria Carter London Dance Center in Ontario, Canada.
“It’s transcendent,” she said. “When I saw that they are trying to combine their dance with their spirituality, that really intrigued me. So it’s been very moving for me. Really just like tears to my eyes at times—very nice.”
Ms. Greene was moved to tears when, in the opening piece, heavenly beings are called to descend to Earth to help people, and how, in another piece, a mother who is persecuted for her faith ascends into the heavens.
A standing ovation celebrated Shen Yun’s final performance in Tempe for 2014.