SAN FRANCISCO—”It’s wonderful. Lots of energy, lots of smiling,” said retired TV actor Dennis Kostecki when he attended Shen Yun Performing Arts with his wife at San Francisco’s War Memorial Opera House on Jan. 10.
“It’s fabulous. It’s just magnificent … the artistry and the grace and style,” said his wife Lynda Roberts, who works for the elections department of Marin County.
With its world-class performances of classical Chinese dance and music, New York-based Shen Yun aims to revive 5,000 years of divinely inspired Chinese culture.
Mr. Kostecki has appeared in TV movies such as The President’s Child, The Bug in the Bathroom, and The Promethean.
“We have lived in the area for only six months, and we were hoping to find something of cultural significance, and here we are enjoying it,” Mr. Kostecki said. The couple recently moved to the area from Mammoth Lakes, California, and lived in Hawaii before that.
Ms. Roberts commented on the ancient feel of the culture portrayed in Shen Yun. “The cultural exchange is very enriching,” she said.
“I think it’s great to understand another culture’s story and their thoughts about their own sense of where they came from, and their heroes, and their myths,” Ms. Roberts said. “I think it enriches our own stories that we grew up with.”
“It’s more of the way life should be,” Mr. Kostecki said.
He enjoyed the animated digital backdrop that complements the dancers, serving as virtual props and scenery. “It draws you in,” he said.
“I especially like it when a character will leave the stage and appear on the screen and vice versa; that’s very interesting and fun. It makes me feel like a kid again!” Mr. Kostecki said.
Ms. Roberts was impressed by “the athleticism” of the dancers. According to Shen Yun’s website, classical Chinese dance “entails systematic training in movements and postures, as well as very difficult jumping and tumbling techniques.”
“The costumes are just amazing,” Ms. Roberts added. “The grace of the long sleeves is very impressive.”
She was referring to the dance Sleeves of Grace, in which female dancers use long, flowing silk sleeves to form intricate patterns as they dance.
“Every costume in a Shen Yun performance is presented with brilliant colors, displaying a splendid spectacle,” the company’s website states.
“I like all of it. I can’t wait till the second act,” Mr. Kostecki said during intermission.
Reporting by Chiawei Lin and Sally Appert
New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts has four touring companies that perform around the world. For more information, visit ShenYunPerformingArts.org.
Epoch Times considers Shen Yun Performing Arts the significant cultural event of our time. We have proudly covered audience reaction since Shen Yun’s inception in 2006.