TOKYO—Crowds gathered outside New National Theatre Playhouse after seeing the spectacular performance by Shen Yun Performing Arts International Company on the afternoon of Jan. 30. Captivated by the astonishment and joy after watching Shen Yun’s second performance in Japan, they seemed to be reluctant to leave right away. They were amazed by the authentic traditional Chinese culture delivered by the show.
Mr. Sinri Sakai, a department manager at Tokyo Broadcasting System, said, “I didn’t understand what type of show Shen Yun is. Also, I did not know what to expect of the orchestra conducted by maestro Yohei Sato. With these unknown expectations, I arrived at today’s show.”
Sakai was deeply satisfied with the performance. He siad, “I indulged myself with the artistry and beauty. The animated digital backdrops replaced the traditional curtains, which makes the show even more unique and creative.”
“Each program was very exquisite and beautiful. But to me, the most memorable part was probably the storyline. As I remember, there was a monk who appeared insane. His expressions and actions were extremely vivid and adorable. I really like this type of performance. Through the introduction by the masters of ceremonies, I found it easy to understanding the connotations of the story and the meanings behind each program. I was deeply touched by the show.”
“In addition, the final line sung by the last soprano (Jiang Min) fully demonstrated her superb vocal skills and techniques. It was very impressive! Marvelous!”
Although Sakai could not completely understand the Chinese lyrics, he said that there was an important meaning deep within the songs. “It is a valuable opportunity for me to attend a performance with such a high standard. To me, this is an empowering show through which I am profoundly moved by the elegance and supreme beauty.”
“It was a unique privilege for Sato to conduct Shen Yun Orchestra. I didn’t know that someone Japanese had taken part in Shen Yun performances,” Sakai said.
Watching the whole performance also enabled Sakai to rethink modern China. He said, “Traditional Chinese culture demonstrated by Shen Yun has prompted me to rethink China today.”
I Finally Understood the Purpose of Life: Returning to Heaven
A female IT company president, who remained anonymous, said watching Shen Yun performance brought her to beautiful dreamland and enlightened her as to the purpose of life–that it is returning to heaven.
It was her first time to see Shen Yun. When asked what she felt about the performance, she said excitedly, “The performance was so beautiful that it was like a fairyland. It made me feel as though I were in a very beautiful dreamland.”
“Classical Chinese dances were so exquisitely exhibited on the stage. I could feel that all the artists had fully devoted themselves to the performance. I was highly moved by the show,” she added.
Recollecting her enjoyment and love of the dances, she mentioned in particular the muscularity of the Mongolian male dance and the gentle delicacy of the female. She said, “The dancing of the Lotus Fairies truly revealed remarkable beauty of purity.”
She also mentioned that the lyrics delivered by Shen Yun vocalists had very profound meanings. She explained, “I tried to understand the meaning by looking at the Chinese characters on the screen. I feel that they tried to convey the truth of people’s descending to the world and returning to heaven. The lyrics brought hopes to the audience.”
“The first program prompted a topic to contemplate for today’s entire society,” she said. “I noticed that everybody was thinking and exploring where he/she came from and where he/she would go. Nobody can have a clear answer for this question. Instead of using words, today’s performance was carried out through dynamic backdrops, dances, and singing on the stage. I am extremely glad to be here.”
Finally, she concluded, “I felt I have been to a very beautiful dreamland. I am truly touched!”
Company President: I Feel Like Seeing It Again
Ms. Asami Mitsuko, president of a company, attended the show along with her friend who came all way from Hokkaido. Seeing Shen Yun performance for the first time, he said he was amazed by the comprehensive lineup as well as all the performers’ magnificent skills.
Ms. Asami: “I think the classical Chinese dances performed by Shen Yun are indeed very wonderful and touching. With so many actors performing on the stage at the same time, the tremendous momentum demonstrated by the comprehensive lineup is fascinating and moving.”
“In the first program, the higher being descended to the earth from heaven with a mission. Although there were no words, the audience could truly feel the righteous connotations behind the story. Chinese people have long believed in Buddhism, and Japanese culture came from China. So, they have the same origin. We can feel the exquisiteness of Shen Yun’s techniques. The quality of the show is perfect.”
As to the fact that Shen Yun uses story-based dances to demonstrate the battle between good and evil, as well as justice and sinfulness to rectify the human world, she expressed, “It’s really admirable and lets people find hope in times of distress.”
Praising Shen Yun’s live orchestra, she said, “It was my first time to hear the music played by Western and Chinese musical instruments at the same time. The seamless blend of the sounds made the music pleasing to the ear, with Chinese flavor and yet a tremendous momentum.”
Ms. Asami continued, “Viewing the Shen Yun show for over two hours was like a mere moment, and it made me feel like seeing it again.”
Shen Yun’s Energy Warms My Entire Body
Painter Sumie Kikuike watched the Shen Yun show along with her female friend surnamed Yamagami. After seeing the performance, Ms. Sumie said, “Today I felt Shen Yun’s energy, which warmed my entire body.”
“All of Shen Yun’s colors demonstrate the beauty of China, and they are full of vitality. They make me feel refreshed and energetic. People who want to keep fit should do what they are fond of and should appreciate nice dances and music (like those demonstrated by Shen Yun),” she added.
Ms. Sumie said, “My feeling toward Shen Yun’s use of colors is that Shen Yun has demonstrated the characteristics of China. They are pleasing to the eye. I was amazed by the dancers’ smooth transitions into various formations one after another on the stage, and dancers’ jumping onto the stage one by one. We hardly see such performance in Japan, so Japan should learn from Shen Yun.”
“Every actor’s face is so beautiful, so are their physical movements. Though I am not young as they are, I am wondering how wonderful it would be if I could be as beautiful as they are. In the arts, everyone pursues beauty, which is also true in painting. Not only should the colors be beautiful, but they should also be elegant, so that they can console our spirit and soul. As to my own artistic works, I have been studying and learning (in these regards).”
As to the Chinese philosophies of honoring heaven and valuing virtue embodied in Shen Yun performances, Ms. Sumie said, “Shen Yun displays (the feelings of) beauty, kindness, appreciation, and love. People should strive to keep all these; they are the most basic elements in children’s education.”
Watching Shen Yun for the first time, Ms. Yamagami said, “I really feel that Shen Yun combines Japanese and Asian elements. It’s a stunning cultural exchange with music, and it makes people forget everything unhappy. From now on, people should be hopeful, friendly, and harmonious, and full of blessings. These are messages conveyed by Shen Yun.’
Ms. Yamagami was thankful to her friend for inviting her to watch Shen Yun. She said, “The beauty displayed by Shen Yun through vigorous practice, the exquisiteness shown in the dances and all the effort behind all kinds of dancing movements really touches the Japanese people.”
Reporting by Ren Zihui and Lauren Lane, Niu Bin and Leo Chen, Wu Lili and Bill Xu, Zhan Nini and Fleu L
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.