“I thought the colours of the costumes were fantastic and also the movements. I haven’t seen that before and the hand movements … beautiful hand movements.
Shen Yun is based in upstate New York and according to their website “The Shen Yun Orchestra combines the spirit, beauty, and distinctiveness of Chinese music with the precision, power, and grandeur of the Western symphony orchestra. The result—two great traditions producing one refreshing sound.”
As an accomplished violin player Ms. Hewison enjoyed listening to the instruments in the unique orchestra.
“I thought it was very interesting to see where they combine Western instruments and Chinese instruments—that was very effective.”
“Sophisticated dance techniques, an orchestra joining instruments from both the East and West, beautiful costumes, and a stunning back drop—this is Shen Yun at first glance. But digging deeper, one discovers a sea of traditional Chinese culture,” states the Shen Yun website.
“Mortals and divine beings merge on stage as one. Principles such as benevolence and justice, propriety and wisdom, respect for the heavens, and divine retribution, all come to life, washing over the audience. Originating from Confucianism, Buddhism, and Taoism, these ideals are the essence of traditional Chinese culture.”
Ms. Hewison is known in Melbourne circles for her violin playing and teaching, performing regularly on the baroque violin and viola. She has studied in London and performed in the UK, Spain, Greece, France and the Netherlands as well as many baroque performances throughout Australia. She has featured on a number of CDs and has recorded for the ABC.
Ms. Hewison also teaches violin and viola and is head of strings at Ivanhoe Girls’ Grammar School, amongst a list of credentials.
Mrs. Hewison was at a Probus Club meeting when she was introduced to Shen Yun by a guest speaker.
“I thought I’ve just got to see it,” Mrs. Hewison said.
The widely publicised performance, comprising classical Chinese dance, music and song, was the first time the Hewison’s had seen the 5,000-year-old divinely-inspired ancient Chinese culture performed on stage.
“So I think there was a lot of publicity in Melbourne—book clubs and everything. It was really lovely, fantastic,” Ms. Hewison said.
“Artistically it was good to see, but it was great to see the traditional [stories], the river one I really liked. The farmer was so happy and the flowing ribbons. We really enjoyed it.”
Reporting by Tracy Fan and Raiatea Tahana-Reese
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