Shen Yun Choreographer and Dancer: Yungchia Chen

In 2006, a group of leading classical Chinese artists came together in New York with one wish: to revive the true essence of divinely inspired Chinese culture that had been shadowed from the modern and destructive ideology of communism, which believes anything old equals nothing of importance.

Five thousand years of civilization was almost lost under the pressure of modern ideologies.

The revival of traditional Chinese Dance. (Image via Shen Yun Performing Arts YouTube/Screenshot)

The revival of traditional Chinese Dance. (Image: Shen Yun Performing Arts  via YouTube/Screenshot)

China once was known as Shen Zhou — “The Divine Land” — a land where deities and mortals co-existed, and faith toward the divine protected and transmitted a rich culture to the people of the Earth.

Classical Chinese dance has a long history of thousands of years, soaking up profound wisdom from every era and dynasty. It has become a complete system of dance, embodying traditional aesthetic principles. Classical Chinese dance has three main components — bearing, form, and technical skill.

Yungchia Chen grew up in an environment during the end of the Cultural Revolution in China. (Image via Shen Yun Performing Arts YouTube/Screenshot)

Yungchia Chen grew up in an environment at the end of the Cultural Revolution in China. (Image: Shen Yun Performing Arts via YouTube/Screenshot)

Yungchia Chen is currently an instructor at Fei Tian Academy of the Arts, and was formerly a lecturer in dance at Central University for Nationalities, in Beijing. Before coming to the United States, he was a council member of the Dance Association of the Republic of China.

Trained in Chinese classical and folk dance, along with ballet, Chen won a Gold Medal at NTDTV’s 2007 International Chinese Classical Dance Competition, the International Cultural Exchange Award (top honor), the Silver Medal in choreography at Japan’s Kitakyushu International Dance Competition, the Silver Medal (performance) and the Gardener Award (pedagogy) at China’s National Peach and Plum Cup Dance Competition.

"In the past it was just about pleasing the audience now I think more how to communicate with them, how to have a heart to heart exchange." Yungchia Chen (Image via Shen Yun Performing Arts YouTube/Screenshot)

In the past, it was just about pleasing the audience; now, I think more how to communicate with them, how to have a heart-to-heart exchange. Yungchia Chen (Image: Shen Yun Performing Arts via YouTube/Screenshot)

Chen is currently a choreographer as well as principal dancer with the Shen Yun Performing Arts Touring Company.

Yungchia Chen was born in China and grew up during the period at the end of the Cultural Revolution. In the video above, he discusses his sadness for a culture almost lost:

Today in China, there is no real freedom of expression in daily life, or within the arts, without the worry of being spied on, and fear that anything can happen to you.

Shen Yun male dancers on world tour. (Image via Shen Yun Performing Arts YouTube/Screenshot)

Shen Yun male dancers on world tour. (Image: Shen Yun Performing Arts  via YouTube/Screenshot)

Yungchia Chen expresses more on this:

To see Shen Yun Performing Arts live in a city near you, visit https://www.shenyunperformingarts.org

Written by George Orfanos

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