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Shen Yun Arts Proficiency Assessment Center: Connecting Artists and Students in the World of Classical Chinese Dance

Alina Wang
A native of New York, Alina has a Bachelors degree in Corporate Communications from Baruch College and writes about human rights, politics, tech, and society.
Published: January 5, 2023
Located in Middletown, New York, Shen Yun Arts Proficiency Assessment Center has quickly become a hub for cultural exchange and education — attracting students and artists from all over the globe. (Image: via Shen Yun Arts Proficiency Assessment Center)

Nestled in New York’s scenic Hudson Valley, Shen Yun Arts Proficiency Assessment Center (APAC) is a world-renowned institution dedicated to the authentic traditional arts and culture of ancient China. 

Founded in 2006, the center has quickly become a hub for cultural exchange and education — attracting students and artists from all over the globe. Home to a variety of programs and initiatives aimed at preserving and promoting the cultural heritage, values, and traditions of China prior to communist rule, the center features a lineup of instructors affiliated with the world’s premier classical Chinese dance and music company: Shen Yun Performing Arts. 

From comprehensive training in dance, music, and acrobatics to theater and literature, the Center offers a wide range of artistic disciplines for students from all different walks of life and ages to explore, develop, and hone their skills.


A commitment to tradition

One of the key features of the APAC is its commitment to upholding traditional Chinese arts and values. The center works closely with leading artists and cultural experts to ensure that its programs are authentic and true to traditional Chinese arts and dance styles. This dedication to preserving and promoting the cultural heritage of China has earned the center a reputation as one of the premier institutions of its kind in the world.

Students of the Shen Yun Proficiency Assessment Center pose for a photo following their End-of-Semester Performance at the Northern Academy of the Arts located in Middletown, New York, on Dec. 17, 2022. (Image: David Chai/Vision Times)

According to the center’s website, the APAC is an “artistic platform for those with aspirations — whether it’s to cultivate interest at an early age, fulfill the artistic dreams from your childhood, or to help you develop artistic skills that you can pass on.”

“For the growth of the students, [the classes] have had a profound impact,” said Feng Xuan, one of the instructors at the center. “Shen Yun’s standardized and comprehensive examination courses have been meaningful in the eyes of our teachers, and they have personally practiced the entire set of courses,” she said.

“The classes are not only formal and systemic, but unique,” Feng told the “Stories of Life” YouTube channel, adding that “one feels very comfortable after the training.” 

Feng Xuan, one of the instructors at APAC is seen during an interview explaining the uniqueness of classical Chinese dance. (Image: Screenshot via ‘Stories of Life’ YouTube)

In addition to its educational programs, the APAC also hosts a number of events and performances throughout the year in the state of New York. These events provide an opportunity for the public to experience the beauty and depth of traditional Chinese arts, and learn more about the rich cultural history of China. Students who excel in their respective dance and arts programs may also be given the opportunity to join one of Shen Yun’s dance troupes or symphony orchestras.

Young students doing stretching exercises at Shen Yun Arts’ Proficiency Assessment Center in Middletown, New York. (Image: Screenshot via ‘The Stories of Life’ YouTube)

“Parents entrust us with their children [at the center] and if we can nurture a child to truly understand the beauty of classic dance and learn about its benefits, it’s a win-win situation for everyone,” Feng said. 

In August, 2022 the APAC released a comprehensive list of course materials for classical Chinese dance training for students aged seven to nine. The course materials were created by Shen Yun artists and are the culmination of their expertise gathered from years of professional training, performing, and teachings in classical Chinese dance, music and acrobatics.

A renaissance of Chinese arts and culture 

Founded in 2006, Shen Yun is the world’s premier performing arts and entertainment company featuring seven equally large troupes that perform simultaneously around the world. The non-profit organization produces unique performances and symphony concerts inspired by ancient civilizations and heavenly realms. 

Through breathtaking dance and music, Shen Yun brings together artists from all over the world in stunning performances showcasing vibrant costumes, acrobatics, and choreography — all while reviving 5,000 years of traditional Chinese culture and heritage onstage.


Shen Yun’s performances have attracted the attention of dozens of industry professionals and artists. Academy Award-winning production designer for Avatar, Robert Stromberg, called the production: “So inspiring. I think I may have found some new ideas for the next Avatar movie,” and Academy Award-winning actress Cate Blanchett said the show was, “Exquisitely beautiful. An extraordinary experience for us and the children,” after watching the performance in New York City’s Lincoln Center. 

shen yun dancer in orange and yellow costume with long yellow sleeves and headpiece and male dancers dressed in orange robes with blue hair in the background.
Shen Yun Performing Arts is the world’s premier classical Chinese dance and music company. (Image: via Shen Yun Performing Arts)

Theatergoers have also praised Shen Yun for bringing to life the whimsical beauty of traditional arts and music, and combining the use of cutting-edge technology and special effects. “It was really interesting. Very, very interesting,” said Mike Shula after watching Shen Yun’s all-new production in Boston’s Wang Theater on New Year’s Eve. “The beauty of the dance is just incredible. The timing is amazing. Everything is so synchronous…The colors and the backgrounds were beautiful. And the special effects were amazing,” he said. 

The APAC is a vital institution that is dedicated to preserving and promoting the traditional arts of China. Its commitment to excellence and cultural authenticity makes it a unique and valuable resource for students and artists from around the world.

For more information and FAQs, please visit APAC’s website by clicking here.

Shen Yun Arts Proficiency Assessment Center
14 Jason Place
Middletown, NY 10940
United States
Contact: [email protected]