NEW YORK, New York — The acclaimed performing arts troupe took the grand stage at New York’s esteemed Lincoln Center, leaving theatergoers captivated with its mesmerizing dance routines, gravity-defying techniques, vibrant costumes and props, state-of-the-art digital backdrops, and musical finesse.
Founded in 2006 and headquartered in upstate New York, Shen Yun Performing Arts is the world’s premier classical Chinese dance and music company. Every year, the company unveils a brand new production to showcase the beauty, tradition, and richness of China’s 5,000-year-old history and heritage before the ravages of Communism.
The show stunningly blends classical Chinese dance, ethnic and folk performances, ancient legends, contemporary narratives, and a live orchestra to take the audience on a spellbinding journey through time and space.
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‘It was fabulous’
Sridedi, a business analyst, attended Shen Yun’s performance on April 16 alongside her two friends, and said the performance was “fabulous.”
“I loved all the musical aspects — the dance performances and the orchestra; it was fabulous,” Sridedi said, adding, “I was expecting the dancing [to be good], but the singing was amazing. I liked the way the emcees described and explained each performance, and I loved the coordination and how in sync [the dancers are.] It was so good.”
Shen Yun’s use of a high-tech integrative, digital backdrop brings scenes from different dynasties, celestial realms, and ethnic regions to life; each performance is also guided by two emcees who explain each segment in both English and Chinese — making it more accessible to a wider audience.
Corinna Makhihaj, a treasury analyst, said “every single thing was very well coordinated,” and shared how she thought the audience can really see “all the effort that went into it.”
“It was very commendable, and the stories really help people understand Chinese culture. It was my first time understanding and looking at Chinese culture, and it was really surprising and amazing,” said Makhihaj, who attended Shen Yun’s performance on April 16.
Rashi Gupta, who owns a bookstore, said she “loved all the beautiful stories” and being able to “learn about Chinese culture.”
“The music and how coordinated and systematic the dancers were; I loved all of that,” she said, adding, “I feel like I want to go back to that era. It was very nice.”
‘Creative and magical’
Sabina Dzhabbaroba, manager at a medical office for Kerato ophthalmology, told reporters that,
“The outfits, the music, the backdrop and digital signage were very creative and magical.” Dzabbaroba, who hails from Russia, made note of the show’s live singing and said she was “very moved” by the lyrics.
“Everyone in the show is absolutely incredible. The dancing was outstanding and the voice of the soprano was incredible; I don’t think I’ve ever heard anyone sing like that,” she said.
Shen Yun’s performances aim to not only entertain, but also educate audiences on important social and political issues while providing a unique perspective on the human spirit and the importance of not taking certain freedoms for granted.
“[The soprano’s] sound, her power, and the words she was saying were very touching,” she said, adding, “I come from Russia so I understood what she’s talking about; it’s really amazing and it made me cry.”
‘I loved everything’
Jose Morales, a flight attendant, said he “loved everything” about the performance: “Every performance, every dance, the costumes, the dancers; everything was great. I’m so glad I came [to see Shen Yun], and I don’t know why I didn’t do it before,” he said.
When asked what he enjoyed the most about the performance, Morales said, “The whole coordination, the scenography, the costumes and the dancing were beautiful,” adding, “The integration between modern and traditional with the music was great; The orchestra was a totally different experience,” he said.
Shen Yun’s award-winning dancers and acrobats — who hail from all over the world — are accompanied by a live orchestra that blends classical Western and Chinese instruments to create a unique and harmonious soundscape. The result is a beautiful fusion of sound that takes the audience on a journey through the history and culture of China — with music ranging from classical to traditional folk style.
Shen Yun currently has eight equally-sized performing arts troupes that tour and perform around the world simultaneously, putting on a brand new production every year.
‘Chinese culture is amazing’
Marcela Sotolongo and Andrea Yanpietro, a bartender, shared with reporters that they “loved everything,” especially the “orchestra, dancers, and the costumes.”
“I loved the Mongolian dance and the traditional aspect of it,” said Yanpietro, adding, “Chinese culture is amazing.”
Shen Yun’s performances skillfully integrate classical Chinese dance, ethnic and folk dancing from many of the country’s different regions, as well as ancient legends and contemporary narratives depicting modern-day China.
‘[They] looked like angels from Heaven’
Jeffrey Chin, a technician, who attended the show with Kathy Lastihanos, a nurse, said he really “enjoyed the show,” and shared that he particularly enjoyed the “mystical themes” of the performance.
“My favorite part was when all the women were dancing and they all looked like angels from heaven. It was just so mesmerizing and great,” said Lastihanos.
For more information on the performing arts troupe, including FAQs, upcoming performances, and ticketing information, please visit the official website here.