GUADALAJARA, Mexico — For over six months every year, Shen Yun’s eight companies embark on a remarkable journey across five continents to showcase authentic Chinese culture and art through mesmerizing dance routines, gravity-defying techniques, vibrant costumes and props, state-of-the-art digital backdrops, live musical performances, and more.
Established in 2006 and based in New York, Shen Yun Performing Arts is the world’s premier Classical Chinese dance and music company — delighting audiences of all ages and backgrounds through captivating and immersive performances that showcase the beauty and grace of ancient Chinese culture prior to the ravages of communism.
This year was no different, as Shen Yun’s talented artists wrapped up hundreds of performances in over 200 cities across the globe.
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‘It was worth the long trip’
José Antonio Arámbula López, a public accountant, told reporters after attending Shen Yun’s last show in Guadalajara, Mexico, on May 10, that he had traveled all the way from Aguas Calientes (located about three hours away) to attend the performance.
“It was worth coming all the way from Aguas Calientes,” said Lopez, adding that he thought the show was “breathtaking and uplifting.”
“The show allowed us to learn a little more about Chinese culture: Classical dance, costumes, history, vibrant colors, and breathtaking landscapes. It leaves the audience with a newfound sense of inspiration and joy; I am very happy to be here,” he said.
When asked about what stood out to him the most, Lopez said, “Well, it’s fantastic, honestly. I was delighted to learn about the history of Chinese culture, arts, and costumes through dance and music.”
Lopez also made note of the importance of reconnecting with traditional values, and praised Shen Yun’s performers for helping keep this art form alive. “I believe it’s very important. China has contributed many things to the world; it is one of our ancient cultures. And I think through dance, we can learn a lot about history. Today, we also learned that classical Chinese dance has greatly influenced music throughout history, for example.”
Shen Yun’s use of a high-tech integrative, digital backdrop brings scenes from different dynasties, celestial realms, and ethnic regions to life; the show is also guided by two emcees who explain each segment in both English and Chinese — making each storyline more accessible to a wider audience.
‘Truly a show of great precision’
Mayola Velazquez and Efrain Pedrosa, also attended Shen Yun’s final performance in Mexico on May 10. The pair shared with reporters that the performance was “exquisite and truly beautiful.”
“It was incredible; it truly is a show of great precision,” said Pedrosa, a marketing executive.
“The movements are very beautiful, and I loved the costumes,” he said, adding, “I particularly enjoyed the spiritual aspect of the stories, which were very beautiful and profound. I feel that they [the dancers] delved deep into that aspect, and it was exquisite.”
Shen Yun’s performances aim not only to entertain, but also educate audiences on important social and political issues taking place in China today; all while providing a unique perspective on the human spirit and the importance of not taking certain freedoms for granted.
One of the storylines touch upon the persecution of Falun Gong adherents in China.
Falun Dafa, also known as Falun Gong, is a spiritual practice that combines meditation exercises with a moral philosophy based on the principles of truthfulness, compassion, and forbearance (真善忍). After becoming widely popular in China in the 1990s — with millions of people, including high-ranking government officials taking up the practice — the communist authorities launched a brutal persecution campaign of its estimated 100 million practitioners in July 1999.
READ MORE: ‘The Suffering of the Chinese People Is Caused by This Evil Regime’: Statements by Those Quitting the Communist Party
‘Brought out a lot of emotions’
“For me, what I saw was beautiful,” said Velasquez, a professional dancer, adding, “There was a lot of harmony, a lot of beauty in the colors, all the synchrony with the dancers and their movements, also with the music — it really touched me, and brought out a lot of emotions within me.”
“And what I felt was a connection within me that [the performers] were transmitting — and my voice is a bit shaky because it moved me deeply,” she added.
Shen Yun’s performances take audiences on a spellbinding journey through time and space by seamlessly blending classical Chinese dance, ethnic and folk dancing, ancient legends, and contemporary narratives. A live orchestra that features a harmonious fusion of traditional Chinese and classical Western instruments also serves to take the audience on an immersive and unique artistic journey.
Velasquez added that the artists successfully conveyed “human values that come from the heart — values such as compassion, unity, and peace. All their work is beautiful.”
For more information regarding Shen Yun Performing Arts, including FAQs, upcoming performances, and ticketing information, please visit the official website here.