CHARLOTTE, N.C.—Todd Hewey, a producer for Christian television station Inspiration Ministries, and Jill Horton, a special education teacher, watched Shen Yun Performing Arts at the Belk Theater at Blumenthal Performing Arts Center the evening March 4.
The couple had high praise for the performance, which they found very inspirational.
Mr. Hewey appreciated many aspects of the performance, including “the colors, the beauty of the pageantry, the artistry, the athleticism of the of the dancers. The humor, I really liked that a lot. The orchestra was spectacular.”
“I enjoy the taste of Chinese culture and history, and the dancing is entertaining,” added Ms. Horton.
Based in New York, Shen Yun was founded in 2006 and quickly became the world’s premier classical Chinese dance and music company. Over the years, it has grown from one to eight equally sized companies that tour the world simultaneously, each with its own live orchestra that includes a mix of traditional Chinese and Western instruments.
Mr. Hewey said what impressed him the most was the fact that “it’s different than what we normally see in here in the West.”
“It’s marvelous to see stuff that goes back into China, throughout tradition, and you just don’t see that as much, except here with this show. I really appreciate that.”
“It’s absolutely pristine,” said Mr. Hewey, from the standpoint of a producer. Shen Yun has an all-new program every year, which Mr. Hewey observed would be “a full-time task to create new dances, new moves, the choreography, the music, new stories. Good gracious, that’s a lot of work!”
Everyone glows on stage, and that comes across—that joy of them performing and dancing.
“The color and motion is really mesmerizing. With the music, everyone glows. Everyone glows on stage, and that comes across—that joy of them performing and dancing,” he added
Shen Yun’s mission is to revive traditional Chinese culture and to present the beauty of China before communism. Mr. Hewey found this to be inspirational, and hoped that it would be inspirational to other Chinese people as well.
“It’s inspirational in that you’ve got people who are for traditional China, for their faith that they have there that they practice, and that they’re also talking about the negativism of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party), which has squashed so much creativity in China. And so, when you see this, it gives you hope that other Chinese people will take that hope and throw off the chains of the CCP.”
Shen Yun’s program includes story-based dances, some of which are set in modern-day China and depict the Chinese Communist Party’s persecution of followers of Falun Dafa, a spiritual practice that teaches the principles of truthfulness, compassion, and tolerance.
“China needs to be free,” said Mr. Hewey. “China needs to be free so that the Chinese people can practice what they want to practice, to do what they’d like to do, without fear of repercussions from an evil group of totalitarians that’s known as the Chinese Communist Party, who are not the Chinese.”
“Chinese culture is ancient, and did so much for the world. Since the CCP has come in, it has brought a darkness over that country and the countries surrounding it.”
“More people have to see it,” said Mr. Hewey. “More people have to see what these performers are doing.”
To Shen Yun’s performers and artistic director, Mr. Hewey wanted to say, “Thank you for your hard work, and making a marvelous performance. It was very inspirational.”
Reporting by Frank Liang and Wandi Zhu.
The Epoch Times is a proud sponsor of Shen Yun Performing Arts. We have covered audience reactions since Shen Yun’s inception in 2006.