Shen Yun Captivates the Audience at Historic Boston Opera House

( Shen Yun Performing Arts graced the stage at the historic Boston Opera House on Friday, January 20, 2012, for an opening-night performance showcasing five thousand years of traditional Chinese culture. The New York-based company will perform four shows at the renowned venue as part of its 2012 world tour.

At the core of Shen Yun’s performances is classical Chinese dance, one of the most expressive and comprehensive dance forms in the world. With stunning visual displays, technical virtuosity, and soulful presentation, Shen Yun offers a magical window into the rich history, diverse ethnic heritage, and deep spiritual devotion of the nation once known as “The Land of the Divine,” receiving generous applause and rave reviews from the audience.

Chiropractor: “The dancing is spectacular”

Attending the opening-night performance were Dr. Ken Lowey and his wife, Dr. Anne Lowey, both of whom are chiropractors.

The couple decided to see Shen Yun after receiving a brochure in the mail. They were not disappointed.

“The dancing is spectacular. We’ve been to a few ballet [performances], but this is amazing!” enthused Dr. Ken Lowey.

“It’s very unique,” added his wife, who was enchanted by the colorful costumes made by hand specifically for each dance. “I loved the costumes—they are so beautiful, they are so graceful,” she said, giving the example of the traditional “water sleeves” worn by female dancers in the piece “Sleeves of Silk.” According to the program book, “Acting as extensions of a dancer’s arms, these sleeves linger in the air long after the movement is finished. The effect is akin to fluttering wings or trailing ripples.”

Dr. Ken Lowey and his wife, Dr. Anne Lowey, at the Boston Opera House on January 20, 2012

Programmer: “We’ll definitely come back next year”

Also in the audience on Friday night was Mr. Oliver Newell, a weather researcher at MIT, who brought his mother, sister, and a family friend. Clearly pleased with their experience, the group was enthusiastic in their praise following the performance.

“It was wonderful. I had never seen traditional Chinese dance before, and the dancing was absolutely incredible. And the singers as well—the sopranos were just incredible. I thoroughly enjoyed it,” said Mr. Harnett, the family’s friend who works as a programmer at a social research firm.

“We’ll definitely come back next year,” he added.

“The colors and the dance and the tumbling were all very good,” agreed Mr. Newell, impressed with the visual and technical aspects of the classical Chinese dance presented on stage. With a history of thousands of years and a vast array of challenging techniques, classical Chinese dance is believed to have given rise to the modern-day gymnastics and acrobatics.

Ms. Madeleine Newell, Mr. Newell’s sister and a Harvard University librarian, emphasized the “lovely” costumes that are carefully handcrafted to align with a brand-new production each year.

“Incredible skill and great visual beauty I think as well,” agreed the siblings’ mother, Mrs. Newell. “It’s really very unusual and I enjoyed it,” she concluded.

Mr. Oliver Newell (right) with his mother, Mrs. Newell (left), and family friend, Mr. Harnett (center), at the Boston Opera House on January 20, 2012

Teacher: “I would definitely recommend it to my friends and my family”

Mr. Martin Brackman, who works in sales, attended the opening-night performance with his wife, Mrs. Karen Brackman, a teacher.

“I am very impressed,” said Mr. Brackman after the show. “The consumes were great, the dances were phenomenal, and I really, truly enjoyed it.”

Mrs. Brackman eagerly agreed. “I would definitely recommend it to my friends and my family,” she said. “And I would love to come back again next year,” she added.


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