The New York-based Shen Yun Performing Arts received an enthusiastic welcome while performing at the Cincinnati Music Hall in Cincinnati, Ohio, on March 6th, 2010.
Among the distinguished guests in the audience was Cincinnati's Bengals' safety Kyries Hebert, who brought along his friend, Alexis Miller.
He said he was "very impressed. I didn't know exactly what to expect. I've never been to a show like it. At no point did it lose my attention - full of highs and no lows. A very exciting show."
Mr. Hebert said that the performance that stood out the most for him was "Astounding Conviction." "Throughout the show, they spoke of divine people being here to protect us and watch over us, and it showed that he was protected because he was standing up for what he believes in, and that this higher power protected him from evil. Good will always overcome evil," he said.
Ms. Miller, who has been involved with drama and performing arts since she was six years old, said that Shen Yun "was one of the most amazing performances that I have ever seen. ... It was very fascinating and very extraordinary. The costumes were so detailed; plus the singing and the orchestra were amazing.
"Everything was just amazing! It can't be compared to anything I have ever seen."
She thought the dance technique displayed in the show "is one of the hardest. Everyone was in sync and moving together. It's amazing, because that is one of the hardest things to do when you are in groups. They are so talented and so skilful. I really appreciate the performances. I think it was fascinating."
Commenting on the dance "Splitting the Mountain," Ms. Miller said, "It was awesome! It showed that even though things happen to us, you can still come back if you keep your faith and are strong and have hope in what you believe."
Mr. Hebert added, "This is one show that should not be missed. We will definitely come back to see it!"
His friend agreed, saying, "Americans should come out and experience it. It's a new experience, and they should open their eyes to it."
Former dance teacher: "It's beautiful and high quality"
During intermission, audience members Udia Nagy, a former dance teacher from Hungary, and Margie Kellie, an elementary school tutor, talked about the show.
"It's beautiful - it's beautiful and high quality," said Ms. Nagy, with her friend adding, "I'm also struck by how they used the backdrop. For instance, when they made the embroidery 3-D and then had the people come down and show up on the stage. I think that's very effective. And I'm really enjoying seeing a representation of some of the spiritual beliefs, I'm really enjoying that."
Ms. Kellie noted that, although many different cultures from around the world share universal beliefs, they are "expressed in different ways. So I liked that."
Commenting on the dance piece "Nothing Can Block the Divine Path," which depicts the persecution of Falun Dafa practitioners in China, Ms. Kellie said, "I was really moved by the family that practises that belief [Falun Dafa], but they were torn apart. That was very moving, very moving."
Ms. Nagy shared her spiritual impressions of the show, saying, "For me, when we go to the deepest level, or the highest level, truth is one and spirituality is the connection with each other. Nothing else.
"If the spirituality or the open heart and love are not there, we are not connecting with our nation or with other nations or with anybody who exists on this earth.
"That's the beauty of the Chinese belief: it doesn't matter if its the Dao or Buddhist or Zen Buddhist or Christian or Muslim. Truly, when we get to the roots it's one, and everybody belongs to and goes back there."
Her friend called it "the source," to which Ms. Nagy replied, "Yes, the source."
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