Shen Yun at David H. Koch Theater, Lincoln Center
646-478-9905 www.shenyunperformingarts.org/shenyun2012 $80-$250
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Through classical Chinese dance and music in a colorful and exhilarating show, Shen Yun brings to life 5,000 years of Chinese civilization. Dozens of dancers in dazzling costumes, thunderous drums, and spectacular backdrops take you to another world. The performance will be held at the David H. Koch Theater, Lincoln Center, New York, January 11-15, 2012. Shen Yun’s program features traditional Chinese culture as it was meant to be; a beautiful blend of artistry, energy, and grace. Each year boasts a brand new show, with dozens of dancers in dazzling costumes move in seamless, flowing patterns. A live orchestra blends East and West, thunderous drums shake the stage, and spectacular backdrops transport you to another world. Comprised of a variety of Chinese culture, Shen Yun has an inspiring story created through the following:
Dance: o Classical Chinese dance is composed of three main parts: bearing, form, and technical skill. Other than complete training in the fundamentals, it also entails systematic training in movements and postures, as well as very difficult jumping and tumbling techniques. And so, alongside ballet, classical Chinese dance is one of the most comprehensive dance systems in the world. Costumes: o Every costume in a Shen Yun performance is presented with brilliant colors, displaying a splendid spectacle—from the Tang Dynasty’s “Raiment of Rainbows and Feathers” to imperial dragon robes, phoenix coronets, and cloud capes, from the civil official’s headdress and robes to the warrior’s helmet and armor, and from the traditional rightward cross-collared Han clothing to the ethnic attire of the Manchurian, Tibetan, Dai, Mongol, and Uyghur ethnic groups. Music: o The Chinese instruments in the show are classified by their material construction into eight categories: jin (metal), shi (stone), tu (clay), ge (hide), si (silk), mu (wood), bao (gourd), and zhu (bamboo). Collectively, these eight classifications are known as the ba yin, or “the eight sounds.” All materials used to make these instruments originate from nature, and the significance and symbolism of each is closely tied to its natural origin. While each of the Chinese instruments differs greatly in character, their interactions produce euphonious sounds that may surprise the listener. In fact, the emotions that these instruments are capable of invoking are as refined and subtle as they are complex. Through the performer’s technical excellence and emotive expression, any human emotion can be depicted. Vocals o The fundamental characteristic of Shen Yun Performing Arts vocal soloists is their use of bel canto vocal technique while singing Chinese lyrics. This means that the singer must grasp the highly difficult technical requirements of bel canto operatic singing while retaining the proper Chinese articulation and diction—today, this is unparalleled. The lyrics are all original compositions. Brimming with philosophical reflection about human life and deep layers of meaning, they traverse the boundaries of nation, race, and culture and have been fondly received and appreciated the world over. Some audience members even call Shen Yun’s songs "hymns." ABOUT: Shen Yun has performed to acclaim in more than 100 cities worldwide. At the core of Shen Yun’s performances is classical Chinese dance, and China's numerous ethnic and folk dance styles round out the evening along with masterful vocalists and musicians. In a collection of short pieces, audiences travel from the Himalayas to tropical lake-filled regions; from the legends of the culture’s creation over 5,000 years ago to contemporary tales of courage; from the highest heavens down to the dusty plateaus of the Middle Kingdom. Website: http://www.shenyunperformingarts.org/shenyun2012