Chinese dance is at the heart of what Shen Yun does. Known for its incredible flips and spins, and its gentle elegance, it is one of the most rigorous and expressive art forms in the world.

An art form
tempered over
thousands of years

Classical Chinese dance    has helped preserve 5,000 years of Chinese culture. Built on traditional aesthetics, it was once passed down among the people, in imperial courts, and through ancient plays. Over thousands of years, it was constantly refined, eventually developing into the vast and distinctly Chinese dance form we know today.     MORE >

Classical Chinese dance has its own set of training methods in basic skills and has strict training in both physical expression and specific postures. It also involves learning combinations of leaps, turns, flips, spins, and other aerial and tumbling techniques. It is a vast and independent system of dance.

China’s deep cultural traditions are contained in classical Chinese dance, allowing its movements to be richly expressive, such that the personalities and feelings of characters can be portrayed with unparalleled clarity. It is therefore capable of depicting scenes from any time period, whether ancient or modern, Eastern or Western, in a strikingly vivid way.

Left: Angelia Wang, principal dancer

Classical Chinese Dance

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Folk &
ethnic dance

THE MANY DISTINCTIVE ethnic groups within China and around her borders provide a wonderful array of material from which to choreograph and compose. These dances might whisk you away to the plains of Tibet, the shores of a Dai village, or the sprawling plains of Mongolia.

Left: Principal dancer Chelsea Cai, with Shen Yun New York company, in The Tibetan Dance of Praise from 2010.


THESE DANCES GIVE  dramatic portrayal to the cherished stories of past and present. Their figures embody the most exalted virtues of Chinese civilization, and convey a message or moral that is still relevant in our day. Many have inspired people for generations, such as the tales of heroine Mulan and general Yue Fei.

Left: Principal dancer Rocky Liao as drunk monk Lu Zhishen, in The Heroic Lu Zhishen from 2010.
Classical Chinese dance Gallery
Classical Chinese dance has its own training in basic skills, physical expression and postures, leaps, flips,
spins and other difficult tumbling techniques, forming an extensive and independent dance system.