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“As a die-hard New Yorker, albeit a slightly jaded one, it is rare for me to experience a performance that defies description; that is, one that has overwhelmed, excited and completely mesmerized my tired self! Such was the case after witnessing Shen Yun, one of the city’s most breathtaking shows…

What I was unprepared for was the extraordinary magic, the visual feast and the seduction from the stage as Shen Yun’s dance troupe leapt through the screen, conjuring the possibility of flight, allowing the viewer an endless stream of imagination while reflecting on many of life’s opportunities…

As New Yorkers, we are privileged to have access to a vast variety of stage, music and screen productions at arm’s reach. We have inherently become selective and sensitive to sub-mediocre offerings and blast our personal reviews to any and all who care to listen. Over the years I’ve noticed that there are far more self-appointed “film critics” riding the M2, 3, 4 bus and the 4, 5, 6 trains than those writing for the New York Times.

Therefore, when I first viewed the TV ads for Shen Yun I–the jaded me, that is–thought that all who effused their delight were hired by the Shen Yun PR people. Men, women, and children all expressing endless amounts of enthusiasm, seemed a Hollywood hype with “actors” hired straight from central casting. Well, as much as I hate to admit this, I was wrong.

After the opening set of dancers leapt onstage, it was clear that this was something truly rare. Over the recent past, we’ve all been conditioned to experience only small doses of beauty thanks to technology’s interference in our natural world. What I came to appreciate–and many others have as well–was a sense of hope, of possibilities, of a power within all of us to go beyond the limits set by society...

We are all overdue for an instant fix, a panacea to the daily news we are forced to endure. The climate of this country has become morose with mediocrity replacing high expectations, hope and promise for ourselves, our children and our grandchildren. There must be a way for us to cleanse these feelings of despair.

My advice is to try to infuse entertainment, film, music, theatre into your daily lives. It certainly couldn’t hurt!

—Laura Wagner for La Voce di New York”

—La Voce di New York