BERKELEY, Calif.—For the owner of Cafe Van Kleef, being able to sit down and enjoy a Shen Yun Performing Arts performance was an escape from this world and an entrance into another.
Cindy Reeves is the proud owner of Cafe Van Kleef. Since the passing of her husband six years ago, this is the first time she has gone out to do something for herself. She told her sister that she purchased a ticket, and her sister, Paula Lozano, decided she wanted to see the performance as well.
Ms. Reeves said that if she was to describe the performance to a friend, she would say, “If you want to [go to] a different dimension, different world, a culture that you didn’t really know about until you sat down and realized what’s happening and going on, if you want to get your world rocked, go see Shen Yun. Your heart [will] open like a plum blossom, it’s just wonderful.”
The Plum Blossom dance was especially moving to her.
“I am absolutely speechless. “The Plum Blossom” brought tears to my eyes,” Ms. Reeves said.
She said she saw values that were close to her heart in the performance.
“Peace, devotion, strength. I want to cry. I’m honored to sit here,” she said.
I want to cry. I’m honored to sit here.
After going through a rough time with the pandemic, seeing Shen Yun brought Ms. Reeves a sense of safety.
“When I see something like that, there’s nothing that can harm me, there’s beauty in the world again,” she said.
Ms. Lozana agreed with her sister. “That’s what art does for us. The artistry tonight opened my heart, opened my eyes, and I could enjoy the beauty for two hours and get out of the fears of COVID-19, just to be able to come back out and enjoy this with everybody. I’m so grateful,” she said.
Shen Yun Is Beautiful
Bruce Shepperson is a musician and CEO. His love of music is what brings him peace and relaxation.
“Music is my special place that I go to when I want peace, when I want relaxation,” Mr. Shepperson said.
“You can hear the different instruments. So you know, when it’s more Chinese, and you can tell when it’s blended in with [Western] music as well. And the orchestra is made up of Americans as well as Chinese Americans. So it is a blend of just wonderful, wonderful music,” he said.
When asked to describe the performance to people who haven’t seen it, Mr. Shepperson said, “Come see it. It’s something that you truly have to come to see. I couldn’t tell you about it if I tried. It’s beautiful.
“Come see it. It’s worth every penny. Come see it.”
Reporting by Lily Yu, David Lam, and Maria Han.