The Shen Yun Symphony Orchestra, a touring symphony that includes talented musicians from across five continents, has gained much prestige in recent years. The orchestra, which seeks to open up horizons in the world of Western music by combining the spirit, beauty, and distinctiveness of Chinese music with the precision, power, and grandeur of the Western Symphony Orchestra, has become an incredible group to view.
At first, the Shen Yun Symphony Orchestra only performed with dancers as a background even, but in 2012, they made an international debut at Carnegie Hall, pulling their incredible work into the light. The orchestra includes performers on cellos, violins, trumpets, flutes, clarinets, oboes, French horns, erhus, pipas, and drums, as well as bel canto soloists of incredible esteem, and plays both traditional Western romance works as well as original Eastern-style compositions using a unique combination style.
As stated in a recent review, “…‘Shen Yun’ translates into ‘beauty of the divine.’ The name expresses what the company’s dance and music aspires to achieve: an experience [that] provokes a sense of the heavens.” On the official website for Shen Yun performances, they express this with great depth, speaking of the divine and spiritual motivations that push their work forward. Chinese music has always been highly affected by such thought, and the traditional continues with the Shen Yun Symphony.
In an interview with a couple of the main composers for Shen Yun’s music, the composers spoke of how their inspiration comes greatly from the way of dancing music, where the orchestra began. They are able to combine the two flavors of music using the authentic feel that dances give. They also rely on the combination of Western and Eastern instrumentation that the orchestra offers to create the best feel.
One thing is for sure: the Shen Yun Symphony Orchestra has burst into blinding fame, and as their work continues, it is bound to change the face of music forever. May their beautiful combination of cultures guide us all in our lives.