(Clearwisdom.net) Divine Performing Arts' (DPA) last global tour ran from December 18, 2007, to May 7, 2008. The company has visited four continents and 66 major cities, giving 215 performances. The show has brought joy to an audience of 600 thousand people. From February 29 to March 20 this year, DPA toured five major cities in Taiwan with 22 shows. Over 50 thousand specators enjoyed this year's visual and spiritual feast.

The work of hundreds of outstanding artists created DPA's compassionate and beautiful programs. The artists combined traditional and folk costumes with background projections and modern sound and stage effects. They presented the profoundness of traditional, divinely-imparted Chinese culture. The DPA's next global tour will start in Philadelphia on December 19, 2008. The group will come to Taiwan again early next year and present 37 shows.

When the DPA toured Taiwan in April 2007, tickets for the shows in Taipei were sold out in three hours. Many people went to other cities to see the performances. An additional 15 performances were added to accommodate audience demand to see the show.

The seats were full for DPA's performances in Taipei

Divine Performing Arts' shows have received rave reviews around the world. The following are the reflections of audience members who are involved in the arts by profession. These professionals are grouped into several categories: professors that teach music and art, dancers, critics and those involved in the theater, directors of cultural bureaus and art centers, and other arts professionals.

1. Professors that teach music and art had high praise for the DPA performances

Music professor and band conductor: "The DPA's music is from heaven"

Lin Yueh-li, professor of the National Taichung University Common Education Center and conductor of the Taichung Chinese Orchestra, said the the music in the performance perfectly combined Eastern and Western traditions. She said that the music gave the audience a feeling of being free, as if in heaven.Ms. Lin also praised the vocalists for possessing outstanding technique. She appreciated the hard work DPA members have done to promote the beauty of traditional arts.

Professor Lin Yuehli

"The DPA's original music, its use of musical instruments, and the performance were outstanding. The music blended in so well with the dances, backdrops, lights, and the stories in the programs," she said. "The entire show was magnificent. The artists put in a lot of work into the music and dance, and every aspect of the show, and this truly moved everyone. I am so glad to see such devotion to the promotion of beauty and brightness."

Professor and composer: Perfect presentation of music and dance

Ma Shui-lung is a professor at the Institute of Music in the National Chiao Tung University and a renowned composer. He has created music for many dance groups. He specializes in presenting traditional music that combines the use of Eastern and Western instruments. He had high praise for the DPA's stage design, the integration of the music with the dance movements, the simple yet powerful choreography, and the skillful performers.

Ma Shui-lung

Mr. Ma specializes in blending visual aesthetics in his musical creations. He promotes the concept of "hear a painting with the ears and see music with the eyes." He said that the DPA stage design was very appropriate and the performers blended in with the background perfectly. "The animation in the background projection highlights everything," added Ma.

Dean of the College of Art: I feel differently every time I see the show

Li Der-lin is the Dean of the College of Visual and Performing Arts and the Chair of the Department of Music at the National University of Tainan. He focuses on the overall presentation when he watches each show. In his opinion the DPA did a great job in creating costumes, music and the background projections. From the stories in the individual programs, he could sense the DPA's supreme devotion to art.

Li Der-lin

Mr. Li comes to the show every year and said he feels differently every time. "Taiwan's art needs the DPA and its high-class, refined performance and unique musical design. We are not against popular music, but we need to strongly promote high-quality performances such as DPA's. This will help the development of art in Taiwan tremendously," said Li.

Professor of arts management: Seeing the show once is not enough

Lu Hung-hui is a professor at the Institute of Arts Management at National Sun Yat-Sen University. Lu said, "The DPA's show was dazzling, magnificent, and colorful. I couldn't take my eyes off the stage. Here, the essence of Eastern and Western art blended smoothly to compliment each other. The stage sets were stunning. I felt that very audience member was eager to see the next program even while enjoying the present one. It's not enough to see the DPA show just once."

Lu Hung-hui

"The DPA used classic stories from Chinese culture such as 'Lady of the Moon' and 'The Loyalty of Yue Fei' and combined them with classical Chinese dance forms such as 'Water Sleeves,' the fan dance, the drum dance, and the chopsticks dance. Based on these fundamental Eastern elements, the DPA skillfully added in the essence of Western art, such as the orchestral music and paintings on the background projections. The DPA created an irresistible and extraordinarily artistic atmosphere for the audience. This is a difficult achievement for ordinary performing groups," said Lu.

(To be continued)