Taiwan: Divine Performing Arts Arrives at Chianan Plain, People Experience the Spectacular (Photos)
(Clearwisdom.net) On the evening of April 20, 2007, two long lines of people waited to enter the concert hall of National Chung Cheng University, Chiayi, Taiwan. Looking up the steps to the hall, one could see a colorful poster with the words, "Divine Performing Arts," and images of beautiful dancers in ancient Chinese costumes.
When the curtain was raised amidst warm applause, the amazing scene on the stage won sincere praise from the 2,500 viewers, and continuous applause filled in the hall.
After touring Taipei, Taichung, Tainan, and Gaohsing, Divine Performing Arts arrived at Chiayi and gave two final performances in Taiwan at National Chung Cheng University.
Ceramic arts master Hsia Dong-che from Chiayi works on art in temples in Taiwan. After watching the introductory DVD of Divine Performing Arts at the beginning of April, he invited NTDTV Asia to his workshop and introduced the troupe to his friends in the temple arts. He said, "I am engaged in temple arts and live among statues of divine beings and Buddha. I believe human culture is passed down from divine beings. The fairy in the video of the troupe impressed me very much and gave me inspiration."
Touched by "Creation"
When the curtain was opened, many people were moved by the spectacular scene of the first performance of the evening, "Creation." In the dance, the compassionate Master Buddha brings divine beings to the human world and creates a graceful future for sentient beings in the universe.
"After watching the first dance, 'Creation,' I sat in an auspicious and delightful atmosphere throughout the whole show. I am nearly 70 years old and saw this scene for the first time. I was very moved," said Wu Chao-yi, the first principal of Jenyi High School in Chiayi, after watching the first half of the show. She said, "The whole stage is so beautiful. Each scene is very nice. [Because of where I was sitting] I could not see the whole view. Next time I will sit a little further back to view the whole stage."
Cai Mei-ling, former director of the Women's International Youth Business Association, said she felt a strong energy field once entered the hall. She said, "My tears did not stop. If there are tickets for the show tomorrow, I will come again."
Ms. Cai said she did not know why her tears flowed. She said she experienced a warm feeling, as if meeting relatives, but also a little sadness. After watching the first performance, she was moved and seemed to recall a deep memory in her heart. She said she could thoroughly enjoy other types of performances, but did not feel the deeper connotations in them as she did in this presentation by Divine Performing Arts. She felt the auspicious and compassionate energy surrounding each person in the whole hall.
Liu Hsi-dan from Chiayi said he never thought that the performance would be beyond imagination. The applause in the hall was continuous. He said that the message from the show can clean people's hearts and educate the world's people.
Pure Heart Gets Hints from Buddha
In the dance "A Dunhuang Dream," under a beautiful backdrop and the gaze of numerous divine statues in Dunhuang Cave, a dancer tells a story: a sculptor carved statues of Buddha in the cave, but ran out of creative ideas and fell asleep. Buddha gave him hints during his sleep, and after waking up, he was inspired by the new ideas and continued carving.
A woman in the audience said during intermission, "I wished the performance would never end."
Yunlin County Council member Hsu Chong-fu said, "Each performance is very good. The performances, 'A Dunhuang Dream' and 'To the Rightful Place' are most impressive. I believe in God and believe that one can communicate with God when the heart is pure. God can offer hints to world's people in dreams. Heaven watches people's actions. Good deeds are rewarded with good and evil meets with retribution. The performance of the troupe is not only providing entertainment, but presents a deep inner meaning without any dialog. If one observes with the heart, one can gain different experiences and understanding."
Li Hsi-hsun, Deputy Mayor of Chiayi, said each that each performance is unique and the dancing showed skill and inner meaning. Large dance program, such as "A Dunhuang Dream," provides strong guidance. He said that the performance promotes Chinese culture.
Chen Cheng-kuan, deputy director of the Kuomintang Organization and Development Committee, said, "I have seen and felt those things that Divine Performing Arts strives to present. I was impressed most with the dance, 'A Dunhuang Dream.' Since ancient times, Chinese people have believed in Buddha. Seeing statues of Buddha come to life can give people inspiration."
He believed that the performance plays a big role in promoting kindness and in upgrading morality.
Luo Hsue-jung, renowned artist and director of the Department of Visual Arts of Nanhua University, said she visited Dunhuang Cave and was impressed with the performance of the troupe. The performance of 'A Dunhuang Dream' conveyed the feeling that one experiences in Dunhuang.
The whole show tells people that human culture is passed down from divine beings. Chinese traditional culture is genuine culture from divine beings. Divine Performing Arts performed Chinese dancing with the inner connotations of Chinese culture. The evening included the dances of Mongolia, the Manchu Court, and Tibet, dramas depicting loyalty, filial piety, kindness and righteousness, as well as songs and an erhu solo.
One audience member said, "The entire program was very well conceived. Each scene was wonderful and I held my breath throughout."
Experiencing Humanity in Connection with Divine Beings
Tseng Guang-hua, Associate Professor of the Marketing Management Institute of National Chung Cheng University, said after watching the show, "Even now my heart cannot calm down. This is a moving performance. Any program or art activity that can touch people this way is outstanding."
Mr. Tseng said, "The program does not only move people, but contains deep inner connotations. In the performance, there is very serene part and also a very active part. In the serenity, you can hear the wind, rain, humanity and divine beings. In the active part, you get the sense of a torrent running, such as in 'The Loyalty of Yue Fei' and 'Resounding Drums'."
Mr. Tseng continued, "I was most moved by the dance, 'To the rightful place.' We can see from the performance that those perpetrators wore black clothes and carried out persecution. But who is the winner in the end and gets eternity? It is shown clearly. Another program [I was impressed with] is 'Candlelight Vigil.' A pure and innocent young girl pursues truth and eternity. These two numbers impressed me most."
Mr. Tseng believed that the humanity shown in the performances transcends race, history, culture and all other dividing aspects.
Li Pei-ling, director of the service center for Legislation Council Member Weng Chung-chun, watched the performance and was delighted.
In Soprano Jiang Min's song, "Why refuse?," the lyrics, "The state of the divine is eternal compassion," impressed Li Pei-ling. She said this is her future direction. She thought that the performance helped everyone maintain a compassionate and auspicious heart, which would lead one to be nearer to the divine and feel the existence and power of divine beings.
Regarding the fact that the performers in the troupe are Falun Gong practitioners, Ms. Li said she knows many Falun Gong practitioners. They are kind and healthy. As for the persecution of Falun Gong in China, Ms. Li said she felt sorrow. She said she was lucky to live in Taiwan and wished that everyone across the world had freedom of belief. She feels that the show is outstanding because it brings the audience to the world of divine beings and has deep inner connotations.
The Performance's Impact on the Taiwanese Art Circle
Lin Kuang-yi, a renowned artist and instructor in the Department of Art of Chiayi University said he was impressed with each performance after watching the show, especially the erhu performance, which created such a serene and auspicious feeling.
Mr. Lin indicated that the performance had a big impact on Taiwan's art circle, and mentioned that the morality shown in the performance will help towards improving society.
"The whole performance carries a high level of morality, especially the dances, 'The loyalty of Yue Fei' and 'Mulan.' They have a strong educational meaning. Schools should encourage students to see these performances. It would generate a big impact."
Mr. Lin's wife also watched the show. She said, "The singers, erhu, dancing, and costumes are all wonderful. I am very touched. I like them very much. If there is another opportunity, I will come again. I think my sky has become bright. The whole sky and world has become bright."
Chang Ching-lang, former dean of the College of Art of National Taiwan Normal University, studies folk music. He said that he was impressed with the stage backdrops, which use computer technology to present visual art. He praised the choreography and composition, and said that each program is very good. The troupe's performance is the best he's seen in Taiwan.
"I feel that today's performance is wonderful. Though it is over, my heart cannot calm down. This performance is the best I've seen in Taiwan. The performances include vocal solos and an erhu solo. This manner of presenting art, music and dance is very good."
A Sell-out Performance
It is wonderful that such a large performance troupe came to the Chianan Plain and the whole hall was full. A musician with religious beliefs who watched the performance said, "Chiayi is an area with pure and kind people. Wherever there is virtue, that is where there is good fortune."
When answering the curtain call, all the performers came out on the stage. The audience was excited, standing and applauding for a long time.