The Shen Yun Symphony Orchestra (SYSO) performed at the Music Center at Strathmore near Washington on the evening of Oct. 13. The level of the musicianship and the combination of Eastern and Western musical instruments had many among the audience offering their praise.
“It’s very sacred experience,” Psychotherapist Lakshmi Carpenter said.
“I loved it. It was other-dimensional. I was in the sixth dimension. I was on a cloud. It was fabulous!” Attorney and businessman Stanley Brock said.
SYSO, composed of musicians from the orchestras of Shen Yun Performing Arts’s seven touring ensembles, finished the Asian leg of its tour before moving on to North America. It stopped in New York yesterday for two performances before appearing in Washington on Sunday.
Known for its seemingly perfect blend of the East and West, the orchestra folds ancient Chinese instruments like the pipa and erhu into a Western symphony, creating Chinese melodies with classical orchestration.
“I’m really impressed with how soft—but big—the sound is, and it has this romantic quality, but also invokes nature and horses. It’s just absolutely magical!” Research Scientist Naomi Knoble said.
“The musicians are so precise. The precision of all the string instruments, and then the blending of the woodwinds, the brass, and the percussion is just fantastic!” said John Hemleben, dean of academics for the College of Distance Education and Training at the Marine Corps University.
“We heard about this, and we thought we’d give this a try,” he said. “Beauty about this is you can focus on the music. … So it’s really breathtaking. It’s wonderful.”
After its Washington performance, for the following two weekends, the orchestra will appear first in Chicago and then finally in Boston to conclude its own tour before rejoining the Shen Yun Performing Arts company for their touring season.
Reporting by Kitty Wang