Frequently Asked Questions

When can I clap?

In general, applauding at the end of each piece and after the emcees finish introducing each piece is most customary at Shen Yun performances around the world. Of course, if there is a particular technique or aspect of the performance that moves or delights you, feel free to applaud mid-program. And if one song from our world-class vocalists is not enough, you can call “encore!” They just might respond…

What should I wear?

Classical opera or ballet performance attire is recommended. We encourage you to come looking your best, it makes the evening that much more special.

How early should I arrive?

Most theaters encourage audience members to arrive 30 minutes prior to curtain. Latecomers will only be seated between programs.

I am not Chinese - will I understand the content?

Absolutely. Each Shen Yun performance is hosted by bilingual emcees who will guide you through the show and provide all the background needed for you to enjoy it. The songs’ lyrics are translated and appear on a screen, and programs are available, which provide a simple introduction to each piece and background information about the performers.

Why would I enjoy a Chinese show?

Do you enjoy beautiful costumes, exciting music and high-flying dance techniques? Then you will certainly enjoy our performances! Not only that, but the universal themes of compassion, courage, spirituality and hope are hallmarks of Shen Yun. Learn more here!

How long is the show?

A typical Shen Yun performance is a lineup of short pieces, each just a few minutes long. Along with a select number of vocal or instrumental solos, the entire performance lasts about two hours, with a 15-minute intermission.

Can I photograph or record?

Photography or recording of any kind at Shen Yun performances is strictly prohibited. Even without a flash, photography and recording disrupts our performers—the dancers can see it! It further interferes with other audience members trying to enjoy the performance. It is also a violation of copyright laws. Theater staff and security personnel are instructed to intercept anyone taking photos or recording.

What does Shen Yun mean?

Shen Yun literally translates as: The beauty of divine beings dancing.

What’s the performance like?

A Shen Yun performance consists of a collection of group dances programs and 3-4 solo vocalist or instrumentalists performances. Each dance number has its own theme, its own story, as well as its own ethnic, regional, or dynastic background. Classical Chinese dance is at the heart of the performance, along with brilliant costumes, breathtaking projection, and an orchestra that combines both classical Western and Chinese instruments.

Is it suitable for children?

Generally, Shen Yun is very much suitable for all ages. Families often attend our performances and each year children have their favorite pieces, such as the Monkey King. We ask that you only bring children who are able to sit through the entire performance without disturbing others. Some theaters and local presenters require a minimum age for attending the performance-in some cases, for example, a child must be six years old.

Do you have an orchestra?

Every Shen Yun performance is accompanied by our one-of-a-kind orchestra that combines Western symphonic instruments with traditional Chinese instruments. Learn more about the orchestra here.

You are not based in China?

Shen Yun’s mission is to revive the 5,000 year old, divinely inspired culture of China. Unfortunately, over the past 60 years, this cultural treasure has been persecuted and co-opted by the Chinese Communist Party. It is outside of China that Shen Yun’s artistic creators have the ability to freely express themselves and their ancient culture. Their courage to speak up is an integral part of Shen Yun’s spirit.