True Chivalry With the 3Musketeers

Evan Mantyk, Contributing Writer

For those who haven’t seen their videos yet, the 3Musketeers are a trio of longtime Shen Yun dancers who take viewers on lighthearted adventures, from fantastic food to dancer challenges to behind the scenes at a Shen Yun performance. As the cold weather sets in and a good scarf becomes a necessity for any gentleman in the cold, we caught up with the 3Musketeers and asked them, beyond clothing, what truly makes a gentleman?

Will (Joined Shen Yun in 2007)

What defines a true gentleman?

When I hear the term gentlemen, I think of the Chinese term “Jun-zi.” Junzi has many qualities and some of which are to speak less and do more and always help others in need.

What is the most difficult thing you have ever done?

I can’t think of a single instance where something is the “most” difficult thing I’ve ever done. But, I do find it difficult to admit that I am wrong, especially when I’m in a position of authority. I have to recognize that everyone makes mistakes, admit to them, and improve upon them.

Where have you had the best winter experience?

My best winter experience was in Quebec, Canada. We finished our performance and had a day off, so we decided to head to the outdoor heated pool in the middle of winter. It was snowing that night and the temperature was so cold that if you stuck your head out of the water your hair would freeze! It was the first time I swam in an outdoor pool during winter—definitely an unforgettable experience.

Sam (Joined Shen Yun in 2011)

What is the most difficult thing you have ever done?

The most difficult thing that I've ever gone through is rupturing my Achilles tendon. But, even though it was difficult, the experience made me a better man.

I ruptured my Achilles tendon three years ago while flipping. Before the injury I was naive and pretentious. I was rarely content with my life, and always found myself wanting more than I had. The Achilles rupture turned my world upside down. After surgery, I was confined to a chair all day, and couldn't even get a drink of water without someone helping me. It broke me mentally because my physicality was my biggest source of confidence back then. I was also scared that I would never dance again, or make it back into Shen Yun.

It was only through my spiritual practice (Falun Dafa), that I was able to find hope again.

I spent my free time reading Zhuan Falun, a book that encourages its readers to follow the principles of Truth, Compassion, and Forbearance, as well as to look inwards when faced with problems. It was through reading that I realized how fortunate I was before, and how I failed to cherish it. I told myself that in the future no matter what situation I was in, I would stay positive, and cherish everything that I had. This change in mindset really propelled me through my rehab, and as you can probably tell from watching our videos, I've fully recovered! 

This experience was extremely humbling, and in some ways I was actually glad it happened.

Where have you had the best winter experience?

My best winter experience is in my hometown of Los Angeles where the weather is just perfect during the winter months. Just imagine wearing a T-shirt outside in December, how awesome is that!

Any holiday shopping tip to share with our audience?

Buy winter clothes in summer and buy summer clothes in winter.

Kim (Joined Shen Yun in 2013)

What defines a true gentleman?

Being humble, generous, and selfless.

What is the most difficult thing you have ever done?

It’s sharing very personal stories and secrets with other people. Now it’s easy for me to be open, but believe it or not, I was a very introverted person and it was really hard for me to take the first step to open to others.

For me, life wasn’t always easy. Back in Korea, I experienced many hardships at a young age. Due to these encounters, I was a very introverted person, easily stressed and depressed by the things around me. I questioned myself: what’s the point of life. However, instead of finding an answer, I was more hopeless and ready to give up. In the midst of all my troubles, I was lucky enough to get a chance to watch Shen Yun, and that changed my life. I was moved by the divinity and the morals of the show. It also gave me a purpose in life: to one day join Shen Yun and become part of their cause. 

However, that meant I had to change my personality, and I have to be sociable. For me, that was a very difficult thing to do due to my social anxiety. My heart felt actual pain when I entered a room full of strangers, afraid of people making contact with me. I was even anxious if I passed by a couple of people in the hallway. When I’m down and depressed, what brought me back to my feet was my cultivation practice, Falun Dafa. Whenever I wanted to give up, I reminded myself of the main principles of Falun Dafa: Truth, Compassion, and Forbearance. Even though I’m very introverted, I wanted to treat the people around me like how I would treat my family. So one step at a time, I opened my mind to other people instead of waiting for others to open their minds to me. Slowly, I was able to share my personal stories and feelings with others. I was even able to share some secrets with others that my family doesn’t even know. Little by little, I became more extroverted, and I wasn’t afraid of people anymore. 

During my introverted times, I liked to be alone and observe other people. Instead of living in reality, I liked to daydream and wander in my imaginary world. Maybe its my daydreaming and my observations that made me a creative person, but because I was introverted, I didn’t share my ideas with other people. When I became more extroverted, I decided to learn dance choreography because I realized that it can express ancient moral values using dance drama, which is something that I want to share with other people. I was less afraid of people, and I was more open to communicating and working with others. Now, it’s easier for me to direct others onstage and work with my peers, and I’m able to choreograph dances and perform them in front of thousands of people. This is life-changing for me and it wouldn't be possible if I didn’t practice Falun Dafa. This practice changed my life!

Where have you had the best winter experience?

I remember when I was 4 or 5 years old, my family and I went on vacation to a small village in rural South Korea. The place was covered in snow, and everything was silky white. I remember sledding to a waterfall and breaking off an icicle and munching on it despite the cold weather. Afterwards we sat down and ate sweet, juicy persimmons to end our small adventure. It was an unforgettable experience for me.

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While they have a good time joking around on their videos, these performers clearly take the 5,000 years of traditional Chinese culture that Shen Yun portrays very seriously. Love to know more? Be sure to visit them via the Shen Yun Creations streaming platform or YouTube.

Don’t forget to check out the Shen Yun Shop scarves worn by the 3Musketeers here.

1 comment

Thank you, I am proud to be connected to such a wonderful organization. I am proud to have a Chinese American existence myself. Your life stories and meanings for doing what you were destined to do are most welcoming and of such a sensitive nature. I am always learning more and more of my own heritages and other’s experiences. Although I am not a young woman I feel as though I could never stop learning new things in my own nationality..and so appreciate that the younger generations have just as much if not more to offer, as the wisest of all men…. continue your journeys to life’s end. Continue your quest of bettering human kind and yourselves… I’ve enjoyed thee experience tremendously.

Helen Wong-Humphries November 04, 2021

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