Review: Phoenix Symphony – Star Wars
Star Wars carries an incredible amount of weight to it’s name. With a mere mention of it, a majority of people think back to their favorite childhood moments of using card board tubes as light sabers and attempting time and again to lift a rock with use of the force. A New Hope, Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi were some of the most influential films that helped shape the standard of what we know as Sci-Fi to this very day.
A large part of what made the films so fantastic was the soundtrack composed by John Williams and originally performed by London Symphony Orchestra. It’s safe to say that watching a five minute long space battle to dead silence would take so much away from the experience. Many of the songs in those films are so ingrained in our hearts that we catch ourselves humming the theme of Darth Vader when we walk into a room with the purpose of being in control; or hear Yoda’s song play when a tough decision must be made that requires wisdom. (Or is that just me? Alright then.) I was awestruck when I found out Phoenix Symphony were putting on a Star Wars performance, they knocked their Harry Potter performance out of the park and did fantastic at their Super Hero showing.
Walking into the concert hall there was a sea of Star Wars fans, many of whom dressed up as Jedi, Sith, and even Storm Troopers. The audience varied in age, yet all of them eagerly awaited for the show to begin and their favorite songs to fill the air. The lights soon dimmed, the orchestra played a near perfect rendition of the classic Star Wars theme while a projector came alive to display opening credits explaining that Jedi had arrived to our planet in search of the infamous Darth Vader.
A wonderful aspect of Phoenix Symphony performances is that they have a short story to go along with the music that involves audience participation. There were a very large amount of children in the crowd who both loved Star Wars and also seemed to have trouble focusing on anything for too long. The acts in between pieces were perfect for captivating both adult and child alike. A courageous Jedi gathered his Padawans to help train them to use the force and unfortunately are interrupted by Darth Vader and Storm Troopers who were from the local Dune Sea Garrison 501st! The audience even had to use masks they were provided before the show to help them hide from Storm Troopers. The Jedi rallied the crowd to fight back against the Empire’s forces by having us use the force. In the end it worked and the Padawans were awarded medals of honor.
While the side story was entertaining, the music itself was wonderful. The orchestra played a number of major songs ranging from Darth Vader’s theme to Yoda’s theme and brought the house down with each one. The lights danced to the music and children fidgeted in their chairs at the excitement their tiny bodies held when the songs hit their climax. Although I have heard these songs time and again from my TV, Computer, and Phone there is something special about hearing it live and feeling the music hit you enough to cause goosebumps. Every song ended in a roar of applause and by the end of the performance I, along with the rest of the audience, rose to show our thanks to Phoenix Symphony for their dedication and hard work.
I can not recommend attending a Phoenix Symphony performance enough if you ever get the chance! They are incredible and you will have an all around great time hearing such classic pieces in a setting that is appropriate for all ages!