Yesterday night, GenDV138
, The Great BM
, and I all went to the Play! A Video Game Symphony
in Vienna, VA last night.
Basically, one CAG posted in our thread about the event coming to the DC area. Many of us were not familiar with the group, but a bunch of us all decided to go together, giving us another excuse to hang out with as a group. With lawn seats only being $20 (before taxes and fees), we felt it was cheap and we could all sit together.
In case you don't know anything about play, this is what it says on their website:
From the creative team that brought you the ground breaking Dear Friends-Music from FINAL FANTASY Symphony Tour, comes an entirely new celebration of video game music and images:
PLAY! A Video Game Symphony is a Symphony world-tour featuring music from blockbuster video games. The music is performed by some of the finest, world-class orchestras and choirs. All concerts take place in classy, prestigious venues. Graphics on large screens suspended above the orchestra accompany the scores, highlighting memorable moments from the video games.
The concert tour started off in North America on May 27, 2006 in Chicago, followed by a sold out show in Europe. PLAY! is embarking on a world tour.
I decided to leave for the event at 6pm, where my first stop would be KFC (I wanted to eat beforehand). Unfortunately I-95 had some traffic jams holding things up. After I thought I was clear from traffic (I-495 Capital Beltway wasn't bad going west), the line for the Toll Booth (which wasn't EZPass or exact $1.25 in coins only) was really long with cars merging over. I got to the Wolftrap Filene Center at 8pm, 30 minutes before the concert started. I found a few CAG members on the lawn, so we just sat there on our lawn chairs or on the ground waiting for others to arrive.
Let me first off say the concert was filled with nerds/geeks all over the place
. Some were cosplaying, a bunch had video game related shirts on, and you could tell some don't get out of the house much. I wore one of my Kingdom Hearts T-shirts, which actually got a ton of compliments from people there (one girl wearing a FFXIII Lightning approached me telling me she liked it). One discussed about his Kingdom Hearts obsession (he agreed with me on why the JP "Passion" is way better than English "Sanctuary").
So the concert started, mostly discussing how many series are in their 25th Anniversary this year, and how they'd be celebrating them by playing this music. Before they started playing the music, they asked if anyone was a Final Fantasy fan. I jumped out of my seat very loudly shouting (unfortunately a CAG just had to take a picture of that and post it on Google+ and Twitter). First game music played was Super Mario. Being a big Mario fan myself, I enjoyed it and recognized the music. On the video screen, they played various gameplay footage of Super Mario games and playing their orchestra music to that stage. Next up was Chrono Trigger/Cross. That music had me beyond excited where they played the intro to both games (which I really like). Some there you could tell didn't recognize it. They played Metroid and Legend of Zelda (Zelda was very popular with the fans), but since I'm not a massive fan of either series, I wasn't really excited. I was glad to see Castlevania music, but can't say I was a big fan of their remixes. When they turned over to western music, they decided to start off with Kingdom Hearts (since it contained western Disney characters along with JP FF characters). You better bet I got all excited.
I shouted Kingdom Hearts very loudly (probably everyone at the Filene Center could hear me) when they asked us to guess what was being played. I felt the music (such as the Kingdom Hearts opening) was VERY good. I enjoyed the video clips they showed of Kingdom Hearts games while playing the music. There was a huge standing ovation from me at the end. Next up was music from the western games Civilization V, Dragon Age 2, Halo Reach (I sort of knew that), and World of Warcraft.
The concert ended just before 10:30pm. We all decided to chat for a while until security kicked us off the lawn telling everyone to leave. The end of the meet-up was sort of like our Dave & Buster's swap meet, where MCalvert1 tried to empty out his cooler giving away stuff (I took a Pepsi). I drove home and got home around Midnight. Only traffic that sucked was getting out of the Wolftrap park.
Anyway, it was a fun event. It was the first video game related concert I ever went to so I can't compare. Some music was good, some not so special. But regardless, it was an enjoyable night for what we paid (which was worth it). Definitely hope we have more events like this (next time we'll try to make more CAGs aware in the area). Here are some pictures of the event: