Can you guess who’s putting this one on? If you think Symphonic Fantasies sounds similar to Symphonic Shades, you’re on the right track. Producer Thomas Boecker is at it again, but rather than featuring the works of a single composer as was the case with Symphonic Shades, Fantasies will spotlight the music of Square Enix, including music from Final Fantasy, Kingdom Hearts, and the Mana and Chrono series. Sounds like win to me!
Unfortunate for those of us in the States, the concert will be held at the Philharmonic Hall in Cologne, Germany. At least it’s set for September 12, 2009, giving you plenty of time to book your trip! So far, we know that the WDR Radio Orchestra and Choir will be performing alongside percussionist Rony Barrack and conductor Arnie Roth. If Thomas’s past productions are any indication, this should be a great show. Stay tuned for more information.
Are you Europeans happy to have somebody like Thomas Boecker around? Are you others with me in wondering when Thomas is going to bring a concert like this to the States?
Read the official press release for more details after the jump.
PRESS RELEASE (January 20, 2009)
COLOGNE, January 20, 2009: The WDR Radio Orchestra Cologne and the WDR Radio Choir Cologne will present the “Symphonic Fantasies” concert on Saturday, September 12, 2009 at 8 PM. This highly anticipated concert will feature music from the video game soundtracks of Square Enix. The Japanese company Square Enix is rated as one of the world’s best known producers of digital entertainment software.
“We will present a huge concert of video game music, performed by the WDR Radio Orchestra, and the WDR Radio Choir. Arnie Roth will be conducting, and there will be special appearances by Rony Barrak and Benyamin Nuss. Thanks to the help of Thomas Böcker, who is my right-hand-man for these kinds of productions, I am absolutely certain that it is going to be an amazing concert.” said Winfried Fechner, orchestra manager of the WDR Radio Orchestra Cologne.
Classics such as “Final Fantasy”, “Chrono Trigger” and “Kingdom Hearts”
For many years, fans have known that the name of Square Enix is synonymous with superb soundtracks. One would be hard-pressed to find any other producer out there with so many outstanding audio productions in its portfolio. The Japanese company is world-renown for its console role-playing games which immerse players in intense and complex fantasy worlds and accompany those experiences with a music score that rivals big screen film soundtracks.
Jonne Valtonen, the award-winning Finnish composer and arranger, has been hired to arrange the music for the “Symphonic Fantasies” concert in Cologne exclusively, using classics such as “Final Fantasy”, “Chrono Trigger”, “Chrono Cross”, “Kingdom Hearts” and “Secret of Mana”. Though Valtonen has amazed fans and critics alike with his scores for video game concerts all over the world, “Symphonic Fantasies” just may be his biggest challenge to date.
Conducted by Grammy-winner Arnold Roth
Grammy-winning artist Arnold Roth will conduct the 70 minutes long concert. Roth is a classically trained violinist, conductor and composer who has worked with artists such as Diana Ross, the Three Tenors and Andrea Bocelli. He has also conducted several prestigious orchestras including the London Symphony Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra and the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra. In addition, he has built himself quite a reputation within the world of video game music as well. In 2005
Arnold Roth was on tour in the U.S. conducting music from the “Final Fantasy” games, and he is currently traveling the world performing at various distinguished concert halls with “Distant Worlds”.
“I am excited that I will get the opportunity of working with the superb musicians of the WDR again, and my friend Thomas Böcker! With the long and successful relationship that I have had with Square Enix, I am truly honored and delighted to be conducting this outstanding and important new concert in September in Cologne.” Says Arnold Roth.
First concert of its kind in Europe
It is the first time in Europe that a video game developer will be honored by their own concert. The idea of performing computer and video game music is no longer new, yet last year the WDR concert “Symphonic Shades – Hülsbeck in Concert” still caused a great deal of excitement. It was praised by fans and critics alike as trend-setting for similar events all over the world, and this tribute to Square Enix promises to offer even more.
The producer behind “Symphonic Shades” and “Symphonic Fantasies” is Thomas Böcker. In 2003 he was the first organizer to bring the concept of video game music concerts from Japan and to present such an event to a sold out concert hall at the Gewandhaus in Leipzig. The concert received such an overwhelming response that it was continued in 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007. Thomas Böcker is also a consultant for the world tour of “Distant Worlds” which has been invited to famous concert halls in Sweden, the USA, Taiwan and Singapore.
Tickets for “Symphonic Fantasies” are available now, ranging from EUR 6 to EUR 30. Pupils, students up to 35 years, trainees, severely handicapped persons, people who do military service or alternative service and holders of the Cologne Pass get a 50% discount on the regular ticket price by presenting a certificate.
TITLE: Symphonic Fantasies
TYPE: Big orchestra concert of video game music from the Japanese publisher/developer Square Enix
WHERE: Kölner Philharmonie (Philharmonic Hall in Cologne), Bischofsgartenstraße 1, 50667 Cologne, Germany
WHEN: September 12, 2009 (Saturday) at 8 PM
WHO: WDR Radio Orchestra and WDR Radio Choir
WHAT: Final Fantasy, Chrono Trigger, Chrono Cross, Kingdom Hearts, Secret of Mana, etc.
CONDUCTOR: Arnold Roth
TICKETS: Koeln Tickets or Ticket Online