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'A Celebration of John Williams in Concert' - Royal Albert Hall, October 26, 2018 (CONDUCTED BY DIRK BROSSÉ)


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Just now, Bespin said:

And now exclusively on classic FM...  😛 

 

I just downloaded it at Gatwick Airport. What a crappy bit rate. Being a renown Classical Music Station, this sound quality is clearly not advertising for them...

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27 minutes ago, Nick1066 said:

I envy you who were there.

 

We'll get our chance when JW returns to London for a second attempt!

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14 minutes ago, PetePan said:

 

I just downloaded it at Gatwick Airport. What a crappy bit rate. Being a renown Classical Music Station, this sound quality is clearly not advertising for them...

 

Their app as "HD quality" sound. Whatever that means.

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1 minute ago, Nick1066 said:

 

Their app as "HD quality" sound. Whatever that means.

 

Horrendous Definition I guess...

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29 minutes ago, Jay said:

The bummer - for me - was the rest of the of program. Every other piece I had heard so, so, so, so, so many times before. I had heard them all live multiple times, many multiple times by Williams himself, and of course they are all pieces we've heard a million times on CD too. Their original OSTs, re-recordings, complications, etc. It was frankly a bit boring to me to hear some of these pieces live again for the 5th or 6th time, as wonderful compositions as they might be.

 

I completely understand why this program was chosen, and I mean - bloody hell, if you don't get to go to film music concerts that often, it would truly be an amazing and unforgettable concert no matter who was conducting. I certainly remember the goosebumps I got the first time I heard each of these famous pieces from my childhood live. But that feeling fades with future concerts, especially when it's a conductor I am unfamiliar with.

 

I can sympathise with this.  Raiders and Superman in particular did nothing for me. Just drank from that well one to many times.

 

That said, let's face it...this is a complaint every die hard fan of an artist has when seeing them in concert. U2 fans bitch about having to hear One and With or Without You and Vertigo at every concert. It's just how it is...these programs are designed for casual fans, not for fanatics. Almost certainly for a large number of people attending, it will be the first and only time they've heard these pieces from their favourite films performed live. 

 

And as you said, the performances themselves were flawless...you just wanted to see Williams (understandably so).

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Dare I say there was a bit too much Star Wars last night? I think they could have replaced the Yoda’s Theme encore with Flight to Neverland or something. I mean, I know and respect the history that the LSO and Star Wars hace but I felt they went a bit overkill with it last night.

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1 minute ago, Alex said:

Dare I say there was a bit too much Star Wars last night? I think they could have replaced the Yoda’s Theme encore with Flight to Neverland or something. I mean, I know and respect the history that the LSO and Star Wars hace but I felt they went a bit overkill with it last night.

 

There's was definitely too less "Hook" last night...

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1 minute ago, Alex said:

Dare I say there was a bit too much Star Wars last night? I think they could have replaced the Yoda’s Theme encore with Flight to Neverland or something. I mean, I know and respect the history that the LSO and Star Wars hace but I felt they went a bit overkill with it last night.

I wish the concert was an hour longer to fit in some less popular ones. I was looking at my watch to predict the next one. 

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The biggest problem was prgoramming both the main title and end title of Star Wars in the same program. Huge mistake because you're repeating the same three minutes exactly in each piece.

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3 minutes ago, Alex said:

Dare I say there was a bit too much Star Wars last night? I think they could have replaced the Yoda’s Theme encore with Flight to Neverland or something. I mean, I know and respect the history that the LSO and Star Wars hace but I felt they went a bit overkill with it last night.

 

I felt this a little, especially when we essentially heard the End Titles music twice. I don't think we needed the Main Titles at the start, but I can also understand why they did begin with it. Yoda's theme was nice enough for the fans I suppose, but it's a theme which I've always been able to take or leave.

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There can’t be any better work to start a JW concert than the Star Wars Main Title.

 

 But I agree with Jay about the repetition.

 

The Throne Room Finale, I got sick of hearing it on concerts... And I never really loved the extented concert version...

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1 hour ago, Jay said:

But that feeling fades with future concerts, especially when it's a conductor I am unfamiliar with.

 

I always find it interesting to hear the interpretations of a "new" conductor, and at best it can give a new appreciation for an old warhorse. At worst... let's not talk about that.

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After > 1 hour delay finally taking off from Gatwick Airport.

 

But with yesterday's performance of Superman Main Titles blasting at 192kbps flying just got another dimension.

Highly recommended!

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20 minutes ago, Bespin said:

There can’t be any better work to start a JW concert than the Star Wars Main Title.

 

 But I agree with Jay about the repetition.

 

The Throne Room Finale, I got sick of hearing it on concerts... And I never really loved the extented concert version...

Yes and It was maybe a good occasion to perform "Adagio for the Force Awakens"... 

 

But the general rendition was magical for me, even without Johnny, his presence was there.

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19 minutes ago, Jurassic Shark said:

 

I always find it interesting to hear the interpretations of a "new" conductor, and at best it can give a new appreciation for an old warhorse.

 

Absolutely true...But! In this case, they exclusive played the published Signature Editions, with no alterations. And the LSO played so well and so mistake-free, that often it almost didn't feel like you were at a live show, because it sounded so similar to the CD versions. Usually at the very least the brass and percussion sound different enough that the entire time you're aware you're hearing a unique performance you'll never hear again.

 

Last night the Star Wars main title was like a flawless rerecording of the original.

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4 minutes ago, aescalle said:

Yes and It was maybe a good occasion to perform "Adagio for the Force Awakens"... 

 Good idea... well anything else from the Star Wars movies.

 

TFA end credits by example.

 

I wonder why they never play ESB end credits in a concert... it would be awesome no?

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I was actually antsy to leave by the time Jurassic park rolled by. I really can't listen to these polished concert pieces anymore, played to perfection or not - but actually was there for JWFan and our merry german band of Facebook fans as it is probably the only opportunity to meet any of them. 

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I sort of understand why some people didn't like the program, but on the other hand, those people seem to have attended too many of the same concerts anyway. I get bored easily, but I wouldn't have been bored one second had I been in the RAH yesterday evening.

 

I just hope someone, either Classic FM or the LSO, has a recording that sounds CD-worthy.

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13 minutes ago, Jay said:

Usually at the very least the brass and percussion sound different enough that the entire time you're aware you're hearing a unique performance you'll never hear again.

 

Usually, with other orchestras, the horn players make some mistakes, making it a unique performance...

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Well it’s the same reason I’ve lost interest in Charles Aznavour concerts over the years... he always sang a kind of best-of in his concerts... Always the same songs... After years, you realize... ok those concerts are for a new public... or old gentry who suffers from Alzheimer! And you start to look for errors, instead of real performances...

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Don't you think that there is no music pieces from the 2 new Star Wars movies (Force Awakens & Last Jedi) because the London Symphony Orchestra was not featured in the 2 new soundtracks?

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I suppose that is a part of the reason. I suppose the other reason Williams' first visit in Europe in over a decade. They decided go down the nostalgia path. It makes sense to go with the well known pieces given the importance of this event. We might feel bit disappointed, true, but you need to look at it from wider perspective.

 

Karol

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No I don’t think. The last movie is still yet to be released... All goes way too fast... Why play a work from TFA.... and not from TLJ instead? We are lacking perspective, the series is not yet finished.

 

Anyway, The » best-of » program type was inevitable for this event... 

 

Remember, this concert was supposed to be an historical event... They were supposed to broadcast it to TV, surely to make also a bluray...

 

What a fail rendez-vous with history if we think twice...

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5 minutes ago, Bespin said:

No I don’t think. The last movie is still yet to be released... All goes way too fast... Why play a work from TFA.... and not from TLJ?  

 

The « best-of » program type was inevitable for this event... 

 

Remember, this concert was supposed to be an historical event... They were supposed to broadcast it to TV, surely to make also a bluray...

 

What a fail rendez-vous with history if we think twice...

But They didn't even played pieces from TFA to. 

Just the original trilogy

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1 hour ago, Jay said:

It was frankly a bit boring to me to hear some of these pieces live again for the 5th or 6th time, as wonderful compositions as they might be.

 

I can understand that. Just out of curiosity, Jay, do you enjoy attending non-film music orchestral concerts? As for myself, I go to way more concerts with classical music than film music.

 

28 minutes ago, crocodile said:

I suppose that is a part of the reason. I suppose the other reason Williams' first visit in Europe in over a decade. They decided go down the nostalgia path. It makes sense to go with the well known pieces given the importance of this event. We might feel bit disappointed, true, but you need to look at it from wider perspective.

 

Karol

 

Still, they could have done the new Han Solo and the Princess.

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3 minutes ago, Jurassic Shark said:

As for myself, I go to way more concerts with classical music than film music.

I don't go to too many concerts to begin with, but this is the same for me.

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Was lucky enough to attend this last night. Although you could feel the disappointment at the great man not being there, the LSO played their hearts out and were absolutely brilliant. Tried to listen to the classic fm broadcast but the bitrate seems very low. 

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2 hours ago, Jay said:

Well I suppose I should say something about the concert since I was there.

 

We had nice seats on the floor, which would have been great to watch Williams from, but instead was amusing to watch Dirk Brosse wiggle around. Being on the floor meant I couldn't see some if the musicians at all, which was a bummer.

 

The music was played impecably, I mean the LSO really played the hell out of everything with no mistakes and any tricky parts fully sorted. The brass section was ESPECIALLY on point, everything they played was better than any brass section I've ever heard play live.

 

I loved hearing Dracula and The BFG, those were the clear highlights. Dracula was so alluring and gothic, and The BFG covers so many ideas in such a well organized way, and is just so playful and fun.

 

The bummer - for me - was the rest of the of program. Every other piece I had heard so, so, so, so, so many times before. I had heard them all live multiple times, many multiple times by Williams himself, and of course they are all pieces we've heard a million times on CD too. Their original OSTs, re-recordings, complications, etc. It was frankly a bit boring to me to hear some of these pieces live again for the 5th or 6th time, as wonderful compositions as they might be.

 

I completely understand why this program was chosen, and I mean - bloody hell, if you don't get to go to film music concerts that often, it would truly be an amazing and unforgettable concert no matter who was conducting. I certainly remember the goosebumps I got the first time I heard each of these famous pieces from my childhood live. But that feeling fades with future concerts, especially when it's a conductor I am unfamiliar with.

 

The whole night truly would have been different if Williams was conducting. There may have been minor differences in how it sounded, it might have sounded the same - I don't know. But I would have been endlessly entertained just by watching Williams conduct them, and especially by watching him going through all the various emotions he goes through as he reacts to what the crowd is giving him in between cues. And boy, would this crowd have brought the thunderous applause and love down on him like never before. It would have been truly and utterly unforgettable.

 

Instead, as it is, for me personally, it was "just" a really good concert of film music played really well in a spectacular venue. But it wasn't magical.

 

The more magical part of the day was meeting so many film score gane I've known online for years or almost 2 decades for the first time. I'll never forget that.

 

I agree with this. When I go to a John Williams concert, I go to see him more than the actual music itself. Being in the same room as a living legend, seeing him conduct with his various facial expressions and instructions to the musicians, together with his trademarked well worn anecdotes and his 'good night' gesture at the end all contribute to a very special time indeed.

 

It is such a shame that the Royal Albert Hall audience, a vast majority of whom probably never saw JW live, didn't get to experience that. From reading his letter, I sense that he is just as disappointed about this as his fans are.

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3 minutes ago, Jurassic Shark said:

 

How's that?

At the end of the encores, he puts his hands together and lays his head on them (like a pillow) to indicate the concert is over. It rather sweet actually. Usually gets a laugh from the audience.

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4 minutes ago, Damien F said:

At the end of the encores, he puts his hands together and lays his head on them (like a pillow) to indicate the concert is over. It rather sweet actually. Usually gets a laugh from the audience.

 

Of course, how could I forget. It's not that unique to do - I've seen other conductors and soloists do the same at classical concerts. It's one of the few "legitimate" reasons for not giving more encores that's easily coveyed in a wordless manner to the audience.

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2 hours ago, Jay said:

I loved hearing Dracula and The BFG, those were the clear highlights. Dracula was so alluring and gothic, and The BFG covers so many ideas in such a well organized way, and is just so playful and fun.

Same here. I really enjoyed listening to those two pieces live, which I had never had the chance to before.

In the end, I spent a fantastic night. The performance by the LSO was absolutely incredible, from start to finish!

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2 hours ago, Jay said:

The whole night truly would have been different if Williams was conducting. There may have been minor differences in how it sounded, it might have sounded the same - I don't know. But I would have been endlessly entertained just by watching Williams conduct them, and especially by watching him going through all the various emotions he goes through as he reacts to what the crowd is giving him in between cues. And boy, would this crowd have brought the thunderous applause and love down on him like never before. It would have been truly and utterly unforgettable.

 

Instead, as it is, for me personally, it was "just" a really good concert of film music played really well in a spectacular venue. But it wasn't magical.

 

The more magical part of the day was meeting so many film score gane I've known online for years or almost 2 decades for the first time. I'll never forget that.

 

I agree to a certain extent. It was really crushing that Williams couldn't conduct.

This would have most likely been the best concert I ever attended. 

 

Meeting so many people, many for the first time, others who ive seen before really made yesterday a very special day though. And the atmosphere at the concert was great.

 

Its not what it could, should have been. But I think we all made it as good as possible.

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