at the cpo

Just spent an epic Friday night at the Epcor Centre watching the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra (CPO) perform Movie Masterpieces: The Classics of John Williams.

The view from the choir loft (behind the stage). Our tickets were $24.

The night started with ET. Having never seen the movie, I wasn’t  quite moved by the opening number, but by the time they finished playing the next selection, the theme from Jurassic Park, I was hooked and hanging on to every note. It was majestic, simply majestic. I felt like I was soaring through that scene when they first see the Park and that gorgeous landscape and dinosaurs! The terrifying theme from Jaws followed and I relived being six and scared to death of the swimming pool because I was was worried about sharks. I could almost see the white fin slinking through the audience, making its way to the stage, and then snap! Ahh, the cellist! And crap, he’s got the conductor’s leg! Blood spewing on the stage, splattering the first violinists’ sheet music. The shark goes for the grand piano next, the wood creaks and splinters and keys clatter all over the floor. The tuba player tries to subdue the shark with his tuba, but the shark skillfully dodges through the trombones and bassoons and destroys the timpani in one fell swoop…

And then we entered the magical world of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. This also brought back memories, of reading the first Harry Potter book and watching the first movie, both the books and movies were integral parts of my childhood. We were moved through the excitement of seeing Diagon Alley and Hogwarts for the first time, the sadness of the Mirror of Erised, and the heartwarming triumph of saving the Philosopher’s Stone and successfully completing the first year of Hogwarts. Indiana Jones burst onto the stage next and I was humming the Raiders March all throughout intermission, a little theme song for myself as I entered a raffle to win a trip to Egypt, woohoo!

After intermission, things got serious with the theme from Schindler’s List, with that haunting but beautiful and incredible violin solo. Jonathan Crow did a wonderful job with it. They finished the night with the theme from Star Wars, which couldn’t be anything other than excellent and the obvious choice for a finale. All the musicians were so amazing and I have so much respect for all the dedication they have in order to gain and maintain that level of talent. The CPO definitely deserved the standing ovation they got at the end of their performance.

Except, that it wasn’t really the end – they surprised us with the theme from Superman!

What a fantastic show. I can’t believe I hadn’t seen a CPO concert before, but I am definitely going again. Tickets range from about $20 to $90, but if you sign up as a cpossibilities member (free membership), tickets are only $14. They do have a limited supply of cpossibilities tickets for each show, but pretty sweet deal either way. Also a great way to spend an evening. I had a lot of fun tonight 🙂

Ran into my buddy Darth. He's a big orchestra fan as well, apparently.

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