Last night my 17 year old son took me to the symphony at the historic Chicago Theatre. Of course it was Pokemon Symphonic Evolutions, but it was still the symphony as the Chicago Philharmonic played the music. It was fantastic!
The entire night was set to music from all the Pokemon games from the past 19 years. Interestingly it appeared that the audience reveered the first set of Pokemon games the most. This was proven by my son's statement "I liked when they played the music from the first games, because those were the first games I played that made me fall in love with Pokemon."
The audience cheered, yelled and threw out loud comments throughout the performance. Everyone was so excited about the production it was reminicent of being at a Rocky Horror Picture Show. People were dressed in costumes and as previously mentioned really got into the music. When the Chicago Philharmonic played the second to the song the entire audience, except maybe myself, was singing to it. Loudly! No karaoke words required.
What made this evening so enjoyable was seeing how much my son was enjoying himself. He and everyone in that room have spent their entire lives with Pokemon. In fact I don't think my son remembers life without Pokemon. I don't think I remember him not having a game device in the car as we drove places. Because of that I recognized all the music without ever having played the game!
Another thing that was incredibly interesting was seeing the transformation in the games and even the music in them from 1996 to now with Pokemon X and Y. As the graphics and characters adapted and became more intense so did the accompanying music. The games saw a big transformation in 2013 as graphics in games adapted with technology and more mythology was introduced into Pokemon. The music changed at this time too. The music became more electronica with more power to it.
Did you know Pokemon has motivational quality within the games? I had no idea! It consistently mentions "following your dreams" and the greatest quote from the game is "Make your dream your reality, and it will become your truth." Wow! What a concept! And to teach kids, and adults, that as they play the games is fabulous. Makes me happy my son chose these games to become so involved with rather some others we won't mention.
The show ended with an encore. The last song played, Kiseki, was a tribute from the composer of the Pokemon music to the game's fans. Again, this song had great meaning to it. I only wish I had been able to write all the words down. The gist of the song was how if there was more love the world would have more peace - we get to live this life together so treasure it. A fitting tribute, especially with what has been going on in Charleston, SC this week.
If your city has the pleasure of hosting Pokemon: Symphonic Evolutions, I highly recommend attending. Not only will you enjoy yourself, it's a great way to introduce the symphony to the non-symphony goer and you'll definitely learn a thing or two about this iconic game and its characters.