Lauren In Tokyo

Sunday, January 16, 2005

Disney On Classics 2005

My wife's friend who lives in Yokohama won a pair of tickets to a perfomance of Disney On Classics 2005. Unfortunately for her, the concert is in Matsudo, Chiba which is a pretty long way from Yokohama. Fortunately for us, we live only a half hour drive away. So she sent us the e-ticket and we attended the concert last night.

Disney On Classics is an annual concert series put on by Disney and the Tokyo Philharmonic. They play classical interpretations of well-known and not so well-known Disney songs. This year's theme was The Little Mermaid.

While the music itself is not quite "classic" as you would normally consider it, the orchestra was very good and the various interpretations were pleasant. What really brought the show together was the syncronization of the light show with the music. Lasers, spotlights, roamers, all sorts of lighting was used to enhance the experience and tell the story of the Disney song.

The first set was a classical rendition of Pirates of the Carribean ride. The music was fine, but the lighting was exceptional. The use of smoke machines to create a hovering mass of clouds and then shooting lasers and spotlights through the clouds to simulate lightning was very cool.

The rest of the show was musically better, with a duet with the Tokyo Philharmonic's violin and trumpet soloists delivering a duet of "A Whole New World" and an abridged semi-live action rendition of The Little Mermaid.

We ended up buying the 2004 CD of the show which was themed on Monsters Inc's big band jazz and The Lion King. We picked up the 2005 CD for the friend who sent us the tickets.

All in all, it was a great show. The speeches by the conductor and lead actress/singer were a little bit cheesy and it seemed that the Japanese host hadn't rehearsed well enough as there were times where things could have gone much smoother if the director had handled the presentations better.

If the tickets hadn't been free, I doubt that we would have gone to see it. At 8,500 yen per head, it was a little too rich for our taste. It seemed, though, that most people there had won the tickets also, as the line for claiming tickets was much longer than the line to buy tickets. We need to send that CD and a thank-you note ASAP.


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