Thursday, July 26, 2012

Road Trip! Symphony of the Goddesses

Worth it.
The year 2012 marks the 25th anniversary of The Legend of Zelda. It's a video game franchise that taught many children about the corrupting force of Power, the value of Wisdom, and the true strength of Courage. This summer, I've been preparing for the marching band season, working, going out with my girlfriend, having friends over often, working, playing video games, getting back into comic books, cooking ramen, and working. It's been a great summer so far, though I haven't taken time to blog, and I apologize for that. Thanks to anyone waiting for an update.

Today, I went to the Symphony of the Goddesses. First, I waited for everyone to meet at my house. The plan was to leave at seven o'clock, thinking it would take about an hour to get to the Mann Center on the outskirts on of Philadelphia. Everyone arrived by six and things were going perfectly. No computer in the house would allow me to print my ticket from my email receipt. Small bump in the road. I ran to Zack's house across the street, and on the way, I saw his mom walking on the sidewalk.

"Hey, can I use your printer? I can't print my ticket," I asked her.

"Sure. I'm going to use your pool." We part ways.

After that episode, I got my ticket and ran home. It was getting pretty close to seven, and Andrew was hungry. We all figured that we could eat, and it was still about 15 of seven. When we got to KFC, there was a guy waiting on a huge order in front of us. Ten minutes later, the lady at the counter finally came to take our order. She was nice and all, but we were in a rush and getting pretty frustrated. It was after seven. A sudden look of shock and horror washes over my face.

"I don't have my ticket."

Kevin's face suddenly mimics mine. "I left mine at your house, too."

Zack follows: "I left mine on my keyboard by my computer."

We have lost cabin pressure.

We got lawn seats. Luckily, they had extra seats available.
Safe to say we had to run back for our tickets. When we got back, the food was finally done. And it was good. We grabbed a box popcorn chicken for the road and head down I-95. After surviving some questionable drivers and leaving a while after our expected time of departure, we made it.

We were on time. Back on track.

Unfortunately, when Andrew decided to come with us, tickets were no longer available online. We figured we'd just get tickets from those guys who just stand outside of stadiums selling spares. Still on track.

When we arrived, the entire area was flooded with police and event staff. Derailed.

Luckily, tickets were on sale at the door, and for $10 less than all of us had paid for it. Soon we were surrounded by people in costumes, people dressed casually with excited grins (like us,) and people dressed in shirts and ties with their grandmothers or whatever (because it was a symphony, I'm guessing.) The next few hours were incredible. We had a great view of the stage and both jumbo-trons. People teared up, remembering their past adventures and the memorable scenes from the series on the screens. The videos that accompanied the music were well put-together and thought out and definitely for the fans. The music was beautiful. Now I'll hand the keyboard over to Patrick to explain one example of the detail put into this show:

"I LOVE Zelda, and Link's Awakening is possibly my favorite game of them all. I can, and have, written a several page blog about it, but all you need to know right now is that the Ballad of the Wind Fish is the ONLY song that I needed to hear at the symphony. Sure, everything else was amazing, but I absolutely needed to hear that song. Not a word was said as to whether or not it would actually played though, and I grew worried as the show went on. As a medley of A Link to the Past played, I grew more hopeful still, as it was only the second movement since intermission. And then the tease. As the medley came to a close, the projector showed the ocean; a sunset over the sea.

Now for those not learned in Zelda lore, the hint may have been completely missed. Very few people know this, but after the events in A Link to the Past, Link set off in search of adventure to new lands, and that adventure came in the form of the Oracle games. Afterwards, Link tried to return home to Hyrule, but got caught in a terrible storm, beginning the events of Link's awakening.

Knowing this, I grew incredibly excited at the prospect of hearing a real Ballad of the Wind Fish, but people began to get up, applaud, and leave. I wanted more, I wanted the song that embodies one of my favorite games, the song that, quite literally, is both the goal of your heroic adventure in search of freedom and the apocalypse for the island. It wasn't going to happen, I missed it, the tease had been hollow and completely in my imagination. I was happy with what I had heard, but disappointed that there hadn't been more.

And then the creative director walked on stage, exclaiming "Hold on, hold on, we're not done here!" I remained standing, elated that I had a second chance, it could still happen. "Now, this next one is a little obscure," my smile widened, "so some of you may not recognize it. It came in a cartridge only yay big," he continued saying, holding his fingers at about the size of a Gameboy Color cartridge. "Now, that means it could be one of three games." I knew what was happening. I couldn't stop myself. I yelled, alone, in sheer excitement. I didn't care that I was standing, yelling my heart out in the silence. Happiness does strange things to a person. "It's from Link's Awakening, The Ballad of the Wind Fish." The crowd goes wild, realizing why I was so happy, probably seeing me as less of a madman and more as a prophet. Probably.

The song itself was amazing, bringing back every emotion that the game had invoked on my first playthrough. I listened to most of the song with my eyes closed, remembering all of the inhabitants of Koholint Island, specifically Tarin. The presentation was almost as impressive, and honestly, was the highlight of my entire time at the symphony."
From, since I didn't have a clear picture of the stage.