Star Wars: The Musical

December 13, 2009

If you’re a Gen-Xer, I can bet you love Star Wars. It was our Harry Potter–our morality tale of good versus evil, our way of relating with kids on the playground and finding common ground in unfamiliar situations like sleepovers and summer camp. Empire Strikes Back was probably the first movie I ever remember seeing. My dad took me; I was four years old. By the time Return of the Jedi came out in 1983, I was bona fide fan. My brother, cousins, and I saw that movie at least three times in the theater. We had the action figures, the Millenium Falcon, the Ewok village, the comic books, the bed sheets, the posters, the awesome t-shirts with the iron-on decals, and of course, the soundtrack. Last night, for the first five minutes of Star Wars in Concert at Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, I was transported back to that thrilling time of Star Wars wonder and mania.

The “Star Wars Main Theme,” as performed by the Royal Symphony Orchestra can still invoke magic and emotion, albeit slightly bittersweet when mixed with childhood memories. It was lovely to see Gen-X parents with their young kids last night, both generations enjoying the drama of John Williams’ beloved score. Without John Williams, George Lucas would probably be some guy who directed a decent movie. The marriage of music and film in Star Wars is sublime and still powerful–to hear it performed live is a rare treat.

Anthony Daniels (C-3PO) narrates

Anthony Daniels, the voice of C-3PO, narrated the two-hour event, which features a large screen behind the orchestra where scenes from all six films are projected in tandem with the music. Daniels’ background in live theater is evident. He’s corny but believable. The man obviously loves being a part of this event. Though it did run long, and the pieces featuring the prequels are considerably more boring, Star Wars in Concert ended on a high note—a reprise of Dark Vadar’s Imperial March. In the words of George W. Bush, it’s quite obvious Lord Vadar “hates freedom”….just listen to the music.