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9/22/2012

185. Pixar In Concert


When I was in LA, I was fortunate enough to attend the opening night of Pixar In Concert at the famous Hollywood Bowl. This trip to the Bowl was another first for me - which probably explains why it seemed like I didn't get the memo to bring blankets and buckets of food. There we were, with nothing but a couple of hotdogs, drinks and a Snickers bar we got from the refreshments booth. My legs were starting to shiver from the cold (darn those shorts!) when the lights dimmed and the concert began.

(Pardon the quality of the photos - I was armed with only my iPhone that night.)

But not before an opening speech by the one and only John Lasseter! I couldn't help but gawk and squeal when he walked onto the stage - if you are in any way interested in Disney/Pixar or animation, you'll know what I mean. I thanked my lucky stars that I bought tickets to the opening night instead of Sunday ones like I'd initially planned. John Lasseter spoke about the importance of storytelling, and the vital role music plays in conveying a certain tone or mood to an audience. He spoke of the magnificent body of work that Randy and Thomas Newman, Michael Giacchino, and Patrick Doyle have produced for all thirteen Pixar feature films. I've seen John Lasseter's interviews before, but let me just say, when he spoke that night, the air in the Bowl literally tingled with the passion he has for what he does.

Now let's get on to what I was really there for: the music. I've always known that music and sound comprise half the impact a film makes on its audience, but never before have I been put in a position to appreciate just the music in its purest form: live. Hearing the little nuances of each instrument play with the snippets of the films that were projected on screen - it was like an entirely new storytelling experience altogether. The music tugged my heart strings like no visual could ever do, and I found myself tearing up every now and then (the opening sequences of Finding Nemo, UP, and Jessie's song number in Toy Story 2 deserve special mention here). I didn't even care that I hadn't seen Brave at that point; the music was incredible. They even brought in the man who played the bag pipes for the soundtrack to play for us on stage that night, complete with kilt!

By the end of the night, I'd forgotten about my cold legs and less than satisfying dinner - my heart was full, and warm.

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