Have you ever wanted to hear the music of a movie live while you watched it? The Harry Potter Film Concert Series does just that by combining the incredible cinematography of the Harry Potter films with the breathtaking sound of a live full-symphony orchestra playing the score for a unique kind of storytelling that makes you wish all movies could be seen this way.
I have had the privilege of attending the Harry Potter Film Concert Series each time it has come to my hometown. So far, the production is halfway through the eight films, currently touring Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.
Whether you are watching your favorite Harry Potter movie for the thousandth time or it is your first time to step into J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World, each experience at the Harry Potter Film Concert Series is uniquely different. Sometimes it is just a different seat that changes your perspective for watching the musicians. So far, I have sat in the front row and been able to watch the movie on the conductor’s screen, sat in the middle to view the full orchestra work as one perfect entity and sat behind the stage for a behind-the-scenes look of the performance; the change in seat alone can alter your viewpoint so much that each visit is remarkable and special.
Sometimes a different conductor leads the orchestra. One of the producers of the show, Justin Freer, will frequently tour with the show as conductor. His love for the movies and music make the shows even more fun to watch. Sometimes the conductor is the composer of the score for that film. Anyone who has ever watched the Harry Potter movies and paid attention to the score can tell you that the tone of the music is vastly different for each one-especially when comparing Goblet of Fire to Sorcerer’s Stone. As the content of the movies becomes darker, so does the score. With the soundtrack of the films being played live, this element of storytelling is brought to the forefront causing you to pay attention and feel the music as you never have before.
Harry Potter spans many generations; young children to grandparents all love it. People pull out all the stops for these concerts. My home symphony center decorates with house banners, photo opportunities and merchandise. People cosplay as their favorite characters or simply wear something to show their Harry Potter or house pride. The conductors ask people in the audience to cheer for their favorites on the screen and proudly represent their house. Mr. Justin Freer himself is a Hufflepuff and lets the audience know each time he conducts a performance.
For those of us who have grown up with Harry, anytime we get to add something to our love and knowledge of the universe is a blessing. The concert series shows a video of the making of the score before the movie that includes trivia. Information on the composers and the thoughts and processes of writing and producing a full-length movie score is shown. There are so many interesting things to learn! For example: I learned that the iconic twinkling notes to Hedwig’s Theme is made by playing an instrument called a celesta.
I adore the Harry Potter movies and could watch them consistently without getting bored. Even though the movie is playing while the symphony plays, I am constantly drawn to watching the talented musicians. I love to watch the violinist’s fingers fly or the brass section’s solo in Goblet of Fire. I am in awe every single time I attend a performance of each individual person who comes together to create this magnificent event. It is truly a one of a kind show that anyone who loves music or Harry Potter should see.
For more information on the Harry Potter Film Concert Series or to buy tickets please visit: harrypotterinconcert.com
Trailer provided by CineConcerts. Pictures provided by CineConcerts or taken by Hailee.