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A Magical Experience at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts

We visited as a guest of the venue


Before my mother and I moved to California we lived in London.  Summers in London consisted of concert series in the park.  My uncles and aunts would pack picnics and we would head to Hampstead to listen to the orchestra play.  I would love playing about listening to the music as the sun set and watching the stars appear.  It was quite lovely and the memory is something that lives deep instead me.  When we moved here in the early 80s it was a bit of a culture shock.  Gone were the days of theater and concert in the park with my family which caused a void in my soul.  It wasn’t until 1986 that a spark of joy was lit again.  I was in 6th grade and Segerstrom Center for the Arts (SCFTA) had invited my class to come and tour its brand new opera house.  I was so excited to see the place that would bring music and art back into my life; unfortunately I woke up with a fever and didn’t get to go.  That actually haunted me until a few months back when I got a behind the scenes tour of SCFTA.


SCFTA has become a staple in our family.  I love Broadway musicals and try to take my kids to as many as possible.  Having the freedom of running about in an outdoor venue as the music played kind of spoiled me to concerts.  When I went to my first concert at SCFTA I found that I couldn’t sit still and decided that concerts weren’t my thing until Harry Potter.   SCFTA presented a concert featuring a live symphony orchestra performing every note from Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.


For Harry Potter fans young and old it was an incredibly magical event.  When you enter the hall you see a giant screen and in front of it a full orchestra.  I wasn’t sure what to expect and was blow away as the orchestra performed John Williams’ unforgettable score.  As the lights dimmed and the screen lit up I found myself mesmerized by the orchestra playing ever foot step, every note, every whoosh that I never quite noticed before.  I had seen behind the scenes on movie making and knew how important music was to film but until you watch it live for yourself you can’t really gasp how much music is in a movie.  When the orchestra played the theme to Harry Potter, the hairs on my arms stood up.


Feeling the music inside you while watching the film is an experience like no other.  I loved watching the orchestra playing and would at time just watch them instead of the film.  They were so on point.  I have no idea how much they practiced so that they could align as well as they did, but it must have been hours and hours and hours.  SCFTA doesn’t often have an experience like this.  It’s such a unique and beautiful concept and I hope they have more experiences like it.  To keep on top of upcoming shows for SCTFA make sure you bookmark their calendar  and book your tickets fast.  They are quite popular and sell out often.

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