The Symphony of the Goddesses Excited me for Wind Waker HD
Nintendo Partners with Jeron Moore to Bring Fans The Symphony of the Goddesses
As the heat wave continued to plaster the country with record highs, that didn’t stop scores of Zelda fans from filling the Long Center in Austin Texas for the Symphony of the Goddesses. Because the 8PM showing had sold out, last minute the symphony decided to offer a matinee showing at 2PM. I jumped on this chance to experience some of the most memorable music from the Zelda series, live. Although the experience was very different from other orchestral performances, it was still quite memorable, even if the audience was atypical of your normal symphonic fare.
My friend and I arrived at the Long Center at 1:30 ready to experience our favorite tunes by expertly trained musicians. Although the concert didn’t start untill 2:30, that did very little to quell our excitement. What I noticed immediately upon entering was the more casual nature of the show. There were people cosplaying next to those who were wearing full formal attire. I had decided for a middle ground, a Zelda shirt under a sports coat. What I also noticed, was due to the fact that it was a Matinee showing, it was ideal for families. This wasn’t a major issue for most of the kids were well behaved. What was also interesting, but not entirely surprising, was the amount of 3DS systems around the lobby. It was clear that Animal Crossing was the buzz and that many people were jumping on the opportunity to trade street passed goods.
Before the performance starts, it’s customary for the first violin to come out on stage with an ovation. There was a snarky teenager behind me with his less than attractive girlfriend trying to be cool and mocho by yelling out “he hasn’t even done anything yet.” I’ve never wanted to beat a minor so severely in the face in all my twenty-two years of existence. His lack of respect for the symphony, as well as its tradition, just pissed me off.
The setup was very different from most Orchestral performances, above the orchestra was a giant screen with gameplay footage from the various Legend of Zelda games. Couple that with commentary from both the conductor Eimear Noone and creative director Jeron Moore, it was clear that much time and effort had gone into making this a very personalized and special experience for gamers. More surprisingly, through the performances, I felt very proud to have experienced these games and to have been so heavily invested into their lores. Listening to music from Ocarina of Time and Twilight Princess brought me back to a time where I couldn’t wait to gallop onto Hyrule to explore and see what was around the next bend.
The Wii U Will Make a Comeback, Starting with The Wind Waker HD
I bought a Nintendo Wii U at launch, and have since regretted the purchase. I felt, and continue to feel, that Nintendo has been far too slow in bringing out content to the system and am surprised at how much dust the thing has been collecting. For a while I was upset that the first game to try and jump-start the ailing console would be a Gamecube port. I love the Wind Waker, don’t get me wrong, but ports don’t necessarily get one excited for your three-hundred and fifty dollar purchase. After taking the trip down memory lane with the Symphony of the Goddesses, I started to feel an agitation to play some of those old Zelda games again. I really do want to delve into some of the games I’ve missed, such as Oracle of Ages/Seasons or Link’s Awakening. Listening to the music of Dragon Roost Island and the Ocean Theme brought me back to a time where that sense of wonder and exploration felt so real and captivating. I feel that that sense can only be experienced a few times in ones life, and for me, it happened to be in the Wind Waker.
Nostalgia can be a rather powerful tool, hell, Nintendo has been profiting on that Nostalgia for years. Although Wind Waker HD is just an upgraded port of the original, I do look forward to playing it on my Wii U. This is by no means a pardon for Nintendo, they still have to make amends for the lack of support they have been showing their new console, but it’s a good start to a hopeful healthy recovery. Lastly, if the Symphony of the Goddesses is coming to your town, I recommend with all my being that you go. It’s a goosebump inducing experience that’s a must for any fan of the Legend of Zelda series as well as masterfully composed music.