I really was hoping to make it to a couple of shows this summer at the Hollywood Bowl, but after going to see “The Little Mermaid” earlier this summer I hadn’t made it back until this past weekend. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to go, but time and money were limited this summer and things just didn’t line up.
But the show that I got to see this past weekend was the night of John Williams, which is one of my favorite shows ever! And I really lucked out with my tickets. I knew that several of my friends had already purchased tickets, and once I found out the night they were going and where their seats were I went online to look for tickets. There was only 1 seat left in their section and it happened to be the seat right next to them! So I bought that and we were all able to sit together!
Even though I was going to the show with several of my friends, because we were all coming from different parts of LA I ended up getting there by myself. I took the Bowl bus over (which is probably the easiest and best way for me to get there) and it just happened that we all arrived at about the exact same time! We met up right as we were going up the first set of escalators which could not have been timed better if we planned it!
Our seats were toward the top so we had a bit of a walk to get up there. I don’t mind the high up seats since they are cheaper and you get a great view of some of the fun things that happen at the John Williams show. And once we finally got to our seats, I was excited to see that not only did we have a great view of the stage but we had a great view of the Hollywood Sign as well!
I usually don’t sit on that side of the Bowl, so seeing the sign (and the Griffith Observatory) was a treat for me!
The first half of the show was conducted by David Newman. He had some great stories to share with everyone and there were some fun musical tributes. There was a section that was just clips of Paramount movies to the score from “Forrest Gump”. They also played the first 10 minutes of “Star Trek Into Darkness” and had the orchestra play the score live. I really liked that (it reminded me of seeing “The Little Mermaid” earlier this summer) and that score is just so dramatic and wonderful to hear. I’m glad that was one of the parts for the show.
After intermission, John Williams came out. In the past, he conducted the entire show but I actually enjoyed seeing 2 different conductors playing music from movies I love. Even though the music sounds the same, there is just something different watching it live with a different conductor. And once John Williams came out, there was just one thing everyone was waiting for.
“Star Wars” music live really is the highlight of the show every year. So many people there bring light sabers with them (including several of my friends) and I love seeing all of them glowing while the music is playing. I usually hate glowing things at concerts, but this is different and special. It almost enhances the music when you see so many people enjoying themselves.
Besides hearing music from “Star Wars” we also got to hear the score from “Superman” which was something I remembered hearing at one of the shows a few years ago. It’s another beautiful score and I just sat back and enjoyed the music.
There are always at least a few encores at the show (John Williams really hams it up but it’s so much fun to see everyone screaming for him to come back out). The final encore every time I’ve been to the show has been the score to the closing scene of “ET”. And this year was no different. The score builds up to such a dramatic finish and you can just visualize the movie playing as the music is happening. And the closing of the score also lights up the inside of the Bowl with a rainbow (similar to how the end of the movie has a rainbow). I just love seeing it and it makes me happy every time.
The show was really just as amazing as every other year that I’ve gone to see it and I’m glad that this has become a bit of a summer tradition. Since the season for the Bowl is pretty much done now, I doubt I’ll make it back there until next summer. But getting to go twice in a summer is still awesome and I’m glad that this is something I’m able to do pretty much every year!