Last night I set off to the National Arts Centre to see Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring performed by 200 musicians and singers (including the NAC orchestra). I was curious to see if the film would either distract me from the live performance or vice versa. I am pleased to say that overall both aspects complimented each other very well. I was particularly blown away by the multitude of voices in the choir (over 100). This made for a particularly powerful experience. The emotional power of the score performed live seems to raise the stakes of the action taking place on the screen. The battle scenes in particular are quite enhanced.
I think it’s great that the NAC is encouraging patrons to come in costume. In fact, they have provided a special area for photo taking, including some props (helmets, staffs, etc.) to for people to dress up in (if they desire. ) This certainly makes for an accessible family friendly show and is a great way to introduce younger audiences to the orchestra.
I have one suggestion for future performances, since at times the volume of the live performance overpowers the dialogue on the screen, it would be nice to have subtitles in both languages (currently they are in French only). This would make the narrative easier to follow for those who are less familiar with the film.
I thoroughly enjoyed this production and I fully recommend buying a ticket. It’s a rare treat to see and hear so many performers on stage! I left the theatre humming parts of the score with a desire to go on a quest. Well done NAC orchestra and friends!