Let the Symphony Begin: A Night with the Georgia Philharmonic Orchestra

Photo by Steven Diaz

The Centennial I–III ballrooms in the Hyatt were completely full to see the Georgia Philharmonic Orchestra perform on Saturday night at 8PM. People waited patiently outside the room for seats to open up as people exited as well. It was impressive to walk in and see the orchestra filling the stage in the room.

Conductor John Morrison has served as music director of the Georgia Philharmonic since 2010. For more than a decade, Morrison has been the executive director of the Georgia Academy of Music, also conducting the chamber orchestra.

The 60-some musicians make up the body of the Georgia Philharmonic. It is a philharmonic in the truest sense of the word: local musicians unite and perform out of their love of music. The artists create classical music experiences that rival those of professional orchestras and delight audiences.

Photo by Steven Diaz

Tonight was no different. When Morrison came out in a Captain Picard uniform, the crowd went wild. He just smiled and took his place. Yep, he understood Dragon Con.

The lights went down, and the evening’s narrator, Desmond, welcomed us to the performance and gave the standard reminder to silence all electronic communications devices. He noted, “Telepathy is alright, but please keep it down.” As he began the first selection, the Star Wars opening theme, the conductor’s baton lit up like a light saber.

Desmond guided the audience through the selections, which included the Batman television theme, “The Imperial March,” Han and Leia’s theme, the Simpsons theme and a medley of songs from Harry Potter. There were also selections from Star Trek, Lord of the Rings, and Battlestar Galactica. As each selection began, ripples of recognition spread through the room. It was incredible hearing these powerful, stirring, and silly themes played by a full orchestra.

Photo by Steven Diaz

One particularly moving moment came when a singer dressed as Thorin from The Hobbit came out and, along with a solo cello, sang “Far Over the Misty Mountains Cold.” It was as haunting, sad, and beautiful as it was in the movie.

There was a solo by “Mal,” who sang the Firefly theme song. The audience sang along with the chorus. It was so much fun watching and listening to the audience participate in the concert.

As this almost two-hour concert came to an end, so many people from the audience hoped there would be a CD created of this musical tribute. It really was a musical, magical night to remember.

Authors of the article

Max sees to the needs of her kitty overlords; polices the grammar on all kinds of published material including signage, menus, and food packaging; and cuddles with her wife while watching her favorite shows (Our Flag Means Death, Killjoys, Sense8, and Doctor Who among them). She continues to be far too excited to be working for the Daily Dragon.

Award-winning author Amanda Faith may have been raised in Dayton, but her heart and home is in the South. With a lifelong love of teaching and writing, she had plenty of encouragement from teachers and friends along the way. Loving a good puzzle has always been a fascination, and writing gives her the outlet to put all the pieces together. Being adventurous and loving to try new things, it wasn’t long before her characters found themselves in unusual situations. She loves to put people from two different worlds into new situations and to see how they interact, taking them on journeys they would never have normally experienced. Her current adventure working as a high school English professor turned Media Specialist, writing, and doing paranormal investigations doesn’t slow her down from having a great time with a plethora of hobbies. Her published credits include several short stories, poetry, several journal articles, her doctoral dissertation, and her award-winning book Strength of Spirit. With multiple degrees, she has a passion for learning and exploring new venues. She is a staff writer for The Daily Dragon at Dragon Con.

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