BWW REVIEW: Nicholas Hooper's Dark And Ominous Score Comes To Life As Sydney Symphony Orchestra present HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF BLOOD PRINCE: IN CONCERT.
Wednesday 10th July 2019, 7pm, Concert Hall, Sydney Opera House
Sydney Symphony Orchestra (SSO) continues the collaboration it started in 2017 with the latest instalment of CineConcerts' live music and big screen movie experience with HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF BLOOD PRINCE: IN CONCERT. Conductor Nicholas Buc returns to the podium to lead the SSO and the Sydney Philharmonia Choirs through Nicholas Hooper's (composer) darker, more ominous score as the wizarding world gets closer to defeating the dark forces.
The pairing with live orchestra reminds the audience of the importance of the music on the mood of the movies as well as reinforcing that it is actually real instruments that make up the soundscape, not electronic synthesisers. Wistful flutes tie with Slughorn's happy memories of the students he has 'collected' over time whilst a languid anxious tone washes over Bellatrix and Narcissa's visitation at Spinners Lane. A theme of Latin choral chants underpins the memory pensive dives. Strong string flourishes and a bold brass undertone elevates the Quiddich Match while light harp and piano conveys the delicate danger of Hermione's conjoured attack birds.
Themes that have remained throughout the series remain such as the trio's theme and new ones, like the light mysterious bells relating to Sulghorn's more welcoming Potions class separate the work from the earlier instalments. Hooper has also built on his earlier work with HARRY POTTER AND THE ORDER OF THE PHOENIX as the bass drum remains a subtle but constant feature with solitary booms punctuating silence or deeper rumbles.
These concerts are events for all ages and are definite fan favourites as more and more audience members are arriving brandishing wands, wearing robes and sporting house colours. Whilst as with earlier concerts Buc encourages an almost pantomime audience engagement, this work had less interaction from the audience which may be indicative of the darkening mood of the story as Harry gets closer to facing Voldemort.
Whether you are well acquainted with the Wizarding world or a bit of a muggle, this is a brilliant way to experience David Yates's (Movie Director) cinematic expression.