DSC00206 Originally uploaded by AccessWinnipeg

I know this is stolen from somewhere very important to me, but it’s gotta be said (props to James Clinton Howell by the way). It is no trite assertion, that Video Games Live will easily go down as one of the most memorable nights for anyone who attended. I hope our contest winners enjoyed it! Continue reading for pics and more.

VGL co-creator and front man, Tommy Tallarico, lightened the atmosphere as soon as the show started. Educating the audience that this was no normal symphony. The Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra (who performed wonderfully, by the way) was as lively and energized as the crowd they were playing to please. Applause and cheers would roar across the concert hall for featured titles. These included Halo themes 1, 2 and 3, Metal Gear Solid 2’s cover theme, Metroid’s medley, CIVILIZATION IV’s title theme, Final Fantasy VII’s One Winged Angel and Castlevania’s theme medley. Another nice touch was the live choir. Who’s stunning group and solo vocalist performances added a sense of completion to each piece (They even did the “SEGA” sound for the Sonic themes). Bringing to life, in real time, the already amazing music produced by our own, Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra. This elite team was conducted by VGL co-creator, Jack Hall. I just wish I could hear the name of the choir when they called them out… I’d totally do a name drop here on this blog. If you guys know the name, post it in the comments or something!

A notable performance was a piano solo by Martin Leung. Taking several popular themes from numerous Final Fantasy titles, he brilliantly linked them together in one really awesome medley.

Staying true to VGL’s “interactive concert” idea, there were two segments where members of the audience were asked to come up and play a video game classic in hopes of winning a prize. The first up was a bright young boy who was tasked with playing a very physical game of “Space Invaders”. While he didn’t win the prize (a tabletop MAME arcade system), he staged a valiant effort. Earning him a concelation prize!

Second, two ladies were chosen to battle it out in Frogger. Taking one turn each, they would settle things with each turn’s final score. One lucky lady won herself an XBOX 360.

Tommy, Jack, you guys did it. Along with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra and that choir I wish I could remember the name to, you’ve surpassed the hype us Winnipeg game fans have been hearing for all these years. With the bar raised, we’re looking forward to 2009 and more of Tommy’s sick guitar skills. A little more Metal Gear wouldn’t hurt either!

I’ve uploaded some less than semi-amateur shots I took of the event tonight. The cosplay was alright… but the Ulala from Space Channel 5 was what took the cake. Well, my cake anyway (she was really splendid to look at). Some kind of Master Chef or something took the prize. I know, hey? A CHEF?! Anyway, Enjoy the blurry images.