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  • Writer's pictureLourdes de la Peña

Experiencing the National Symphony with Elsa, Anna, Olaf, and StringTime Friends

Updated: Nov 29, 2022

Imagine a massive screen the size of a concert hall stage, over two thousand people of all ages in the audience, and a full orchestra complete with a drum set. This is what some of our StringTime students experienced on Black Friday at the Kennedy Center. The National Symphony Orchestra played the complete Frozen soundtrack as the movie played on the Concert Hall's massive screen.

For those of you who have never been to an orchestral movie concert, the conductor stands on the stage and leads the orchestra with precision through every scene, song, and instrumental sound effect. Before attending this concert, I'm sure most of the audience hadn't noticed the percussion in the opening ice chopping scene, brass fanfares during the coronation scene, or the orchestral climax of the snow monster scene. The music doesn't just add to the film, it makes the film.

Many go to movie theaters to experience surround sound. At the Frozen concert, the surround sound in the Kennedy Center's Concert Hall was unlike anything I had ever experienced in a movie theater. Concert Halls are specifically built to project and blend an orchestral sound. I will never forget hearing Do You Want to Build a Snowman, Let it Go, For the First Time in Forever, and Love is an Open Door performed by world-class musicians with every note executed perfectly- exactly as the film composers envisioned it .

The concert ended with the conductor inviting the audience to sing along to all of the famous Frozen songs while fake snow fell from the ceiling. Kids and adults sang their hearts out as we all watched the white dust sparkle in the lights. Every face had a smile and every heart was warm. The orchestra received a standing ovation.

As the StringTime Director, it was my privilege to coordinate this once in a lifetime experience for our students. From Rock-a-Bye-Baby to Let it Go, music follows all of us throughout our lives. At StringTime, we teach our students to notice it, enjoy it, and study it.

With joy,

Lourdes de la Peña and the StringTime Family

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