A Review of Candlelight Concerts: The Best of Hans Zimmer
I have never been a fan of concerts. Usually, I find them to be too loud and too crowded. If we’re being totally honest, I just don’t care for live music as a whole. It never seems to sound as good, and I never got the appeal of paying money to see what I can just listen to at home without other people around (I realize the same argument could probably be made for movie theaters, but I love going to the movies).
So, yeah, not big into concerts. However, as soon as I got an ad on TikTok for Candlelight Concerts, I knew I wanted to take a risk and see one of their performances. This was the ad:
Candlelight Concerts is an experience that involves a lovely venue, a group of talented musicians, and a huge amount of LED candles. They have so many different options for their performances. You can choose a variety of artists like Mozart, Queen, Taylor Swift, even ABBA! Depending which you choose, your concert will either be a string quartet, a solo piano, a brass band, or guitar. They do indoor and outdoor shows depending on the time of year and your location.
After looking through my options, I knew I had to go with The Best of Hans Zimmer. Not only do I love so many of the movies he’s done the score for, but I adore his style of music and think his scores make the movies they accompany ascend to a new level. He is truly one of my favorite musicians.
The performance was in Cincinnati at the Woodward Theater, and performed by a string quartet called StringSource String Quartet (a group local to Cincinnati!).
I’d never been to the Woodward Theater before, but it was a small, historic theater in the Over-the-Rhine district. It had a bar that you could get a drink at before the show started if you arrived early. The venue was set up with rows of white folding picnic chairs with an aisle down the middle. I had bought A-section seats, which were the first two rows of seats, and it’s first come first serve so you just pick any open seat you want within your section.
The stage was completely covered in LED candles, which trailed down the steps of the stage and served as the only light for the theater once the performance began. It was so atmospheric!
I had already known the line-up of the music before attending, but the performers took turns announcing which piece they’d be playing next, as well as throwing in some fun facts and personal touches.
The line-up was as follows:
Time from Inception
This Land from The Lion King
Zooster’s Breakout from Madagascar
Supermarine from Dunkirk
Honor from The Pacific
A Dark Knight from The Dark Knight
Wonder Woman Suite
Cornfield Chase from Interstellar
Discombobulate from Sherlock Holmes
Pirates of the Caribbean Suite
And they even did an encore piece, which was Flight from Man of Steel.
Holy cow, y’all. This performance was amazing.
Out of all these movies, I’ve seen about half. I thought that that would negatively impact the performance for me, but I ended up loving every single piece. In fact, some of my favorites from the set were from movies I have never seen. Every time a new piece was performed, I’d think “okay, that’s gotta be my favorite,” but then the next piece would start and somehow be even more spectacular.
Some were vibrant, up-beat, and brought a smile to my face, like the Madagascar piece. Others were haunting and gave me chills, like the piece from Dunkirk. So, no, I can’t really tell you what my “favorite” was, because they were all so incredible in so many different ways. It was really awesome to hear some of the familiar pieces I know and love on just strings. There’s nothing like a good cello.
It was mesmerizing, beautiful, emotional, and so completely worth the money and the drive to see it. My ticket for the A-section was fifty dollars, but the B, C, and D sections are cheaper and you’ll surely have a good time no matter where you sit.
I was thrilled to enjoy live music in such a beautiful space with such talented performers, and I can’t recommend it enough. It was truly a show to remember. I’ll definitely be seeing more Candlelight Concerts in the near future (in fact I already booked a ticket for another one while I was writing this post).
Bonus: Candlelight Concerts even has some performances available on YouTube to check out!
Here’s This Land from The Lion King:
What’s your favorite Hans Zimmer piece? Or favorite movie he does the score for? Do you like cello? Let me know in the comments, and have a great day!