Zelda, Pokémon and Final Fantasy Music will be present during the very first promotions of video games

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Image: Nintendo

The BBC Proms are probably one of the best-known classical music concerts in the world. This eight-week extravaganza features daily concerts for various classical music and film score composers. But in 2022, the Proms are making history by hosting their very first video game concert.

Directed by Robert Ames, the show starts tonight at 7.30pm at the Royal Albert Hall. Some of the game’s most well-known tracks will make their debut at this annual event and hopefully start a new trend of showcasing the bracket every year. The importance of video game music has grown tremendously in recent years, with franchises like Kirby winning Grammy Awards.

The full lineup for tonight’s concert was revealed over the weekend, and there are some Nintendo heavy hitters in the mix. Both The Legend of Zelda and Pokemon will be featured during the concert, and with both franchises having hundreds of iconic music tracks, we can’t even begin to think what bandleader Robert Ames or arrangers Nic Raine and CHAINS picked.

Zelda gets its own dedicated slot for five minutes, while Pokémon will share the spotlight with a few more unusual – but by no means less deserving – picks. SEGA Ecco the dolphin and Square Enix Mana Secret will be featured with Game Freak’s franchise in a 10-minute tribute piece, and we can’t wait to see how these three games come together.

Square Enix has a pretty good performance at the gig this year, and considering the many legendary composers who have come from the studio, that’s no surprise. Final Fantasy makes an expected appearance, with ‘Liberi Fatali’ by Nobuo Uematsu from Final Fantasy VIII showcasing the talent of the legendary JRPG composer. Kingdom HeartsMusic will also be featured, and while the listing credits both composer Yoko Shimomura and singer Hikaru Utada, the 4-minute track/set has not been revealed.

Here’s the full lineup for tonight’s Gaming Proms, “From 8-Bit to Infinite,” from BBC website:

Program

Matt Rogers, Tim Follin – Charging Chronos (8 min) BBC commission: world premiere

-Koji Kondo- The Legend of Zelda (5 mins) arr. Nic Raine

– CHAINS – Tribute to Pokémon, Ecco and Secret of Mana (10 min) Original compositions by Junichi Masuda, Hiroki Kikuta, Spencer Nilsen, Attila Dobos, András Magyari, David Javelosa and Andy Armer

– Nobuo Uematsu – Final Fantasy VIII: Liberi Fatali (5 min) arr. Andrew Skeet
– Kow Otani – The Shadow of the Colossus – continuation (8 min) arr. Tomomichi Takeoka

– Yoko Shimomura, Hikaru Utada – Kingdom Hearts (4 minutes) orchestra. Kaoru Wada

-Austin Wintory- Excerpts from Traveler – A Journey Symphony (15 mins)

– Hildur Guðnadóttir, Sam Slater – Battlefield 2042 Picks (14 mins) arr. Robert Ames; European premiere

-Jessica Curry- Dear Esther / So let us melt – I have begun my ascent; Departure (5 minutes) arr. Jim Fowler

For a very first Proms for video game music, it’s a pretty wide selection of classics and new music. We hope this will kick off more video game gigs in the UK and around the world.

Are you happy to see video game music having a chance at the Proms? Let us know!

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