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The Suffolk Journal

Your School. Your Paper. Since 1936.

The Suffolk Journal

Your School. Your Paper. Since 1936.

The Suffolk Journal

Boston Pops take audience to a galaxy far far away

Jamie Taris / Managing Editor
Boston Pops filled Symphony Hall with the familiar cadences of ‘Star Wars’.

The force was strong with Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops Sept. 21 , as they performed a tribute to composer John Williams in the form of “Star Wars: The Story in Music.”

Williams, who conducted the Pops from 1980-1993, was launched to stardom with his work on “Star Wars” in 1977. Over the years, his music has had a heavy influence on pop culture, having composed the music to numerous iconic movies such as “Jaws,” “Indiana Jones,” and “Harry Potter.”

The performance included a masterful narration of the nine movies of the Skywalker Saga by Jeremiah Kissel, set to music performed by the Pops from each film played throughout the two-hour show.

As the brass blared the notes to the saga’s main theme, the audience was instantly transported to that faraway galaxy where Jedi and Sith clash. Kissel set the scene by introducing Episode I’s main characters, as the orchestra painted the image of the movie through music.

Through Kissel’s narration and the orchestra playing along, the audience was taken through major points of the prequel trilogy. The Pops projected the introduction of a young Anakin Skywalker, and the composition “Dual of the Fates” allowed listeners to relive the famous Darth Maul battle from Episode I. The audience was then taken through the love story of Anakin and Queen Padme Amidala, and to the rise of Darth Vader and the Galactic Empire.

Just before the show’s intermission, Kissel and the Pops introduced the characters that made the franchise famous 46 years ago. “Princess Leia’s Theme” sparked a new hope for the rebellion and marked the progression of the saga into the original trilogy.

As Kissel and the Pops told the story of the trilogy’s first two movies, the audience got to bop along to “Cantina Band,” meet Jedi Master Yoda and were treated to staple compositions such as “Binary Sunset” and “The Imperial March” before the orchestra paused for an intermission.

When the Pops returned, they wrapped up the original trilogy with music fromReturn of the Jedi.” As Kissel recalled Luke Skywalker and his friends defeating the Empire, he joked about how it seemed that peace had finally been restored to the galaxy…“or so we thought.”

From there, the saga transitioned into the sequel trilogy and introduced Rey and a new generation of heroes and villains. The audience was guided through the journey to find a self-exiled Luke Skywalker, Ben Solo’s origin story and conclusions for the main characters from the original trilogy, even Emperor Palpatine.

Through his narration, Kissel was able to capture the beauty and intricacies of the saga with some humor as well. Fans particularly enjoyed quips about Jar Jar Binks and Palpatine’s return in Episode IX.

The audience contained those young and old. Some wore suits and dresses, others wore vintage-styled Star Wars T-shirts. One father and son even came dressed as Jedi. From magic to nostalgia, everyone found something to enjoy in this performance.

Overall, it was a night well spent at Symphony Hall and one that won’t soon be forgotten by anyone in attendance.

The Pops continued performances of “Star Wars: The Story in Music” throughout the weekend, as well as other shows paying tribute to Williams.

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About the Contributors
Jamie Taris, Managing Editor | he/him
Jamie is a senior broadcast journalism major and public relations minor from Pelham, New Hampshire. He has a deep passion for sports, especially hockey and football, and hopes to make his way into the sports media field after graduation. Outside of the Journal, Jamie is a sports intern at WHDH and is involved with Suffolk's orientation department. When he's not obsessing over the latest sports news, you can usually find Jamie hiking or camping in the White Mountains, or exploring the city with his friends. Follow Jamie on X @JamieTaris
Stephen Merrick, Staff Writer | he/him
Stephen is an undergraduate law major from Marshfield, Massachusetts. In addition to writing for the Journal, he is a member of the Suffolk University Debate team, and was previously the president of the Suffolk University Democrats. In his free time, he enjoys reading, fishing and scuba diving. When Stephen graduates, he hopes to join the United States Coast Guard.

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