This past Friday, Chris, Nick, Shaun and I attended the Final Fantasy New World concert in Phoenix. The concert was held at the Crescent Ballroom, a partial bar and venue. We initially had some complications getting in (basically, they didn’t accept older licenses to let us in through the “bar” entrance, and so we went in through the “kid” entrance), but the rest of the night was a wonderful experience I would easily repeat.
The venue was pretty small, with two major sitting areas, and it was sold out. Since we came in from a different entrance, we were seated to the side of the stage, which wound up being great seats since we were behind the piano and we got to see every move pianist Benyamin Nuss made during his piano solos, which were amazing to watch and my favorite parts of the concert.
Overall, the concert was a huge blast. I’ve never been to a concert before (I missed out on the Zelda concerts from a few years ago), and I loved the small venue and the intimacy it provided for the audience. In particular, the conductor Arnie Roth was wonderful, both humorous and clearly passionate about the Final Fantasy series and its music.
Rather than providing guests with a guest booklet, Arnie introduced the next few songs as the concert progressed, leaving everything a surprise. The evil Moogle theme was hilarious too. The selection of songs for the concert were pretty varied, and there was never a point where a song felt like it was going too long. Our particular concert ended with One-Winged Angel, with the audience being cued to shout “Sephiroth!” whenever the song required, and it was a great way to end a fun night.
Really, my only regret is that I didn’t take more pictures during the concert. They never said we couldn’t, and I saw people in the audience both taking pictures and recording the concert on their phones as well, but other than that, this was a wonderful experience that I was happy that I was able to go to. The concert flew by (it was only an hour long), and as much as I wished it could have gone on longer, it’s also something that I would definitely go to again should the opportunity arise.