When I heard Queensland Symphony Orchestra would be performing with Daniel Craig, I got excited. I love Daniel Craig, platonically speaking, and he is the best James Bond yet.
In fact, for a long time now I have wanted to be Daniel Craig. Yes, I know, that’s not going to happen.
Never mind, I can dream about being him when he comes to Brisbane to perform with QSO on the big screen. Ok, I got over-excited because when I say he is coming I mean that QSO will be playing to the Bond film Casino Royale at the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre on March 15. For one night only.
For the first time, audiences will be able to experience Bond on the big screen accompanied by the power of the QSO, an orchestra that is absolutely on fire.
Under newish chief conductor Umberto Clerici, the orchestra seems better than ever, although Clerici won’t be conducting for this film and music event. However, I’m excited that Vanessa Scammell will conduct, because she is terrific.
The orchestra will be performing composer David Arnold’s thrilling musical score live and in sync to the picture.
The day after that, March 16, they will be doing the same for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1, also at BCEC, with Scammell again conducting. What a weekend that will be for film and music fans!
I’m particularly keen on the 2006 film Casino Royale because in our household we are lifelong Bond fans and the music of Bond films is usually fabulous, as are the theme songs.
You Know My Name was the theme song for Casino Royale, performed by American musician Chris Cornell, who wrote and produced it jointly with David Arnold, the soundtrack’s composer. The film producers chose Cornell because they wanted a strong male singer.
How deliciously politically incorrect that is!
Brisbane outfit The Little Red Company did a whole show based on Bond theme songs. It was called Skyfall and I’m hoping they might do it again this year. It showed how intrinsic music is to these movies
Casino Royale marks the first appearance of Daniel Craig as James Bond, the legendary MI6 operative 007. Directed by Martin Campbell, Casino Royale brings us Bond at the beginning of his career having just earned 00 status and his licence to kill.
The story pits him against the ruthless terrorist financier known as Le Chiffre, who is played so brilliantly by Mads Mikkelsen. From the jungles of Madagascar to the white sand beaches of the Bahamas, Bond’s pursuit of le Chiffre leads to a showdown in a high stakes poker game at the luxurious Casino Royale in Montenegro and, ultimately, to a jaw-dropping finale on the Grand Canal in Venice.
As far as Bond films go, they don’t get any better than this one. I’m hanging out to see it again on a big screen with live music. This combines two of my favourite things – the QSO and James Bond.
My first experience of this format was some years ago when Alondra de la Parra was chief conductor and the QSO did a similar thing with the original Raiders of the Lost Ark film. That was amazing.
This will be, too, and hopefully they will have popcorn on hand. They must, surely?
Of course, the serious music of the QSO starts before then with the highly anticipated Mahler odyssey with Umberto Cleric conducting a Maestro Concert, Umberto’s Mahler – The Journey Continues. Clerici has chosen to start the season with Mahler’s Symphony No. 7, an epic that clocks in at just over an hour, longish for a symphony.
Then there are the film concerts and in April – what a lovely idea this is – a concert dedicated to Livvie. Hopelessly Devoted: A Celebration of Olivia-Newton John will feature David Campbell, Georgina Hopson, Jess Hitchcock and Christie Whelan Brown performing the iconic hits of our own Dame Olivia. What a treat. That will be a special afternoon and evening in the Concert Hall at QPAC.
There’s so much more in store. One of my great pleasure s in 2023 was attending QSO concerts and witnessing an orchestra that just gets better and better.
And when Clerici is at the podium it gets very exciting, indeed. He is, of course, also a world-class cellist. We get to hear him play in November in the concert Umberto & Natsuko, a season-closing gala teaming him with concert master Natsuko Yoshimoto on violin and soprano Eleanor Lyons singing. How wonderful.
But right now I have my sights set on Mahler and Daniel Craig who, as far as I can discern, have nothing in common. I wonder how Mahler would have looked in a tight-fitting black polo shirt?
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