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By Mykah Garcia


On Wednesday May 24 the UCSC Wind Ensemble held their annual spring concert at the UCSC Recital Hall. Conducted by Nathaniel Berman, the concert featured music from anime and video games. The excitement and anticipation could be felt from the packed audience in the Recital Hall right from the start.

The ensemble started off the concert with “Sogna di Volare”, the main theme from Civilization VI, an energetic and triumphant piece that set the pace for the rest of the performance. The power and preparation of the ensemble could be heard and felt immediately from the booming percussion section to the energetic flourishes of the flutes and piccolos.

Featuring direction from guest conductor Andrew Lu, “Fantasy Scenes from Princess Mononoke”, “Rydeen” composed by the Yellow Magic Orchestra, and “One Winged Angel” from Final Fantasy VII finished off the first act of the concert. Of the many things I enjoyed about this performance, one was the addition of harpist Pamela Scholz whose glissandos added an extra dream-like feel to the already wonderful performance.

Next, we went into the worlds of Skyrim with “Riften Wed” composed by Julie Giroux, Hibike! Euphonium with “Crescent Moon Dance”, and Spirited Away with the song “Spirited Away” composed by J. Hisaishi and Y. Kimora. Overall, the energy of these scores were translated so well by the entire wind ensemble and I really enjoyed the concert! They pulled from so many classic scores and curated a great arrangement of music. The ensemble were locked in the entire night and created a very passionate and beautiful performance filled with music from beloved anime movies and video games. I’m excited to see what the UCSC Wind Ensemble has in store for their next performance!