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Melbourne Symphony Orchestra Is Screening 'Star Wars: A New Hope' and 'Frozen' with a Live Soundtrack

Two very different — and immensely beloved — Disney flicks are getting the live orchestral treatment in 2023.
By Sarah Ward
November 14, 2022
By Sarah Ward
November 14, 2022

A long time ago, in this very galaxy, brass instruments sounded, a text crawl started and the first Star Wars film burst onto the screen. Thanks to director George Lucas and composer John Williams, it's one of the most iconic movie openings in history — and, in all of its force-wielding, Death Star-destroying, orchestra-scored glory, the sci-fi classic is making a kriffing special return.

Star Wars movies have been getting the concert treatment for years now, but that doesn't make their presence on the big screen with a live orchestral soundtrack any less special whenever it happens. In 2023, Melbourne Symphony Orchestra is doing the honours once more in the Victorian capital, starting with the flick that began the whole franchise. It's also busting out another Disney favourite — and something very different.

First, the film that every jedi, wookiee, droid and even sith around the world has obsessed over for almost five decades now: Star Wars: Episode VI — A New Hope. It'll grace the silver screen on Saturday, January 28 as part of the movie's 45th-anniversary celebrations (with that milestone hit in 2022, but hey, what's an extra month?). The feature will roll in The Plenary at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre at 1pm and 7.30pm, MSO will perform Williams' Oscar-winning compositions and, if you're there, you'll burst with a Millennium Falcon's worth of happiness.

Whether you're a huge Star Wars buff eager to ride a wave of excitement in-between Andor season one finishing and The Mandalorian season three arriving, just have a casual interest, or have no idea what the term R2-D2 means, this is the way to see A New Hope. Conductor Nicholas Buc will lead the charge, as the city's finest provide the soundtrack to Luke Skywalker meeting Obi-Wan Kenobi, Princess Leia sending a message for help, Han Solo oozing his usual attitude and Darth Vader just being a power-hungry jerk.

If you just can't let any kind of pop-culture love go, then an in-concert session of Frozen might also be your dream come true. That's MSO's second big movie gig for 2023 — and, yes, it's happening in winter. Taking place on Saturday, June 17 at 1pm and 7pm, these screenings will celebrate ten years since the animated hit first built a snowman, and unveiled the tale of sisters Elsa and Anna. If you like big occasions, it'll also mark 100 years of the Mouse House.

Jessica Gethin is on conducting duties for Frozen, and everyone already knows the story as well as the soundtrack. Here, Anna has to embark on a trek to find Elsa, who gets trapped the kingdom of Arendelle due to her icy powers. Yes, you now have 'Let It Go' stuck in your head.

Star Wars: Episode IV — A New Hope will screen at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre on Saturday, January 28, while Frozen will screen at the same venue on Saturday, June 17. Head to the MSO website for further details, and for tickets from 10am on Wednesday, November 16.

Published on November 14, 2022 by Sarah Ward
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