Final Fantasy is one of those games featuring music composed and produced by some of the most talented artists the video game industry has to offer.
Final Fantasy is for fans more than just a game, it is a source of amazing scores, most of which have been brought to life by the legendary Japanese composer Nobuo Uematsu. Sharing this music through a powerful orchestrated presentation has been possible thanks to many talents and a dedicated promotion team.
A few days ago, the Distant Worlds show made its way to Montreal and we were glad to attend such a prestigious event. The show featured a great orchestra, Arnie Roth as the conductor, and special guests such as Susan Calloway and RIKKI. The entire experience was brought to Montreal and made possible by the Attila Glatz Concert Production team.
This isn’t the first time the show comes to Montreal and so we were curious to know what were the challenges of keeping a recurrent show like Distant Worlds always fresh and exciting.
“We always want to keep the show fresh and we feel it is very important to provide quality entertainment and variety to the fans. From the quality of the orchestra and everything else related to the production must meet the highest standards musically and technically. Because there are so many great scores in the Final Fantasy franchise, it is not so much a challenge, but rather an important factor to constantly refresh the program. There is a great emphasis on changing the program around every time we go back to a city, so if we did not play a favourite song before, we try to play it the next time.
Equally important is to fly in artists associated with the music from Final Fantasy, and as such during previous visits we did feature a number of Final Fantasy composers including Nobuo Uematsu. It is so wonderful to witness fans’ reaction when they meet their favourite Final Fantasy composer or singer the first time during one of the Meet & Greets we do after each show.
Back to Montreal, this time around, we really wanted to do something special for the fans here, because they have been simply one of the best and most appreciative audience we ever played for. After some brainstorming, Arnie Roth came up with the idea of inviting RIKKI from Japan, who is the original singer for “Suteki Da Ne”. So, we secured RIKKI but we wanted to have another Final Fantasy artist. The natural choice was debuting the one and only Susan Calloway during the concert in Montreal. Susan has her own successful career, but been also performing many popular Final Fantasy scores, such as “Eyes On Me”.” – Attila Glatz (JR), Manager of International Touring at Attila Glatz Concert Productions Inc.
As mentioned by Attila Glatz (JR), it is important to please fans of the series by bringing original Final Fantasy artists. Following her magnificent performance on stage in Montreal, we were able to catch Susan Calloway for an exclusive take on what the series and the show meant to her.
Q: You are the leading voice behind Dragonsong from FFXIV. How did you proceed into finding the perfect lyrics for the song. What does it represent to you?
I actually did NOT write Dragonsong . . but I can tell you about what the song means to me! Similar to Answers, Dragonsong is another powerful moment in FFXIV . . that narrates the struggle between good and evil . . the war that has happened . . and the challenges and unknown the future holds. I love the story of FFXIV because it is so similar to what we all go thru in life. The struggles and battles we face every day . . and learning to find the strength to go forward even when all hope is gone . . It is a powerful and important message for all of us.
Q: What is your favorite piece from the Final Fantasy series and why?
Answers! Because it is the song that really established me with FFXIV and most of the gamers. It has a very special place in my heart. I also think that it is one of Nobuo’s best pieces . . so I am honored to sing it.
Q: When you go on stage and perform Dragonsong, you reach tons of fans emotionally thanks to your fantastic voice. Being the one on stage in front of such an audience, how do you feel while performing?
It is a very magical experience. I love the energy I get from the fans. . and they are so responsive and appreciative. I know how much this music means to them so it really inspires me to go out there and give them the best I have.
Q: If you could do a cover for any Final Fantasy song, which one would it be?
Answers! And I already have . . I have an artist version and a club mix version! Both are available on Itunes right now:)
Final Fantasy plans of celebrating the 30th Anniversary with a series of shows in Toronto, as well as a show in London. At the time being, we do not know for sure who we should expect to see perform live, but fans are asked to head over the official Final Fantasy Distant Worlds website and cast their votes.
Make sure you stay tuned as we share more information with you regarding the 30th Anniversary shows scheduled to take place later this year.