Doctor Who Symphonic Spectacular
25 May 2015, Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff
One hardly needs reminding that Cardiff ’s now the home of Doctor Who, but it certainly underlines the point when you find yourself sitting three yards from Murray Gold as he happily nods along to his own tunes… The series’ regular composer since 2005 was just one of hundreds present when Who’s latest musical extravaganza stopped off in the Welsh capital.
Thanks to the success of the Doctor Who Proms, Whovians are familiar with the concept of the BBC National Orchestra Of Wales performing Gold’s scores live, but this long- overdue touring show made the experience accessible to fans as far north as Newcastle and Glasgow.
Over the course of several hours in Cardiff, it both revisited themes that can now be considered classics ( like the accompaniment to Rose and the Tenth Doctor’s blub- inducing Bad Wolf Bay bye- byes) and gave a first public airing to series eight cues ( like a suite of music from “Death In Heaven”), reminding all present that Gold’s compositions – by turns stirring, haunting and martial – have been a major contributor to the show’s success.
Although the focus was on music from the revived series, there was still acknowledgment of the show’s history, with, for example, clips of all the Doctors in a regeneration montage, and the presence of Peter Davison – who even whipped out his original Fifth Doctor coat for the finale. Acting as compere, Davison absolutely smashed it; he’s got a wry sense of humour, and his banter with conductor Ben Foster and sly digs at successor Colin Baker added an extra dimension to the evening – as did appearances by a host of Who monsters, with the likes of Cybermen and the Foretold stalking the aisles.
If we have one complaint it’s that occasionally the music was not allowed to speak for itself, with overlaid dialogue sometimes an unwelcome distraction; no matter how good a speech is, you come to a concert like this to appreciate the music, not the words. But that’s a petty grouse. Hopefully the Symphonic Spectacular will now become a regular fixture. If it comes to a town near you, don’t miss it. http:// bit. ly/ WhoSpectacular
Cybermen positioned and ready to kill everyone, and the orchestra kept playing. That’s professionalism. Peter Capaldi is watching you… Exterminate! Annihilate! Destroy! Ben Foster conducts orchestra and the
Are you my mummy?