Kingdom Hearts Orchestra

Kingdom Hearts Orchestra World Tour live event 

For diehard Kingdom Hearts fans, these past few months have been nothing short of phenomenal. Now, five years after officially being announced at E3 2013 with a teaser trailer, we have a concrete release date for Kingdom Hearts III. Launching January 29, 2019 the next entry in the highly popular series is almost here.

With the massive buzz surrounding Kingdom Hearts III, the second wave of worldwide performances of the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra World Tour couldn’t have come at a better time. Canada’s only stop on the tour was here in Toronto. I had the esteemed privilege of attending and celebrating the legendary game franchise with adoring fans.

Let’s take a look at what the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra World Tour is all about!

Kingdom Hearts Orchestra

Celebrating Kingdom Hearts 

Last year marked the 15th anniversary of the Kingdom Hearts franchise. To celebrate, the official Kingdom Hearts video games concert series launched and toured the world. Now, on their second tour, the live orchestral video game concert is an audio/video show that I and many others won’t soon forget.

Under direct supervision from Kingdom Hearts director Tetsuya Nomura and composer Yoko Shimomura, the live orchestral concert allows you to experience Kingdom Hearts history from the very beginning on the PlayStation 2, all the way up to Kingdom Hearts III on the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

Kingdom Hearts Orchestra

Passionate fans in attendance

It was awesome to see passionate fans dressed up in costume. Kingdom Hearts cosplayers are known for their elaborate costumes, and this event was no exception. It was also cool to see fans and newcomers of all ages come together for this musical celebration.

Picture and video taking was strictly prohibited. Thought, as a member of the press I was allowed to take photos of the first three songs. As the lights dimmed and the concert began, the staged filled with more than 100 musicians who were accompanied by a live choir.

Kingdom Hearts Orchestra

Wonderful symphonic music

With woodwinds, brass, piano, percussion and other instruments, the musicians played spectacular renditions of iconic music from the Kingdom Hearts franchise. To add even more impact, behind the orchestra and choir was a large screen showing gameplay footage synced to the music.

The videos showcased memorable moments from throughout the 16-year history of games. It was awesome to relive these games with so many fans.

Kingdom Hearts Orchestra

New Kingdom Hearts III footage

The highlight of the entire night’s performance was when the musicians began to play an orchestral version of the famous song You’ve Got A Friend In Me form Toy Story. Fans were treated to brand new cinematics set in the Toy Story world from the upcoming Kingdom Hearts III game. Even better, new gameplay footage was shown as Sora explored the world outside of Andy’s room.

If there was any doubt in anyone’s mind that Kingdom Hearts III wasn’t going to be great, this new footage squashed them. Sora jumped into what looked like a toy mech-suit and the on screen display changed into something that you would normally see in mech games. Unfortunately, I was not allowed to take pictures during this part of the show.

Kingdom Hearts Orchestra

A memorable grand finale

After a truly phenomenal two hour experience, the conductor and musicians returned to the stage for a monumental encore presentation. What made the encore so special was the Keyblade baton that the conductor was holding. When fans got a glimpse of it, they immediately started to cheer and clap.

All the musicians, choir members, and technical staff received a thunderous applause and standing ovation. If you ever get the chance to attend one of these live concert events, I highly urge you to. The is nothing quite like hearing the songs from one of your favourite video game series in person.

Kingdom Hearts Orchestra

Kingdom Hearts on BestBuy.ca

I was doing some searching today and found neat Kingdom Hearts things on BestBuy.ca. Like this Funko Pop! Disney: Kingdom Hearts – Sora  and this Funko Pop! Disney: Kingdom Hearts – Riku figure.

Also, if you haven’t checked out the latest video games from these franchise, I’ve provided the links below!

Get Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 + 2.5 Remix – PlayStation 4
Purchase Kingdom Hearts HD II.8 Final Chapter Prologue – PlayStation 4
Pre-order Kingdom Hearts 3 for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One
Pre-order Kingdom Hearts 3 Deluxe Edition for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One