In a land far way and in a time long ago, video games were toys for children. All games were kids' games in the eyes of the overwhelming majority of the civilized western world.
But yea, verily, games did speak unto the hearts of the many, and they were converted, and also they would be fucking bankrupt without video games right now. Thanketh Obama.
It's been a long road for video games to gain cultural importance. While some claim they can never be art, the medium is sure starting to look like it. More and more, video game concerts, many of them performed by orchestras are becoming a regular occurrence. From Distant Worlds to Video Games Live to the more recent The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses and others, it's now easier than it's ever been to catch a live performance of game music.
And for those who begrudge the artistic foothold games have gained, perhaps they can speak to you in another way: your bank account.
According to the Wall Street Journal, video game music performances are keeping concert halls and the symphonies that play in them financially afloat. Such places and groups all across the USA faced hard times during the recent recession, but video game concert goers came to the rescue to not only fill every seat in the house, but also spend their YouTube affiliation money on shirts, figurines, and all manner of merchandise.
Larry Tucker, vice president of artistic administration for the Nashville Symphony said: “I would not want to go through a season without [a game music concert].” It was pointed out that at one show, attendees spent over $13,000 on merchandise, whereas even as little as $2,000 might be considered "a good night," in Tucker's words.
Beyond cash mo-nay, the music itself is starting to win the hearts of those who play it. And that's where we get our article title:
Heidi Harris, the associate concert master for the St. Louis Symphony, was surprised how much she enjoyed performing Zelda in a concert this year. “I thought it was very beautiful,” she said. “I dislike videogames less now.”
The Journal also spoke to a few sticks in the mud:
Not every concertgoer is convinced. “From a business-strategy perspective, it completely devalues the brand,” said Roderick Branch, a 39-year-old lawyer in Chicago who attends symphony-orchestra performances about once a week. The very idea, he said, is “akin to Mouton Rothschild using its wine to make and sell sangria.”
Well, I guess that's why he's not a business strategist for all his hot "business strategy" advice. Did anyone show Roderick the ticket sales and merchandise spending figures, I wonder? Because economists usually don't associate bigger customer bases, higher cash flows, and people still having their jobs with "devaluing" anything.
On a related note, if you missed The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddesses from the recent Late Show, here it is: