February 13, 2016
Washington, D.C. review
With music as iconic as the franchise itself, Star Trek: The Ultimate Voyage brings a musical experience like none before. It is very rare that any franchise will celebrate a 50th anniversary, so to do that with such fanfare is a bold and exciting treat that only Star Trek can bring.
Billed as a 100-city tour across North America, Star Trek: The Ultimate Voyage is produced by CineConcerts. Justin Freer, who serves as both the production’s producer and orchestral conductor, has been mentored by Star Trek musical legends such as the famed, late Jerry Goldsmith. Goldsmith was the man behind iconic scores from five Star Trek films, including the renowned march from Star Trek: The Motion Picture, as well as the author of the theme for the television series Star Trek: Voyager.
Freer and company touched down for an engagement in Washington, D.C.’s historic Warner Theater. Within an hour of the show, Freer could be found in the upstairs dressing room, once occupied by Frank Sinatra.
When asked about how he was tasked to integrate numerous themes and scores, and tell 50 years of stories in two hours, he had a confident response: “I’ll let the music tell the story.”
Star Trek, unlike many other science fiction universes, has a long roster of talented musicians who have contributed to the franchise over the years. Freer has the tall task of collaborating the works of Goldsmith, Alexander Courage, James Horner, and Michael Giacchino, to name a few. While fans are looking forward to hearing music that is as familiar as any of the characters, Freer also stresses there is more music to be heard and appreciated.
“Fans don’t always remember the music but they might remember the scene,” he said. This statement by Freer was made clear by a haunting video of a monologue from Captain Sisko during the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode “In the Pale Moonlight,” set to the music that accompanied the scene.
The show opens with the classic and unforgettable march from Star Trek: The Motion Picture, and from there the show continues non-stop filled with clips set to Freer’s beautifully chosen arrangement of Star Trek music. The score from the Star Trek: The Next Generation two-part episode “Best of Both Worlds” sent the audience into an obvious, yet well-placed intermission.
Upon return, music from Star Trek: First Contact is played. The score from Star Trek: The Next Generation episode “The Inner Light” hits an emotional nerve as well as a rousing rendition of the theme from the 2009 film Star Trek. The score from Star Trek: Generations is set to honor the legacy of the ship “Enterprise.” There is also a subtle, yet touching tribute to the late Leonard Nimoy, who passed away in 2015. Nimoy was the actor who brought to life the original Mr. Spock when Star Trek debuted in 1966.
This is a spectacular show that will please motion picture music lovers as well as die-hard Star Trek fans. With the 50th Anniversary of Star Trek well underway, Star Trek: The Ultimate Voyage aims to please and hits all the right notes.
Written by: Ryan Estorninos