I had the pleasure and honour of seeing my hero today.

Tonight I saw Distant Worlds, a collection of Final Fantasy pieces arranged for orchestra/choir, conducted by Arnie Roth. The Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony and the Telus choir performed – but most importantly I saw Nobuo Uematsu play tonight.

Before I get to that I should say that I was disappointed in a way. Little things, like violinists not playing with the same bowing, the audio crew doing a very poor job of mic’ing the choir… I had a few moments of deep frustration. Knowing that Nobuo Uematsu was sitting in the best seat in the house watching all this I wanted to go apologize to him for it. Being that he’s not classically trained most of the orchestral slip-ups probably didn’t phase him but I still felt it was sub-par.

But as I was saying before, the main attraction for me was Uematsu himself. I can’t tell you that I was “amazed” by his playing – it’s not in his style to ‘wow’ anyone with his musicianship. Still, I was in awe. Watching the man who wrote the FF prelude in the 80s when game music was just “bleeps and bloops.” I might add that he played not just one, but two Nord Stage 3 keyboards (retail around $5k)… and used one of them for nothing but the wind sound effect – probably just because he could. What a boss!!

They played Dark World from FFVI (see above), and I know I’ll never hear it better than that. But, maybe that’s just what it feels like to finally see your hero perform. [note: FF6 was originally released as FF3 in North America]

For more information about their future events, visit http://www.ffdistantworlds.com/.