Relive the excitement of ‘Pokémon Symphonic Evolutions’ with Grand Rapids Pops

Media Contact
Jenn Collard
Public Relations Intern
616.454.9451 ext. 139

GRAND RAPIDS, MI., December 21, 2017 – Grand Rapids, I choose you!

Over 20 years after its initial release, Pokémon fans, ranging from young children to seasoned adult players and entire families, have followed and celebrated one mantra: Gotta catch ‘em all!

Back by popular demand, you can catch Pokémon at the Grand Rapids Symphony this January, where Pikachu and the gang will appear on a 40-foot screen while the Grand Rapids Symphony plays the iconic music of the beloved video game.  

Grand Rapids Pops presents Pokémon: Symphonic Evolutions in a one-night spectacular on Saturday, January 6, 2018, at 8 p.m. in DeVos Performance Hall, 303 Monroe Ave. NW in Grand Rapids.

Two seasons ago, Grand Rapids Pops presented Pokémon to audiences keen to engage in sights and sounds of the endearing game. Now, with the advent of the location-based, augmented reality game Pokémon Go in 2016, more people than ever are participating in Pokémon, capturing and training wild Pokémon to do battle and become Pokémon tournament champions. 

As part of the Gerber Symphonic Boom series, this concert gives fans a different kind of immersive experience: a symphonic one.   

The fuzzy tones and beeps of the game that originated on the hand-held Game Boy now give way to big-screen images enveloped by the surround sound of the Grand Rapids Symphony, performing musical arrangements timed to the visuals from recent and classic Pokémon video games.

Guest Conductor Chad Seiter, Michigan native who attended Grand Valley State University from 2001 to 2003, conducts the concert produced by Princeton Entertainment. Seiter, a prolific composer, arranger, and orchestrator for film, television, and video games has provided compositions and arrangements for some of Hollywood’s biggest projects, including Lost, Star Trek, and the Medal of Honor video game series.

In 2016 season, guest conductor Susie Benchasil Seiter conducted Pokémon: Symphonic Evolutions to an enthusiastic Grand Rapids crowed decked out in Pokémon garb and Game Boys. The husband and wife team also collaborated to orchestrate and conduct The Legend of Zelda: Symphony of the Goddess.   

Chad Seiter, originally from Okemos, now serves as the Associate Executive Producer at Princeton Entertainment, and was the lead arranger and music director for all of the Pokémon: Symphonic Evolutions concerts.  

Together with Benchasil Seiter, he transcribed the score of Pokémon’s original composer Junichi Masuda for symphonic audiences, while crafting additional music to enhance the concert-going experience.  

“We started by listening to every single piece of music in all the Pokémon games,” Seiter said. “From there, we narrowed it down to our favorites that tell the story of Pokémon. Then we picked the pieces we thought would work best with a symphony orchestra.”

Their musical efforts have resulted in what iDigital Times called a “once in a lifetime event.” 

Memorable musical highlights such as the Pokémon Red and Blue Overture, and the beautiful “Kiseki” from Pokémon X and Y, were handpicked by Masuda for Pokémon: Symphonic Evolutions. The concert also features music from the Pokémon anime series and films.  

Perhaps Game Music Online puts it best: there are few things as fun as celebrating beloved childhood memories played out in front devoted fans with the help of live, symphonic music.  

Tickets

Tickets for Pokémon: Symphonic Evolutions start at $18 and are available at the GRS ticket office, weekdays 9 am-5 pm at 300 Ottawa Ave. NW, Suite 100, (located across from the Calder Plaza), or by calling 616.454.9451 x 4. (Phone orders will be charged a $2 per ticket service fee, with a $12 maximum.)

Tickets are available at the DeVos Place box office, weekdays 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. or on the day of the concert beginning two hours prior to the performance. Tickets also may be purchased online at GRSymphony.org.

About the Grand Rapids Symphony

Organized in 1930, the Grand Rapids Symphony is nationally recognized for the quality of its concerts and educational programs. Led by Music Director Marcelo Lehninger, Principal Pops Conductor Bob Bernhardt and Associate Conductor John Varineau, nine concert series are presented, featuring a wide range of music and performance styles. More than 400 performances are given each year, touching the lives of some 200,000, nearly half of whom are students, senior citizens and people with disabilities all reached through extensive education and community service programs. Affiliated organizations include the Grand Rapids Symphony Chorus; Grand Rapids Youth Symphony and Classical Orchestra; and Grand Rapids Symphony Youth Choruses. GRS provides the orchestra for performances by Opera Grand Rapids and the Grand Rapids Ballet and sponsors the biennial Grand Rapids Bach Festival, which was held in March 2017 and returns in 2019.

To learn more about the Grand Rapids Symphony, please visit the website or

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This activity is supported in part by an award from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs and the National Endowment for the Arts.

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