Trekkies of the world unite for an evening cramming 50 years of trekkin’ into a spectacularly wondrous event. Star Trek: The Ultimate Voyage 50th Year Celebration has been touring worldwide in 2016, featuring the world’s best symphony orchestras performing under a screen projecting highlights of 50 years of Star Trek television and films.

As someone who has grown up in a sci-fi centric household, Star Trek is standard. Star Trek: The Ultimate Voyage 50th Year Celebration is anything but. From the moment the introduction started with the iconic theme music playing over an inspiring montage of the various captains achieving great things, I was covered in chills. It made me realise just how special the Star Trek world is to its audience.

It was surprising to see just how many ‘geeks’ came to support this show. From pop culture classics like The Rocky Horror Show, to internet sensations Rooster Teeth, fandoms come out in droves to support this ultra-crossover, foundational show that has inspired multitudes of people in various ways. The ultra-successful Big Bang Theory wouldn’t have its multitude of jokes to fall back on, had Star Trek not existed. Many immediately-identifiable actors had their start on Star Trek.

Star Trek has been held in high esteem by audiences since its inception for the diversity, the curiosity, but ultimately the desire “to boldly go where no man has gone before”.

Melbourne’s Sidney Myer Music Bowl is a particularly apt venue for an Australian Premiere of a show about exploring space. It’s not often you see something so moving and spectacular, and be able to look up at the infinity of the universe above you within the same moment.

It is utterly breathtaking to witness such uplifting music performed by the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. It’s not something I’ll forget anytime soon. Conductor Sarah Hicks engaged with the audience before launching into the show and pursuing a divine form of storytelling. It’s incredibly emotive to shut your eyes for a moment and lose yourself in the orchestra.

This show is just as stunning visually as it is audibly. Nick Whitehouse’s lighting and stage design are sublime, incorporating the lighting so intricately to match the visuals that lasers or spotlights come into the crowd when on screen. It is awesome in the truest sense of the word.

Star Trek: The Ultimate Voyage 50th Year Celebration is intensely beautiful, almost overwhelmingly so. The standing ovation and encore song ended the performance flawlessly, with behind-the-scenes images on screen from the 50 years elaborating on the people behind the well-known characters and story.

For a screen-show whose pilot was initially rejected and found roadblock after roadblock, it is remarkable for us to be celebrating 50 years of adventures. This prolific story has inspired generations to push themselves further and to be better.

I’ve grown up surrounded by Star Trek, but never actively sought after it. Now, if you please excuse me, I have 50 years of stories to catch up on. And please, book tickets to an MSO show. I regret not experiencing Melbourne’s wonderful Symphony Orchestra live before now.

Star Trek: The Ultimate Voyage 50th Year Celebration was a part of the 2016 Melbourne Festival.

 

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