canadian_turtle: (DW || Eleven; Death is but the next grea)
[personal profile] canadian_turtle

Please don't take/repost/claim/hotlink any of my pictures or videos (feel free to link to this post in its entirety instead). They're far from excellent quality but they're mine and I'd like to keep it that way. Thanks <3

(Most of my write-up and pictures are going to be about the Saturday night Prom, all videos are from Sunday morning.)

Many months ago when the tickets to the BBC Proms went on sale I snapped up one for the Doctor Who Prom on Sunday, but as my allocated seat wasn't very good I decided to try to 'prom' for the Saturday Doctor Who Prom as well. This basically means you show up several hours before the concert starts and the first 900 people or so have the opportunity to buy a standing ticket for either the Arena or Gallery for only £5 each. The concert started at 7.30pm, I got there at 3pm and was handed ticket number 134. Not too shabby, especially considering the fact some fans had started lining up at 6am. The two guys in front of me were from Australia and we had a good time for the first few hours or so chatting about where I've travelled to in Oz and where they've been to in Europe. By the way their names were Matt and Tim, lmao I kid you not and yes I also had to instantly think of Tim DeKay and Matt Bomer. Anyway, at 6.45pm they let us in in batches. We first had to show our ticket number, buy the actual physical ticket and then we moved to the Arena section of the Royal Albert Hall. We ended up roughly second row from the front of the stage and had an absolutely perfect view on the orchestra and hosts.

Now it's practically impossible to describe the Royal Albert Hall. I'd never been inside it before but it's absolutely stunning, overwhelmingly so, and I spent a good amount of time oh-ing and ah-ing over its beauty when standing there. To keep the Doctor Who theme there was a Tardis on stage and there was a kind of mini stage at the centre of the arena decorated as a piece of Amy's garden with the swing set. On stage there was a small space decorated as the garden as well as sunflowers which I assume to be related to the Vincent van Gogh episode. Before the show started there was a loud noise of a ringing phone over the speakers before a Dalek voice interrupted with the message that all phones should be switched of or you will be exterminated.

The music piece the orchestra opened with was "The Mad Man with the Box" quickly followed by "An Untimely Arrival" which was the introduction of Eleven in The Eleventh Hour (the Tardis going mental, the Doctor meeting Amy, the fish fingers with custard and there were some quick shots of later on in the episode too); a wonderful start of the evening. At this point Karen Gillan came on stage and she asked the audience who had tried fish fingers with custard themselves after seeing the Doctor eat that in the first episode of the season. Quite a few people answered 'yes' to that and she replied back that those who hadn't tried it should do so first thing tomorrow morning. "But", she said, "let your mum and dads try it first. They'll do so because they love you." She then talked about the classical piece that the orchestra would play next "Short Ride in a Fast Machine" by John Adams, saying that this title could summarise every adventure Amy has with the Doctor. Karen also mentioned that the orchestra playing on stage was the BBC National Orchestra of Wales which is the orchestra also performing on the Doctor Who scores, so that was a nice little tid bit of information.

The next Doctor Who song that was performed was "I am the Doctor" which showed a summary of most of the past season on the screens. This song was particularly interactive for those in the Arena (like me) as many enemies of the Doctor from series 5 suddenly popped up all around us in the audience. I saw vampires, Judoon, Cybermen and Silurians. At one point the girls playing the vampires took off their veils and they had the fantastic make-up as we know from the series so they looked quite terrifying. They walked right in front of me as well and the little girl behind me started screaming and crying, awww...

When Karen came back on stage afterwards she cheekily asked "Should I have warned you about the monsters? Keep your eyes open and don't blink". The last Doctor Who song performed before the interval (which followed the classical pieces "The Planets" - "Mars" by Gustav Holst and "Overture Portsmouth Point" by William Walton) was "Battle in the Skies". This is the Dalek theme music from the Winston Churchill episodes this series and was 'introduced' by one of the soldier Daleks on the small stage in the Arena saying "Do you like tea? I make good tea" followed by the white Surpreme Dalek coming on stage, bullying away the other Dalek and keeping Ben Foster (the brilliant conductor) hostage saying he had to play the "Dalek Symphony". I have to say, I never cared much for these episodes but this concert really had a knack for making me appreciate it a lot more because the live orchestra music went so well with the compilations shown on the screens.

I liked the show even more after the interval. It started off with Carl Orff's "Carmina Burana" - "O Fortuna", followed by Karen coming back on stage pretending she was going to introduce the next piece. When in fact she got interrupted by a message from the Doctor (on the screens) saying how he sadly can't be at the Royal Albert Hall but he got stuck in the future. Of course he eventually DID show up, on the little stage in the middle of the Arena, so very close, eee! He then had to (of course) save us all from a big threat and managed to do so with the help of an adorable little boy. It was all really cute and I managed to video it on the second day if you want so see it for yourself (you know you want to!):

Because I was sitting so high up on Sunday the sound is kind of echo-y and I've been asked to describe the interaction that happened between the Eleventh Doctor and the little boy:

The Doctor had that *thing* in his hand which was about to explode, any form of movement could set it off. He picked a little boy from the audience dressed up as the Eleventh Doctor to help him and said "You're going to be absolutely fine, I'll be with you every step of the way. And Monday morning you'll able to tell all your friends in school about this. Oh no wait it's half term!" The Doctor gave a magic wire ("so invisible in fact it's imaginary") to the boy. The Doctor "Do you like that hand? Do you want to keep it?" The boy does so he had to hold it between his teeth instead and hold it really, really tight. The Doctor then asks the boy's name but before he can answer the Doctor stops him just in time, preventing the invisible wire to fall. The Doctor also says the boy can't nod, "a tiny nod can blow up the entire Royal Albert Hall" (of course the boy nearly nodded in agreement). The Doctor also says the boy can't giggle or half of London will be gone. He then transmits *something* but even watching it live twice I didn't know what exactly he did, though of course in the end the Doctor saved the day. The only side affects were that people who had their mobile phones on would die and that ITV (competitive channel from BBC) was taken of the air XD The Doctor then told the boy he'd be fine, though he might have a sore throat in the morning. He could also turn into a big bird but that rarely ever happened. He made sure the boy got a round of applause, asked his name and finally stated: "To Ben, the boy who saved the Proms."

After this wonderful interrupton Arthur Darvill came on stage (FINALLY! I had already started complaining to Tim that I was wondering if he wouldn't show up). He was a great host and I wish he got more to do actually as he only introduced one song by himself (and Karen in all honesty wasn't that great she just read off the autocue and kept stopping mid-sentence). Anyway, Arthur went on a bit about Rory's journey this season and said that there would never be a dull moment with Amy which was then the introduction to Murray Gold's theme for Amy.

This song was followed by a medley of series 5 themes called "Liz, Lizards, Vampires and Vincent". The Vincent bit in particular was very moving to me so on Sunday I made sure to film that piece of the music:

The next piece (introduced by both Karen and Arthur) was "The Ride of the Valkyries" from Richard Wagner's "Die Walküre". A very famous piece that apparently was also performed at the last Doctor Who Proms. This was then followed by "Gallifrey: Our Childhood, Our Home" and "Vale Decem"; my two favourite Doctor Who songs! I was so pleased they included these and on Saturday it was extra amazing as during the first song they showed all 11 Doctors on the screens and all the regenerations (where applicable as not all regenerations have been filmed of course). Every introduction of a new Doctor got a round of applause but particularly when Ten came on screen the crowd went insane. On Sunday they only showed 9/10/11 during "Vale Decem", which was too bad because I was sitting ready with my camera to film the cool montage I'd seen the previous day.

I don't remember who introduced the last few songs, I do know that at this point Matt had changed outfits and came on stage as himself also hosting for a bit. The last three songs they performed were all from Doctor Who and were in order: "Pandorica Suite" (a special compilation of the music from The Pandorica Opens and The Big Bang), "Song of Freedom" (from the S4 finale, brilliantly sung by Mark Chambers who also does the voice of the Ood apparently, there's your fun fact for the day) and of course the not to be missed "Doctor Who Theme" (during which the monsters went on stage and in the audience again to give everyone one last fright). As the music for "Pandorica Suite" was especially combined for the Proms (and I think different than what we saw in the series) I filmed that as well (it's beautiful!):

After the final song everyone came on stage once more to take a bow and a round of applause (and this was then repeated several times). I also went to the stage doors hoping one of the actors would come out to sign but unfortunately they didn't. Damn those undeground car parks. Barrowman!! *shakes fist* I did get signatures from Ben Folds (who is the official Doctor Who conductor and not too shabby to look at either) and Grant Llewellyn who also conducted a piece during this concert. On Sunday I also managed to score autograps from Murray Gold (which was my personal highlight as I absolutely adore his work) and vocalist Yamit Mamo. Ben Foster was there again too, being incredibly kind signing for god knows how many people while holding two heavy bags, a small suitcase and some other random stuff.

(at one point, I don't know when, a Fez had appeared on the head of the statue in the back there XD)

This is the cover of the programme by the way, yes I do have three copies... I don't know why either it was a spur of the moment thing (and I didn't even get the blue or orange covers they also had for sale!):

Wow, this turned out incredibly long... but at least I think I didn't leave anything out XD Hopefully it gives a good impression of the Doctor Who Proms for those who were unable to attend.
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