‘Frozen Planet In Concert’ at Wolf Trap by Erica Laxson

Frozen Planet in Concert is a High Definition Arctic adventure brought to new life with live orchestration performed by Washington’s own talented NSO. Explore a vivid and unbelievably close up look at some of nature’s most unique moments selected by Producer, Composer, and Conductor George Fenton. His emotional score highlights each mesmerizing clip from the breathtaking seven-part Frozen Planet series and draws the audience into the stark imagery and frozen wonderland that we instantly feel a part of.


Act One explored the bitter cold of the arctic and the wonders planet Earth has in store for resilient life surviving in the wintery climate. From the microscopic beauty of an infinite combination of snowflakes to a bloody hunt through red and white snow, Fenton and the NSO highlighted every thrill with the emotionally charged score so wonderfully matched to each unique scene. Fenton’s introduction to each clip sets prepared the audience for whatever may come as he fondly pointed out his favorite moments to watch for.

Act Two took us to the other side of the Earth for a stunning look at life in the Antarctic. With three scenes featuring at all sorts of penguins, Fenton happily composed laugh-inducing music to accompany their robust antics. Birds and beasts of all kinds filled the giant Wolf Trap screens and it felt as though the gorgeous scenery was close enough to step into.

Frozen Planet took several years to produce and required a dedicated crew to capture some of the rarest footage ever seen by man. Despite the frigid conditions, we never see just how fearless these cameraman had to be until the final story that honors the original Antarctic explorers; Roald Amundsen and Robert Falcon Scott. As we mirrored their journey in helicopters and snow mobiles, it was nearly impossible to imagine the brave men and their crew striking on a similar journey on foot all those years ago. Kudos to the entire production team who braved the cold to deliver this stunning imagery!

Editors Ed Ison, Jo Payne, and Matt Swarbrick may not have braved the cold, but they crafted their own visual symphony within each story that perfectly synched to Fenton’s breathtaking score. Each scene was beautifully introduced and the audience joyfully reacted to every jaw dropping escape, discovery, and brutal kill.

5 stars for a mesmerizing journey to the frozen ends of the Earth, some of the most beautiful Nature photography ever seen, and the perfectly composed music that gave each vignette its own emotionally charged and breathtaking moments.

Photo by Jeff Wilson.
Photo by Jeff Wilson.

Frozen Planet in Concert played for one-night-only on June 28, 2013 at The Filene Center at Wolf Trap -1551 Trap Road, in Vienna, VA. For future events, check their online calendar of events.

An interview with Composer George Fenton by Joel Markowitz.

Love the NSO? Check out the rest NSO’s 2013 schedule at Wolf Trap:

Carmina Burana on July 12, 2013
Video Games Live! on July 13, 2013
La traviata on July 19, 2013
1812 Overture on July 26, 2013
America the Beautiful on July 27, 2013
Wicked Divas on July 28, 2013
Bugs Bunny at the Symphony II on August 1 & 2, 2013
Singin’ in the Rain on August 3, 2013



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