Arts & Entertainment

Chicago Philharmonic Society Promotes “Blue Planet II” With Surprise Performance

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BBC America is set to release season two of Blue Planet, a remarkable television series that takes viewers through the depths of the ocean and into the lives of the creatures that dwell beneath the waves. To celebrate the season’s launch, members from the Chicago Philharmonic Society (CPS) held a pop-up performance in Union Station’s Great Hall.

Passersby were treated to part of the program’s soundtrack, written by Academy Award winning composer, Hans Zimmer (“The Lion King,” “Gladiator,” “Inception”). Flying manta rays and schools of fish were displayed on a screen behind the musicians as they played, truly encapsulating the magic of oceanic life the way only Blue Planet II could.

Miguel Ruiz
Miguel RuizMembers of the Chicago Philharmonic Society perform a piece from Hans Zimmer.

Narrated by David Attenborough, the eight-part series utilizes state-of-the-art technology to explore the aquatic unknown, and, hopefully, uncover secrets never before seen on video.

Groundbreaking film producer Orla Doherty and her team became the first people to venture 3,280 feet below the arctic ice to study the creatures that live beneath it. According to The Verge, Doherty — with the help of several scientists — was able to capture many of the otherworldly happenings taking place on the ocean floor. Footage of underwater methane volcanoes, dexterous Tuskfish and Giant Trevally are all featured in stark detail. The four-year filming process culminated in a true work of art.

The series attempts to shed light on the beauty of marine life, as well as the impact mankind is having on it. The final episode in the series will focus solely on man-made issues affecting the ocean and its inhabitants.

The series’ message was heard loud and clear during the CPS’s pop-up orchestral performance. Beginning softly with a single violin and growing to include a bass and two cellos, the piece concluded with a piercing viola followed by audience applause. The beautiful yet somber tune stood as a reminder of the importance and fragility of our oceans.

New episodes of Blue Planet II premiere Saturdays at 9 p.m. on BBC America.

A previous version of this article stated that members from the Chicago Symphony Orchestra performed in Union Station. It was corrected to the Chicago Philharmonic Society.

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