Just in case anyone was thinking that the value of promoting classical music in video games was a passing fancy, the video game business recently sent a big reminder in the promotional material for what will likely be one of the largest grossing video games of this decade, Halo 3…
I don’t watch a lot of television and since I’m not a TiVo owner, I don’t enjoy the satisfaction of flipping past commercials. Instead, I usually push the mute button and read a nearby magazine or play with a nearby cat. However, a few weeks ago I left the volume on during a commercial set and in the middle of enticing Carmen, one of my cats, with a peacock feather, I heard my absolute favorite piano piece; frankly, I found it startling.
I was startled because the music wasn’t embedded behind a voice over for some new high end sedan or arranged into some awful orchestrated version but it was being pumped out at commercial strength volume in all of its glory. The entire advertisement consisted of nothing but Chopin’s Prelude No. 15 in Db Major, The Raindrop, and a series of what looks like a diorama of still images from the game (talk about old-school). Click the video below to watch the commercial in its entirety.
Here’s the real kicker, the music works every bit as well for Halo 3 as it did for the 1950 Bugs Bunny cartoon, Water, Water Every Hare (which you can watch below). It would be difficult for anyone to deny the impact all of those wonderful Carl Stalling arrangements of "Classical Music’s Greatest Hits" had on exposing what we now call the cultural consciousness to classical music. As such, don’t write off the value of video games as the "Bugs Bunny Delivery System" for this generation’s children.