I don't know how many people will write to you about the Dear Friends concert, but let me be the one to tell you that it was absolutely AMAZING. Here's my rundown of it, for your info. Feel free to print it if you want, though I know it's long.
The Final Fantasy: Dear Friends concert was just...absolutely breathtaking. I can't even think of words to describe the emotions I felt while watching it.
It was at the Walt Disney Concert Hall, a beautiful brand new building in downtown LA. There were giant screens above the choir and orchestra that showed occasional CG sequences, and just heightened the emotion. We had what I swear were the best seats in the house - we had great views of both the screens and the LA Philharmonic Orchestra, and could see really well.
Also, they picked the best EmCee ever - James Arnold Taylor, also known as the voice of Tidus. He came out and his first words were Tidus's opening lines from FFX......"This is my story..." THAT got everybody's attention! ^_^
Liberi Fatali (FF8) - this one sent so many chills up my spine. The choir was so perfect, and the big drums and the CG scenes of Rinoa and Edea, everything just left me breathless. This was a wonderful way to start of the concert.
Zanarkand (FF10) - The piano at the beginning just set the stage, and when they started showing the CG of Yuna doing a Summoning, I just felt so emotional. It's such a beautiful piece.
Terra's Theme (FF6) - I don't know why, but this one got me kind of teary. The flute was just so beautiful, and it made me think of the many long hours I would spend leveling up on that game.
Theme of Love (FF4) - It had been so long since I played that game, that I wasn't too familiar with the song. It was a beautiful piece, however, and I really enjoyed it.
Dear Friends (FF5) - I'd never heard this before, as FF5 is one of the only FFs that I haven't played much of. It was a great song, and having it as the title of the concert seemed really fitting.
Vamo' Alla Flamenco (FF9) - Haha, better known as the "Chocobo Hot-And-Cold" song, this one was wonderful! They had a famous contemporary guitarist come in so that they did the song justice, and it was just great. Made me want to go play 100 games of Chocobo Hot-and-Cold.
Love Grows (FF8) - AKA Eyes On Me with no vocals, this song was gorgeous. I found myself mouthing the song's real words along with the orchestra...such a beautiful song. Again, that wonderful flute playing was back, and it just swept me away. Oh, and they showed Squall and Rinoa dancing up on the screens...so awesome ^^.
Aeris's Theme (FF7) - Do I even need to talk about the effect that this song had on me? I didn't shed any real tears, but I was crying inside. The parts with the piano were so moving, and whenever the music swelled, emotions swelled inside me.
Not Alone (FF9) - I was still kind of reeling from the emotional turmoil caused by Aeris's Theme, but like all of the others, this song was hauntingly beautiful.
Ronfaure (FF11) - I've never played FF11, and I was STILL recovering from Aeris's Theme, but this song was also pretty cool. I'm gonna have to steal the MP3 from Wes.
Final Fantasy I-III Medley - The best part of this medley was the chocobo theme right in the middle. The audience started chuckling a bit at the opening chords, then broke out into applause when they were sure of what it was :). You can't have a Final Fantasy concert without a true chocobo theme!
New Melody From FF7: Advent Children - This was a big surprise, and it was a really beautiful song, not much faster in tempo than Aeris's Theme. It sounds like remixed versions of a couple of FF7 songs, so it sounded familiar while at the same time was completely new. A really nice piece. Not to mention the Advent Children eye candy that they briefly showed on the screens.
Final Fantasy - AKA the Staff Roll, AKA the Main Theme, this was of course a wonderful song. It just tied all of the other songs together so well, and fit in perfectly.
Then, Nobuo Uematsu, the composer himself, came on stage and said a few things through a translator. He then introduced - get this - Yoshitaka Amano, the great illustrator of Final Fantasy, and Hironobu Sakaguchi, the creator of Final Fantasy. I felt like I'd died and gone to heaven. They all said a few things, and people thought it was time to leave, when...
The house lights dimmed, the stage lights lit up red, a Sephiroth engulfed in flames appeared on the giant screens, and the orchestra launched into One Winged Angel. It had been left off of the programs and everything, so people started cheering like crazy, and it was quite the rendition. The Latin chorus sent more chills up my spine, and my already emotional ecstatic state was heightened even further.
In summary, the concert was perfection.