The Reno Video Game Symphony is a unique band program founded in 2011 that is focused on educating its members through rehearsal, the community through performance, and the world through collaboration. Our group is a collection of RVGS-sanctioned ensembles that focus entirely on performing the ideas found in video games. Currently our organization consists of a symphonic orchestra, a jazz band and choir. The music is arranged by members of RVGS specifically for each group. Our ensembles are always changing due to our open policy for members to create their own groups to perform with our program.
RVGS: Mission Statement
The Reno Video Game Symphony educates its members and the community about the artistic integrity of video games, while providing an inclusive social environment where all people feel safe and heard. To accomplish this mission, the Board of Directors:
- encourage the growth of our members by offering challenging musical arrangements and unique musical opportunities;
- perform music from video games of all styles, genres, and eras;
- welcome people regardless of background or talent; and
- provide safe and entertaining events for our members and the community.
RVGS: A Brief History
July 21, 2011 – Vidjyagames is born (first flyers are posted).
August of 2011 – Shaolin, Emerson, Sym, Kevin meet and start rehearsing – First songs include Animal Crossing (2am) and Final Fantasy VI (Relm). Sym and Kevin are both big fans of Super Nintendo era Squaresoft RPGs and those populate the first rehearsals.
Summer of 2012 – Artown – Small ensemble played several gigs for The Underground, Nevada Humanities, and MENSA. The Orchestra, conducted by Sym, produced a performance of the Aria De Mezzo Carraterre from Final Fantasy VI, this was a sold out performance of 250 attendees at the McKinley Arts and Culture Center on July 27th.
Fall of 2012 – Tomo Club, Tantalus, and Jazz Ensemble – The group segments into smaller groups with overlapping members, the Symphony is an organizing force for individual expression. The Orchestra continues to grow.
Cold months of 2013 – Day of Games – The Symphony’s first convention is a day-long event featuring live music performance, tabletop and console tournaments, as well as a video game trivia game show. A live Earthbound speedrun was projected during the course of the day. Tomo Club, Tantalus, and the Jazz Ensemble play their first shows during this period.
June 1, 2013 – GAME Expo – The convention is attended by 210 people. The Symphony’s events now combine artists, academics, and musicians. The GAME Expo event would pillage for another three years until it entered hibernation in 2016.
Mar. 21, 2014 – The Memory Card and Bigger Band – Several members of the Symphony produce a play focused on video games with Good Luck Macbeth Theater. Justin Davis reforms the Jazz Ensemble as the Bigger Band during this time.
Jan. 23, 2015 – Kickstarter – First Kickstarter launched to support a live album of the Orchestra and Bigger Band. The project reaches $4,500, almost doubling its funding goal.
April of 2016 – RVGS has a successful fundraiser and raises enough money to purchase our own Timpani.
July of 2017 – RVGS Game-A-Thon – RVGS hosted an art, games and music event for Reno Artown.
Dec. of 2018 – RVGS Tactical Music Action – The Reno Video Game Symphony partnered with Retro Replay and performed a full concert at the Carson City Community Center.
June of 2019 – BLFC – RVGS was invited to perform at the Biggest Little Furry Con and had one of our best shows yet.
Mar. of 2020 – RVGS temporary hiatus.
Oct. of 2021 – RVGS Jazz Combo starts back up and performs at BLFC making this our first returning concert.
Sept. of 2022 – RVGS Comes back in full force!
Dec. 18, 2023 – First livestreamed concert.