WATCHING a much-loved film never gets old but add a live orchestra to perform the iconic scores of the Star Wars franchise and you really are in for a treat.

An evening in the audience of the Novello Orchestra as they provided an accompaniment for the journey of Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, Princess Leia and Obi-Wan Kenobi in Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope was a special and unique experience.

As soon as the first bars of the trademark 20th Century Fox sequence had been struck and the booming tones alongside the crawling text filled the venue, it was clear the talented musicians would put on a fine show.

The thrilling and memorable scenes throughout the film, which was first released in 1977, provided obvious highs in drama and vibrancy from the orchestra.

But the live performance of Oscar-winning composer John Williams’ score also showcased the important role music plays in maintaining the flow of the story.

As R2-D2 and C-3PO go their separate ways on the sandy dunes of Tatooine in the movie's early stages, it was impossible not to appreciate the value of instrumental craft to support the moving pictures.

Footage of Luke Skywalker looking out on the setting sun with The Force Theme playing had greater power and meaning than any previous viewing as the orchestra delivered a crescendo.

Short phases without live music, such as the famous cantina scene (admittedly a minor disappointment), only made you welcome the inevitable return of the strings and brass.

As the film reached its conclusion, the intensity of Luke's efforts to the destroy the Death Star with Darth Vader close on his tail reached fever pitch with the musicians in full flow.

While the closing credits rolled, conductor David Mahoney remained energetic and charismatic as he led the orchestra to a perfect end and rapturous applause from the crowd.