PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- As guests waited in line outside the Kimmel Center for Performing Arts in Philadelphia, you could tell it was a special night.
After all, it had been nearly two years since anyone had seen the Philadelphia Orchestra live in person.
Tuesday night was the first night since the start of the pandemic the orchestra performed in front of a full-capacity, live crowd.
"This is my first evening out in a wonderful venue. So, I'm very excited to be here," said ticket holder Erica James.
Once through the door, after being screened for proof of a COVID-19 vaccination, you felt the energy only increase.
"I'm excited because we're all back in person. I love the orchestra," said guest Ellen Phillips.
Then at 6 p.m., it was showtime. The Philadelphia Orchestra was greeted with a standing ovation. The performance started with world-renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma.
Philadelphia Orchestra CEO Matias Tarnopolsky says this was a big night for more than just the guests. Many employees made big sacrifices to get back to this point.
"Everyone took a salary cut and some people left the organization. But we were really able to keep everyone as whole as we could, and making music and connected to the community," said Tarnopolsky.
The orchestra certainly didn't disappoint the crowd.
"It was very emotional and, of course, wonderful," said guest Enrique Curchitser.