‘In My Life - A Musical Theatre Tribute to the Beatles’ plays the Edmonds Center for the ArtsRetelling of Beatles story on stage no easy task
When Brian Epstein first saw The Beatles playing at the Cavern Club in 1961, he wasn’t overly impressed. The four members were dressed in black leather jeans and leather jackets, and looked completely out of control.
“I was actually quite put off by the Beatles. They wore black leather jackets, smoked as they played, and generally acted unprofessional on stage," Epstein said.
"But they gave a captivating performance, and had an amazing ability to connect with the audience - especially the girls."
So begins “In My Life,” the musical biography of the Beatles told through the eyes of Epstein and featuring the live music of accomplished Beatles tribute, Abbey Road.
Sets such as the Cavern Club are established by images projected on a large screen behind the musicians and actors.
The show has been touring for five years with a critic for the Orange County Register at one point declaring, "If you see one tribute show, see this one – smart and loads of fun."
The task of trying to write a script telling the history of the Beatles from their point of view – a glimpse inside the world of the Fab Four – was a difficult undertaking.
Producers Tom Maher and Andy Nagle spent six months reading everything they could find that was written about the Beatles, but there is so much discrepancy about what actually happened behind the scenes.
“When we found the same account of facts told by several different people, we placed weight on those story lines,” said trial-lawyer-turned-music-producer Nagle.
“One of the problems was that even the Beatles themselves changed their stories over time.”
More than just a Beatles tribute concert, "In My Life" gives the audience a chance to “be there” at pivotal moments in the extraordinary career of the Beatles – from Liverpool’s legendary Cavern Club to the Ed Sullivan Show, Shea Stadium’s 50,000+ screaming fans, and their final live performance on the rooftop of their Apple Corp. offices.
“It’s nice to learn some things about the Beatles that people may not have known, but in the end the audience really wants to hear the music,” said Maher. “So the band plays 33 Beatles hits during the show.”
The cast rehearsed Beatles music for six months and then performed Fab Four tribute concerts in clubs and bars for over a year under the name "Abbey Road" before the producers began booking the musical.
The band features Chris Paul Overall ("Paul"), Nathaniel Bott ("John"), Jesse Wilder ("George") and Axel Clarke ("Ringo").
Brian Epstein is played by Alxander Jon. The production includes multimedia, period costumes and vintage instruments.
The Edmonds-Woodway High School string quartet will join the band on stage for five ballads.
Be transported and relive how four young lads from Liverpool were propelled to fame and fortune from their humble childhood beginnings on June 4 at the Edmonds Center for the Arts.
“In My Life - A Musical Theatre Tribute to The Beatles” plays at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 4.
Tickets are $35/$45/$55 and may be purchased online at www.edmondscenterforthearts.org by phone at 425-275-9595, by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or at the theater box office.
The Edmonds Center for the Arts is at 410 Fourth Ave. N, Edmonds. The show is appropriate for all ages.