Last night I was lucky enough to attend the opening night of the new UK and Ireland Tour of the Beatles inspired show Let it Be at The Orchard Theatre, Dartford. Quite simply, it was amazing!
The smash hit West End show Let It Be is a celebration of the music of The Beatles is back with a brand new show which includes hits from the Fab Four’s incredible back catalogue of iconic songs as well as a second-half full to the brim of hits from John, Paul, George and Ringo’s solo material.
The first half of the show follows the band through their musical journey from the historic Royal Variety Performance, Shea Stadium and those iconic Sergeant Pepper costumes all feature. From scene to scene we get to see how the Beatles grew as artists with evolving music, outfits and grooming!
In the bittersweet second half the audience gets to experience the reunion concert that never was. The concert date is 9 October 1980, John Lennon’s 40th Birthday, set a decade after The Beatles went their separate ways. The band’s solo material featured includes Starting Over, Band On The Run, Black Bird, Got My Mind Set On You, My Sweet Lord, Live and Let Die, and Imagine.
The Let It Be cast is made up of Michael Gagliano from Woking (John Lennon); Emanuele Angeletti from Italy (Paul McCartney) who despite being right-handed has learnt to play left-handed; Irish/Australian John Brosnan (George Harrison); and Ben Cullingworth, from Market Harborough in Leicestershire (Ringo Starr). The band will be joined on stage throughout the tour by musical director Michael Bramwell on keyboards.
Let It Be is a mix of audio-visual displays with original broadcasting coverage of The Beatles concerts as well as live musical performances by the very talented cast. From the start, the atmosphere was buzzing with band encouraging us to clap, stand up and dance along to the well-known numbers. It really felt like we were actually at a Beatles gig!
Throughout the performance, the audience is encouraged to photograph and video the show and share across social media using the hashtag #LetItBeLive which is very different to usual productions. This really adds to the feel that we are actually at a gig. If you never made it to a Beatles gig or, like me, hadn’t been born yet, then this is a great way to feel like you were there. We had a blast.
Following the UK and Ireland Tour, the show heads to Europe and overseas, with the international tour taking in countries including Germany and North America. It is also hoped that the show will return to a London theatre in late 2018 or early 2019.