Thursday, 31 January 2019

New film announced - What do you think?

Did you read the news yesterday (see below) about this new film?  Many fans have patiently been waiting years for the official release of Let It Be, the film originally created from the same footage. What are your thoughts?  Are you excited for the new film or disappointed that the original isn't being released?


New film collaboration between The Beatles and acclaimed Academy Award winning director Sir Peter Jackson announced
The Beatles in the studio
London – January 30, 2019 - Apple Corps Ltd. and WingNut Films Ltd. are proud to announce an exciting new collaboration between The Beatles and the acclaimed Academy Award winning director Sir Peter Jackson. The new film will be based around 55 hours of never-released footage of The Beatles in the studio, shot between January 2nd and January 31st, 1969. These studio sessions produced The Beatles’ Grammy Award winning album Let It Be, with its Academy Award winning title song. The album was eventually released 18 months later in May 1970, several months after the band had broken up.
The filming was originally intended for a planned TV special, but organically turned into something completely different, climaxing with The Beatles’ legendary performance on the roof of Apple's Savile Row London office — which took place exactly 50 years ago today.
Peter Jackson said, "The 55 hours of never-before-seen footage and 140 hours of audio made available to us, ensures this movie will be the ultimate ‘fly on the wall’ experience that Beatles fans have long dreamt about - it’s like a time machine transports us back to 1969, and we get to sit in the studio watching these four friends make great music together.” 
Although The Beatles were filmed extensively during the 1960s - in concerts, interviews and movies - this is the only footage of any note that documents them at work in the studio.
The Let It Be album and movie, having been released in the months following The Beatles’ breakup, have often been viewed in the context of the struggle the band was going through at that time. 
“I was relieved to discover the reality is very different to the myth,” continues Jackson, “After reviewing all the footage and audio that Michael Lindsay-Hogg shot 18 months before they broke up, it’s simply an amazing historical treasure-trove. Sure, there’s moments of drama - but none of the discord this project has long been associated with. Watching John, Paul, George, and Ringo work together, creating now-classic songs from scratch, is not only fascinating - it’s funny, uplifting and surprisingly intimate”.   
"I’m thrilled and honoured to have been entrusted with this remarkable footage - making the movie will be a sheer joy.”
Jackson will be working with his They Shall Not Grow Old partners, Producer Clare Olssen and Editor Jabez Olssen. The footage will be restored by Park Road Post of Wellington, New Zealand, to a pristine standard, using techniques developed for the WW1 documentary film which has been nominated for a BAFTA for best documentary.
The untitled film is currently in production and the release date will be announced in due course. This film is being made with the full co-operation of Sir Paul McCartney, Sir Ringo Starr, Yoko Ono Lennon, and Olivia Harrison. 
The Executive Producers are Ken Kamins for WingNut Films and Jeff Jones and Jonathan Clyde for Apple Corps.
Following the release of this new film, a restored version of the original Let It Be movie directed by Michael Lindsay-Hogg will also be made available.


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Wednesday, 30 January 2019

Pepperland is touring UK and Ireland in 2019 - Don't miss it!

Pepperland - Liverpool - by Robbie Jack
Pepperland - Liverpool - by Robbie Jack
Previously we told you about Pepperland performing at Plymouth.  

Well if you can't get to the South West, you are in luck!  Pepperland is touring!  

The tour has dates all across the UK and Ireland.  See locations and get tickets here.

Read more about the show in the press release below.

Co-commissioner, Dance Consortium presents
Mark Morris Dance Group in Pepperland - UK & Ireland Tour 2019
For dance and Beatles fans alike, a captivating dance work inspired by
The Beatles’ revolutionary Sgt. Pepper’s album

Media release: Monday 23 July 2018 - The Beatles’ ground-breaking 1967 Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album is the inspiration behind Mark Morris Dance Group’s (MMDG) Pepperland, presented by co-commissioner Dance Consortium and touring across the UK and Ireland between 20 March & 1 May 2019.

Pepperland is legendary choreographer Mark Morris’ unique tribute to the 50th anniversary of the release of the iconic LP. Hailed as the first-ever ‘art rock’ album and widely regarded as the best rock and roll album of all time, it spent 27 weeks at number one on the UK Albums Chart and 15 weeks at number one in the USA. It won four Grammy Awards in 1968, including Album of the Year, the first rock LP to receive the honour.

Mark Morris is renowned as an intensely musical choreographer and is undeviating in his devotion to music. The New York Times said Morris is the “most successful and influential choreographer alive and indisputably the most musical”. Since founding MMDG in 1980, he has created almost 150 works for the company, many of which are widely considered masterpieces.

By request of the City of Liverpool, Morris created Pepperland to pay homage to The Beatles, the album and its landmark anniversary. Its world premiere performances kicked off Liverpool’s Sgt. Pepper at 50 Festival in May 2017 and received critical and audience acclaim for both its dance and music.

Now, set to tour across the UK and Ireland in 2019 – London, Birmingham, Salford Quays, Bradford, Edinburgh, Canterbury, Cardiff, Plymouth, Southampton, Norwich, Newcastle and Dublin - Pepperland features an original score by composer Ethan Iverson, inspired by some of the album’s most enduring hits: Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band; With a Little Help From My Friends; A Day in the Life; When I’m Sixty-Four; Within You Without You; and Penny Lane. Iverson’s fresh arrangements of the original tracks will be performed live by MMDG Music Ensemble - Pepperland‘s unique chamber music group - and is interspersed with six original Pepper-inspired pieces that complement Morris’ profound understanding of classical music styles of allegro, scherzo, adagio, and the blues.

The septet music ensemble is led by Iverson on piano. Best known as long-time pianist with the trio Bad Plus, which he left last year, Iverson was selected by Time Out New York as one of 25 essential New York jazz icons, “perhaps NYC’s most thoughtful and passionate student of jazz tradition—the most admirable sort of artist/scholar.” For Pepperland he is joined by New York City’s finest musicians specializing in voice (Clinton Curtis), theremin (Rob Schwimmer), soprano sax (Sam Newsome), trombone (Jacob Garchik), organ/harpsichord (Colin Fowler) and percussion (Vincent Sperrazza).

Costume designer Elizabeth Kurtzman has designed numerous pieces for MMDG, including Dancing Honeymoon, Sang-Froid, The Argument, Greek to Me, Four Saints in Three Acts, Empire Garden, Visitation, Crosswalk, Petrichor and Pure Dance Items. Her bright, candy-coloured costumes, often splayed in geometric patterns, recall the swinging sixties as Morris’ dancers evoke the freedom and energy of a time that revolutionised social and political norms.

Artistic director and choreographer Mark Morris, said:The music for Pepperland, arranged and extrapolating from tracks on The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band is important to me because of the enormous impact the album caused in popular culture at large. Beatlemania in the UK and particularly in the US was a pivotal event in the turbulent social/political semi-revolution of the late 1960s. As a very young person, I was dazzled and confused by the music. I loved it and I loved The Beatles. Then, over the years, I lost touch and lost interest partly because of overexposure. When I was approached to participate in the commemorative project in Liverpool, I re-examined the recording and found so much of interest in it that I eagerly took on the big project of turning these very familiar songs into an evening length music and dance show. Pepperland is the exciting result.”

Composer Ethan Iverson, added:The Pepperland score is a suite of chamber music performed by some of New York City’s finest iconoclasts. Half the piece is arrangements of the songs we all know, half is new danceable pieces responding to the strong undercurrent of classical music present on the original album.

Community engagement is a vital component MMDG’s work. The group integrates opportunities for dance, music, talks, and education at its Brooklyn home, the Mark Morris Dance Center, as well as on tour around the world.

Pepperland’s UK and Ireland Tour 2019 will feature talks and participation events including MMDG’s renowned Dance for PD® workshops - born from the idea that people with Parkinson’s could benefit from the insight and specific techniques and methods used by dancers to guide their own bodies and minds. The workshops strive to increase coordination, balance, flexibility, and strength through music and movement from a broad range of dance styles.

Tuesday, 29 January 2019

Calling Any Beatle People visiting Madeira in 2019

We just received the report below about an opportunity for Beatles fans living or visiting Madeira. (Note: All the information is from a fan so we cannot verify it.)

Calling Any Beatle People visiting Madeira in 2019

I have just returned from Madeira and while there I spotted a poster for 'Orchestra Quartet Plays The Beatles'.

My wife (no Beatle fan) and I (no string quartet fan) along with another couple we had met on holiday went along and all four of us thoroughly enjoyed it.

If any Beatle Fan Club member or any one else is going to Madeira in 2019 then I can highly recommend this concert. A very unusual take on Beatle music but the talent and enthusiasm of the four musicians create a fantastic evening's entertainment.

The details are:

Concert: 'Plays The Beatles'
Venue: The English Church, Funchal
When: Every Thursday at 6pm
Musicians: Orchestra Quartet

What you get is about one hour and fifteen minutes of Beatle songs played by three violins and a cello. The quartet is led by Andrei & Olga Ladeichikov, a couple from Russia working at the Madeiran Concert Orchestra. On the night we went they were joined by a third violinist from Spain and a cellist from Poland. I think the line up varies and may include a guitarist on occasion.

The songs played included a great variety of hits from A Hard Day's Night to Hey Jude plus fabulous arrangements of album tracks such as Across The Universe and Norwegian Wood. In all 21 songs were covered and my only regret was that it finished too soon.

The church was pretty full so anyone going get there early to grab a seat near the front but do check that the concert is on by checking the posters around town or at the Church gate. The website does not mention it yet but when I pointed out to the ticket seller (who turned out to be Andrei the first violin) he promised to mention it to the web manager to get it updated.

I was so impressed that I felt I must tell any Beatle fans going to Madeira about these concerts so I hope you can put something on your website or in the magazine.

All the Best

Iain Allen

Saturday, 26 January 2019

BBC Radio Wiltshire will be remembering 50th anniversary

BBC Radio Wiltshire will be remembering 50th anniversary of The Beatles last live concert on the Rooftop of Apple on  Wednesday January 30th on the Mid-morning show.

Why not tune in to celebrate with them?
The show will be on sometime between 10:30 AM- 11:00 AM

104.3 & 103.5 FM  DAB

Tuesday, 22 January 2019

Upbeat Beatles New Theatre show

As described on their website:
"Our newly produced theatre show brings you the very best for John, Paul, George and Ringo.
The Upbeat Beatles take you on a journey through the most remarkable story in the history of rock and pop music.
Using projection and narrative, teamed with the pinpoint accurate music and vocals of the band, this show takes you on a “Magical History Tour”, travelling through the ages of The Beatles’ relatively short yet amazing career.
The Upbeat Beatles recreate the sheer fun, excitement and magnetic power of The Fab Four and the unforgettable music they created, with their attention to detail and stunningly precise reproduction.
Covering the beginnings at The Cavern Club in Liverpool.
The frenetic, early TV appearances.
Conquering America at Shea Stadium.
Frenzied “Beatlemania” in the early 60s.
The colourful, psychedelic, Flower Power era of Sgt Pepper’s and The Magical Mystery Tour.
The landmark final performance in 1969 atop the Apple Building in London.

Thursday, 17 January 2019

Let It Be returns this Spring with new Act Two Reunion


Let It Be returns this Spring due to popular demand

New Act Two features ‘must see’ reunion

Let It Be: A Celebration Of The Music Of The Beatles is returning to the stage in 2019 with a series of new tour dates announced in a year that marks key anniversaries in Fab Four history.

Let It Be UK Tour 2018 - Credit Anthony Robling
The acclaimed theatrical concert, which features an all-new Let It Be Part II reunion concert, proved such a hit with audiences and critics alike when it was premiered last year and a sell out European Tour, that it is now returning for a new UK Tour through Spring 2019.

After opening in Portsmouth on 22 April, Let It Be will then visit Inverness, Glasgow, Aberdeen, Blackpool, Bath, Bradford and Norwich.

Let It Be is a celebration of the iconic music of The Beatles and has already been seen by more than two million people worldwide, including a run in the West End and two UK tours.

Beatles fans are invited to join John, Paul, George and Ringo for an unforgettable night of live music. The cast will be announced shortly.

Act One takes audiences through the early days of the band as they embarked on their musical journey and onwards to the heights of global Beatlemania. The historic Royal Variety Performance, Shea Stadium and those iconic Sergeant Pepper costumes all feature. The first half of the evening features many of their most famous songs including I Want to Hold Your Hand, Day Tripper, Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, Penny Lane, A Day In The Life, Come Together, Get Back, and The End.

Let It Be UK Tour 2018 - Credit Anthony Robling
In a twist from the original Let It Be show, Act Two is set a decade after The Beatles went their separate ways. It gives fans a rare glimpse of how the Fab Four could have Come Together once again to perform – and is not to be missed.

Audiences are taken on a memorable and unique step back in time to the reunion concert taking place on 9 October 1980 – it’s John Lennon’s 40th Birthday. This is the ultimate concert that never was. The band reunite for one night only, just Imagine.

Let It Be UK Tour 2018 - Credit Anthony Robling
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 new tour coincides with a number of iconic anniversaries in the history of the most successful band of all time, The Beatles – who started out as just four young lads from Liverpool.

This year marks 50 years since The Beatles took those infamous steps across the pedestrian crossing outside EMI’s Abbey Road Studios in London, which went on to become one of the most famous album covers of all time.

Sadly, it also marks the 50th anniversaries of the group playing together for the final time with a rooftop performance on top of the Apple Corps building in London’s Savile Row. They also finished recording Abbey Road – and this year also marks half a century since the album was released.
Let It Be UK Tour 2018 - Credit Anthony Robling

Let It Be producer Jeff Parry said: “The original Let It Be was a hit with Beatles fans all over the world, but UK audiences’ reaction to the new show and the new Act Two reunion concert that never was, has been nothing short of phenomenal.

“It may be almost half a century since The Beatles split, but their popularity and their influence just seems to keep growing, with their incredible and creative catalogue of music attracting a whole new generation of fans. And with so many important anniversaries during 2019, we’re delighted to take this special show to thousands more Beatles fans here in the UK.”


A masterstroke’
British Theatre Guide

‘A rare glimpse of how the Fab Four could have Come Together once again’
Theatre News UK

“A joy to hear these beloved songs live”
The Mail on Sunday

‘The cast left me in complete awe during the second half of Let It Be’
Lowdown Magazine

Facebook:       /LetItBeUKTour
Twitter:           @LetItBeUKTour


Kings Theatre
Monday 22 April – Saturday 27 April 2019
023 9282 8282

Eden Court
Monday 29 April – Saturday 4 May 2019
01463 234234

SEC Centre
Friday 10 May – Saturday 11 May 2019
0844 395 4000

His Majesty’s Theatre
Monday 13 May – Saturday 18 May 2019
01224 641122

Winter Gardens
Wednesday 22 May – Saturday 25 May 2019
0844 856 1111

Theatre Royal
Monday 27 May – Saturday 1 June 2019
01225 448844

Alhambra Theatre
Tuesday 4 June – Saturday 8 June 2019
01274 432000

Theatre Royal
Monday 17 June – Saturday 22 June 2019
01603 630000