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Story by Andy Argyrakis
Though theatrical in nature, the evening was clearly a concert as opposed to a narrative play, but it still told the story of Liverpool's most beloved band through the songs themselves. The spectacle started with the act's British Invasion of America, most specifically, "The Ed Sullivan Show" where the foursome captured the hearts of every teenage girl in the country, not to mention every other person on the planet. Performances of early hits like "I Want To Hold Your Hand," "All My Loving" and "This Boy" showcased the group's early rock n' roll innovations, which may seem simplistic by today's standards, but were truly ground breaking at the time and continue to influence just about every musician regardless of genre.
As the exhaustively thorough revue breezed on, the chart-topping hits unfurled at rapid pace, loosely mirroring The Beatles 1 CD that Capitol Records released in 2000. Most of the obligatory staples were presented true to form, leading to an endless sing-a-long of '60s staples like "I Feel Fine" (enhanced by a simulated Shea Stadium frenzy) "Day Tripper," "Twist and Shout" and "A Hard Day's Night."
However, the evening was at its most experimental when exploring the psychedelic side of The Beatles' treasured catalogue. Latter career cuts like "Revolution," "Come Together" and Lennon's solo smash "Give Peace a Chance" indicated a more socially conscious mindset, while "Get Back" and "Golden Slumbers/Carry That Weight/The End" found the band continually pushing the creative envelope.
All the while, Rain continued to convince the crowd it could literally be the next closest thing to seeing The Beatles brought back to life, a point driven home by dead-on harmonies, deft instrumental replication and even visual resemblance. But by the end of the two hour-plus trip down memory lane, it was still the original band's striking sounds and uplifting lyrics that earned the most applause, once again reminding attendees of all ages that The Beatles truly were revolutionary in more ways than one.
Rain- A Tribute To The Beatles continues at Chicago's Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University with various performances through March 8. For additional details, visit www.RainTribute.com or www.BroadwayInChicago.com.
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