Broadway in Chicago presents
RAIN, A Tribute to the Beatles
At the Ford Center for the Performing Arts Oriental Theatre, 24 W. Randolph
Wednesday, Thursday, Sunday at 7:30pm
Friday and Saturday at 8pm
Saturday and Sunday at 2pm
Thru February 13th
Running Time: Two hours includes a twenty minute intermission
Reviewed by Katy Walsh
Beatle Mania! British Invasion! It’s a forty year flashback to the sixties where the mop-top quartet has been resurrected. Broadway in Chicago presents RAIN, A Tribute to the Beatles. Defying death and aging, the Beatles are alive and singing in Chicago for one week only. The concert chronicles the six year British group influence in the United States. The show starts with the reenactment of their memorable performance in February 1964 on the Ed Sullivan Show. Oversize visual projections display the historic images of fans crazed over the imported sensation. An astounding 74 million viewers tuned in to see the notable record-breakers that would continue for the next 50+ years despite disbanding and 50% dying. The remembrance of fainting girls and screaming fans is enhanced by the actual Beatle-quality of the RAIN-makers. The illusion continues as the guys sing through the Sergeant Pepper to Vietnam years. The costumes are more flamboyant. The hair gets longer. And the music gets more poignant. It’s ‘A Day in the Life’ from ‘Yesterday’, a classic rewind for Beatle enthusiasts.
The Beatles 2.0 engage with British wit and mind-boggling musical mimicking. Steve Landes (John Lennon) IS ‘I am the Walrus.’ He hits those high notes with quirky accuracy. Graham Alexander (Paul McCartney) is the ‘Hey Jude!’ ringleader. Graham acts as the friendly narrator introducing songs and getting the audience on their feet. Douglas Cox (Ringo Starr) beats it out with high energy, enthusiasm. Tom Teeley (George Harrison) keeps the ‘A Hard Day’s Night’ going with an amicable George-like quality. The singing is undeniably, the best of the Beatles. The jovial synergy between this Beatle version might ‘Let It Be’ ‘Strawberry Fields Forever’ until they find a Yoko look-alike. RAIN is big drops of fun! Plus, when was the last time you were at a concert and knew all the words?
‘With a little help from my friend’, Steve described the show with ‘for Beatle fans!’