REVIEW: LET IT BE (Churchill Theatre, Bromley)
I wasn’t sure what to expect from Let it Be as I don’t really listen to The Beatles. I was pleasantly surprised as to how many songs I recognised and some old classics of course.
Let It Be isn’t a musical, nor should it be treated as one. It is a tribute concert and celebration of the legendary music of The Beatles. I initially had the perception it would be loosely based around how they were formed and their rise to global stardom. However there wasn’t a storyline and it did follow along the lines more of a tribute concert.
For many this would have been a reflection on the last six decades and the continual stream of hits. For others it was a great opportunity to become familiar with an array of songs, many of which are still well known and played today. What struck me is that whether you were lucky enough to have witnessed the hype ‘back in the day’, or whether you were listening to these songs for the first time, the music showed the Liverpool lads at their finest. Showing that British is Best!
The show starts in Liverpool’s Cavern Club and the audience is taken through the heights of Beatle-mania, then to their other masterpieces with tracks including Twist and Shout, Let It Be, Yellow Submarine and my personal favourite from the show – Yesterday. An honest and emotional performance, with some audience participation too.
Iain Hornal plays a perfect Paul, with the continual head motions that he is known for, whilst John Brosnan plays a shy and solemn George. Ringo played by Luke Roberts happily beats the drum most of the night, and even manages to lead a rendition of Yellow Submarine later in the show. However I struggled at times to understand the humour of George and this felt a little unnatural at times.
The set itself was simple – two large old style televisions on the fly bar which were often used to project images and videos on to, and some live filming from the show was played here too, which gave it very much of a ‘live’ concert feel, which suited the show. Unfortunately the show was late going up due to a technical glitch with the audio track and videos not playing. However after ten minutes everything worked as it should, although after 10 minutes Paul managed to disconnect their guitar whilst walking back on stage, albeit a spot of improvisation and him commenting about being ‘Unplugged’ provided the audience with a little titter. After this, the show seemed to run more smoothly.
The energy throughout the show slowly built and the more energetic musical numbers were played during the second act – with lots of lighting and smoke being used during the last few numbers.
Let It Be is a great evening for any avid Beatles fan and is simple to follow and was enjoyable. It is a great lesson to those that aren’t familiar with The Beatles and showcases some great numbers. I did enjoy the show, however I was expecting a storyline to follow and unfortunately I think at times the show lost it’s flow, this perhaps due to my age and not having much exposure to the music of The Beatles.
The show embarks on a UK wide tour until July 2016, playing many venues up and down the country, before embarking on a tour of North America.
Reviewed by Sam Harler