Beatles musical hits the big stage

CERRITOS - "Ticket to Ride," an award-winning touring production based on the Beatles, will perform at the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts on March 19 at 8 p.m.Tickets start at $30 and can be purchased online at or by calling (562) 916-8500. In December 2008, Andy Nagle, a volunteer producer with the La Habra Depot Theatre, wrote a script retelling the Beatles story through the eyes of manager Brian Epstein and featuring the live music of a Beatles tribute band. The show premiered to sold-out audiences in April 2008 and a number of nights were added to keep up with demand. The show received rave reviews from Los Angeles Times, Backstage West, San Gabriel Valley News, Pasadena Star-News and Whittier Daily News. The show also earned a prestigious Roar of the Crowd award and was rated higher by online audiences than any other stage production in Southern California during the week of April 26, 2009. The show is widely considered by industry insiders to be the most unique Beatles show in decades. More than just a Beatles tribute concert, "Ticket to Ride Musical" gives the audience a chance to "be there" at pivotal moments in the extraordinary career of the Beatles: Liverpool's legendary Cavern Club, The Ed Sullivan Show, Shea Stadium, Abbey Road Studios and the final live performance on the rooftop of their Apple Corp offices. With manager Brian Epstein serving as narrator, "Ticket to Ride Musical" allows the audience to get a glimpse inside the world of the Beatles from their point of view, as well as hear some of the greatest songs ever written. Historical settings such as the Cavern Club are established on stage with videos and images which play behind the actors and musicians on a large video screen. "The last thing on my radar was writing a script for a Beatles tribute show," said Nagle, a retired lawyer. "But I loved the idea of "being there" with the Fabs when all of these legendary events took place," continued Nagle. Four Beatles tribute musicians and actors were cast to portray the Fab Four in the musical. With their tight harmonies, flawless renditions, custom-tailored costumes, vintage instruments, Liverpudlian dialect and precise attention to detail, they recreate the magic of the Beatles, including the Fab Four's cheeky personalities and familiar onstage banter. "Ticket to Ride Musical" takes the audience back to February 1964 when America watched the Beatles for the first time on The Ed Sullivan Show, playing "I Want To Hold Your Hand." Progressing through their various musical stages, the audience re-experiences the psychedelic era of Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, the creation of the haunting "Blackbird" and the raucous rock and roll of "Revolution." "There have been so many different Beatle band concert shows over the years, but in "Ticket to Ride Musical," we get a chance to see the Beatles, up close and personal, and hopefully gain a deeper insight into who they really were," said Nagle. The four musician/actors cast to play John, Paul, George and Ringo were selected from 120 Beatle tribute musicians, most of whom showed up for auditions in costume and in character. The band features Benny Chadwick ("Paul"), Tyson Kelly ("John"), Robert Bielma ("George") and Axel Clarke ("Ringo"). The band is managed by Tom Maher, who was part of the management team for such world class acts Guns N' Roses, Slash, Blind Melon, Zakk Wylde, Danzig, Leon Russell, John Jorgenson and My Little Funhouse. Maher is still currently in management for Motorhead, Sepultara, Zebrahead, My Vitriol, as well as up and comers Orange, the UK's Obsessive Compulsive, and Finland's Icon Crash. Please note that the title of the show will change to "In My Life - A Musical Theatre Tribute to the Beatles after the Cerritos show. The show's website is

********** Published: March 3, 2011 - Volume 9 - Issue 46