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In My Life

The story of Beatles through the eyes of Brian Epstein

Tribute band Abbey Road guides us through the life of the Beatles. Photo credit:

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One would be hard-pressed to find a group of artists, at least in the modern era, who have been more intricately and consistently studied than the Beatles. Since emerging in 1963, the lives of John, Paul, George, and Ringo - individually and together - have been catalogued and documented to the point of complete cultural saturation. Countless books, songs, pieces of art, documentaries (including a recent one by Ron Howard), articles, and other ephemera have strived to paint a picture of how and why the Beatles were so important, and what made them tick as people. Resurgences and backlashes piled on top of one another, with audiences at times embracing and reflexively decrying the band, but no one could deny their status as some of the most essential artists of the 20th century.

Finding new ways to explore the Beatles, then, has become a sort of cottage industry for people who live in a world of pop culture-examination. After over 50 years of obsessing over the Beatles, what else is there to say? In My Life - A Musical Theatre Tribute to the Beatles strives to answer this challenge by showing the career of the band through the eyes of manager Brian Epstein. It's nothing new for musical revues to traverse the Beatles' evolving styles and innovations in sound they made over their enormously influential seven years in the spotlight, but by focusing on a man that was intimately close with the band, In My Life aims to depict key moments from a new perspective.

Epstein, who has himself had scads of books written about him since his untimely death in 1967, acts as narrator, taking the audience through the major events of the Beatles. Fittingly, since Epstein discovered the Beatles at the Cavern Club, that's where we start. As you might assume, we also get landmark moments ranging from their iconic debut on The Ed Sullivan Show, to their Shea Stadium performance, to their final concert on the roof of the Apple Corps headquarters. The multi-media show is part revue, part history lesson, tied together with performances by the incredibly popular Beatles tribute band, Abbey Road.

All told, 33 songs are performed in the duration of In My Life, which only grazes the sheer volume of indelible music the Beatles gave us. Though the Beatles only existed in the public eye for a total of seven years, their impact was monumental. But, far from being the be-all and end-all of the band, In My Life endeavors to dig a little further below surface-readings of the Beatles in an infectiously fun and family-friendly way, which it's succeeded at since its debut in 2009, garnering critical and audience acclaim. For families wanting to educate littler kids on the importance of the Beatles, or for anyone wanting to bask in the nostalgic glow of some of the best music ever created, In My Life serves as a bright and compelling document of pop culture history.

In My Life, 7:30 p.m., Friday, Oct. 14, $35-$65, Rialto Theater, 310 S. 9th St, Tacoma, 253.591.5894,

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