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RLPO and Bootleg Beatles to celebrate 50 years of Abbey Road and Let It Be

The RLPO and the Bootleg Beatles are teaming up once more – this time to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Abbey Road.

The Phil and the UK’s leading Beatle tribute band received acclaim for their series of It Was 50 Years Ago Today concerts in 2017, marking the golden anniversary of the seminal Sgt Pepper album.

This time, along with Abbey Road, they will also perform songs from Let It Be, which was recorded in early 1969 but not released until May 1970.

Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band member and The Rutles’ ‘Ron Nasty’, Neil Innes, will compere the series of concerts which will start at the Philharmonic Hall on September 26-27 – coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the release of Abbey Road - and take in venues around the UK before ending at Glasgow’s Clyde Auditorium on May 8 2020, the 50th anniversary of Let It Be.

And with both September Liverpool shows selling out, a new date has been added for the Philharmonic Hall - ending the tour in the city on May 9 2020.

Tickets go on general sale on September 4.

The orchestra will be conducted by Richard Balcombe, who returns after the Sgt Pepper concerts and composer Ian Stephens will arrange songs which will include Come Together, Here Comes The Sun, The Long and Winding Road and Let It Be.

Stephens said: “‘I’ve known these albums all my life, but in preparing these orchestral versions I’m getting to know them a whole lot better.

It Was 50 Years Ago Today performed at the Echo Arena. Photo by David Munn

“I began by listening to the original tracks intensively with Andrew Barreau from The Bootleg Beatles, working out all the places where the orchestra takes the limelight – where it will provide a huge surge of brass-led power, or a lush dose of strings – and the places where it can take more of a background role

“Then I lovingly transcribe all the songs by ear, getting down all the melodic and rhythmic details, every one of those intricate vocal harmonies that makes the music of The Beatles so addictive.

“I’m keeping true to the spirit of George Martin’s timeless arrangements, but adding a super charged orchestral scaffolding. The brilliant musicians of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra will really be able to let rip, adding a whole extra level of power and beauty.”

Neil Harrison of The Bootleg Beatles added: “The Bootleg Beatles/Liverpool Philharmonic collaboration to bring the Sgt Pepper album to life on stage was such a wonderful, creative, often challenging but hugely rewarding experience.

“Frankly I can't think of anything more exciting than to repeat the whole process all over again.”

The concert will tour to The Bridgewater Hall, Manchester (September 29), Symphony Hall Birmingham (October 16), the Royal Albert Hall (October 17), Anvil at Basingstoke (October 18), Nottingham's Royal Concert Hall (May 2 2020), Sage Gateshead (May 6 2020), Usher Hall in Edinburgh (May 7 2020) and Glasgow's Clyde Auditorium (May 8 2020).

And In The End will be performed at the Philharmonic Hall on September 26-27 2019 and May 9 2020. More from the website HERE

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