Let It Be

Peviewed 14 September 2012, Opened 24 September 2012, Closed 19 January 2013 at the Prince of Wales Theatre
Transferred 1 February 2013, Closed 8 February 2014 at the Savoy Theatre
Returned previewed 9 July 2014, Opened 10 July 2014, Closed 20 September 2014 at the Garrick Theatre
Returned 28 February 2015, Closes 27 September 2015 at the Garrick Theatre

The return of the theatrical concert ahow Let It Be to London jam-packed with The Beatles' greatest hits. Already seen by over one million people worldwide.

Relive The Beatles rise from Liverpool's Cavern Club, through Beatlemania, and their later studio masterpieces in this multimedia presentation. Featuring live performances of the songs Twist and Shout, She Loves You, Drive My Car, Yesterday, Hey Jude, Come Together and, of course, Let It Be, along with many others!

This production returns to London's West End following a succcessful four month run at the Prince of Wales Theatre in 2012, a 12 month run at the Savoy Theatre in 2012 and a three month run here at the Garrick Theatre in 2014. Directed by John Maher with set designs by Tim McQuillen Wright, costumes by Jack Galloway, lighting by Humphrey McDermott, sound by Gareth Owen, video by Duncan McLean and original video by Darren McCaulley and Mathieu St-Arnaud. Originally directed by Joey Curatolo.

When this production was originally seen at the Prince of Wales Theatre in 2012 Charles Spencer in the Daily Telegraph hailed it as being "two glorious hours" adding that "Let It Be is essentially a concert with a brilliant covers band offering a non-stop parade of hits in more or less chronological order... the hits just keep on coming, and even the most complex numbers are performed with terrific panache... For those who love the Beatles, this show is as about as good as it gets." Paul Taylor in the Independent described how "with almost amusingly minimal commentary we're off on an unashamed, beautifully lit nostalgia binge through the hysteria of Shea Stadium, the psychedelia of Sgt Pepper, the flower-power phase and "All You Need Is Love", through to giving peace a chance and the split. In Joey Curatolo's mountingly enjoyable production." Ian Shuttleworth in the Financial Times highlighted that "musically the band are immensely skilled as they recreate sequences broadly describable as 'moptops', 'Shea Stadium', 'Sgt Pepper' and 'Abbey Road'... but the show remains utterly pointless as theatre." Neil Norman in the Daily Express said that "this doesn't bother with even a rudimentary narrative. It is just a bunch of musical counterfeiters performing the group's songs more or less in chronological order... The most interesting aspects of the show are the archive clips of crying, screaming, fainting fans in the grip of mass hysteria and the utterly bewildered cops trying to contain them." Libby Purves in the Times noted that "there is no dialogue or confected backstage 'story'. Just songs, more or less in order, each period staged in the familiar costumes, every move scrupulous... Is it theatre, though? Oddly, yes. The very lack of 'story', accompanied by the brilliance of the songbook, creates a mental space. Each of us privately makes an account of those seven years: from the Cavern to the Guru, innocence to sophistication, drugs, adulthood, regrets, the breakup. When the whole house at last sang Let It Be, cynicism was not an option." Michael Billington in the Guardian thought that "there is a good musical to be written about the Beatles, covering their artistic achievements as well as the internal friction that led to their breakup. Unfortunately, this is not it. Conceived by Beatles tribute band-turned-theatre company Rain, it simply offers an evening of faithfully executed Beatles hits. This kind of show is normally dubbed a juke-box musical, but I'd call it Tussaud Theatre: it asks us to gaze for a couple of hours on replicas of reality." Henry Hitchings in the London Evening Standard wrote: "For the first time the 'grand theatrical rights' to the band's back catalogue have been granted to a West End production, and that in itself seems something to applaud. But Let It Be is a missed opportunity. Fifty years on from the release of their first single, the music feels as vital as ever. Yet in essence this is a nostalgia trip. It doesn't tell us anything we don't already know... As for the interpretation of the songs, it’s vigorous and well-rehearsed. You can't fault the essential fidelity of execution."

This production originally previewed from 14 September 2012, opened on 24 September 2012 and closed on 19 January 2013 at the Prince of Wales Theatre before returning to London, firstly to the Savoy Theatre from 1 February 2013 to 8 February 2014 and then to the Garrick Theatre when it previewed from 9 July 2014, opened on 10 July 2014 and closed on 20 September 2014.

"John Lennon's claim in 1966 that The Beatles were 'more popular than Jesus' doesn't make it into Let It Be, a very jolly new show in which a band of approximate lookalikes - some of their mop tops and moustaches are decidedly dodgy - strum their way through some 20 Beatles numbers. But that's because there's nothing going on here except the songs. No back story, no narrative, nothing new... Of course it's impossible to resist a concert of some of our favourite songs. But by far the best bits of this show are the film footage from the era of Beatlemania." The Mail on Sunday

"As fetid an exhibit as has been paraded through theatreland in many a year, this jukebox Beatles musical has already attracted a rumoured £1m-plus in advance bookings... Deprived of dialogue or a plot, the audience is instead invited to sit back and savour a Fab Four facsimile: 30 songs are performed live (with a little help from backing tapes and a hidden multi-instrumentalist), with varying degrees of accuracy, by four musicians who at least bear a passing resemblance to the originals." The Sunday Times

"There is no attempt whatsoever at a plot in Joey Curatolo’s dire production, but the big numbers are punctuated by old television footage of events that were happening at the time these songs were originally sung – the bombing in Vietnam, Neil Armstrong on the Moon and so on – and there’s a commentary by Tony Blackburn to please the ageing pop pickers. The costumes by Jack Galloway are exuberant enough and there are some interesting visual effects from Darren McCaulley and Mathieu St-Arnaud, but I wish they really had all just let it be." The Sunday Telegraph

"To mark the half-century since the release of Love Me Do, we have this show, described in the promotional material as a 'media-rich theatrical concert’ - or, in other words, a Fab Four tribute act doing a quick dash through the band's back catalogue, intercut with period visuals flashed up on screens either side of the stage. There`s no storyline to link the songs: in so far as there’s a narrative, it's provided by the musicians' changing hairstyles and clothes, and archival footage - cheesy TV ads, anti-war protests - evoking the soaring l960s zeitgeist... The real Beatles performed their last proper gig in l966, long before the release of Sgt Pepper. Unsurprisingly then, their avatars struggle to make sense of the likes of A Day ln The Life here: you'd need more than four Beatles not-so-lookalikes (plus keyboardist) to reproduce such studio-crafted orchestral psychedelia satisfyingly on stage. The more straightforwardly beat-based, guitar-driven material works much better." The London Metro

Let It Be in London at the Garrick Theatre opened on 28 February 2015 and closed on 27 September 2015