“Rain,” A Tribute To The Beatles at the PantagesTheater — By Buddy Sampson on April 13, 2011 at 10:09 pm
“Rain,” A Tribute To The Beatles
A Masterful Portrayal of The Beatles’ Music in America
By Buddy Sampson
“Rain,” currently running at The Pantages Theater until April 17, 2011, is billed in their press releases as “the next best thing to seeing The Beatles,” by the Associated Press. Normally, press releases have a bit of hyperbole designed to give a PR boast to a show or production that try to make you attend their show, then fall short of the mark. “Rain” delivers. For many that are over the age of 40 that remember the golden age of The Beatles, when you attend the production of “Rain,” you find yourself transformed to that age. The cast of “Rain” puts on a masterful performance and portrayal of The Beatles, with one forgiveable exception-Paul McCartney is left-handed and the actor that plays Paul, Joey Curatolo is right-handed. But otherwise, the show is flawless. Joined by Steve Landes, Joe Bithorn, Ralph Castelli and Mark Beyer, the show accurately portrays The Beatles in concert on legendary TV shows and concert arenas. “I grew up on The Beatles,” said actress Loretta Divine, who can be seen on the ABC television series “Grey’s Anatomy” and will be starring in Tyler Perry’s ‘Madea’s Big Happy Family’,” in theaters this Easter. “I use their songs all the time in all the Broadway shows that I’ve ever been cast in. ‘The Long And Winding Road’ is always in your head.”
In the beginning of the production, the audience at The Pantages is transported back to the Ed Sullivan Show in the sixties. It is part of the TV show, with applause signs and cues. “The Beatles had music that influenced everyone’s lives,” said comedienne and personality Jo Anne Worley, best known for Rowan and Martin’s Laugh In.” Worley just did a tribute to actress Betty White, which was a fundraiser for animal causes. “First of all, when they came over (from England) and they had long hair, we all went, ohhh, how could they possibly!! When we look now how clean cut and nice and lovely they were and they had a little bit of an accent, that was the only thing that was a little different about them. Their music is absolutely timeless.” “Rain” features The Beatles classic songs, such as “I Want To Hold Your Hand,” and “It’s A Hard Days Night” among others. It is a real hoot and just a fun show. They notably avoid The Beatles personal lives and don’t mention the trials of the timeless group, which makes the show just a good time to be had by all. Seen at The Pantages were Charlene Tilton, sexy actress and comedian Tawny Kitaen, who will be on the CBS TV show, CSI on April 28th and on an A&E biography in the fall, actress Kate Linder of “The Young And The Restless” and Leif Garrett, among others. The show covers many of the musical phases and evolution of the music of The Beatles through the turbulent 60’s and closes with an audience participation of their classic song, “Hey Jude.” It is a fantastic and masterful portrayal of the iconic musical group.
“Rain” is a must see. It is only running until April 17th. For more information, please visit BroadwayLA.org or call 1-800-982 ARTS (2787) for tickets.