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The Beatles GB

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Trama e descrizione rappresentazione teatrale The Beatles
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Content Preview
D
THE BEATLES
Adapted by
Palkettostage
PROGRAMMA DI SALA AD ESCLUSIVO USO DIDATTICO.
SONO VIETATE LA RIPRODUZIONE E LA DIVULGAZIONE
TRAMITE APPARATI FOTOCOPIATORI,
SALVO ESPRESSA AUTORIZZAZIONE DI PALKETTOSTAGE.

The Beatles
difficoltà ad essi legate; il rispetto per i fan così come l’insofferenza di fronte
Gruppo musicale britannico, originario di Liverpool, attivo dal 1960 al 1970,
ad un’ingerenza che condiziona fortemente le loro scelte quotidiane. E poi
i Beatles hanno rivoluzionato la storia della musica, divenendo la più famosa
la droga, il viaggio in India e la ricerca spirituale; i momenti bui, come la
rock band di tutti i tempi. La portata della loro vicenda travalica i confini
morte del manager Epstein, il crollo finanziario e il triste epilogo con lo
strettamente musicali, condizionando mode, costumi e comportamenti dagli
scioglimento della band, fino alla conclusione della parabola narrativa di
anni sessanta ai decenni a seguire. Tutto comincia nel 1956, quando John
Lennon, colpito a morte da quel proiettile sospeso.
Lennon, sedicenne, fonda il gruppo The Quarrymen, che nel 1960 diventa
The Beatles. Oltre a Lennon, gli altri componenti della band sono Paul
Note di regia
L'esperienza straordinaria dei quattro baronetti di Liverpool rivive in un
McCartney, George Harrison, Stuart “Stu” Sutcliffe e Pete Best. Dopo la
musical avvincente; The Beatles ritrae con cura filologica e poesia la storia
gavetta ad Amburgo e le prime promettenti esibizioni, la formazione si
della famosa rock band e gli anni indimenticabili della Swinging London. In
assesta con l’uscita di Sutcliffe e di Best, l’ingresso di Ringo Starr, e con
palcoscenico ventisette personaggi - oltre ai quattro musicisti anche il loro
l’arrivo del manager Brian Epstein. Il resto è storia nota: le hit in vetta alle
mondo affollato di amici, manager, giornalisti, fan e, naturalmente, compagne
classifiche, la “beatlemania” imperante in tutto il mondo e le sperimentazioni
di vita - sono interpretati con versatilità da otto giovani attori-cantanti-
musicali unite ai sorprendenti successi commerciali, fino allo scioglimento
ballerini, protagonisti anche di colorati numeri coreografici. Accanto ai
ufficiale del gruppo, nel 1970, e alla tragica morte di Lennon, che segna il
brillanti dialoghi, lo spettacolo del giovane regista Daryl Branch seduce
tramonto del sogno coltivato dai numerosi fan di poter rivedere, un giorno,
per le musiche: una vasta scelta di pezzi dal repertorio dei Beatles con
di nuovo insieme i Fab Four.
brani proposti anche in originali arrangiamenti, tutti interpretati dal vivo. Il
viaggio nella memoria dei Fab Four si fa infine più vivido grazie ai preziosi
Le canzoni del musical
materiali video che arricchiscono lo spettacolo; sono documenti provenienti
Love Me Do (1962); Please, Please Me (1963); I Saw Her Standing There
dalle registrazioni pubbliche, estratti dai film, immagini dei concerti e
(1963); She Loves You (1963); I Want to Hold Your Hand (1963); Twist and
testimonianze di momenti privati, ma anche foto dei luoghi consacrati dal
Shout (1963); Help! (1965); Yesterday (1965); All You Need is Love (1967);
loro passaggio, come Liverpool e il Cavern Club, dove tutto ebbe inizio.
Magical Mystery Tour (1967); Penny Lane (1967); Ob-la-di, Ob-la-da (1968);
Hey Jude (1968); Back in The USSR (1968); Get Back (1969); Come Together
(1969); Yellow Submarine (1969); Let it Be (1970); The Long and Winding
Road (1970); Imagine (1971).

La trama
Omaggiamo i baronetti di Liverpool con un musical che ne ripercorre
la storia, attraverso lo sguardo di John Lennon che ricompone in un
lungo flashback l’avventura straordinaria dei Beatles. Il sipario si alza su
Mark Chapman, il fanatico che uccise Lennon nel 1980, che ritroviamo in
palcoscenico mentre impugna l’arma con cui spara all’ex-Beatle, il quale,
in quell’ultimo istante di esistenza, ripercorre magicamente la sua storia
personale e musicale. John Lennon adulto introduce via via personaggi e
situazioni, dalla madre Julia alla zia Mimi, dai compagni Beatles alle donne
della sua vita, Cynthia prima e Yoko Ono poi. Nei fitti dialoghi, punteggiati
dai grandi successi musicali della band, emerge la storia dei Fab Four, ricca
di particolari e curiosità sulla carriera, ma anche sulla loro vita privata:
gli anni spensierati, l’amore per la musica e i primi successi, ma anche le
2
3

CHARACTERS
(in order of appearance)
MARK CHAPMAN
OLDER JOHN
JULIA LENNON
GEORGE STANLEY
JOHN LENNON
MIMI
PAUL McCARTNEY
SYNOPSIS OF SCENES
STUART SUTCLIFFE
CYNTHIA
GEORGE HARRISON
ACT I
page
6
ASTRID
PETE BEST
ACT II
page 48
RAY McFALL
BRIAN EPSTEIN
RINGO STARR
GEORGE MARTIN
HELEN SHAPIRO
ED SULLIVAN
DIRECTOR
MAUREEN CLEAVE
MAHARISHI
REPORTER 1, 2, 3
ACCOUNTANT
YOKO ONO
NIXON
4
5

ACT I
LOVE LOVE LOVE
LOVE LOVE LOVE
LOVE LOVE LOVE
December 8th, 1980. Mark Chapman enters.
THERE'S NOTHING YOU CAN DO THAT CAN'T BE DONE
NOTHING YOU CAN SING THAT CAN'T BE SUNG
Mark Chapman. John Lennon just gave me his autograph. It’s so exciting.
NOTHING YOU CAN SAY BUT YOU CAN LEARN HOW TO PLAY THE GAME
I’ve always been a big fan of his. He is the greatest. The one and only. And
IT'S EASY
now I’ve got his autograph! Wow! It will be my treasure… I wonder how
much it will worth then! I am. I am. I am. Lines on a page. Bits of ink! But
NOTHING YOU CAN MAKE THAT CAN'T BE MADE
this ain’t going to save the world. It ain’t going to save me. It ain’t going to
NO ONE YOU CAN SAVE THAT CAN'T BE SAVED
save you, Mr Lennon. You didn’t believe enough in it.You’re not the saviour
NOTHING YOU CAN DO BUT YOU CAN LEARN HOW TO BE YOU IN TIME
of the world. You’re a major disappointment!
IT'S EASY
Chapman aimes the gun at the image of Lennon. Older John enters.
ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE
ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE
Older John. They say your life flashes before your eyes. What a cliché!
ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE LOVE
With my eventful career, there just wouldn’t be time. (Julia Lennon enters.
LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED
Sequence of images of an approaching 1950s car commences on backdrop.)
I should know. My mum was dead in the blink of an eye. Waiting for the
ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE
bus home. Knocked down by a drunken, off-duty policeman who mistook
ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE
his accelerator for a brake. (By now the car is in close-up. Stage and screen
ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE LOVE
dissolve into blackness. Older John stays visible.) I imagine this incident
LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED
explains my attitude to those in authority. In my view, their authority’s as
fragile as the lives they so often destroy. I’d like to say your story was my
NOTHING YOU CAN KNOW THAT ISN'T KNOWN
story, mum. Penny Lane. 1940. (Rooftops illuminated by bomb explosions.)
NOTHING YOU CAN SEE THAT ISN'T SHOWN
Into the blitz, into hell arrived a burbling bundle of joy.
NOWHERE YOU CAN BE THAT ISN'T WHERE YOU'RE MEANT TO BE
IT'S EASY
Julia Lennon, John’s mother, enters.
ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE
Julia. Oh dad, with Alfie away and this war raging, a baby’s the last thing I
ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE
need!
ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE LOVE
LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED
George Stanley. Get down the shelter now, you daft girl!
ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE (ALL TOGETHER NOW!)
Julia. Sorry, dad.
ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE (EVERYBODY!)
ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE LOVE
Older John. To ward off enemy bombs, mum called me Winston. That’s no lie.
LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED (LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED)
Winston’s my middle name. And, like all children, what I needed most was love.
(LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED) (LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED)
(LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED) YESTERDAY (LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED)
John sings.
(LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED) (LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED)
6
7

YEE-HAI!
Older John. Mimi eventually got her way.
OH YEAH!
LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED
Mimi. John! Your tea’s ready.
LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED OH YEAH OH HELL YEA! LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED
LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED
Older John. She persuaded social services to let her replace my mother.
Julia welcomes a soldier.
Mimi. For what we’re about to receive, may the Lord make us truly grateful.
Older John. Dad left us. So much for love. Mum went out with several fellas.
Mimi starts to pray.
Sailor. Soldier. (The soldier and Julia embrace.) She lived for the moment.
You had to in war. (The soldier leaves.) There was a child. My sister.
Older John. Amen. My mum lived nearby but I saw little of her. She and
Bobby had two daughters. Two more sisters from whom I was kept apart.
George Stanley re-enters.
Life improved. I got into Quarrybank High School. Despite Mimi’s best
efforts, though…
George Stanley. Don’t even think about it. You will not bring any more
disgrace upon this family.
Mimi (still praying). Bless John’s studies and let him become a successful
doctor.
Julia. What do you mean, dad?
Older John. …my main passion was music. Not any old kind of Swing Band
George Stanley. The child must be adopted, of course.
music, mind. Our first band, The Quarrymen, was something else!
Julia. What?
Younger John appears, grabs a guitar and contorts himself
into Rock’n’Roll leaps.
Older John. I believe the child lives in Norway now. (George Stanley exits.
Mimi enters.)
After Granddad died, my Aunt Mimi took over. And when I
John. Yeah!
say ‘took over’, I mean everything. What you could and couldn’t do. Finally
my mum met Bobby. Decided to move in with him. Mimi said she couldn’t.
Polite applause follows. Paul McCartney enters.
But this time she did.
Paul. That was amazing. I might join your band.
Julia starts to exit.
John. Might you, now? And who might you be?
Mimi. Do as you like, then. But don’t expect any help from me!
Paul. Paul McCartney.
Julia (exiting). I wouldn’t want it anyway.
John. Never heard of you.
Older John. A spirited lass, my mum.
Paul. We can soon change that.
Mimi. And don’t expect to keep that son of yours either. I certainly won’t
allow him to live in a house of sin.
John. What do you play?
8
9

Paul. You name it. Keyboard. Guitar. And I sing.
John. Hang on a second, Paul. We’re beatniks, right? We’re the beat
generation, aren’t we? I’ve an idea, what about calling ourselves the Beat-les,
John. We should talk.
still beetles but with beat!
Paul. And sing?
Paul. Brilliant idea, John! I like it. The Beatles. It says everything about who
we are and what we’re about.
John. Quite possibly.
John. Despite the fact it makes us sound like insects?
John and Paul shake hands. Paul exits. Julia returns.
Paul. Despite that.
Older John. Things were getting better, eh mum? But life goes on. The
Quarrymen went on. Me. Stuart Sutcliffe. Paul McCartney. Pete Best.
Older John. Beatles we were.
George Harrison. A right collection! Playing our little hearts out.
All band members return to their places. Cynthia sits beside phone.
John steps out of band. The playing stops.
Cynthia. How’s your first tour going?
John. This is better than our old stuff. We don’t sound like Cliff Richard
anymore.
John interrupts playing to pick up his own old fashioned phone.
Stuart. That’s a result.
John. Something else, Cyn. I know it’s only Scotland but it’s something else.
John. We’re more like Buddy Holly.
Older John. If you’re wondering, that’s Cynthia. My soon-to-be wife.
Stuart. What a result!
John. Sorry, Cyn. I’ve got to go.
Paul. I think we’re more like ourselves.
Older John. And so I did, again and again. They got us a gig in Hamburg.
Eh! Where’s the sound, fellas? I said, where’s the sound?
John. You’re a wise man, Paul McCartney. (John pretends to knight Paul.)
Rise, Sir Paul! So what should we be called, now we’re ourselves? We’re the
John (while playing). We’ve written noting original yet. And we’ve made no
revolution. We’ve got to get a revolutionary name.
records.
Paul. I’m thinking. I’m thinking.
Older John. But you will. You will.
John. We’ve been The Quarrymen. We’ve been Johnny and The Moondogs.
Stuart. Who’s that you were talking to?
Paul. Too long.
John. Myself.
John. We’ve been The Silver Beetles.
George. Are you going mental?
Paul. Too long.
Paul. Sign of genius. What were you saying to yourself?
10
11

Astrid enters club, she cranes her neck and stands on tiptoe.
John. Sarnies.
John. I said, we gotta do better. We gotta write our own stuff. This is second-
Pete. Don’t confuse her.
hand crap. (Drunken shouting and boos from the crowd. John shouts over it
all.)
We gotta make records!
Astrid. No. I like your humour. What is your name?
Crowd noise stops. Astrid steps to front of the crowd, politely applauding.
John. John Lennon. John Winston Lennon. After the great war leader. Oops!
Astrid. Don’t worry. Shouldn’t we try to forget the war?
Pete. She’s sorry for us.
John. Give peace a chance.
Astrid. Not at all. These people don’t know talent when they hear it.
Older John. I’ll use that later.
John. And who are you?
Astrid. Exactly. I assume you boys have your own photographer?
Astrid. My name is Astrid. I am a photographer.
Pete. Yeah, we got all that sorted.
Paul (to John). Publicity shots.
John. No, we haven’t.
John (to Paul). Publicity shots.
Paul. Don’t mind Pete. He’s camera shy.
Pete (to both of them). Why do we need publicity shots?
Astrid. I would love to take some pictures. Would you be so kind?
Astrid. Would you all like to visit my flat for tea? English tea.
Stuart. It would be a pleasure.
John. You bet! I haven’t had a decent cuppa since I got here. Come on, lads.
Astrid. And your name is…?
The band leave their instruments and, in joining Astrid,
effectively enter her apartment.
Stuart. Stuart. Stuart Sutcliffe.
George. Wow!
Beatles pose.
Stuart. This is amazing. Did you take all these pictures yourself?
Astrid. That’s no good. Relax.
Astrid. I did. Ham sandwiches? The English like ham sandwiches.
Astrid photographs them. She exits with Stuart, followed by Pete,
George and Paul. John takes copy of same photo from his jacket pocket and
John. We’re not English! We’re from Liverpool. But we do like ham
admires it. Cynthia enters carrying bag of chips.
sandwiches.
Cynthia. There. Got them at last. Help yourself. Is it good to be back home?
Paul. Sarnies!
(John’s gaze remains on the photograph.) John, have some chips.
12
13

John. We don’t look too bad.
Cynthia. That is stunning. You shouldn’t have. I bet it cost you a lot and that
money should have gone into promoting the band.
Cynthia. Course you don’t! Give us a look. (She inspects photograph.) How
stylish! Who took that?
John. What band? I’ve lost touch with them all. I may never see them again.
John. Astrid.
Cynthia. Don’t be daft. They’ll have got back somehow.
Cynthia. Oh, her. I hope you behaved yourselves.
John. Except Stuart, he won’t get back. We’ve lost one Beatle before we’ve
even started.
John. Most of us did.
Cynthia. He needs to do what makes him happy. And if this means getting
Cynthia. What do you mean?
out of the band, it is right for him to do it.
John. Stuart didn’t.
John. So make the most of the coat. It may be the last I can afford.
Cynthia. He tried to seduce her? I hope she told him where to go.
Cynthia. Still, you shouldn’t.
John. She must have. They’re engaged now.
Mimi enters.
Cynthia. Wow! You mean they’re both in Liverpool?
Mimi. You shouldn’t!
John. No, they’re both in Hamburg and likely to stay there.
Older John. Mimi agreed.
Cynthia. What about gigs?
Mimi. How dare you waste your money on that... that gangster’s moll?!
John. What about gigs? What gigs!? Stuart’s gone native in Germany.
John. I’ll catch up with you, Cyn. You don’t need to hang around and be
George was deported for playing his guitar in an adult club, underage. Pete
insulted. Go on.
and Paul were arrested for starting a fire in the hotel by accident. Which
leaves me. What a success story!
Cynthia exits.
Cynthia. You’re a wild lot, aren’t you?
John. What the hell do you mean by that? Are you off your head?
John. Except me.
Mimi. Are you questioning my judgement?
Cynthia. Especially you.
John. I certainly am!
John. Look what I bought you with my earnings.
Ray McFall enters, unseen by the others.
John produces stylish leather coat.
Older John. That’s Ray McFall, owner of the Cavern Club.
14
15

John (to Mimi). All you care about is money and cats! I don’t stand a chance
Pete. Alright, alright, I heard you.
with you.
George enters and returns to guitar.
John turns to leave, walking straight into Ray as he does so.
George. I was on my way.
Ray. Evening. Are you the Lennon boy?
Paul enters and makes his way to the keyboard.Cynthia enters, too.
Mimi. So? What’s he done wrong now?
Paul. I know what you’re going to say. The band’s not complete without
Stuart. But ask yourself this, John. Was he ever the world’s best guitar
Ray. Well, Mrs Lennon…
player?
Mimi. My name’s Smith.
John. He was…
Ray. Really? Well, this boy and his band, The Bluebottles…
Paul. Your mate. But now we’re professionals. A “one”?
John. Beatles.
John. A “two”.
Ray. Beatles… have been recommended by the one and only Bob Wooler...
Beatles. A “one, two, three, four”!
John. DJ extraordinaire!
Band freezes.
Brian Epstein enters cautiously, bumping into Cynthia as he does so.
Ray. Indeed… to take the lunchtime slot at my club.
Brian. Terribly sorry. It’s rather dark down here. Puts me in mind of
John. What club’s that, then?
Calcutta’s black hole.
Ray. What club? The club! The Cavern.
Cynthia. Yeah. It is, a bit.
Mimi. Sounds a bit seedy.
Brian. Can I just check that this is the Cavern?
John. Thank you, God!
Cynthia. Oh yeah.
Mimi. Don’t take the Lord’s name in vain.
Brian. And these are the Beatles?
Mimi storms off. John returns to his guitar. Ray exits.
Two lines from ‘My Bonnie Lies Over the Ocean’ from Beatles.
They stop and freeze.
John. Are there any Beatles out there?! I said, are there any Beatles out
there?!
Cynthia. They’ve really found their voice!
Pete enters and returns to drums.
Brian. An excellent voice, I must say.
16
17

Beatles relax. Ecstatic cheering is heard.
Brian. Epstein. Brian Epstein, seller of records. Anymore questions?
Cynthia. They seem to agree.
Paul. No.
Brian. And who are you, if I may ask?
Brian. Good. Put a comb through your hair.
Cynthia. Me? I’m Cynthia Powell. John Lennon’s girlfriend.
Paul. Me?
Brian. I’d make myself scarce in a place like this. You’ve got a lot of
Brian. All of you. (Brian hands some cash to John.) And buy some suits.
competition.
John. Suits!
Cynthia. Oh, I see. Excuse me.
George. Ties!
Cynthia exits. Cheering suddenly ceases.
Brian. You sound smart. Try looking smart.
John. Now all we need’s a decent song.
The Beatles turn away from the audience as one.
Brian. And a manager.
They turn back, transformed into the Beatles’ image that we all recognise.
All Beatles leave instruments and approach Brian.
Paul. Well, Mr Epstein…
Paul. We hear… er…
Brian. Brian.
John. …you’d like to meet us.
John. Have you found us a record contract?
Brian. A shame about the dingy venue. A shame about your scruffy clothes,
Brian. Funnily enough…
your swearing and your drinking. Otherwise you’ve got bags of talent.
Pete. No.
George. Thank you very much.
Brian. Yes. Yes. Yes.
Brian. I can sell your discs. We just need to persuade someone with musical
taste that you have the sound he needs.
George. No!
Pete. Do you really think you can do that?
Brian. Or, as you’d put it, ‘Yeah! Yeah! Yeah’!
Brian. I know I can, sooner or later.
John. Who’s the man with taste?
John. You know what? I’ve got a good feeling about you, Mr… Oh yeah! We
Lights increase, reflecting shift from dingy Cavern Club as George Martin
don’t even know your name.
starts to arrange recording equipment around instruments.
18
19

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