BritishMania at SOPAC

Do you feel like you were born a few generations too late? Would you rather be listening to bands rocking out in Liverpool at the Cavern Club than to Linkin Park’s latest identity-crisis album? This weekend South Orange Performing Arts Center offers an opportunity to see the Fab Four themselves… well, almost. BritishMania, a Beatles tribute band that has played across the country and even in The Cavern Club itself, will rock SOPAC this Saturday, September 11.

BritishMania features Jon Ferris as John Lennon, Tom Godsman as George Harrison, Jim Miller as Paul McCartney, and A.J. DeFeo as Ringo Starr. All four band mates are both musicians and Beatles impersonators, incorporating the stage quirks of the Beatles into their concert performances.

A BritishMania show is composed of four distinct Beatle eras, incorporating the costumes and instruments that correspond to each period. The band begins the show with what they call “The British Invasion/Ed Sullivan Show era,” donning replicas of the infamous black suits and ties that the lads from Liverpool wore in February of 1964.

The band progresses through “The 1965 Help/Shea Stadium era,” onto “The Sgt. Pepper/Magical Mystery Tour era,” complete with crazy and colorful suits made famous on the 1967 album cover. The band concludes the show with “The Let it Be/Abbey Road era.” BritishMania welcomes old and new fans to see the Beatles in every stage of career from “Love Me Do” to “Let it Be.”

The band also switches instruments according to album and era. Ferris as John Lennon wields a Rickenbacker 325v63 “Miami,” similar to that from Lennon’s Ed Sullivan appearance, at the beginning of the performance, switching over to the sunburst Epiphone Casino for the group’s take on “Sgt. Pepper” and “Revolver” era songs. BritishMania not only wants the audience to feel like they are seeing the Beatles themselves, but also hope the audience feels like they are hearing them as well.

“We invite the audience to take a memorable trip back to the experience of seeing The Beatles live at such venues as The Hollywood Bowl and Shea Stadium,” Ferris said on SOPAC’s web site. “This is an exciting opportunity for Beatles fans to take a historical, fun-filled journey back to the 1960’s and experience the magic of the most successful band in the world.”

For more information on the performance check out SOPAC’s web site at sopacnow.org. Tickets are available through the SOPAC box office, via the web site, or by phone at 973-313-ARTS.

Meghan Dixon can be reached at meghan.dixon@student.shu.edu.

Author: Staff Writer

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