A couple of nights ago, I was up in my room looking through my books and I started to look for a ticket stub I’ve saved since 3000 years ago. Or, as many of us know it, 1981.
I knew the ticket stub was tucked inside one of 3 bigger Beatles picture books I’ve owned for the longest time. I flipped through the pages, coming across loose pages, and black and white Xerox pictures of George and Paul that my sister and I had made on the copier at our local library.
‘Twas a different time, kids. You had to go places to make copies of pictures. And it was a glorious time, I’ll tell you.
Anyway, I found the ticket stub.
It was for the show “Beatlemania”.
The time was the beginning of the year 1981. I was in 8th grade. My best friend was also in 8th grade. My sister was in 7th grade. We had just discovered the Beatles right before John was murdered. And after he died…do you remember? The Beatles were everywhere again.
And that Fab Four media explosion was just what we needed to fuel our new interest and turn it into full-blown love affairs with the music and the men who made it.
So, if I remember correctly, and believe me–I am reaching way back here–I think we found out about the Beatlemania show the day of the show. And we asked our moms if we could go. Amazingly, my mom said she would take us and my best friend’s mom said she could go with us.
Looking back on it, this was nothing short of a miracle. It was a school night, my mom had to work the next day and it was January (there had to have been snow on the ground).
But sure enough, we 3 silly girls and our hero of a mom went to the show and we had really good seats in the front of the loge at a popular concert venue here in our city.
Beatlemania was a Broadway musical featuring four dudes who dressed like the Beatles and played the same instruments as the Beatles and took their audiences on trips through the 1960’s with images from the times flashing on a screen while the band played the massively incredible and world-changing song catalog.
It was a show designed to take you back, or in our case introduce us to, and enjoy.
Beatlemania wasn’t, however, really a show designed to make you get out of your seat and dance.
Keep that in mind as my story goes on.
To say we loved the show is an understatement. We were located just far enough away from the guys on the stage to help us imagine that they could really be the actual guys if we pretended hard enough. And believe me, we did. Also, the show on the screen behind them was pretty cool, full of headlines and pictures from times before and right when we were born. My BFF brought her camera with her and snapped a few pics throughout the show. We needed documentation of this momentous occasion. I texted her last night (we’ve often talked lately about what if we would have had cell phones and texting back when we were young?! That would have been fucking awesome! But we didn’t, so…) and I asked her if she could remember details from that night.
I laughed out loud when she texted me the following photos:
Are these not the greatest photos in the history of photokind?! I remember we were so excited to get these pictures back and when we did we were so bummed out. Hey, at least she tried. After the initial disappointment over not being able to see anything besides the heads and rail in front of us, we laughed and laughed at these snapshots.
We’re STILL laughing about them! I can’t believe she still has them!
So, back to my story….
As we sat with my mom that night so long ago, we really got into the show. People all around us also enjoyed it from the comfort of their seats. It was all a very lovely and civil experience, jamming to the tunes of the BEATLES…
…til we got to the very end of the show and then something happened. My sister, my BFF and I could no longer contain ourselves.
We got up and danced in the aisles.
I am sitting here as I write this, racking my brain trying to remember what song we danced to and for some reason, Revolution keeps coming to mind. I’ve done some Googling, and for the life of me, I can’t find a list of the songs in the order we heard them that night. I’m almost positive it was Revolution.
This would get most people up and dancing, am I right?!
But here’s the funny part–I do remember my mother was not happy when we did this. I think she must have been totally embarrassed. But that didn’t stop us. We kept going. It was like we couldn’t help it. We were young girls possessed.
And it totally RULED.
The thing is, the other audience members didn’t seem to mind. In fact, I think they were digging the 3 young girls shaking it for all it was worth. Hell, they probably wished they could join us.
The dudes playing the Fab Four on the stage saw us too.
I like to think they congratulated themselves after the show on a job well-done. Those crazy kids up in the loge were losing their minds.
And having a blast.
And taking silly pictures.
And loving every minute of it.
And making their mother mad.
And from there, our love for the Beatles grew.
What a great memory.
It still makes me smile.
All these year later.