The Sierra Vista Community Chorus will transport the community back to the 1960s this Saturday with a The Beatles–themed show.
It is the first time the longstanding chorus has centered a performance around the catchy tunes of the legendary British foursome, said publicity chairwoman Linda Gilbert. While the group typically performs older songs outside rock or pop genres, they made an exception for one of history’s most well-loved bands, she said.
“We had a lot of people that said, “you do a lot of wonderful old music, we’d like to hear something a little more modern, and we love The Beatles,”” she said. “We heard it often enough, we decided to give it a try.”
Several of the chorus ensembles will be performing one to two Beatles songs each during the show, primarily featuring arrangements of the band’s earlier classics such as “Yesterday,” “In My Life,” and “When I’m 64,” rather than the more experimental tunes they produced in the latter part of the 1960s.
A little background on the songs and on John, Paul, George, and Ringo themselves will also be provided during the performance.
The chorus is excited to have the Rhythmix ensemble from the Buena Choral Union of Buena High School joining them on stage as well, Gilbert said.
“These kids, they sing, they dance, they light up the stage,” she said. “They’re wonderful.”
Proceeds from the concert will go towards supporting the rental of the venue and the community chorus itself, a registered 501©(3), Gilbert said.
Chorus director Sharon Keene decided last year to choose a Beatles theme for the May 2019 performance, after feeling that the chorus was getting into a “rut” with their usual musical comedy numbers, she said.
“I can truly say that as a teenager, I wasn’t a Beatles lover,” she admitted. “But when orchestras started doing Beatles arrangements, I decided I needed to take another look at their music, because most pop groups don’t get their music picked up by an orchestra.”
Without realizing it initially, the group also chose the Beatles theme close to the band’s 60th anniversary, Keene said. More importantly, however, they discovered “how much fun” the catchy songs were to perform.
“We were having such a good time with it, that I guess I made Beatles lovers out of some of us who weren’t before,” Keene said. “When anybody says to me, ‘I don’t like the Beatles,’ I say, ‘come and try it!’”
If any concert–goer is inspired to help make their community a little more musical following Saturday’s show, the community chorus is always looking for new members — and you don’t even have to be able to read music or audition to join in the fun, said Gilbert.
“We want them to come and sing with us,” she said.