Ladies and Gentlemen...The Beatles!
A Beatles traveling exhibition presented by the Grammy Museum and Fab Four Exhibits, LLC
The Music Box at Ravinia
Highland Park, Illinois (Chicago)
May 6 - September 25, 2022
Chicago was one of the few lucky cities to have hosted the Beatles on all three North American tours (1964-66), so Chicagoland was an essential stop for "Ladies and Gentlemen...The Beatles!". And what better place to celebrate the Beatles' enduring music legacy than on the grounds of the historic Ravinia Festival in Highland Park. Ravinia concertgoers can visit the exhibit free anytime a concert is scheduled, from the time the grounds are opened until intermission. Every half-hour, groups of attendees are admitted into the Music Box theater for "Bernstein's Answer", a short hologram presentation inspired by the life of the great maestro Leonard Bernstein. Exiting the Bernstein presentation, they can enter the exhibition gallery for a half-hour viewing of our many Beatles artifacts.
"Ladies and Gentlemen...The Beatlles!" offers several photo ops
at Ravinia, the first of which is a British phone booth...
...which features a marquee poster promoting
the exhibit to Ravinia concertgoers.
On this particular summer evening, a Beatles tribute
band headlined the Festival...
...drawing a huge crowd and providing a built-in audience
for "Ladies and Gentlemen...The Beatles!"
The line outside the Music Box to get into the film
and the exhibit...
...stretched around the side of the venue.
The Music Box entrance after dark.
Upon exiting the Bernstein presentation, the crowd enters the exhibit...
...free to wander the gallery and view our many artifact displays.
A fish-eye view of the exhibit from the entrance.
The view to the right as patrons walk inside.
The map featuring original unused tickets from the Beatles' three North American tours
has always been a crowd pleaser in every city the exhibit has visited.
Fans love spotting the tickets from their hometowns, often shocked by prices
as low as $2 a seat!
Visitors take in the display of early Beatles artifacts pertaining to the band from 1960 until they started getting national recognition in the UK in 1963.
The Beatles' earliest influences came from America, and this display pays tribute to the musicians and songwriters who inspired them to greatness.
The iconic stage set-up from the Beatles' live American television
debut on The Ed Sullivan Show, Sunday evening, February 9, 1964.
The arrival in America: Fans can take photos posing behind a stand of four microphones representing the Beatles' first American press conference on February 7, 1964.
It's just one of several photo op spots in the exhibit.
The American press had never seen anything like the Beatles before, and
when the group first came to America in February 1964, the coverage on radio
and television was unprecedented. Their American record label, Capitol,
followed suit with a publicity blitz.
More views of the exhibit, including the First American Visit display, which features the ultra-rare Meet The Beatles promotional motion display
from Capitol Records, an original gold record presented to the Beatles for "I Want To Hold Your Hand", the original Lennon-handwritten set list used
onstage at the group's first American concert (Washington, D.C.) and, from later in 1964, the original Paul McCartney handwritten lyrics for his
composition "What You're Doing", written in Atlantic City during the group's fall 1964 North American tour.
The Woolworth's window is one of the exhibit's most popular displays. In every city, first-generation fans have lingered here, recalling the
Beatles toys they had in their youth, and collectors have marveled at the mass-produced rarities and promotional pieces on display.
A real fan lived and breathed Beatles, surrounding themselves with all things "fab" --
all day and all night. The fan bedroom has been a staple of the exhibit.
Fans viewing a display dedicated to the Beatles'
American experience in 1965 and 1966.
Above and below: The Beatles in 1965-66 and beyond. A display devoted to
the group's activities during their final two years in America and the end of touring, highlighting Paul McCartney's original jacket from the famous 1965 Shea Stadium
concert, an original RIAA gold record award for "Rubber Soul" as well as the
infamous "Butcher" cover LP.
Above: The Beatles made a huge impact on the
film industry in 1964 and 1965, releasing two films now considered rock 'n roll classics: "A Hard Day's Night" and
"HELP!". The exhibit acknowledges them with a display of
related promotional materials. A film short from 1963,
"The Beatles Come To Town", is also represented.
One of the interactive mainstays in the exhibit is a drum lesson given by Ringo Starr himself. Both aspiring drummers and pros have gravitated to "Drumming With Ringo".
Exclusive to Ravinia: A display of pieces tied to the Beatles' visits to Chicago on each of their three North American tours, 1964-66. The city was one of few chosen to host the group on all three tours.
No visit to "Ladies and Gentlemen...The Beatles!"
is complete without the requisite group photo on
our Abbey Road crosswalk.
And In The End....
Fab Four Exhibits, LLC founding member Jeff Augsburger takes a stroll across
Abbey Road only to find himself trapped in the Sixties! Is there any better place to be?