All You Need is Love… and Some Rock history

Max McClatchy

A traditional choral concert can include some classical choral compositions and maybe if the choir is good enough a major choral work.These “major” works are often the classics created by Verdi, Mozart, and Beethoven. Traditionally, the Malvern’s Men’s Chorus and Notre Dame’s Women’s Chorale join up and perform this very music. However, this year was different. Last year, Mr. Liga planted the idea of a concert completely dedicated to the music of the Beatles. Most of us were not only excited, but ecstatic about performing such upbeat and energetic music, so the idea became reality.

The practices leading up to the concert were absolute heaven for a Beatles fan like myself. Mr. Liga was not focused on the music alone. He wanted to give us background and context to what we were singing. Some stories he shared with us included Paul McCartney’s creation of “Yesterday” and also the competitive style of songwriting between Paul and John Lennon. His knowledge of the Beatles’ lives and careers is outstanding. We all learned so much from him about everyone’s favorite mop-top rockers from Liverpool.

The concert itself was performed in front of an audience on April 11th, which included the 80+ members of the Student Augustinian Values Institute (SAVI).

The song list was meticulously selected from the entirety of the Fab Four’s career. Such early hits like “Can’t Buy Me Love “ and “If I Fell” transitioned into songs from later in their lives like “All You Need Is Love” and “Two of Us”. Mr. Liga made the executive decision to have the concert songs progress in chronological order. The only exception to this was for “With A Little Help From My Friends” to precede “All You Need Is Love”.This happened because the group felt that “All You Need Is Love” was more appropriate as a closer. Also because the students from SAVI were in attendance, and love/caritas being a major theme of Augustine and the weekend, we thought that they would appreciate having their concert experience being closed with a religious theme.

The concert was a huge success, and featured solo’s from Malvern juniors Matt Anthony (“This Boy”) and me (“With a Little Help From My Friends”). There were few if any mistakes that occurred. The ending to “Two Of Us” will be remembered because of the chorus’ literal take on the line “We’re going home boys”. The choir thought it would be a hilarious ending to our solo repertoire during the concert to walk off the risers and whistle while doing it.

The various pieces of memorabilia set up in the lobby of the Duffy Center was also a point of interest. The memorabilia included things donated by Mr. Liga, Mr. McLaughlin, and a few students for the purposes of giving a visual representation of the big the Beatles really were.

A Beatles collection, lent by Mr. Liga & Mr. McLaughlin

Attendees from SAVI and from the general public sent emails to Mr. Liga after the concert was over praising the creativity of the concert and how everyone sang. All in all, this concert was an enormous success and was loved by the students and teachers alike. This reporter can only hope that next year will follow a similar theme.