Posted by: Nick | May 7, 2009

Abbey Road on the River @ Belvedere Festival Park – 5/21-25

World’s Largest Beatles Tribute Festival to be Held Memorial Day Weekend

May 21 – 25, 2009, at the Belvedere Festival Park and Galt House Hotel & Suites

67 Bands to Perform, 16 international, 14 from Louisville

Louisville, KY –The Courier-Journal.com’s Abbey Road on the River 2009 will celebrate the 40th anniversary of both its namesake Abbey Road and The Who’s Tommy with showcase concerts of the albums. Fans will experience a 90-minute supersized version of Abbey Road, with a reengineered sound performed by Hal Bruce, Abbey Road Live and a small orchestra on Saturday, May 23 at 9:15pm. On Friday, May 22 at 9:30pm, All You Need Is Love will perform a tribute concert salute to Tommy, The Who’s double album which is the first musical work to be considered “rock opera.” Tommy was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1998 for historical, artistic and significant value.

Another highlight will be when Moscow, Russia’s pop star Alyona Yarushina will make her debut performance in the United States when she lead sings the Across the Universe soundtrack in its entirety with Wonderwall of Greensboro, NC. The film Across the Universe incorporates 33 compositions originally written by members of The Beatles, and was nominated for a Golden Globe and an Academy Award. Other headlining international acts include The Backwards from Slovakia, The Repeatles from Sweden, Itchycoo Park from Scotland, Lucy in the Sky from Germany, the Norwegian Beatles from Norway, and Germany’s #1 bass player Ralf Gauck. For the complete list of bands, including 14 hometown Louisville bands, click here.

The festival will also take on a theatrical component this year with the premiere of The Day the Beatles Met, an original play underwritten by Republic Bank and conceived, written, directed, produced and cast with students from The Youth Performing Arts School (YPAS). The production will premiere on Friday, May 22 at 6:00pm in the Daisy Room of the Galt House Hotel & Suites, and will be open to reserved ticket holders.

The world’s biggest Beatles song singing competition, sponsored by the Hard Days Night Hotel (Liverpool), called “They’re Gonna Make a Big Star Out of Me” is also new to the line up this year. The competition is limited to 250 contestants, and is open to any Abbey Road on the River ticket holder, with a $20 fee to enter. The final six contestants will perform live on Sunday, May 24 at 7:00pm on the Main Lawn Stage and will be assigned a text message short code number so that voters can text the contestant’s number they want to win. The grand prize winner will perform on the world famous stage where the Beatles launched their career, The Cavern Club in Liverpool. Click here for complete competition rules and entry details.

The festival will kick off with a re-creation of the Beatles’ last concert, which was held on the rooftop of the Apple Building in London during lunch hour on January 30, 1969. On Thursday, May 21 beginning at 11:30am, Germany’s The Beafore and Lucy in the Sky, and The Norwegian Beatles will perform at the Hyatt Regency, on the roof of the Louisville Visitors Center. This event is FREE to the public, with food available for purchase from 11am-2pm.

The Courier-Journal.com’s Abbey Road on the River, featuring 67 bands and 25,000 fans from all across the globe, will be held in Louisville for its fifth consecutive year, May 21 – 25, 2009, at the Belvedere Festival Park and Galt House Hotel & Suites. The music festival is 5 days of peace, love, and rock and roll, including performances from the world’s most accomplished Beatles and 60’s era bands performing thousands of hit songs on 5 stages, 12 hours each day. To see a video preview of this year’s festival highlights, click here.

Festival hours are Thursday: 4:00 p.m. to 11:30 p.m., Friday through Sunday: Noon-12:00 a.m. and Monday: 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. General admission (outdoor shows only) one-day tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door. $5-10 admission discount coupons will be available at Courier-Journal.com. Reserved tickets (ALL shows and events, including indoor) are selling out quickly and are available from $40 for a one-day admission. One guest 21 and under can enter free when accompanied by any regular ticket holder. Tickets can be purchased online at http://www.abbeyroadontheriver.com.

The Galt House Hotel & Suites, the official AROTR headquarters, is offering special rates by calling 1-800-the-Galt. Two night guests also receive a $40 Visa gift card.

Abbey Road on the River 2009 is supported by: The Courier-Journal, Courier-Journal.com, The Galt House Hotel, Republic Bank, Coors Light, the Greater Louisville Convention and Visitors Bureau, 107.7 WSFR, and 91.9 WFPK.

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