Students part of Yesterday and Today

Yesterday and Today is an annual tradition at the Omaha Community Playhouse. For years, Billy McGuigan and his brothers Ryan and Matthew have brought The Beatles to life in a one-of-a-kind tribute show. The songs are picked by the audiences, with stories about what that song means to them personally, so every single show is different. This literally-stand-up-out-of-your-seat entertainment can't be missed.

This year's performances will be taking a fun new spin on some of the Beatles' classic songs: the McGuigan brothers have invited local children's choirs to join them on stage! Coming from all around the Omaha area, these kids get the opportunity to learn classic Beatles songs with Billy and his brothers, who know them best.

Though they won't be working with the kids until the actual night of the show, Billy says they have given the students' choir teachers all the necessary music to learn. Working with the kids "is something that all of us in the band are really looking forward to," Billy said.

Billy and his brothers were raised on The Beatles from the time they were very young. "I was most likely minutes old when my dad started singing Beatles songs to me," Billy said. "My first word wasn't Mom or Dad, it was 'lellow' --- from 'Yellow Submarine'. Their music was always around, always present in our household. Our dad always led us to believe The Beatles were our long lost uncles who just never sent money."

What Beatles songs should every kid know by age 10?
All Together Now. "It's simple, but has a beautiful meaning and message that's as relevant today as it was in the 60s," said Billy.

The McGuigans decided they wanted to work with young kids this year because they wanted to involve more of the community that has given them so much. "We decided that giving the kids the opportunity to not only learn some Beatles songs but to also partake in the theatrical experience would be the best way to do that," said Billy. "Maybe this one experience will spark a future career in music or the arts. That's our goal!"

"For the show as a whole," said Billy, "we are confident that having the kids participate will bring out the fact that this show is ALL about the audience, the community and all of our experience with The Beatles' music."

Below is a list of the participating schools (who will be sending about 10-14 kids from their choirs to be a part of the shows) and the dates that the choir will be performing:

Saddlebrook Elementary - Dec. 6
Dundee Elementary - Dec. 12
Crestridge - Dec. 13
Russell Middle School - Dec. 14 and 15

Billy and his brothers are emphatic in saying how grateful and thankful they are to call Omaha and the Omaha Community Playhouse home, as they are able to return year after year with their fantastic show.

"We strive to make the show better each year," said Billy, "and make sure that we make some changes each year so that our audience members who come back every year (some have seen the show over 20 times!) always have something fresh to look forward to!"

Come see these talented kids and the Beatles pros, the McGuigans, in the Omaha Community Playhouse's production of Yesterday and Today. The show be running Dec. 6-29, Thursday-Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 6:30 p.m. with a 2 p.m. performance on Dec. 8. There is also a special performance on Dec. 31;  Tickets are $38 and $32 for groups. There will be special pricing for the performance on New Year's Eve; tickets will be $50 for the 7 p.m. show and $75 for the 10 p.m. To purchase tickets, or for more information, call (402) 553-0800, visit the Box Office or click here.
Article by Shannon Kern

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