Hamburg celebrating 60 years of Beatles

Beatles launched world career in Hamburg in 1960 - online anniversary show draws thousands of fans
19 August 2020
Beatles Square, Hamburg

The international "Stream & Shout” festival streamed live on Monday (August 17, 2020) marked “The Beatles” first ever gig in St. Pauli’s Club Indra 60 years ago. The four young Liverpudlians were to follow up the hit show, which marked their first official performance as a band, with some 281 performances in live clubs over the next two years. The foundations of an unprecedented world career and Beatlemania had been laid. John Lennon said simply: "We grew up in Hamburg, not Liverpool. Originally planned as a physical event, the show was instead broadcast live from Club Indra and the Elbphilharmonie owing to the corona pandemic. The three-hour event treated fans of the “Fab Four” to live music, stories and talks with celebrities such as comedian Otto Walkes and the Beatles' companions "The Rattles". 

Fans from all over the world take part

Thousands of Beatles' fans from all over the world joined in from diverse fan websites. On Facebook alone, more than 200,000 hits of the live-stream and on demand were clocked up. The Beatles expert, Hamburg's Stefanie Hempel and her band, as well as musicians such as the Kaiser Quartet, Cäthe, Bernd Begemann, Jessy Martens, Billy King, Jimmy Cornett and Michèl von Wussow brought a rock' n 'roll special to the stage. The original stage from August 1960 had been rebuilt especially for the anniversary. The Elbphilharmonie streamed a live homage to the Beatles by the jazz pianist, Julia Huelsmann, with hits from their first set and other Beatles' songs. The Austrian broadcaster Ö3, the leading Danish daily Berlinkske Tidende, the British regional channel ITV Granada News and ABC radio in the United States were among others broadcasting the show.

Anniversary year 

"The success of our Beatles anniversary show demonstrates that there is no way around Hamburg when it comes to music," said Michael Otremba, Managing Director of Hamburg Marketing GmbH. "We have brought fans from all over the world virtually into the Hanseatic city per live-stream so that they can discover our city's great musical heritage with several unique clubs offering a breeding ground for musical talent. This digital experiment shows how Hamburg is meeting the demands of the corona crisis and with a high degree of innovation. The anniversary show is the prelude to a series of Beatles' communication events this year during which Hamburg Marketing GmbH will market Hamburg as a city of music to tourists."

Hanseatic collaboration

The anniversary show is a collaboration between Hamburg Marketing GmbH, Hamburg Tourismus GmbH, Hempel's Beatles Tour, hamburg.de and SAM Medien and the results are unique. The show is supported by Hamburg's Ministry of Culture and Media, fritz-kola and the BIMM Institute Hamburg. The NDR 90.3 radio station and the NDR Hamburg Journal TV programme are the official partners of the event.

sm/sb/pb