Beatles memorabilia takes over Penn Libraries

This month marks the 50th anniversary of The Beatles’ historic appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show, an event that shaped music well into the future. From that point on, America, and arguably the universe, was obsessed with the upbeat British rockers. 

Beginning Thursday, Feb. 27 Penn Libraries is celebrating this music milestone with a special Beatles exhibit that goes outside the realm of the band’s recorded music and explores the catalog of printed material from the personal collection of David McKnight, director of the Rare Book and Manuscript Library: books, magazines, autographs, puzzles and other memorabilia collected since 1964.

In addition to the collection of visual and textual items, a symposium on the Beatles will be held from Feb. 28 – Mar. 1 that will include special events by authors, professors, and music industry experts who are well versed on the topic. Here is a preview of guests:

Larry Kane: Philadelphia author, journalist and broadcaster, author of two books on the Beatles and one on John Lennon and one of the journalists who accompanied the Beatles on their first tour of America.

Walter Everett: University of Michigan, professor of music theory and a leading expert on the music of the Beatles.

Gordon Thompson: Skidmore College, professor of music who will explore the Beatles in the context of the British Invasion. 

Al Sussman: executive editor of Beatle fan Magazine and former radio analyst for ASCAP. He has just published an new book, 'Changin' Times: 101 Days That Shaped A Generation with Parading Press.

Donna Parsons: University of Iowa, professor of English who teaches courses on the cultural impact of the Beatles.

Jude Southerland Kessler: author of She Loves You, the third volume of her nine-volume biography of John Lennon.

Eugene Halus: Immaculata University, professor of history who teaches a course on the politics and reception of John Lennon.

Anthony DeCurtis: University of Pennsylvania, faculty lecturer in the Center for Programs in Contemporary Writing and a contributing editor at Rolling Stone Magazine. DeCurtis has published numerous articles and reviews on the Beatles during the past 30 years. 

You can register for these events here.

The exhibition is on display at Penn Libraries (3420 Walnut St.) at the Kamin Gallery, located on the first floor, from Feb. 27 – Aug. 11. More info can be found here.