Wesleyan Musicians “Come Together” in All-Star Beatles Tribute Band for Third Annual Benefit Concert

An 18-piece all-star band, including five members of the Wesleyan community, will perform the Beatles’ Abbey Road album in its entirety during a benefit concert at Middlesex Community College (MCC) on Saturday, June 24, at 6 p.m. Pictured (l to r): Nancy Brown, Andy Chatfield, Sarah McNamara, Shona Kerr and Peter Standaart.

An 18-piece all-star band, including five members of the Wesleyan community, will perform the Beatles’ Abbey Road album in its entirety during a benefit concert at Middlesex Community College (MCC) on Saturday, June 24, at 6 p.m. The concert is the third annual event held in memory of former Wesleyan Center for the Arts (CFA) intern Stephanie Nelson, of Middletown, who passed away in early 2015 at the age of 25.

The first two benefit concerts, held in 2015 and 2016, raised more than $6,400 to establish and fund the Stephanie Nelson Scholarship at MCC, Nelson’s alma mater. Each May, the scholarship is awarded to an MCC student with a desire to work as an intern at Wesleyan University in the field of broadcast communications or multimedia.

Both the concert series and scholarship are the brainchild of Andy Chatfield, director of arts communication at Wesleyan. “Stephanie was the first broadcast communications and multimedia intern from MCC to work in the CFA office at Wesleyan,” says Chatfield. “Our goal is to get to $10,000 to make this a permanently endowed scholarship fund in memory of Stephanie.”

Wesleyan-affiliated members of the all-star benefit band re-create the iconic Abbey Road album cover on Wyllys Avenue, in homage to the Fab Four. From left to right: Shona Kerr, Andy Chatfield, Sarah McNamara, Nancy Brown and Peter Standaart.

This year’s all-star band includes Chatfield on drums; Shona Kerr, adjunct professor of physical education, and head coach of squash (men’s and women’s), on backup vocals; Nancy Brown, private lessons teacher, on trumpet; Peter Standaart, private lessons teacher, on flute; and Sarah McNamara, assistant director, employee relations, Gordon Career Center, on violin.

The benefit concert is held in memory of former CFA intern Stephanie Nelson.

“The last time I talked to Stephanie she mentioned her plan to change career paths and to study to become a teacher,” says Chatfield. “Honoring her memory by providing opportunities for students in the community to further their educational goals feels like the right thing to do.”

The event will take place outdoors on the Pavilion Deck at MCC. Ticket prices (in advance and at the door): $25 for the general public, $10 for students, and free for kids ages 12 and under. Middlesex Community College alumni can purchase discounted $15 tickets to the event. In case of rain, the event will take place on Saturday, September 16, 2017, at 6 p.m., inside Chapman Hall at Middlesex Community College. To buy tickets, donate to the scholarship fund, or for more information about the event, click here.