The first public Beatles concert in America takes place on February 11 at the Washington Coliseum. The stage is a central ring equipped with a rotating plateau so that the spectators can in turn see the band from front side. The sound is far from perfect.
An 18-year-old photographer named Mike Mitchell managed to get a press accreditation. He takes photos throughout the show in the stage lighting without using a flash. He thus records the ambience in a chiaroscuro that in the best images evokes a solarization.
The Beatles leave but soon come back for a summer tour of 24 North American cities. Mitchell completes his collection on September 13 in the Baltimore concert.
For nearly half a century these views are unknown. On July 20, 2011 Christie's dedicates an auction to a selection of 46 digitally improved photos. The sale fetches $ 360K including premium. The most iconic 40 x 40 cm print showing in silhouettes the heads of the four boys was sold for $ 68K including premium.
On March 24 in Merseyside near Liverpool, Omega Auctions sells in a single lot all 413 negatives, 56 high-resolution digital files, 71 new prints signed by the photographer, the original contact prints with a scan, and the full copyright.
The set is estimated £ 250K, lot 200 here linked on The Saleroom bidding platform. Please watch the video shared by the auction house which is an interview of the photographer illustrated with some images.
SOLD for £ 211K before fees