John Lennon In His Own Write
Voodoo Rooms (Venue 68) - Free Fringe
There were a few Scousers in the large crowd, and one declared it ‘‘boss - totally boss’’ so who am I to argue?
It’s a curious piece - one for real aficionados of The Beatles and all things Lennon, but one which might leave others scratching their heads.
The show is the first ever unabridged version of his 1964 book ‘In His Own Write’ - word for word in the sequence published 51 years ago.
Back then the critics and fans loved it.
In truth, some of the content - nonsensical poems, doggerel, daft stories and poems - really hasn’t aged well, and there were a few cringes at his use of language to describe race and disability. Any shortcomings in this show are entirely down to the man who penned ‘Imagine.’
Lennon’s love of The Goons is evident in the endless word play and mispronunciations scattered across each short piece. In truth, much of it was a poor man’s Spike Milligan, and he could have learned a thing or two from Ronnie Barker when it came to playing with language, but, when you’re a universally adored Beatle I guess you could do pretty much what you wished and folk would hail it a literary masterpiece.
The three man company found all the laughs within Lennon’s words - and there are more than a few - and their stylish presentation, complete with a smart animated doodle as a backdrop,- helped to make sense of the late author’s prose.
But five decades on, this stands out as an oddity.