When I made my way to see Lennon – Through A Glass Onion at Dundee’s Caird Hall recently, with my Beatles fan Dad in tow, I really wasn’t sure what to expect. Naturally, I knew all about The Beatles, but the life of John Lennon – not so much! Obviously I knew the basics – the move to the big apple, the in the bed protests with Yoko Ono and his horrific murder, but the rest was well, it was all a bit sketchy to say the least. So you could say I was looking forward to being enlightened! The fact that John and the rest of The Beatles had actually graced the Caird Hall’s stage back in the 1960s – only added to my anticipation!
The show, which is part concert, part biography, stars the very talented Daniel Taylor, who is a musician in his own right. The production begins on the fateful day that Lennon died, before looping back to his time with The Beatles before moving on to his solo career. As you can imagine, the soundtrack was amazing and included all the hits such as Imagine, Woman, Working Class Hero, and Jealous Guy as well as some of Lennon’s collaborations with McCartney, including Strawberry Fields Forever and Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds.
Filled with insights about John’s relationship with his bandmates and the love of his life Yoko Ono, the show gets to grips with the man behind the music and separates the facts from the myths and legends. I thoroughly enjoyed the show and would recommend it to anyone looking to know more about Lennon’s life.
For more information about Lennon – Through A Glass Onion, visit: http://lennononstage.com
I’ve been to quite a few circuses in my time, most of them featuring big drafty tents with sawdust on the floor and clowns that weren’t really all that funny, but as long as they were animal free, I enjoyed them all the same for the sake of tradition. So I when I heard that the Chinese State Circus was visiting Dundee’s Caird Hall this week, I was curious to see how it would compare to the colourful seaside affairs that I was used to. Naturally The Caird Hall with its lovely comfy seats and central heating had its own plus points, but how would the Chinese State Circus fare against the run of the mill circuses that I was used to? Pretty damn well I’m happy to report!
My first observation was just how bloody glamourous the whole affair was. The stage was continually filled with dramatic dragons, beautiful acrobats wearing delicate gowns and fearsome martial art warriors who ripping the floor up with their slick moves. There were thrills aplenty with death defying acts and humour too provided by the Chinese State Circus’s very own cheeky monkey clown, whose mischievous antics had the audience chuckling along happily.
But the biggest difference I noted was the sheer level of skill that the performers displayed. It didn’t matter whether they were jumping through tiny spaces in the air, juggling umbrellas with their feet or contorting their bodies into weird and wonderful shapes – they looked graceful throughout, making the whole thing look incredibly easy!
The final act of the show was prime example of performers amazing abilities. Some might say that the Chinese State Circus’s jaw dropping bicycle act, which sees the performers balancing on top of each other while circling the small stage on bicycles, was just plain showing off! The only thing that I said while watching it was “please, please for the love of God, don’t fall off the stage….” I’m very happy to report that they did not!
The Chinese State Circus is currently touring the UK. For further information about the circus and to book tickets, visit: http://chinesestatecircus.com