One Down, Five to Go

Last Saturday I had the pleasure of going to see one of the best comedy groups the world has ever known perform live - Monty Python.

Monty Python One Down Five to Go
I am unable to resist merchandise at an event

I feel like I've waited forever for July to arrive, I booked these tickets waaaaaay back in November and it was a very stressful morning on Ticketmaster trying to get them as every date seemed to sell out in seconds. However, I persevered and eventually got some seats secured for the Saturday night show at the end of the first week.

Try not to look at the price. No really, don't. 

I can never sing the praises of the o2 in North Greenwich enough. Every event I've been to there has been brilliant, I'm convinced that no matter what seats you book you'd have a great view and the crowd control at the tube station afterwards is exceptional. Wembley, you have a lot to learn from these guys!

The first thing that struck me about this event was the demographic of the attendees. Everyone was my age or older. It was like seeing R.E.M in 2005 all over again. I guess that's a sign of the material and the performers, Python was formed in 1969, so it makes sense that the main appeal would be to a slightly older demographic. Also, there were lots of swears, so very much not suitable to a young audience. 

The thing that struck me the most was how spry these guys still are on stage. I accept that stage energy and a live audience is responsible for a lot of enthusiasm when performing, but these guys blew me away. A slight bumble of lines at the beginning from Idle and Cleese was the only thing I noticed, but in their defence it was during a sketch which is very repetitive with wording (the Four Yorkshiremen), and it was the first sketch, so I can understand the odd stumble. I think if I was performing to an audience of 20,000 who knew my work word-for-word I'd probably feel a little overwhelmed too. 

They did get some breaks during the 2.5 hours performance. Some old sketches were shown on the screens in the arena (it was the way they still managed to get a lot of Graham Chapman into the show), there were lots of Gilliam's animations shown, some great musical numbers and an entire troop of West End performers to help make the event more spectacular. Some material was updated for these shows too, which was great to see and was just as topical and silly as the old stuff - they've definitely still got it.

I must admit, I'm not one for seeing comedy events in such a big venue as I'm always concerned the performers get a little lost in the size of the arena. In this case, I was proved wrong. Python filled the stage with their enthusiasm, the video screen interaction definitely helped a great deal and there's nothing quite like hearing 20,000 people laugh, recite along with some of the sketches and, most importantly, sing along!

Monty Python One Down Five to Go
I love shows where there's an actual orchestra in the orchestra pit

It was a brilliant night out, I still worship Michael Palin and to be able to see Python, 45 years down the line, was a brilliant experience. They fully deserved the standing ovation that they received at the end of the show.

Hurry up dvd release, I want to watch this again already. 

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