Review: Lennon Though A Glass Onion at The Epstein Theatre

I’M not a huge fan of The Beatles or John Lennon but after having seen a little preview at the press launch I was really looking forward to this. I wasn’t disappointed. Lennon Through A Glass Onion is a monologue interspersed with lots and lots of songs – 36 to be precise – many of which I wasn’t that familiar with. And that’s what makes this show stand out from some other Beatles-inspired pieces I’ve seen over the years. It’s more than just a jukebox, greatest hits malarkey. The show starts with Lennon noticing a fan hanging around the Dakota building in New York – the fan who is about to kill him. What follows is Lennon reflecting on his life through speech and song and it works really well. Local lad Daniel Taylor is very convincing as Lennon – he’s got the voice, the look and, perhaps most importantly, the attitude. Pianist Stewart D’Arrietta is a tour de force on the old Joanna and he sings some mean harmonies too. As the show progresses Lennon becomes more melancholic, more vulnerable as the bullets approach. The show ends with a haunting rendition of Imagine, brilliantly lit so that at the beginning Lennon actually looks like a corpse only to be illuminated back to life as the song builds. The audience gave this performance a standing ovation and it was deserved. Both Taylor and D’Arrietta worked their socks off in what, particularly for Daniel Taylor, must be a pretty gruelling show. It’s on at The Epstein until 29 April. Go and see it. Review by Andy Green