Search

EXCLUSIVE: Monty Python to perform Spanish Inquisition sketch live for first time ever at O2

14:14 16 May 2014

The surviving members of Monty Python hope to perform The Spanish Inquisition sketch live for the first time ever at the O2 reunion gigs this summer

The surviving members of Monty Python hope to perform The Spanish Inquisition sketch live for the first time ever at the O2 reunion gigs this summer

Archant

Losing the chief weapons of fear and surprise, Michael Palin has revealed surviving members of Monty Python will attempt to perform the Spanish Inquisition sketch live for the first time ever at their hotly anticipated O2 reunion gigs this summer.

Michael Palin with Noella Bello Castro (left), parent governor, and Monika Rego, chair of Parents at Carlton, who organised the fundraising talk at Carlton Primary School. Picture: Nigel SuttonMichael Palin with Noella Bello Castro (left), parent governor, and Monika Rego, chair of Parents at Carlton, who organised the fundraising talk at Carlton Primary School. Picture: Nigel Sutton

Speaking to an intimate audience of 200 people at Carlton Primary School in Camden last Friday, Palin said the legendary comedy troupe will attempt the classic sketch live.

It is one of Monty Python’s best loved acts, in which Palin and fellow inquisitors dressed in red capes burst into a drawing room and declare: “Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition! Our chief weapon is surprise, fear and surprise; two chief weapons, fear, surprise, and ruthless efficiency! Er, among our chief weapons are: fear, surprise, ruthless efficiency, and near fanatical devotion to the Pope! Um, I’ll come in again...”

Palin also revealed the Pythons hope to include the late Graham Chapman, who died in 1989, in the live show using the O2’s large onstage screens.

The first O2 gig sold out in 43.5 seconds when tickets went on sale earlier this year and will see all the surviving Pythons perform live together for the first time in 40 years.

Palin spoke at Carlton Primary in Gospel Oak to a sell-out audience, including one female fan who had flown all the way from New York, to raise money for a new sensory garden the school hopes to build.

The Python star and travel writer has been a patron for more than a decade and is a fervent supporter of the school’s work within a catchment area of north London that includes a diverse intake.

“I’ve lived near the school for a long time and one of our neighbours was on the board of governors and introduced me to the school and I just from the first moment I came here I really warmed to it,” Palin told the Ham&High.

“There’s something about the place. It looks very big and gaunt from outside but there’s lots of pictures around and it’s very warm.

“What I particularly liked was that there were children from all over the world.

“Talking about my travels was great because I learned a lot about countries I’d been to and some I hadn’t.

“What’s been done here over the last few years has been very inspiring and the sensory garden will just add to the fact that the school is always thinking of something to do to improve.

“I think for a lot of children who have recently come to this country it’s really important for them to have somewhere welcoming for their first school and that’s what Carlton does really well and it makes me quite proud to be associated with it.

“It seems such a happy school and I’m trying to do everything I can to keep it going in that way.”

The talk fell on the 80th birthday of Alan Bennett, widely regarded as one of Britain’s greatest living playwrights, and the Python star publicly praised his friend as “one of the most accomplished writers in this country today”.

But Palin remembered recognition was not always so forthcoming as he recounted filming with the prolific dramatist in the 1980s.

Palin was cast as a chiropodist alongside Dame Maggie Smith in Bennett’s comedy A Private Function, filmed in Yorkshire where Bennett would often visit the set.

The Python star remembered having his trousers smeared with sardine oil, irresistible to a particularly stubborn co-star – a pig who refused to be tempted into a car during a scene.

He described how smelly fish oil was slopped onto the beautiful leather interior and finally the pig jumped onto the front seat.

But Palin balked as the car’s owner approached, wondering how he would explain the smell of “pig s*** and sardine oil”.

Meanwhile a nervous Bennett stood up a hill chewing his tie.

So it was that the car owner asked who the writer of the film was, to Palin’s reply “It’s Alan Bennett, he’s up there”.

His response: “Well he’s no Ibsen is he!”

Palin spoke for almost two hours about his recent travels in Brazil and Monty Python’s TV series and films before signing autographs and posing for photographs with fans.

The talk raised £6,000 for the school’s fundraising efforts.

Related stories:

Michael Palin to perform intimate gig at Camden school ahead of Monty Python comeback

Latest News Stories

19:51
Naushad Faruk. Picture: Central News.

A famous glamour model from Camden sobbed as she described how a cameraman persuaded her to engage in a sex act with him by threatening to take away the Chihuahua puppy he had given her as a gift.

18:40
Jihadi John

The secondary school that ISIS executioner ‘Jihadi John’ attended in St John’s Wood has said it is ‘shocked and sickened by the news’.

18:14
A swastika has been daubed at the top of Highgate West Hill in Highgate

A police investigation has been launched as more offensive swastika signs have been found graffitied on notice boards and bus shelters near Hampstead Heath.

14:26
Firefighters at the block of flats in Pilgrim's Lane, Hampstead. Picture: Kate Samuelson

A fire that burned behind walls and under floors has caused damage to a block of flats in Hampstead.

Most read news

Property Newsletter Sign-up

The latest North London property news and features straight into your inbox.

Other Emails:
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot

Among the charitable causes the prince hopes to champion are wildlife conservation and justice for injured service personnel.

Although Farage may not have mentioned the fascist pre-conference entertainment, his speech showed he’s very aware of his party’s image.

Leonard Nimoy is currently dominating six of the top trend slots on Twitter. His fans, friends and co-stars should be proud.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Hampstead & Highgate Express e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24
Our trusted business finder