Details of a new Beatles-themed play have been announced today (October 9), on what would have been the 77th birthday of John Lennon.
The comedy Lennon’s Banjo will premiere at Liverpool’s Epstein Theatre (April 24-May 5), telling the story behind the beginning of the singer-songwriter’s musical journey, influenced by his mother Julia.
The first tune he learned to play was That’ll Be The Day, and he was taught by his mother on the banjo.
Lennon was estranged from his parents and brought up by his Aunt Mimi.
He said in many interviews: “I lost my mother twice. Once when I was five years old when she left me with my Aunt Mimi, and again at 17 when she was run over by a drunken off-duty police officer.”
Mysteriously, the banjo went missing shortly after her death and no-one has seen it since.
If it did resurface, it is estimated to be worth in the region of £5 million.
The play is based on the 2012 novel Julia’s Banjo by Rob Fennah and Helen A. Jones.
Fennah commented: “The show tells the story of a Beatles tour guide who uncovers a clue to the whereabouts of Lennon’s missing banjo. It’s like The Beatles meets the Da Vinci Code.
“Julia’s banjo played a vital part in hers and John’s lives; nurturing and developing John’s musical talent; and of course, the history of popular music.”
Sponsors of the production include The Cavern, The Beatles Story, Hard Days Night Hotel, and The Beatles Shop.