FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 28, 2005
The IN-complete History of Monty Python
The Museum of Television & Radio Presents The IN-complete History of Monty Python
April 1 to June 12, 2005
New York, NY and Los Angeles, CA—The Museum of Television & Radio will present The IN-complete History of Monty Python, a screening series running in New York and Los Angeles from April 1 to June 12, 2005.
One of a handful of British television programs to have a tremendous impact in America, Monty Python's Flying Circus (which aired in Great Britain from 1969 to 1974 and made its debut on U.S. television in October of 1974) is one of the landmarks of the medium, featuring irreverent, wildly inventive material that continues to be quoted and referenced to this day. Its creators and stars, Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle, Terry Jones, and Michael Palin, are recognized as six of the most influential contributors to sketch comedy. This spring, Broadway presents the New York premiere of Spamalot, the first stage musical to be derived from the works of the Pythons. Based on their 1975 feature film Monty Python and the Holy Grail, the show is directed by Mike Nichols, with book by Eric Idle, who has also contributed new songs written in collaboration with John Du Prez. The Museum celebrates the latest incarnation of Monty Python with a screening series featuring some of the best episodes from the Flying Circus (including, of course, the classic "Spam" routine), plus material done by members of the team before and after the series.
The five separate packages will screen in New York Tuesdays to Sundays at 12:30 p.m., with an additional screening Thursday evenings at 6:00 p.m., and in Los Angeles Wednesdays to Sundays at 12:30 p.m.
Sex and Violence
Some rarely seen pre-Python material includes John Cleese on Frost Over England (1967); the premiere of the children's series Do Not Adjust Your Set (1968), featuring the work of Eric Idle, Terry Jones, and Michael Palin; and segments of Cleese and Graham Chapman on At Last the 1948 Show (1967). In addition, the first two episodes of Monty Python's Flying Circus are included, the second featuring the notorious "killer joke," later told by Idle in German at a Museum seminar.
Full Frontal Nudity
Three Python episodes are featured, with such sketches as "Hell's Grannies," "Dead Parrot," and Michael Palin as "A.T. Hun." Also included are clips of John Cleese and Graham Chapman on The Ed Sullivan Show (1964), a sketch from At Last the 1948 Show (1967), and Palin's visit to The Tonight Show (1989) during which he talked about the parrot sketch, as reinterpreted by Cleese at Chapman's memorial service.
April 29-May 12
One of the Python's best-remembered episodes features a much-loved restaurant where everything comes with the spreadable meat product. Also included in the package are an excerpt from At Last the 1948 Show (1967); a 1989 appearance on The Tonight Show by Michael Palin; and the second of the team's German productions, Monty Python Blodeln für Deutschland (1972).
Royal Episode Thirteen
The "Exploding Blue Danube" features in the Python episode Royal Episode Thirteen, while the "Fish-Slapping Dance" is one of the highlights of Mr. & Mrs. Brian Norris' Ford Popular. Also included are "Scott of the Antarctic/Sahara," John Cleese chatting on Late Night with David Letterman (1983), and Eric Idle portraying Prince Charles on Saturday Night Live (1979).
May 27-June 9
Immediately after Python, Eric Idle developed his own series, Rutland Weekend Television (1975), purportedly broadcast from Britain's smallest television station; and, in collaboration with Neil Innes, created the ultimate Beatles spoof, The Rutles: All You Need is Cash (1978).
Admission to screenings of The IN-complete History of Monty Python is included with the Museum's suggested contribution: Members free; $10.00 for adults; $8.00 for senior citizens and students; and $5.00 for children under fourteen. Admission is free in Los Angeles.
The Museum of Television & Radio, with locations in New York and Los Angeles, is a nonprofit organization founded by William S. Paley to collect and preserve television and radio programs and advertisements and to make them available to the public. Since opening in 1976, the Museum has organized exhibitions, screening and listening series, seminars, and education classes to showcase its collection of over 100,000 television and radio programs and advertisements. Programs in the Museum's permanent collection are selected for their artistic, cultural, and historic significance.
The Museum of Television & Radio in New York, located at 25 West 52 Street in Manhattan, is open Tuesdays through Sundays from noon to 6:00 p.m. and until 8:00 p.m. on Thursdays. The Museum of Television & Radio in California, located at 465 North Beverly Drive in Beverly Hills, is open Wednesdays through Sundays from noon to 5:00 p.m. Both Museums are closed on New Year's Day, Independence Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. Suggested contribution: Members free; $10.00 for adults; $8.00 for senior citizens and students; and $5.00 for children under fourteen. Admission is free in Los Angeles. The public areas in both Museums are accessible to wheelchairs, and assisted listening devices are available. Programs are subject to change. You may call the Museum in New York at (212) 621-6800, or in Los Angeles at (310) 786-1000. Visit the Museum's website at www.mtr.org.