Judging by the approximately 400 biographies—which cover the entire sinner-to-saint spectrum—there are almost as many versions of John Lennon available for public consumption as there are ways to mark the I-remember-where-I-was-when-I-heard-the-news-oh-boy moment on December 8, 1980, when a deranged fan, “inspired” by The Catcher in the Rye, assassinated the ex-Beatle in the archway of the Dakota. Perhaps a better way to remember John than by, say, dropping a tab of acid and spinning “Revolution 9” backward would be checking out the Theatre Within Workshop’s 25th Annual Lennon Tribute, a benefit for homeless children. The show’s creator and director, Joe Raiola, who contributed an essay to Yoko Ono’s latest book, Memories of John Lennon (HarperEntertainment), promises a celebration of Lennon as “a man, a neighbor, and an artist,” and an exploration of the central themes of his life: peace, love, rebellion, spirituality, and personal transformation. Acts include singer-songwriters Jen Chapin (Harry’s daughter), Cliff Eberhardt, and Anais Mitchell; the Wendy Osserman Dance Company; and dramatic performances “in the spirit of John” by members of the Theatre Within Workshop.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on November 29, 2005