Cult singer, songwriter and actor Anthony Newley gets his own night at the NFT in London, courtesy of the Flipside's Newley Appreciated, which takes place on Thursday 30th April.
In NFT1 at 6:30pm, you can check out Can Heironymous Merkin Ever Forget Mercy Humppe And Find True Happiness? from 1969. Written, directed by and starring Newley, he plays troubled song-and-dance man Merkin reviewing life so far, alongside then real-life wife Joan Collins. The resulting overblown psychedelic oddity – with moments of painful apparent honesty that many might have saved for their therapist – is by turns funny, disturbing, uncomfortable, challenging, or just plain weird. If that's not enough for you, 8:45pm brings more Newley.
The second half of the show is Newley Preserved: Anthony Newley on TV – great performances and hen’s teeth rarities from Newley’s television career – including a not-to-be-missed opportunity to see the whole fourth episode of surreal comedy series The Strange World Of Gurney Slade (ATV 1960), with Newley’s Slade on trial, facing the death sentence for making a comedy show that isn’t funny. Also, see Tony rock – but gently – with the King of Easy himself in the Val Doonican Music Show (BBC 1979); plus post-psychedelic weirdness with Newley as a white-suited Harrisonesque love guru in The Beatles Forever (ATV 1977) and Tony and Sammy Davis Jr. in their legendary Bacharach TV Special Candyman encounter.
Joint tickets for both shows are £12.50 – see the BFI website for details and booking.