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Rehearsal: Pierrot In Turquoise, Mercury Theatre, London

A final dress rehearsal for Lindsay Kemp’s mime production Pierrot In Turquoise took place on 4 March 1968, ahead of its opening night at London’s Mercury Theatre.

The musical had opened at Oxford’s New Theatre on 28 December 1967, followed by three nights in January 1968 at the Rosehill Theatre in Whitehaven. On 5 March it began a 12-night run at the Mercury.

There were just three performers in Pierrot In Turquoise: Lindsay Kemp in the title role, David Bowie as Cloud, and Jack Birkett (a blind performer also known as the Great Orlando) as Harlequin.

This leg of the production was directed by Jean-Pierre Voos, with music arranged by Gordon Rose. The costumes were designed by Natasha Kornilof, who would work with Bowie on several occasions throughout the 1970s.

Kemp made his entrance by descending in a white hammock that represented the moon, while David, as Cloud, flitted about him. David wore a papier-mâché mask modelled on Kemp’s face, and the Great Orlando held up the frame of a mirror so that Kemp could paint himself with moonbeams.
Alias David Bowie
Peter and Leni Gillman

Programme for Pierrot In Turquoise, Mercury Theatre, London, March 1968

Bowie sang seven of his own songs during this run of the production, with piano accompaniment by Michael Garrett: ‘When I Live My Dream’, ‘Sell Me A Coat’, ‘Silly Boy Blue’, ‘Love You Till Tuesday’, ‘There Is A Happy Land’, ‘Come And Buy My Toys’, and ‘Maid Of Bond Street’.

Bowie’s complete run in Pierrot In Turquoise ran to 21 nights: 28 December 1967; 3, 4, 5 January 1968; 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16 March 1968; and 26, 27, 28, 29, 30 March 1968.

Last updated: 25 April 2023
Travel: Hamburg to London
Stage: Pierrot In Turquoise, Mercury Theatre, London
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