RATHER than trying to impersonate a musical icon as well as a legendary figure, John Waters wants to bring the essence of John Lennon to life on stage.
"I wanted to evoke his honesty, bitter-sweet humour, self-criticism and disdain for pretentiousness and pomposity," Waters said.
"The thing that separates this from other shows is that is has an emotional content that moves people. It's about a man, who deep down was dealing with the issue of, being an abandoned child … and he had to work through all of that. He was at his peak where he was happy and was being a father, and then he was shot …it's a real tragedy."
Created by John Waters and Stewart D'Arrietta in 1992, their unique production of Looking Through A Glass Onion has already done a massive 137-date tour in 2010-11-12, and are now returning with their "up close and personal" two-man show, while gearing up toward launching the production Off Broadway in New York.
One of the "highest selling Australian Artist tours in recent years", the pair are back to deliver the show to Rockhampton audiences at the Pilbeam Theatre on August 24.
While speaking to John, it was clear his passion for his art and the performance hadn't waned, with a career in the entertainment industry spanning decades.
"My motivation for this show was the things I wanted to say about him," Waters explained.
WHAT: Looking Through a Glass Onion
WHERE: The Pilbeam Theatre
WHEN: Sunday, 24 August, 8pm
TICKETS: Adult $55
www.seeitlive.com.au or phone 4927 4111
"I wouldn't say I'm a devoted fan, I love the music but I was part of the 60s rock revolution. I use a voice, I don't dress up ... I have a blast, and I enjoy it because it's one I've devised myself."
The show is not a cut-and-paste biography of Lennon or an emulation of the original recordings. On stage, with shadows from the lighting arrangement fluttering over his face, Waters explores the man through song and spoken word.
It's part-concert and part- biography, though it doesn't seek to tell the full story of Lennon's life.
"They get transported, and the big word that he always used, they 'imagine' John Lennon," he said.
"I get a great thrill of being there, playing music and performing and talking honestly from the heart.
"I love the fact that I can do things myself, like produce the music with my musician friend Stuart," Waters said.