Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 21 September 2014

Parrot tribute to Python quintet

A giant dead parrot sculpture was unveiled to promote the live broadcast of the final Monty Python Live stage show on comedy TV channel Gold

This ex-parrot has not been nailed on its perch but it has been hung upside down from a crane.

The fibre-glass version of the bird, which famously features in a celebrated Monty Python sketch where John Cleese tries to return a dead "Norwegian blue" parrot to a shop, is almost 50ft-long from the tip of its tail to the top of its head and took more than two months to make.

It was hung from a crane before being laid on its back at Potters Fields near London's Tower Bridge to mark the screening of the cult comedy act's live show on TV channel Gold.

Lead sculptor Iain Prendergast said: "We are all Monty Python fans so we were delighted to receive the brief from Gold to recreate the mythical Norwegian Blue on a giant scale.

"We watched both live and televised versions of the sketch and found that there have been a number of different incarnations of the parrot with a variety of different plumages.

"Our sculpture provides a colourful hybrid of the dead parrots which have featured in the celebrated sketch.

"The key challenge for us was capturing the comedy value of the dead parrot, keeping the realism of the bird whilst also adding touches like the bloodshot, stunned eyes."

The massive model will end up at the 02 in Greenwich where the remaining Pythons - Cleese, Michael Palin, Eric Idle, Terry Gilliam and Terry Jones - are performing their final comeback gig on Sunday.

Steve North, the general manager of Gold, said the giant bird was " a fitting tribute to a sketch that is so loved by audiences throughout the world".

The final show is on Gold on Sunday night from 7.30pm.

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