Opera acts

Scene one — Deep down

The opera begins with the murder of Lennon. A real nightmare commences in the head of the fatally wounded Lennon. In order to ease his dying, Yoko calls out for spring that appears in the form of May Pang, John and Yoko’s assistant who according to her autobiography became John’s mistress during their marital crisis. May is John’s companion throughout his dream. In addition to the dialogues that take place between John and May, we can hear the inner monologues of the desperate Yoko and the cynical thoughts of John’s killer Mark Chapman.

Scene two — Everything from my wish list

Stu, the first bass guitarist of The Beatles and friend of John’s youth, appears in this scene. The encounter with his friend who died from a brain haemorrhage at the tender age of 22 uplifts John, but saying goodbye to him again would throw him into despair. Chapman exploits John’s depressive state caused by this parting and creeps like a phantom into the scene to remind John of the painful loss of his mother who died when he was 17. Lennon sees this as a fatal omen of his own unnatural death. Aunt Mimi, his mother’s sister who raised him, intervenes, to be joined by Yoko and Cynthia. The dispute between Yoko and Cynthia ends in a reconciliatory tango for three in which John invites the two women to make up.

Scene three — In a time machine

His mother Julia appears in John’s dream. At first, he is glad to see her, but soon after begins to doubt that she is a vision that will disappear just like Stu, who left him as abruptly as he appeared. Paul tries to comfort the bereaved John and is joined by Julian, John’s son from his marriage with Cynthia. Julian laments about the lack of John’s attention and this agitates John and makes him wish for a drastic distraction or diversion. Brian Epstein, the first manager of The Beatles (who also died before John) appears on the stage and gathers all the members of the band. The men decide to create something new and go for the genre of opera. Their opera that includes the appearance of Yoko evokes the last gathering of the band (1969) on the rooftop of the Apple Corps headquarters in London’s Savile Row.

Scene four — Karmic wheel

Mark Chapman, masked and with a selfish intention of coaxing out of John, his victim, redemption under the pretence of inviting John to play, sneaks into the emptiness that emerges when the opera falls silent. John defies playing the karmic roulette, especially with a masked person. He insists on seeing the face of the person he is talking to. The scene culminates with the revealing of Chapman’s face and the dramatic confrontation of John with his own killer.

Scene five — Imagine peace forever

John leaves May in this scene because everything is pulling him towards Yoko, just as it was in real life. In the euphoric finale, all the characters gather around invoking light and peace in the world. At the very beginning of the scene there is a motif of whiteness that initially points to the blindness of John’s oncoming death. In the following sequence, however, the meaning of whiteness comes to be understood as a symbolic reference to peace. The invitation to give peace a chance evokes the anthemic power of John’s composition Give Peace a Chance, and with it John’s pacifism that marks his everlasting spiritual legacy.