Amsterdam’s COMPLEAT FOOLS – THE CRITIQUE PAGE

A new book about actors, musicians, clowns and fools by Michael Evans & Johnny Melville

Covid gave me the opportunity to down tools from performing as a clown and actor but instead of becoming frantic about the lockdowns like many people I concentrated on a more positive line and sat to write what I could for the book. It was a fruitful and entertaining time as I lived back thirty, forty and fifty years of experiences that I would have never have traded for much else in my life. It was challenging and exhausting in many ways since any book which requires accurate archiving needs absolute correct information.

Book cover designed by Michael Evans

That was hard, sometimes forced due to memory loss and confusion to cross check with various people online who were also there at those fabulous Fools Festivals in the Netherlands. Google gave little help since most of the stories I wanted to tell were indeed long before internet and even computers.

I conducted many video conferences over the days, weeks and months of our brutal social confinements from Barcelona, Spain with Michael Evans who was also in lockdown but far away in Utah in the USA. We did our best to compensate for the distant time zones. We would discuss perspectives, angles, pictures, themes and I would suggest and take on articles that he hadn’t even considered. What has occurred is quite a unique and memorable book of an amazingly fruitful and creative period in the history of World Theatre. Michael wrote articles too on the American scene and did a wonderful job of doctoring the programs, photographs and other graphics which were primitive to say the least in the 1970s.

Here below are a list of reviews from readers, clown and fool performers & the press.

JOAN MERWYN ☆☆☆☆☆ on Barnes & Noble (click for full review)

This book ought to be available in every library in the US and abroad…

THE must-have mime-clown-foolery memorabilia book…!

JOAN BORGMAN ☆☆☆☆☆ on Barnes & Noble (click for full review)

if you have any interest in the history of Indoor, outdoor, theatrical or street performance, this book is a must for your library

ADAM GERTSACOV ☆☆☆☆☆ on his Personal Blog (click for full review)

…this book is a must read.  It is thorough, fascinating, and entertaining.

If you would like to order a copy of COMPLEAT FOOLS please use the form below

Festival of Fools Amsterdam, 1978: IMPROV NIGHT with (L to R): Matt Mitler, Johnny Melville, Justin Case & Peter Wear
Johnny Melville performing as clown
Johnny Melville of Salakta Balloon Band performing in Depfford London, 1974
Michael Evans (L) performing with Theatre Slapstique at the Openlucht Theater, Vondel Park, Amsterdam. 1976

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