Jam sessions, patter with a Southern drawl, big dance numbers, and a bit of sweat: this is a re-enactment of Elvis Presley’s 1968 Comeback Special. Sort of.
It’s an experiment in time drag; wearing another time as drag and dragging another time into the present. What happens if the Comeback comes back? Like a half-remembered dream or two mirrors facing each other or repeating a word so much it loses its meaning.
Comeback Special is a double negative. It’s not the original, but it’s not not.
Greg welcomes Elvis fans, theatre fans and anyone who thinks this peculiar re-enactment might be fun. He certainly does.
Although Presley is the ghostly heart of it, it’s neither an act of homage nor a simple nostalgia trip… By blurring the line between performers and their public, as well as the past and the present, Wohead creates a special bond
★★★★ The Times
He catches the swagger, the sex appeal, the smile. His attention is exacting – so concentrated and precise – and the process of transforming is transfixing: both electric and ghoulish. There’s the air of a séance: a comeback special.
Matt Trueman, Whatsonstage
Drained of the bright, synthetic colour of 1960s fashion, Wohead’s version is a shadow or skeleton of the original event. Recreated in monochrome, this is a black-and-white negative of the 1968 Comeback Special. An echo. A ghost.
Catherine Love, Exeunt Magazine
Co-commissioned by Shoreditch Town Hall, Theatre in the Mill and South Street Arts Centre. A Jerwood Charitable Foundation/Bristol Old Vic Ferment Commission. Developed at MAKE, Bios, Greenwich and Lewisham Young People’s Theatre and the New Wolsey Theatre. Initially supported through a 2014 Dance and the Homemade Commission by Chisenhale Dance Space.
Supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.