The Secret Policeman's Other Ball1982
The Secret Policeman's Other Ball was the fourth of the benefit shows staged by the British Section of Amnesty International to raise funds for its research and campaign work in the human rights field. It was the second of many shows to bear the celebrated "Secret Policeman's" title that became the iconic series known informally as The Secret Policeman's Balls.
The show took place at the Drury Lane theatre in London over four nights between Wednesday 9 September and Saturday 12 September 1981. It was a successor to the 1979 show The Secret Policeman's Ball. Not all artists appeared at all performances: Phil Collins, for example, could not commit to all four and was present at the last two shows only.
The show was directed by Monty Python alumnus John Cleese and produced by Martin Lewis and Peter Walker (Amnesty's fundraising officer). It subsequently yielded two separate movies (one version for the UK, directed by Julien Temple, and a quite different version for the US) and two record albums (one each of comedy and music performances). The film was distributed by Miramax.
The budget of the 1981 film was £125,000.
The show was very influential in galvanizing rock musicians to become involved in the human rights issue and in other political and social causes in subsequent decades. Musicians who performed at the show who subsequently became activists in various fields include Sting, Bob Geldof, Eric Clapton, Phil Collins, Donovan and Midge Ure.
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